Best Sub $400 Planar Magnetic? - low end extension / power
May 9, 2021 at 11:37 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 8

seitil

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I've been using a Hifiman HE-400 for many years as my main set of cans. They were recommended to me on here and I am incredibly grateful for it! They were my first foray into planar magnetics and I really fell in love with the sound signature. More recently I have been looking to try something new and ask for your assistance.

I am looking for some open back planar magnetics (or I could be convinced by a particularly awesome dynamic driver) that have really great low end extension and oomph that would be similar to my HE-400 but a couple steps up. I prefer a warmer sound that's a lot of fun, I am not too worried about neutrality.

I am currently using a Schiit stack with a Modi 3 and Magni Heresy and plan to keep these for awhile, so perhaps something that does require a nuclear power plant to drive :)

My budget is $400, but a bit flexible if there are some major stunners just above the mark. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 
May 9, 2021 at 3:45 PM Post #3 of 8

Roderick

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Brainwavz Alara if you can find one. If bass is priority Alara easily outperforms he560(adorama V2), Sundara, he400i(old version), he4xx,He5xx,he400se, Audeze LCD-1, and mr.speakers afo&afc.

Sash Tres has well extended bass with decent slam, especially with some softer pads. Original he500 would also be a logical upgrade. If I recall monoprice m1060c had a pretty good bass too but I did not listen to those that much as I found them to be quite terrible overall.
 
May 9, 2021 at 4:03 PM Post #4 of 8

someguyontheinternet

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Dan Clark Audio Aeon RT is amazing, but it's 500$ which is over your suggested budget. I do think the quality justifies the price in this case though. The sound quality is simply excellent, build quality is really nice and the comfort is also amazing.
 
May 9, 2021 at 7:14 PM Post #5 of 8

seitil

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Thanks for the recommendations, its very much appreciated, wish I could buy you gents some beers for your help! I am not sure yet what I will get but I am definitely considering the Sundara, though if the Aeon RTs are really that good I might consider them.
 
May 10, 2021 at 5:47 PM Post #7 of 8

Mhog55

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A gently used Quad Era-1. I've been at it for a while now, and these bad boys knocked my socks off right outta the gate.
 
May 10, 2021 at 6:17 PM Post #8 of 8

Dawgfish

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Easy answer Modhouse Argons provided you can find a T50 or T60RP to send to Modhouse to modify. If you are looking for a sub $400 planar with the most bass extension and power, this is it.

Having said that I can confirm the Aeon Flow Open RT or Xs are superb and well worth their $500 list price. You can usually find them for around $400 used. They are by far my favorite headphone (including over the Sundaras).
 

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