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Over-Ear item created by joelpearce, May 7, 2010
Pros - Comfortable; good isolation; durable; long cable
Cons - Poor lows (quantity-wise, especially the subbass); ugly
These are sometimes recommended for 'people who want lots of bass'. Well, I'm certainly one of those, and to me, DT-150 had hardly any bass at all. You can't feel the subbass; and when you EQ them to the point that the subbass is strong enough to be felt consistently throughout the whole song, it's still not perfect, and other frequencies suffer - as if their price was $5. I listen to trance and house, and can't stand hearing my favorite tracks without proper bass. My soundcard was Asus Xonar D1, so it's not like it couldn't drive DT-150 at all. Surely, I could've bought something better than Xonar D1, but I bet it wouldn't make much difference as far as the subbass is concerned. However, I'm happy to stand corrected if someone proves to me that that wouldn't be the case.
As far as the mids and highs are concerned, I had no problem with them, and was happy that the vocals weren't hissing (persistent problem with Ultrasone HFI-580, which I had before DT-150). But that is not what I bought these for - I'd exchange somewhat hissing vocals for quality subbass any day of the week.
They're made like a tank - durable, but look really ugly. Not that it's very important, just saying.
Overall rating: 4/5. I rate the bass 1/5, as DT-150 are sometimes misrepresented as 'bassy headphones', which they aren't. Not by any basshead standards.
If you like to feel the subbass, stay away from those, as they'll be nothing short of a let-down.
Pros - Heritage.
Cons - Might not get you laid.
A name unfamiliar to most. DT150 is not something that is on everyone's radar partly because it was made from the stuff of the future in 1968 and comes from a Legend whose track record and contribution to the industry is overlooked to such an extent it makes me loose hope and instill a sense of understanding that if you think it's classy not to speak much, you won't ever get the recognition for your work if you had done the opposite instead. From the sole perpetrator of the Polymeric revolution for his Electrodynamic contribution, DT150 is the earliest examples dating back to that revolution.
This very perpetrator has taught me many things, given me many clues and made me understand certain things without actually doing any of the following. Although I can't make the feeble-minded bevy understand, I can at least preface this review with the above, although irrelevant I said it because, I wanted to.
Build - Works, nice textured Injection Molded ABS body with slightly altered Monomer permutations to get the right impact, corrosion and wear resistance. I'm personally not a huge fan of the Sliding adjustments, not because of time wear which is irrelevant since I have a 1970 example with me and has shown almost negligible changes in bite and movement, it has to do with my OCD more than anything else, because of this system there is no side articulation, you would imagine such brilliant Engineers would have taken the time to get the fit right but I guess they had other important things to do. This side articulation problem affects the seal dramatically and is variable for head sizes and shapes, nothing unknown in my wordings but the changes with even slight variances can have significant overall change in seal which most modern designs have eliminated. Of course, nothing natural Earpad break-in can't solve.
Comfort - I personally don't like Leather or Pleather on my face, the sensation reminds of strapping condoms (Of course, I haven't done that) on my face and I'm personally not a fan of that sensation although you could be. Sure, you can remedy the issue by changing the Earpads from Beyerdynamic itself (Velour or Cotton) or take the Aftermarket route for which information is abundant on this very site, just search through the DT150 thread. Validity of the information is not something I can assure cause people have interesting opinions but knock yourself out.
Headband is of the same material you find on other "PRO" DT Models, the new revised composition which became standard just a few years ago, the previous century material was prone to tearing and weathering, new material is better at those mentioned tasks.
Clamping is low for me, I would have preferred more clamping to fix the seal problems, it also suffers from the same issue that can be referenced in my HD598 Review which is stability on your head. Slight movement will affect positioning and seal issue due to the Inertia caused by the Headband being unnecessarily large and wide. This can't be remedied because I think Beyerdynamic has used an Elastomer which has a very high elastic modulus but low shore hardness which means you can't change the clamping unless you change the chemistry or just use a different mold shape.
