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Search for my first pair of $300 or less headphones

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi,

I am a new member to the head-fi forums and am deciding to upgrade my stock Samsung headphones. I usually listen to hip-hop, rap, r&b, rock, pop, dubstep and house music. I am looking for a high-end choice at $300 or less. After reading several threads My choices have come down to these four:

Denon AH-5000
HiFiman HE-400
Sennheiser Momentum
Sennheiser HD 650

I'm looking for great quality sound, comfort, good bass nothing Too muddy is fine with me, and a price at least around 300 or less. The Denons are my first choice however they are very costly so I am looking for an alternative to them unless someone can recommend me a place/person I can find them for my specified price range.

I've read the Hifiman he-400 are great at price for the quality of rich sound and balance and would like to know how they compare with the following headphones list above.

Which of the following in list above come close to the D5000? Are there any recent models 2014 that offer same or even better quality, comfort, and sound which I should be looking at?
post #2 of 12

Check also the Soundmagic HP150. For the genres you are listening to they would be my preference in this price range.

post #3 of 12
Not as much for rock (they would be more average for that), but the HE-400s sound pretty fantastic with the genres you like, and you can get a good deal on like new open box one's from razordog for a really good deal. The bass has absolutely fantastic SQ with these. While the HE-400 are relatively easy to drive in terms of their impedance (35 ohm), because of their low sensitivity you might want an amp to achieve the volumes you like.

Comfort is not bad, IMO, as long as their heavier weight is not an issue for you.
post #4 of 12
With that price, you should be looking at the HD600 and HD598 instead of the HD650. I personally did not hear much difference between the 600 and 650, and that knocks about $100 off the (normal) asking price, although a new 600 will still set you back about $350 according to Amazon. I will say that the 600's are great, though.

I've also been interested in the HE-400, but I've been told that the SQ is somewhat similar to the HD600 (which is why I will not be buying them any time soon), and that makes them a great value proposition at $300 or $250 for used/open box. Keep cel4145's advice in mind, though. As a planar magnetic model, they will definitely do better with more power, although you could always pick that up later.
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by hiphophead07 View Post

Hi,

I am a new member to the head-fi forums and am deciding to upgrade my stock Samsung headphones. I usually listen to hip-hop, rap, r&b, rock, pop, dubstep and house music. I am looking for a high-end choice at $300 or less. After reading several threads My choices have come down to these four:

Denon AH-5000
HiFiman HE-400
Sennheiser Momentum
Sennheiser HD 650

I'm looking for great quality sound, comfort, good bass nothing Too muddy is fine with me, and a price at least around 300 or less. The Denons are my first choice however they are very costly so I am looking for an alternative to them unless someone can recommend me a place/person I can find them for my specified price range.

I've read the Hifiman he-400 are great at price for the quality of rich sound and balance and would like to know how they compare with the following headphones list above.

Which of the following in list above come close to the D5000? Are there any recent models 2014 that offer same or even better quality, comfort, and sound which I should be looking at?

 

I currently have the HE-400 and they are pretty amazing. Open non-portable headphones. Amazing bass extension, tightness, and clarity. Sound quality is amazing and it is an absolute joy to listen too. I would say that for $300, you cannot get anything with better sound quality. You would probably want to invest in an amp for the HE-400. Don't need anything fancy to make it shine. Velour pads is something else a lot of people like with the HE-400. It would really blow your mind if you are coming from normal consumer-grade headphones. The sound signature is not technically 100% audiophile neutral, but at this price range nothing really is. I'm thinking like HD800-level audiophile neutral. It's sound signature is absolutely stunning for dubstep, edm, house, rap, and hip-hop!! Note, these are heavier than your average headphones, so it might take a bit of time to adjust to, but they have wide headband that evenly distributes weight and deep comfy earpads.

 

I have also owned the Sennheiser On-ear Momentum. Sound quality and build quality is stunning. Sound signature is great for a portable pair of closed headphones. However, note the earpad's diameter is really small and this model is more of on-ear pair of headphones. They do have nice leather earpads so your actual comfort level just depends on how long you wear your headphones for and how sensitive your ears are to pressure.

