Buying advice: ESW9 or HFI-780 (after I disliked the MDR1's)
Dec 5, 2013 at 8:15 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 2


Jan 18, 2010
After using my ATH-OR7’s for about 4 years by now, they are starting to fall apart. Cable has broken twice and the leather parts are flaking. I’m therefore looking for new ones. I really liked the sound of the OR7’s. It has bright highs and deep and tight bass. I use Yamaha EPH100’s as IEMS, but now I’m looking for an over-ear headphone next to it.
Now I’ve recently bought Sony MDR1’s on the assumption that Sony’s of nearly €200 couldn’t be bad. As a matter of fact, they aren’t but I just don’t like how they sound. They have very nice mids and I really like the soundstage of them. But what I don’t like is the bass, it doesn’t go as deep as my old OR7’s and it isn’t as punchy. I read in the Head-fi winter buyers guide about the MDR1’s that they aren’t designed with deep tight bass in mind. So now I’m thinking about returning them and looking for new ones, more alike my OR7’s and/or EPH100’s.
Models I am interested in are of course the ESW9 of Audio Technica, but I’m fearing mostly comfort (more on ear than overear?) but also isolation and maybe even build quality. Next up are Ultrasone HFI780’s which I read different story’s on. The one says they have the ESW9’s bass with brighter treble, others say it has a soundsignature which you love or hate. They do go over the ears, which is a plus. I tried the Momentums, but they weren't really comfortable for my ears.
I listen to music with them mostly on the go (bike/train), souce is a Cowon S9, mostly folk, house/trance and reggae. Since my cables always break, I am a bit hazardous with the ESW9’s cable. And both have non user replaceable cables (which the MDR1 have). Are there other nice looking portable overears which might be of interest to me?
Dec 5, 2013 at 8:57 PM Post #2 of 2


Headphoneus Supremus
Nov 15, 2008
Riverdale, NY
Seems like you should get solidly made headphones with a detachable cable.
I would have recommended the Momentum's except that you didn't find them comfortable -
The ESW9A are beautiful small headphones; but delicate with thin wires
and genuine wood earcups - won't take much rough handling.  Really
a "stay at home" headphone IMO
I recommend that you listen to the Senn Amperior's if they're still available,
otherwise the new Senn HD 25 1 ii aluminum which are the closest to them.
Would write more but have to run right now...

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