This correction was done against average response of the greatest transducers ever made by man, reference papers and overall response which is the least priority as we are trying to combat the natural resonant frequency as much as we can with references and then FR can be taken into picture with resonant frequency S-D markers to better understand while correcting, this SHOULD not be taken as 100% neutral correction.
The system runs out of excursion space below 50Hz and then any correction will be rendered useless with only gain being unnecessary accentuation which doesn't take away from the overall timbre and tone until you go up in the frequency band till maybe 100Hz, above that there is significant disturbance. Although I have done +15db at 30Hz and +3db at 60Hz kept 80-500 cycles almost flat as this band is very sensitive to changes and takes away from overall fidelity even if correction is required for neutral correction.
The upper bands are very strange as the resonant frequencies are hidden and can only be heard at a certain SPL even if the system is running at it's signal frequency matching natural frequency, I don't have the right equipment for such correction right now so I held myself back and will update this review once I do. Anyway, we have -2db at 2000 and 7-8000 cycles keeping 3000 to 6000 flat and finally a gradual rise of +4db from 15kHz to 16kHz.
With such corrections you can essentially open up the sound and hear the overall sense of space better, that isn't the priority here cause we are not here for minuscule Stage improvements in a limited chamber design, that's not worth talking about, if you want flowery explanations for that then read other reviews.
Overall fidelity is variable with correction, having a reference fidelity target is not possible until I get the above mentioned equipment but still, it's as good as it gets.
A legend, certainly an overlooked one but no less than a Legend. Beyerdynamic DT150.
YouTube (Review) -
Pros - Great Isolation, Rugged, Well built
Cons - Not your go to headphones for mix
This is one of those items that I use every single day, take for granted.
I wouldn't be able to work without a handful of these in the studio. The headphones we give to every single recording artist - the kind they love. They can crank the levels up on their hear back mixer as much as they want, yet the leak remains very minimal. I have had these thrown around, kicked at, what not. They survive. Perhaps the single most item in the studio, on which I wouldn't put a fragile sticker.
Pros - Great acoustic sound, not like a 'typical' closed headphone. More balanced than most Beyers
Cons - Um, ugly? Stock cord a bit longer than necessary (3 meters)
These are great headphones I was turned onto from the forum.
On this forum you have to assess who is enthusiastic about what. Generally, there is a difference between enthusiasm from novices and that of veterans. The novices were excited about my Beyerdynamic 990 Pro, 250 Ohm. But the veterans were on to these DT 150 headphones. The sound is so much more mature, even, musical and rich on the DT 150s.
I will say, I think the sub-bass was a little better on the 990 Pros, but that's about it. Most acoustic music sounds better with the DT150s.
They also sound fantastic whether plugged into an iphone/ipod, and even more fantastic when put into a multi-thousand dollar system.
I'm currently using the HRT HD and the Lehmann Rhinelander, with Chord interconnects. A great sound, with a lot of punch and detail. I may go up to the Linear Black Cube just to squeeze another few drops out of these bad babies.
Loven' em. But I will say, it's the winter now and I'm not lookin forward to summer in the hot and humid place I live. These vinyl pads do get hot, and it's not nice to wear them when you're sweaty. (Are any over-ear headphones really?)
Pros - Beautiful mids, crystal clear, great soundstage, wonderful 3D imaging, powerful yet tight bass, pleasant treble, almost no grain, and non-fatiguing
Cons - Can be a bit heavy in the bass on some systems and songs. Potential comfort issues for some.
