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The sr950 has deeper sub bass to please people looking for a clearer, less bassy xb500 but the sr850 has far more details in the mids and a better soundstage. The xb500s are better for bass music and rock when you EQ them, but the sr850 sound more realistic, spacious and work for every type of music.

As for gaming, xb500s are delicious for explosions, but the sr950s and sr850s have them beat for soundstage (locating enemies by sound) while still having the "whoosh" and "boom" the developers intended.

Senheisser HD555s are just as good for gaming IMHO, being so open sounding and also boomy through my receiver, but the sr850s have better spatial placement of sounds, for those who like to track down their prey like I do in First person shooters. My current favorite is Titanfall.

Also I have JVC XTREME XPLOSIV FX1X earbuds, and they sound like the xb500 but not as capable when EQ'd especially for soundstage and clarity. Neither really is that good for competitive gaming, but they are highly indulgent for bass heads who like a little low and dirty in their music selection. The sr950s are the next best choice for bass, and have far more clarity and separation. Still, when I listen to music in general, I'll either highly EQ my xb500 or just grab my sr850's for their true, and still bassy musicality.
Edited by Audiaunce - 4/21/14 at 2:17pm