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Help me choose: Shure SH1540, Oppo PM-2 or Hifiman HE560

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

So, I want an entry-grade audiophile headphones. After a lot of research, I'm tempted by the trio of the title, and I hope you guys can help me to decide which will one fit my needs the best.

I want a accurate headphone but also fun, no anemic bass, but  tight and controlled.

 

SH1540: I've read great things about it. That is very comfortable and has a very accurate and even sound signature across all ranges. What I fear is that it may be a tad laid back and lacking punch.

 

PM-2: The most expensive of the bunch, looks classy and seems very comfortable. I bet it sounds super good, but maybe boring?

 

HE560: This seems to be an amazing pair of cans whose sound signature can be a love or hate thing. I fear harsh trebles

 

I use the audioegine D3, that I believe has enough power for those phones that arent high impedance.

 

If you believe there may be a better pair to recommend, feel free to do so.

post #2 of 14

Hello,

 

First thing, impedance is not a measure of how hard to drive a headphone is.

HE560 is very hard to drive, you'll need at least something like a FiiO K5 or Schiit Magni 2.

If you need portability, then you'll need something like the FiiO A5 (or E12).

 

Both the Oppo and the Shure are much easier to drive and should work fine with your D3.

Keep in mind closed back headphones like the 1540 provide some isolation while open back headphones like the HE560 don't.

 

Check the new Beyerdynamic Amiron

 

Best Luck!

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Me x3 View Post
 

Hello,

 

First thing, impedance is not a measure of how hard to drive a headphone is.

HE560 is very hard to drive, you'll need at least something like a FiiO K5 or Schiit Magni 2.

If you need portability, then you'll need something like the FiiO A5 (or E12).

 

Both the Oppo and the Shure are much easier to drive and should work fine with your D3.

Keep in mind closed back headphones like the 1540 provide some isolation while open back headphones like the HE560 don't.

 

Check the new Beyerdynamic Amiron

 

Best Luck!


Thanks! The D3 is powerful little fella. I have the Pinnacle P1 that is not the easiest IEM to drive and the D3 drive it easily with the volume around 15-20. I could see it dealing with the HE560 around 60 or 70, or maybe i'm too optimistic. But right now I'm having tending towards the PM-2 or 1540 since they seem to do everything right without much controversy.

post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vitor Roma View Post
 


Thanks! The D3 is powerful little fella. I have the Pinnacle P1 that is not the easiest IEM to drive and the D3 drive it easily with the volume around 15-20. I could see it dealing with the HE560 around 60 or 70, or maybe i'm too optimistic. But right now I'm having tending towards the PM-2 or 1540 since they seem to do everything right without much controversy.

I dont know much about your amp,but the HE-560 is actually harder to drive than the 500 and even though Me X3 recommended the Magni TBH that isnt enough amp for the 500 let alone the 560.

Your amp could indeed be enough,again I know nothing about it,but the Magni isnt.

post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

I believe I will opt for the Shure. Being the lighter and least expensive made it for me.

post #6 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vitor Roma View Post

I believe I will opt for the Shure. Being the lighter and least expensive made it for me.

Don't let the price make you think they're not as great as more expensive headphones. The 1540's are freaking fantastic, built like tanks, easy to drive, and super comfortable. I've yet to find a better closed back headphone for under $1000 and I've been searching for years. Also, they're not entry level for Shure. They're the top of the line closed back. Enjoy! Please share your impressions after you get them!
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shurealltheway View Post


Don't let the price make you think they're not as great as more expensive headphones. The 1540's are freaking fantastic, built like tanks, easy to drive, and super comfortable. I've yet to find a better closed back headphone for under $1000 and I've been searching for years. Also, they're not entry level for Shure. They're the top of the line closed back. Enjoy! Please share your impressions after you get them!


I shure will. ;P

post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vitor Roma View Post


I shure will. ;P

Have you gotten your 1540's yet?
post #9 of 14

Sorry if I'm late to the party, I own the Shure 1540s and have heard the HE-560 (and own its bigger sibling the HE-6), so I thought I'd pitch in.

 

A major difference that I haven't seen mentioned here is that the Shure 1540s and PM2 are closed-back headphones, whereas the HE560 is an open-back. This will make a major difference in some environments, and may or may not suit your use cases.

 

The Shure 1540 is the most comfortable headphone I've ever worn, and have frequently worn them for 8-hour days without issue (although the headband can be a bit annoying). They are very easy to drive, sound good with a lot of modern music, and most definitely pack a punch (to answer your concerns). You've said you wanted tight and controlled bass, just be warned that with higher volumes the bass on the 1540s really becomes uncontrolled, but between low to medium volumes they're fine. For a closed-back they have a very good soundstage, a clear difference over most headphones you may have tried before.

 

The HE-560 to me sounded nice, but I wasn't blown away with. I would say the sound was quite detailed, but it certainly wasn't 'fun' and definitely didn't give me the sound I was looking for with an everyday pair of headphones that would work with most styles. Comfort was also an issue, as I struggle to wear hifiman's headphones for more than 30 minutes at a time. For an entry-grade headphone I think they're a poor choice without hearing them and having a lot of money to throw behind a solid amp.