The Beyerdynamic DT 150 is one of those headphones that for some reason is overlooked and ignored despite being one of the best mid-tier headphones one can buy regardless of open or closed. It's likely a couple factors relating to their very utilitarian appearance and the fact they aren't as easy to find find as Beyers other offerings. It's a shame these don't get much attention because these are in my honest opinion Beyerdynamic's best offering in the mid-tier range and may be Beyers very best closed-back overall. I'm going to explore in the review why the headphones are so great and why they can be compared to well-regarded mid-tier open-backs and be comparable or even surpass some of the mid-tier titans. I'm going to state it now, I think these are better headphones than the HD 600, DT 880, and Q701 in terms of audio quality. The only headphones I like as much or possibly more that I have tried extensively in the mid-tier section is the K712 and Annies. This review is over a variety of genres from folk, electronic, classical, rock, etc.
In the review, I'm using the Beyerdynamic DT 150 on a Schiit Lyr 2 with Amperex Fat Bottle 6DJ8 tubes. A HRT Music Streamer II+ as the DAC and AURIC RCA to RCA interconnects.
Build Quality and Comfort:
The build quality on these headphones is simply outstanding. It's made of incredibly tough ABS(I believe) plastic and a metal headband with a rubberish covering over it with a faux leather headband cover. These headphones are quite lightweight, weighing about the same as the HD 600 and K712. The earcups slide up and down on part of the metal headband and they pivot up and down quite a bit with some front and back pivoting. The cable is replaceable but oddly the cable terminates out of the right earcup instead of the left. Earpads are thick and deep and rectangular softskin. They get slightly hot but not as hot as protein leather. The pads feel a bit weird and take some breaking in so they seal properly, the sound won't be it's best until the pads break-in. Comfort wise I can wear them all day as long as it's not hot so comfort is good.
The sound of these headphones is what these headphones are all about. They have so many things going for them. Overall they are on the warm and lush side and may be slightly dark to some. These are not for those looking for a light-and-airy type of sound. It's more akin to the HD 600s tuning though quite different sounding. These are overall laid-back and warm sounding. This is a system dependent headphone, like with any good headphones, results are going to vary quite a bit from system to system.
Clarity and Transparency: To start with, I'm going to cover this headphones level of clarity and transparency. These headphones are outstanding in this aspect, these headphones are incredibly transparent and are very clean and clear sounding. They have almost no grain to their sound, the HD 600 sounds a bit grainy, slightly stuffy, and veiled in comparison. You can listen to these at higher volumes than other headphones for extended periods of time without any listening fatiguing. You often forget you are listening to headphones and focus only on the music and sound, meaning they are very transparent. They are quite revealing of the system, meaning grainy components will sound grain through these headphones.
Tonality and Timbre: The tonality and timbre on the DT 150 is fantastic, nothing really sounds off except with problem recordings. It's a warm, lush, and euphoric tone and sounds exceptionally natural. Warm and lush systems may be a bit of a warmth overload with these headphones for some people.
Soundstage and Imaging: For a closed-back the soundstage is large and well represented, it's slightly larger than the HD 600 in soundstage, there doesn't seem to be any imaging issues. In terms of imaging it's very clean and precise and has a very 3D sound to it, it makes other headphones sound a bit flat at times.
Speed and Coherency: This headphone is plenty fast, it never comes across as slow sounding and it never gets confused even on faster passages. There is always a coherency, I've never heard this headphones coherency broken so to speak.
Bass: The bass is heavy, thick, and robust leading to a very solid backbone to the sound. The bass can hit with real authority when called for. They sound of the bass varies from instrument to instrument but it does carry a bit of sound signature to it's bass moreso than say AKGs do. Overall it's quite clean and fairly tight and never seems to get confused or sound hollow. There are some songs where it can be a bit too much without getting used to.
Midrange: This is where this headphone truly shines, it's a beautiful, euphoric, present yet laid-back midrange. It's extremely clean and has a lot of vocal depth. Instruments and vocals sound spot on. The midrange is slightly dark and slightly warm overall. It's not quite HD 600 warm though.
Treble: The treble is very clean and well extended, it reveals plenty of detail, has a small amount of air to it and doesn't sound slightly off in the treble like the HD 600 does. No bluntness or overly smoothing out in the treble. It's not sibilance and is almost never harsh(its only harsh on systems it has bad synergy with).