 

The Momentum is a very nice choice if you need portability. If not, I would definitely go He-400 all the way. For your dollar, you simply can't get anything better in terms of sound quality. It's sound signature also matches your musical preferences, so I think you will be really happy with that purchase.

post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by money4me247 View Post

It would really blow your mind if you are coming from normal consumer-grade headphones.

No doubt. In terms of audio quality, I think it competes with very expensive home audio setups. You could go down to BestBuy and spend $2000 on a home audio speaker/sub setup and not get better SQ--especially the bass. smily_headphones1.gif
post #7 of 12

I too think the HE-400 is a terrific bargain at $300.  I think you have to spend at least twice as much to get better (as opposed to different) sound.  They are big and heavy but I'd no comfort problems with mine at all.

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Alright the HE-400 are definitely on top of my list and definitely might be my first high-end headphones. However, let's say I want to increase my budget to $400 what other headphones would you recommend? Also looking for headphones not only for music but to watch movies and have a cinematic experience.

The denon ah-d5000 really sound perfect the comfort, the classy wooden look, the bass, a mix of closed and open, and amazing sound quality. I am really looking for something just like it that offers all these features (of course it doesn't have to be wooden lol) At around $400 am I any closer to getting something similar?
post #9 of 12
The HE-400 used to be $399. And even then, were popular as a good headphone.

I have no experience with the Denon.

I'd say get that open box HE-400 for $250, and put the rest toward a DAC/amp if you don't have one already smily_headphones1.gif
post #10 of 12
Here is a review of the Denon: http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/luscious-denon-ah-d2000-ah-d50000-and-ah-d7000

Here is a review of the HE-400: http://www.head-fi.org/t/634201/battle-of-the-flagships-58-headphones-compared-update-audeze-lcd-2-revision-2-6-4-13#user_HE400
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
cel4145 thanks for the links and everyone else thanks for your awesome input. I have reviewed both and even a direct comparison on these forums. I feel that the denons are for sure my next buy. The hd e400 sound like they're amazing but many suggest an amp to go along with it or invest in one later wheras the d5000s sound great without one. I am going to try to get a good deal on denon ah-d5000 for around $400. Knowing myself if I get the he400s I'm going to be wondering About the denons and I'm looking for headphones that will keep me content for years. Honestly, it's the look and comfort that really convinces me too, but if all else fails I will default to the he400 for sure smily_headphones1.gif
Edited by hiphophead07 - 8/6/14 at 2:19am
post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by hiphophead07 View Post

cel4145 thanks for the links and everyone else thanks for your awesome input. I have reviewed both and even a direct comparison on these forums. I feel that the denons are for sure my next buy. The hd e400 sound like they're amazing but many suggest an amp to go along with it or invest in one later wheras the d5000s sound great without one. I am going to try to get a good deal on denon ah-d5000 for around $400. Knowing myself if I get the he400s I'm going to be wondering About the denons and I'm looking for headphones that will keep me content for years. Honestly, it's the look and comfort that really convinces me too, but if all else fails I will default to the he400 for sure smily_headphones1.gif

good luck with your search. very smart looking for headphones on sale. heard great things about the d5000s and their sound frequency graph looks remarkable similar to the he400.

 

http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/HiFiMANHE400.pdf

http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/DenonAHD5000.pdf

 

I personally spend my budget of $400 on the $300 HE-400 + $125 on an amp/dac. Couldn't be happier with my set-up.

 

just a note that higher price doesn't always equate to improves in sound quality or sound signature. you really max out your sound quality per dollar when you hit the $200-400 range. to hear an improvement in sound quality, you need to double or triple your budget ($700-$1000+ range). and of course, there are diminishing returns as you move up the price chain. It is always nice to set aside <50% of your headphones budget on a nice amp/dac, but of course headphones are the primarily determinate on sound quality and I have personally found the differences between amps/dac to be quite minimal.

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