 

If you intend on only listening to them at home, I would seriously consider the Sennheiser HD600/650 with something like the Schiit magni/modi stack or the Jotenheim, as that would still come cheaper than the PM2 or HE-560, sound better than the Shure 1540, and provide a clearer upgrade path for the future.

post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro95 View Post

Sorry if I'm late to the party, I own the Shure 1540s and have heard the HE-560 (and own its bigger sibling the HE-6), so I thought I'd pitch in.

A major difference that I haven't seen mentioned here is that the Shure 1540s and PM2 are closed-back headphones, whereas the HE560 is an open-back. This will make a major difference in some environments, and may or may not suit your use cases.

The Shure 1540 is the most comfortable headphone I've ever worn, and have frequently worn them for 8-hour days without issue (although the headband can be a bit annoying). They are very easy to drive, sound good with a lot of modern music, and most definitely pack a punch (to answer your concerns). You've said you wanted tight and controlled bass, just be warned that with higher volumes the bass on the 1540s really becomes uncontrolled, but between low to medium volumes they're fine. For a closed-back they have a very good soundstage, a clear difference over most headphones you may have tried before.

The HE-560 to me sounded nice, but I wasn't blown away with. I would say the sound was quite detailed, but it certainly wasn't 'fun' and definitely didn't give me the sound I was looking for with an everyday pair of headphones that would work with most styles. Comfort was also an issue, as I struggle to wear hifiman's headphones for more than 30 minutes at a time. For an entry-grade headphone I think they're a poor choice without hearing them and having a lot of money to throw behind a solid amp.

If you intend on only listening to them at home, I would seriously consider the Sennheiser HD600/650 with something like the Schiit magni/modi stack or the Jotenheim, as that would still come cheaper than the PM2 or HE-560, sound better than the Shure 1540, and provide a clearer upgrade path for the future.

The 600/650 only sound better when properly amped. That's an important point. The 1540's don't need one.
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by shurealltheway View Post


The 600/650 only sound better when properly amped. That's an important point. The 1540's don't need one.


Oh I absolutely agree, but for the price of the HE-560 new I feel you can buy the HD600/650 and have enough money left over to afford a proper amp for them. Compared to the 1540, the 1540 will win on price hands down, but it already does in comparison to the other two headphones in OP's post.

post #12 of 14
I choose yeasterday for upgrade from my fiio q1+ ath-m50x to srh-1540 + schiit magni 2 + modi 2. I cant wait to hear this combo. Cheers!
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro95 View Post


Oh I absolutely agree, but for the price of the HE-560 new I feel you can buy the HD600/650 and have enough money left over to afford a proper amp for them. Compared to the 1540, the 1540 will win on price hands down, but it already does in comparison to the other two headphones in OP's post.

Good points.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro95 View Post
 

Sorry if I'm late to the party, I own the Shure 1540s and have heard the HE-560 (and own its bigger sibling the HE-6), so I thought I'd pitch in.

 

A major difference that I haven't seen mentioned here is that the Shure 1540s and PM2 are closed-back headphones, whereas the HE560 is an open-back. This will make a major difference in some environments, and may or may not suit your use cases.

 

The Shure 1540 is the most comfortable headphone I've ever worn, and have frequently worn them for 8-hour days without issue (although the headband can be a bit annoying). They are very easy to drive, sound good with a lot of modern music, and most definitely pack a punch (to answer your concerns). You've said you wanted tight and controlled bass, just be warned that with higher volumes the bass on the 1540s really becomes uncontrolled, but between low to medium volumes they're fine. For a closed-back they have a very good soundstage, a clear difference over most headphones you may have tried before.

 

The HE-560 to me sounded nice, but I wasn't blown away with. I would say the sound was quite detailed, but it certainly wasn't 'fun' and definitely didn't give me the sound I was looking for with an everyday pair of headphones that would work with most styles. Comfort was also an issue, as I struggle to wear hifiman's headphones for more than 30 minutes at a time. For an entry-grade headphone I think they're a poor choice without hearing them and having a lot of money to throw behind a solid amp.

 

If you intend on only listening to them at home, I would seriously consider the Sennheiser HD600/650 with something like the Schiit magni/modi stack or the Jotenheim, as that would still come cheaper than the PM2 or HE-560, sound better than the Shure 1540, and provide a clearer upgrade path for the future.


Well, you only conviced me that the 1540 is the chosen one. Right now I'm fully satisfied with my little Audioengine D3, it has easily driven any headphone I tested around volume 20. I can't imagine it not driving have enough power unless we are talking about some very high end top of line monster like a hifiman 1000 or lcd-4. If I had to chose a Sennheiser, I'd go for the 700. I'm also curious about the Audioquest Nighthawk, it seems to sound very fun and unique, although unconventional.


Edited by Vitor Roma - Yesterday at 10:23 pm
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