So, over the past two weeks, all my headphone equipment has died. The shanling's input selector switch broke internally (can't go to either input, is just lodged permanently between the two, shorting the power switch it seems), and the HE-5's cable broke inside the left ear-cup cable. So now, I'm looking for recommendations on what I should be looking at, since I haven't been keeping up that much, and it seems things have changed dramatically. I have roughly $300-400 to work with, and I can either buy an amp and the replacement cable for the HE-5's (I could make one, but I have zero interest in that hassle), or I can buy a cheaper set of phones that are easier to drive, and a cheaper amp (thinking something in the area of a soundmagic hp200 and a schiit magni amp), or I can skip the amp for now, use the one built into my Music Hall a50.2 speaker amp, and get some cans in the $400 range. Any opinions? I know it sounds kind of silly to even consider not just replacing the cable (I'm sure I will eventually anyway), but I've had the he-5's a while, and given that there have been the he-5le and he-400/500 models since then, I'm wondering if they he-5's are actually worth putting more money into at this point. Also, I have a feeling the ph100 was never really amping them that great (I could easily be wrong, as I have no great comparison), so I'm wondering if final quality might not be better if I have some easier to drive cans instead.
Anyway, would love to hear what you guys think. Definitely only looking at open cans, but I'm not married to anything in particular. I've had a pair of hd600's in the past and liked them, but gave them to a friend when I got the he-5's, and I have a pair of sure 840's that are okay, but closed, and are so sensitive they are picking up a lot of hiss going through my music hall amp (the he-5s didn't have that problem, which I assume is because of the higher resistance). So yeah, fire away, I appreciate any ideas you guys may have. Oh, and I have no objection to refurbished gear, if you guys know where it can be obtained form non-shady sources ;)