I’m big on very clear, sharp, sibilant, revealing treble, even on my “pleasure” HP. I just listen at slightly lower volumes than is typical for my favorite genres.
sure, but like many things in headphones, there is fake revealing treble and real revealing... I would say the HD800 is a good example of revealing but with a spike, and the DT1990 is not even as revealing as the Sundara but has a lot of "fake detail" in the treble because of the spike, and the drop before it also.
Here is the graph I showed you
Look where the spike is, 7k to 8k.
Then look at crinacle graph with balanced pads
Same peak around 7-8k, but before that most of the treble is harman
I don't think many say the HD600's treble is revealing
But those are fresh pads,
now worn pads(note "worn-ish" padsfor some reason have less treble than both
But it's pretty clear the HD600's treble isn't especially revealing but the lower treble is over harman and until the peak much higher than the 1990, the highes fr isn't as high but still well over harman with a peak that matches the height of 1990's other frequencies
but the proof does not end there, let's check out crinacle graph done the same way with A pads, before we do it's a generally accepted fact by most the A pads are called "harsher" and it's said they have more treble, which would equate with more revealing
I will put them together to make it easier
The A pads have less treble across most of the the high ranges except 2 places, 1 is the peak(and pre peak), the second is a little bit over 10k and that rolls off back to the same as B pads quickly... Infact you will note the b pads is set 1-2 db lower, and the lower mid range up to 5k is still beneath it! and the peak is still several db higher making the differences more extreme on both! Anyway if I had to look at the graphs without seeing exactly where the DB are or the grid I would think the B pads have more treble! infact even with the grid I think they do! lol Also for the part over 10k when you take 1-2db off the A pads as well to compensate for overall volume change at where he set his graph (400?) they are all but the same....
SO let's look at one more headphones graph
Pre-2020 rev sundara
even the 2020 rev
it's over harman much for pre rev and even post rev compared to the A pads (excluding the spike area)... now everyone knows the 2020 is smother or better and the people complaining of some small sibiliance on the old unit are gone... but forgetting the graphs, anyone who has heard old sundara and the DT1990 with A pads.. or even B pads... it sounds like it has WAAAAY more treble (some people are good at finding spike, I literally listen to music on youtube on $1,200+ amp/dac and HD800 and just listen to music right away lol so not me, lets assume non expert listening)
But it really is that spike adding in sooo much sharpness you feel everytime the treble gets near the fr you feel like the mix is bad! Like your headphones have exposed the mix... but in this case the mix have actually exposed the headphones lol, that said even after you fix with velour the treble feels very good but it is a bit of almost "fake detail" I talked about with almost all pads some of the FR is murky and not clear, well most pads and all the ones I tried *except ZMF hybrit) the treble remains VERY VERY clear and quite grainy COMPARED to the mid and bass which switch around.... so there is a little bit of percieved advantage for the treble... but without the peak which I consider a defect not a good thing, and with the sound very clear you won't feel that is it bright... maybe slight V shape with more for the low end... But really unless using the defualt pad which I think is heavily flawed it won't feel so bright... and I would say with most pads that make mids or bass murky like 75% is the quality of the treble and the the headphones detail shining thru and about 25% is the huge delta between how clear the treble is and the murkiness maybe in the midrange and the bass and the fact it's a bit on the boomy side not tight side, since it's dynamic and they want upper bass punch extended heavy to feel the punch because the lower bass is also boosted but it cannot compete with planar for bass feel and deep lows.... If you are looking for bright/ neutral and very revealing treble then you can do 1990, but you might spend a lot of pads, or have to search a lot, you will be going against the grain most want for the 1990 to add bass because it is very good for dynamic punch and keeps detail elsewhere....
I would consider AKG 701... not many more around the price that are very good deal and bright neutral or bright.... and the DT 990 also have treble spike, many of the lower than DT1990 harman or bass boosted they sell to normal consumer who don't want bright... also Grado I guess but I don't like those
Really you find many of the around $1,000+ that perform very well technically use bright or bright neutral to boost perceived detail to compete... I would consider saving for a while and going for the Arya, many used ones are going for $1,000 or less and I know you will like it quite a lot I think
and also get tight but amazing high tier planar bass, great mids, and very open neutralish sound
But if you go for Arya make sure to get V1 or V2, you don't wan't V3/stealth, besides new so cost more, no good used deals, it has more bass and I think little less treble! Good deals are on V1 and V2 Arya which has less base more neutral bright!
anyway just my 2 cents... I really think you want bright and unless you are ok with some fake detail for treble area and spike that I don't like, yeah be prepared to research to get the sound(boost treble and keep it clear and grainy but hopefully kill peak) and maybe spend extra $ or go for high tier... anyway hope something I said is helpful and you enjoy whatever you buy!
Here is AKG 701 graph
and all beyerdynamic compatible pads on 1 graph...
P.S. not sure why the velour still show the peak... beyerdynamic messed up, so sorry it cannot show which one kill peak and none actually help treble... so technically the B pads have the most treble of all pads including A unless count the peak and ok make it bigger,,, even then total is probably still go to B or it is even
Also Sundara but make sure to either buy where you know have pre-2020 pads or ask Hifiman if you can order pre 2020 pads is a good option!