Head-Fi.org › Forums › Help and Getting Started › Introductions, Help and Recommendations › "Best" audiophile-like headphones for iPod?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

"Best" audiophile-like headphones for iPod?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

As one approaches the stratosphere of "summit" quality headphones, one must take on lower efficiencies, higher impedance, 1/4" plugs, and 10' long cables thicker than a pencil.  The response is pre-amps, headphone amps, wall plugs, vacuum tubes, and being tethered to a "listening station."


What is a top quality headphone that is suited for simple portable audio (esp. iPod) use?  To me, "iPod use" includes:


  • 1/8" plug;
  • approx 4' cable;
  • closed (probably... need not share your music with your neighbor);
  • operates well off a source such as iPod Touch 5th gen (an EXCELLENT source.. 0.73 ohms output) or perhaps older iPod (pre Lightening connector, where the "Line Out" is truly analog, not reconstructed by a DAC in the plug!);
  • needs no amp or DAC;
  • reasonably small (not essential, but cannot fall off your head if you stoop down while walking to pick something up);
  • volume and transport remote control as part of cable.


Of the ones in my 24-headphone inventory, it is either the NAD VISO hp50 over-ear or the Shure 535 IEM, but I suspect if I were willing to pay more, there might be something better, perhaps in the $1,000+ range.


Any ideas?  Thanks!

post #2 of 11

Beyerdynamic T5p meets most of those criteria and are marketed as portables, but I wouldn't call them reasonably small!

post #3 of 11

pandora hope Vi ....not small too.

or yamaha mt220 but u need to snip the coil cable down to 4ft

post #4 of 11

My advise if you truly wanna get to the top end of portable audio, forget about over-ears and get some CIEMs like the JH13 Pro.

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thanks, folks.   I had not thought of any of these...


@WraithApe;  the Beyer T 5 - good suggestion, and size is not that much of an issue as long as they don't fall off during leaning over or modest activity (I don't mean jogging).


@Lorspeaker I had heard of but not seen the Pandora and that particular Yamaha... thanks!


@AnalogSavior- good idea... the Shure 535 universal-fit IEMs are my favorite... custom fit IEMs can only be still better.

post #6 of 11
post #7 of 11

I don't know if there is a "best" headphone because we all have different preferences - some like recessed mids, some like stronger bass, some like a more neutral sound, etc. Check out this video, it has a good comparison of lots of portable cans on the market right now. You might want to check out the Sennheiser Momentums.


post #8 of 11

Maybe I got the wrong end of the stick, but I thought OP was asking for suggestions of "Summit-Fi" portables in the $1000+ range. While the Momentums are very good (and arguably a better idea than phones like Beyer T5p for mobile devices), they aren't top of the range headphones. 


I'm inclined to agree with @AnalogSavior that over-ears are maybe not the way to go for top end portable. Headphones like the T5p or even Audeze LCD-XC can be driven by an iPod, but you wouldn't be close to getting the best out of them - it just wouldn't compare to using them with separate DAC + amp. Any over-ear headphone in this price range should scale and the better your source equipment, the more you'll get out of them.  

Edited by WraithApe - 6/1/14 at 3:48pm
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

I indeed was asking about summit-level audiophile headphones, and I appreciate the new direction pointed by Analog Savior and confirmed by WraithApe toward CIEMs.


However, I am a headphone-holic (there, I said it).  If anyone points me to a good headphone, I run after it!!!  Thanks!  :bigsmile_face:

post #10 of 11

Hmmm...I really enjoyed the Denon AH-D5000 when I got a chance to listen to them.  Maybe something worth considering if you can find a pair at a reasonable price.


Closed and TOTL is kind of a small market.

Edited by AnalogSavior - 6/1/14 at 4:50pm
post #11 of 11

I'm a Big Big fan of the NAD HP50.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Help and Getting Started › Introductions, Help and Recommendations › "Best" audiophile-like headphones for iPod?