Best budget headphones for a picky person...?
Jul 20, 2012 at 8:50 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 19

arashb

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What I'm looking for a is a minimalistic type of headphone.  The kind like Grado, Urbanears Plattan, HifiMan HE-xxx, ES7, ES10, something along these lines.  
 
I was about to take the plunge on the Grado, but then I found out they use foam pads.  I'm looking for some sort of isolation padding, even if it hardly blocks anything out.  And then I started to see more pictures of the quality, the cans look like it's made out of the cheapest plastic possible.  So that's out.
 
I then saw the Urbanears Plattan and love how they look, and have even saw them and heard them in person.  Quality is very nice, design is exactly what I want.  But they sound horrible and after a few minutes of using them my head felt like it was a few centimeters skinnier.
 
I won't be using these outdoors, so looks shouldn't be that important to me... but they are.  I've been having the hardest time finding something that isn't flashy, something that's relatively small, and something that won't cost me anything much more than $100.  Anyone have any ideas?
 
Jul 20, 2012 at 10:51 AM Post #3 of 19

boomhaur

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From the pictures of the Grado's I've seen they look solidly built. Never heard of some one who owned one say otherwise either.
 
As for isolating, if you want that it's name doesn't have Grado in it.
 
If you wanted a mimalistic/sturdy no frills headphone with good sound even I hate to recommend this brand, the sony mdr-v6 is supposed to be pretty good and is known to be built like a tank.
 
Jul 20, 2012 at 9:48 PM Post #5 of 19

arashb

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Honestly, I really do like the Grado.  I'm not sure why they look so cheaply built to me, maybe that's just me.  However, I just bought the sr80s, was about to go for the 125s but reviews said not to spend more unless I'm going for the 225s or higher.  Bought them from Amazon so the return will be easy, if I need to return of course.  Thanks for the help guys.
 
@boomhaur, I was looking at those exact Sonys earlier but I think they'd be a little too big for me.
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 1:39 AM Post #6 of 19

Armaegis

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Quote:
I then saw the Urbanears Plattan and love how they look, and have even saw them and heard them in person.  Quality is very nice, design is exactly what I want.  But they sound horrible and after a few minutes of using them my head felt like it was a few centimeters skinnier.
 

 
Here's my work on a plattan to improve the sound: http://www.head-fi.org/t/607380/modded-urbanears-plattan-surprisingly-competent-and-bass-heavy
 
They are also easily stretched so they won't clamp on your ears so hard. 
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 2:26 AM Post #7 of 19

pwnm30rdi3

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Quote:
Honestly, I really do like the Grado.  I'm not sure why they look so cheaply built to me, maybe that's just me.  However, I just bought the sr80s, was about to go for the 125s but reviews said not to spend more unless I'm going for the 225s or higher.  Bought them from Amazon so the return will be easy, if I need to return of course.  Thanks for the help guys.
 
@boomhaur, I was looking at those exact Sonys earlier but I think they'd be a little too big for me.

 
I used to own a pair of Grado GS1000's.
The craftsmanship of those phones were astounding.
The GS1000's are probably not what you are looking for, but they are great for acoustic music!
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 3:01 AM Post #8 of 19

arashb

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Quote:
 
Here's my work on a plattan to improve the sound: http://www.head-fi.org/t/607380/modded-urbanears-plattan-surprisingly-competent-and-bass-heavy
 
They are also easily stretched so they won't clamp on your ears so hard. 

 
Hmmm well maybe if the Grado doesn't work out for me I'll return them and try this.  Thanks.
 
Quote:
 
I used to own a pair of Grado GS1000's.
The craftsmanship of those phones were astounding.
The GS1000's are probably not what you are looking for, but they are great for acoustic music!

 
Yeah, I'm definitely not looking to spend this much.  Mainly because I want to be able to mod mine with peace in mind knowing I'm not risking a $1000 set of headphones :p.  But good to know about the quality, hopefully the same goes for the sr80s.
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 5:52 AM Post #10 of 19

arashb

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Bowers&Wilkins P5 or HD 558/598? I know some sexy minimalist designs of the old orthos 

 
I'm being picky again but Sennheiser seems too mainstream now to be as good as some others for the value.  Probably not true but I like to have a more rare set, even though I won't be showing mine off :p.
 
And I don't know how I feel about the B&W's.  I like them but I don't.
 
However, more importantly both these would be way too out of my budget :[.
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 5:56 AM Post #11 of 19

valerianaoff

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Phillips Uptown
 
Jul 21, 2012 at 6:05 AM Post #12 of 19

obobskivich

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I'm being picky again but Sennheiser seems too mainstream now to be as good as some others for the value.  Probably not true but I like to have a more rare set, even though I won't be showing mine off :p.

And I don't know how I feel about the B&W's.  I like them but I don't.

However, more importantly both these would be way too out of my budget :[.


Koss is "obscure" and not "mainstream" or "trendy" - and they've released quite a few new models recently. :)
 
Jul 24, 2012 at 2:42 AM Post #14 of 19

arashb

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Thanks guys, they just came in and I love the sr80is so far.  My L-cush pads should be here tomorrow so that will be fun as well.
 
The only issues I have with it is the build quality, not up to par with what I've seen with others.  And the box is comes with?  It's so dated, urbanears were so tempting because they feel and look beautiful and their box is just drop dead gorgeous.  But thats about where they lose their advantage, sound wise sr80 destroys.
 
My first mod will be a sock mod, but then I'll convert my sr80s to a single detachable cord :], I love mods.
 
Jul 24, 2012 at 5:40 AM Post #15 of 19

our martin

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Thanks guys, they just came in and I love the sr80is so far.  My L-cush pads should be here tomorrow so that will be fun as well.
 
The only issues I have with it is the build quality, not up to par with what I've seen with others.  And the box is comes with?  It's so dated, urbanears were so tempting because they feel and look beautiful and their box is just drop dead gorgeous.  But thats about where they lose their advantage, sound wise sr80 destroys.
 
My first mod will be a sock mod, but then I'll convert my sr80s to a single detachable cord :], I love mods.

I think you are paying more for the drivers and the cable more than anything else..you forgot to mention that they leak sound, but you can't have everything can you..
 

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