The Beyerdynamic DT 150 is a headphone anyone looking for a high-quality closed-back or high-quality mid-tier headphone in general should consider, especially to those who want a warm musical sound with almost no grain. Those who like the HD 600 should like this headphone quite a bit despite their tonality differences from each other.
Pros - Authority in sound, large scene, not fatiguing, very durable construction, excellent price for the qiality factor.
Cons - Pleather pads need to be changed for velours. With not enough quality power amp may sound dull.
I just like these headphones so much. I was looking for for a long a realixing but engaging headphones. And finally found DT150. Sound is full, present, clear, and with perfect 3D presentation - even better than in some opened constructions. I prefere them more than Senn HD650, HifiMan HE500, Beyerdynamic DT990, DT880, T70, T90, T1 even for now...
Pros - Sound, price and build quality
Cons - Non-proprietary connector, comfort, estetics (to some degree)
Coming from a K171S followed by a DT990, I guess I wanted a combination of the two - a somewhat flat-sounding closed set of cans combined with the comfort, size and soundstage of the latter.
The DT150 certainly does the trick. Much more "alive" than the K171S, quite comfortable*, "alive" yet flat-sounding enough to handle most genres with ease. Rock, metal, electronic music, ambient and hip-hop all feel just about right, opposed to the K171S (which lacks bass and soundstage) and the DT990 (which frequency response is too U-shaped for a lot of music).
Even though the sound may be described as "dark", the bass never gets in the way of anything else while sounding full and quite punchy. It also extends quite deep, avoiding at least some of the boominess that comes at a cost with most closed, bass-heavy cans. The treble is a bit less detailed than the DT990, which results in less listening fatigue. Midrange isn't anything really special, but it sounds good, although it lacks the "magic" of the bass and treble.
Of course, all isn't that well. The bass can be overwhelming, especially on "remastered" tracks, it feels somewhat slow, and you don't get a very high-class feel: While solid built, it's still plastic and metal in its most functional form, and the looks are on par with industrial hearing aids. I like it, but it is far away from the "classic" AKGs and Beyerdynamics on terms of look.
For the tinkerers, the DT150 is very easy to disassemble, and may be a prime target for light modding.
The DT150 is at its best with a dedicated amp, but is far from unlistenable with a lesser source, though it lacks some refinement in bass and treble. The 3,5mm plug adds to the portable aspect, with a nice screw-on 6,3mm adapter included (also fits AKGs). I'm using an Argon HA2 (Mistral Audio HP-509) DAC/HA, which is admittedly not very high-end but makes the sound in general more controlled. Works well with the PA2V2 as well, though it may be a bit dark.
Recommended if you prefer a relaxed sound, don't care about size or looks, and want something that probably will last forever. The non-proprietary connector is some of a letdown, but this is due to the modularity of the headphones, there is, according to the local Beyerdynamic dealer, possible to add a microphone afterwards, where the special connector comed into play.
* Once you stretch the headband, that is. Look at a picture of someone wearing the DT150 from the front, and you see the main reason why it is so hard on the head. Unless you need max. isolation, I suggest bending the headband to a C-shape rather than the "stock" D-shape, compare with the DT990/880/770 (which is indeed comfortable). by flattening the band at the "edges" (top and over each cup), and then trying to make a C-curve, of course without breaking the band (it is quite sturdy, but the cable runs inside it).
Pros - Sins are of omission. They do almost nothing wrong.
Cons - To tight! I have a huge head which doesn't help. LOL
I bought 2 pair of these at an estate sale for $30. I replace my senns with them. I am down to 1 set now, and I am shopping for new phones. That is why I'm on this GREAT site. If I paid full price, I would be happy. I gave them only 4 stars for sound only because I assume there are better ones out there.
