An inexperienced user with a tight budget
Mar 29, 2006 at 11:14 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 28

Lunar_Lamp

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Hi there

I'm looking to get some new headphones, and this seems like the best place I've found to ask for some advice as to what to get!

Budget: approx £40 - yes I know I am not going to get super-quality for this price, but I'm a student, and do not consider myself enough of an audiophile to spend much more.

Usage: I use my headphones with my iAudio X5 all over the place - on the bus, on the train, wakling around town, and also occasionally hooked up to my laptop. Accordinly they need to be able to put up with a bit of abuse caused by transport all over the place, and obviously be easily portable. The music I mainly listen to is Rock and Indie styled, though I do vary a fair bit - but I'm not sure if this makes a big difference in this pricerange!

Type: I want something that I can listen to on the bus without everyone else having to listen - so I presume closed headphones are the way to go. I don't have any major preference over type, but have had problems with a pair of sony canal-phones previously in that when eating/walking/moving in anyway around they amplified the sounds of the movement highly. I guess I would like something that blocks out external noise a bit, though I'm not looking for active noise cancelling (obviously with this budget).

I have seen the Sennheiser PX200 and these seem to give good bang for the buck, but I don't know if there are other options out there. I'm a bit lost really and would appreciate some guidance.
 
Mar 29, 2006 at 11:53 AM Post #2 of 28

sgrossklass

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I would look into these:
Sennheiser HD205
AKG K81 DJ (possibly K26P, but that's neither as good-sounding nor as comfortable)
Creative EP-630 / Sennheiser CX300

The PX200, just as the Sony MDR-710LP/SL apparently, seems to be problematic in getting a good seal with a number of people; even the K26P doesn't fit too great on one ear for me, so that seems to be the weak spot of these ultraportable closed cans.
 
Mar 29, 2006 at 12:24 PM Post #3 of 28

Lunar_Lamp

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Thanks for the suggestions.

The AKG K81 DJ's are just a bit too expensive and a bit too big - maybe I could forgive one of the two factors, but not both.

The way you suggested the "Creative EP-630 / Sennheiser CX300" like that leads me to question whether these are the same phone, but with different rebranding. Is this true, or am I just misinterpreting you?

The Sennheiser HD205's are an attractive price, but whilst smaller than the AKG K81 DJ's, they are big enough to make me keep looking to see if I can find something better.

I have just discovered the Audio-Technica ATH-ES5 - but the only place I have found them so far is from ebay international sellers, at $100 delivered - which is a bit mroe than I would like to pay. [edit: found them in a store, but at 75euro delivered, still a bit more (£10) than the £40 I would like to spend]

Other suggestions would be welcome!

Edit: I've also discovered the AKG K 26 P which seems a good deal at the price and are probably my first choice at the moment.
 
Mar 29, 2006 at 2:55 PM Post #4 of 28

sgrossklass

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The EP-630 and CX300 apparently are not the same, but obviously made by the same OEM. And while the Creative may not be quite as good sounding, it is much less expensive here in Europe.

As for the K26P, be warned that I wouldn't want to have these as my main cans. They're sufficiently comfortable for portable use, but don't quite cut it at home, besides these things have an incredible amount of bass which, while helping to keep the frequency balance on a noisy bus, sounds totally overblown in a quiet environment. I'd rather use it in combination with an open "home" headphone - in fact that's just what I'm doing.
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Maybe a Philips SHP805, which is a fairly capable and comfy headphone for what it costs, even if some EQ is needed, or a Creative HQ-1300, which is supposed to be quite balanced though not extremely comfy; also look out for good cans from the last 20 years on the used market (always keeping an eye on earpad condition and pricing of new ones).
 
Mar 29, 2006 at 3:10 PM Post #5 of 28

Lunar_Lamp

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I use headphones very little at home really, and when I do I have a pair of wireless sennheisers which do the job nicely for me. As I am looking just for portable headphones, would you say that the k26p is not a bad choice?

The Philips SHP805 look huge! They do not look like the kind of thing I can throw in my bag in a hurry particularly easily, and the same with the Creative HQ-1300 (though at the price if they're decent they are tempting)!

How do the CX300 and the K36P compare to each other?

I wouldn't have a clue where to go, and what to look at for old headphones.
 
Mar 30, 2006 at 3:15 AM Post #6 of 28

s2pidstoner

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Lunar_Lamp
Thanks for the suggestions.
I have just discovered the Audio-Technica ATH-ES5 - but the only place I have found them so far is from ebay international sellers, at $100 delivered - which is a bit mroe than I would like to pay. [edit: found them in a store, but at 75euro delivered, still a bit more (£10) than the £40 I would like to spend]



Check out bluetin.com for AT headphones. I think they ship everywhere and they might be cheaper than audiocubes
 
Mar 30, 2006 at 4:05 AM Post #8 of 28

Scotty757

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Run. Now.

I came here like you a month ago, and I'm not roughly $600 in the hole.

Get out, while you still can.

This place is evil.
 
Mar 30, 2006 at 8:08 AM Post #10 of 28

sgrossklass

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Lunar_Lamp
I use headphones very little at home really, and when I do I have a pair of wireless sennheisers which do the job nicely for me. As I am looking just for portable headphones, would you say that the k26p is not a bad choice?


Then, yes, for very compact portable cans providing non-negligible isolation they're quite good.

Quote:

The Philips SHP805 look huge! They do not look like the kind of thing I can throw in my bag in a hurry particularly easily, and the same with the Creative HQ-1300 (though at the price if they're decent they are tempting)!


Like I wrote, these are "home" headphones.

Quote:

How do the CX300 and the K36P compare to each other?


No idea, unfortunately. Currently have the K26P, looking at either HD205 or EP-630 for an upgrade...

Quote:

I wouldn't have a clue where to go, and what to look at for old headphones.


In the ultraportable section there isn't much old stuff anyway, except for the classic PortaPro (which is open and thus not suitable for noisy environments).
 
Mar 30, 2006 at 8:31 AM Post #11 of 28

Lunar_Lamp

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I liked the look of the KSC75 - but if I recall, they are open headphones, and would be too noisy for my neighbours when sitting on the bus/train etc. Other than that though, they seemed pretty decent headphones.

I'm checking out the Portapro's as typing, my initial reaction is that they look weird, but that's no reason to not buy them! The fact they're open however is likely to count against them.

s2pidstoner - thanks for the heads up - though I had already discovered it by myself, it's nice to hear they have a known rep!

PrototypeX2 - I hadn't seen the ATH-FC7s, and I must say they look like a pretty decent solution, and are a decent price from bluetin (well within budget). Not sure what the sound is like on them though - but I'll see if I can find some more info. At the moment I think these are my favourites as they are just a little cheaper than the k26p.
 
Mar 30, 2006 at 10:57 AM Post #13 of 28

jon_m

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If you're happy with earphones you push into your ear canal, I'd second the senny cx300 recommendation. Just over £30 delivered on amazon.co.uk, block out external noise reasonably well (once you pick the right-sized earphone tips), seem pretty sturdy touch wood (and have 2year guarantee). More importantly, the sound's brilliant for the money - slightly warm sound, but just let you enjoy the music, and sound great with guitars
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Mar 30, 2006 at 11:03 AM Post #14 of 28

Lunar_Lamp

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The only problem I have with canal-phones is the way they amplify sounds such as eating etc. Whilst not a huge issue, it also has an effect on sound when walking around, so I'm cautious about buying something like this as I had a few issues with a pair of canalphones previously as I predominantly use headphones whilst moving around a lot.
 

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