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Efficient over-ear under ~$3K

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

Can anyone recommend a pair of over-ear headphones for under about $3K?  I will be plugging them straight into the Wavelength Proton USB DAC without a headphone amp so they need to be efficient.

 

Does anyone know which of the following are efficient?

 

http://www.headphone.com/blogs/news/14003273-top-10-audiophile-headphones-of-2014


Edited by headfirocks - 6/21/14 at 10:00am
post #2 of 29

Got no idea how good that DACs headphone output is.. Got a speaker/power amp as well? Then you should perhaps consider hifiman HE-6

post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 

I'm actually looking to only use the Proton without a separate headphone amp.  Which are the best over-ear headphones efficient enough to consider for this?

post #4 of 29

A number of these high end headphones will require a matched amplifier to deliver their best.

I'd suggest either check with your dealer -- or even the designer Gordon Rankin -- to sort out

what will work best.

 

This leaves aside what kind of performance characteristics you might like, of course.  

post #5 of 29
Well, my point is, some headphones Can be driven directly from speaker amplifiers.
Aside from that, oppo pm-1 and akg k812 are quite easy to drive. Maybe some of the higher end grados too.
But it is hard to recommend anything when we don't know how good your amplification is. For all we know it could be a 1$ chip inside the DAC.
post #6 of 29
Thread Starter 

Wow, those are efficient.  The Oppo PM-1 is 102db and the AKG K812 is 110db.  Any others?  The Audeze LCD-X is efficent at 96db but is it efficient enough?

post #7 of 29
Hard to say, the headphone out on your DAC is still unknown to is. Besides, the k812 is likely 110 dB/V, which isn't comparable to the other specs you found. I could calculate it for you, though.
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 

How can I come up with comparable efficiency specs for different headphones so I can compare them?

 

I'm leaning toward the AKG K812 right now.  Everything I'm reading says it performs well in just about any setup including a cell phone, so I think it would do just fine connected to my Proton DAC.  Plus it doesn't require an adapter for 3.5mm which is what I need for the Proton.  Here's a fairly glowing review:

 

http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/akg3/1.html

 

When comparing the AKG K812 to the Sennheiser HD800, they say the HD800 "demands a better amp to blossom".  Here's a one-sentence local opinion:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/685339/akg-k812-pro/810#post_10219492

 

I found this info regarding my DAC:

 

"Output Impedance Headphone ~ 1 ohm
Minimum impedance for headphones should be 32 ohms."


Edited by headfirocks - 6/21/14 at 1:30pm
post #9 of 29
The k812's sensitivity is 95-96 dB//mW.
The other headphones are specified in dB/mW as well.
You should also look out for the impedance rating. If impedance is high they'll be harder to drive too, though that depends on the individual amp.
post #10 of 29
Thread Starter 

Hmmm, so their efficiency spec isn't really outstanding.  Their resistance is said to be 36Ω.  Is that impressive?  If not, I'm not sure why they are said to be so easy to drive.  In the absence of reliable benchmarks, should I just rely on anecdotal evidence?

post #11 of 29
Actually, the k812 isn't even up to spec according to innerfidelity measurements. It is both higher impedance and harder to drive than LCD x
post #12 of 29
Thread Starter 

Should I rely on specs/benchmarks or reports of people getting great performance with minimal gear?  I would think the former but this thread is full of the latter despite the specs/benchmarks:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/685339/akg-k812-pro

 

This will be my first set of headphones so I'm not sure what to do.


Edited by headfirocks - 6/21/14 at 3:20pm
post #13 of 29
Understandable. If you ask me, I'm not very fond of the k812 since it seems to measure rather mediocre for a flagship and it doesn't quite seem to be that amazing.
Wouldn't buy pm-1 either because it seems to roll the treble and just isn't very convincing to me either.
Nor would I buy the Audeze, they are too heavy. The sound could convince me though, but I'd want to demo them first.
post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by headfirocks View Post
 

Can anyone recommend a pair of over-ear headphones for under about $3K?  I will be plugging them straight into the Wavelength Proton USB DAC without a headphone amp so they need to be efficient.

 

Does anyone know which of the following are efficient?

 

http://www.headphone.com/blogs/news/14003273-top-10-audiophile-headphones-of-2014

DOn't use a High end Headphone with only a Dac, that's not the best idea in the world, In stead get your self something like the LCD X, the AKG K812, The Beyerdynamic T1, the LCD 3, the Hifiman HE 560, maybe even the HE 6

 

and then spend your reaming, like $1500 dollars on a nice amp, for under $3000, you'll enjoy your headphones a LOT more than just our of ur dac 

post #15 of 29
Depends on what camp you are in, after all some believe that all decent solid states sound virtually the same provided they have decent measurements and enough power...
Ima use the hd800 with the emotiva mini-x speaker amp and some EQ if anything needs correction. Wonder how that'll sound.
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