Pros - sound quality, soundstage, isolation, easy to drive, detail, balance, durable, user replacable parts, long straight cable, musicality, bass
Cons - not too classy, loooong cable, clamping force
I'm really only half a year into my serious headphone journey, which began when I got a pair of Shure SRH-840 and Grado 125i at around the same time, along with a solid custom headphone amp (which never ceases to amaze me) from my brother-in-law. Both of those original headphones are gone now, but the journey has taught me a lot about my own tastes, pushing me ever closer to a pair of headphones that I would be happy with for the long term.
That pair is the Beyerdynamic DT-150.
Before starting, I'll go through a few things that I've learned in this journey, and how the DT-150 fits into those lessons:
1. Professionals know what they're doing.
I have found myself increasingly gravitating towards studio-driven products, and now all of my headphones are geared for professional use. I believe strongly that this is where the deals are, and the DT-150 fits into that category. All the money you spend goes into sound quality and build quality, and none of it is wasted on bling that most people would laugh at anyway.
2. Balance is important.
I am not a basshead, but I do like impactful bass. Midrange is where the real magic is, and it shouldn't be sacrificed. Highs are what gives music brightness, speed, and sparkle. That's why the Grados are gone, and that's why the Beyerdynamic DT-990 Pros don't get much head time anymore. The DT-150s reveal exactly what's in the music.
3. Musicality is even more important.
In theory and on first listen, the Shure 840s do a great job with lesson #2. They just weren't that engaging, though, and a level of aggressiveness, responsiveness and musicality is just as importance as balance. This is the danger with studio headphones, and it's one that the DT-150 avoids with ease.
After a month of listening to these headphones, I find myself a bit amazed that they haven't gotten more positive attention around here. The buzz has been positive overall, but it's been awfully quiet.
The headphones themselves are big, bulky, and feel like they could take a bullet. All of the cables and parts are possible to replace, which is nice in an industry with so many stories about cables that disconnect, wood that cracks, and ear cups that fall off. They do clamp fairly tightly, but I don't find them horribly uncomfortable. I can certainly wear them for hours without problems, but I know a lot of people have found them less comfortable--definitely rule them out if you have glasses with thick frames or frames that stand out from the sides of your head. Thanks to all the pleather, they do get sweaty as well.
Thankfully, the sound is absolutely sublime. The DT-150s were originally made to build on the design of the classic DT-100, but with added bass response. The design team definitely succeeded on that front. I wouldn't necessarily call the DT-150s bass monsters, but they are happy to supply whatever level of bass recorded on music tracks. They create an impressive sense of pressure on Massive Attack's Angel, which means they have both powerful and deep bass. Even when the song gets more busy, the bass is still there as well (it gets buried on many other headphones).
The mids are equally excellent. Many Head-fiers with studio experience claim that the DT-250s reflect voices and instruments more accurately, and I can't really comment on that. What I can say is that the DT-150s showcase vocalists beautifully. They do a great job with guitar and piano as well, revealing minor details and depth that I had rarely heard previously. The midrange doesn't quite have the sweetness of the GMP 450s, but it's much meatier.
The high end also exhibits the signature Beyer brightness, without ever threatening to ascend into harshness and sibilance. If there is harshness in the recording, the DT-150 will reproduce it faithfully, but it definitely doesn't have the overbearing highs of the DT-990 Pro. Even though the bottom half of the sound is so rich, it's the high end that prevents them from becoming too dark (I've definitely found that I like a brighter sound, though).
I wouldn't describe the DT-150s as either aggressive or laid-back, but they are definitely musical. The soundstage is nice and wide, and they're highly responsive. They do a great job with rock, easily wiping the floor with the Shure SRH-840. They also do a great job with electronic music, movies, and games. I don't listen to much jazz and classical, but they sound not bad on those genres either. In the end, it's really the flexibility of the DT-150s that I've been so impressed with. I wouldn't quite call them a chameleon, because they do have a distinct sound, but they largely stay out of the way of the music and deliver exceptional, well-balanced, engaging sound. And that's more than enough for me.