Cable replacement for old 600 Ohm DT 990?
Mar 3, 2006 at 10:44 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 2

davebot

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I'm finally thinking of fixing my old Beyerdynamic DT 990. These are the 1989 vintage, 600 Ohm cans. I always liked these, but haven't been using them for the past three years because of a short in the wire to the right ear. I'm wondering whether I should go for a stock Beyer cable, or whether I should make a new one out of Belden 8413, or Canare StarQuad.

It turns out that Beyerdynamic is willing to fix these. Besides needing a new cable, they need new ear pads, and they need new center foam pieces (none of the center foam remains!). Beyer estimated parts + labor to be about $60. Of course, I'd still have to ship the DT 990 to New York from the West Coast. Someone whose opinion I trust pointed out that the $60 could edge up to $70, and that shipping could bring the total close to $100. He pointed out that headphones have improved a lot since 1989, and suggested that newer DT 990s might be more worthy of my money.

I'll probably still have these fixed, sentimental fool that I am. The question is whether I ship the cans to Beyer, and just let them handle it, or whether I ask them to send me the parts and do the work myself. At this point, I'd rather let them work their Beyer magic, and save my time for putting out other fires in my life.

But the thing that makes me pause is the cable. Beyer's replacement is a $10 part. If I did the replacement myself, I'd probably get some Belden 8413 (as Jan Meier suggests on his Tips page), or Canare StarQuad. I wouldn't want to put a lot of money into this, but I'd still probably end up with "better" wire than the stock cable.

There are three possibilities: 1) Maybe changing the wire would have little effect -- in that case, why bother? 2) On the other hand, it could change the basic sound signature of these phones, and maybe I'd actually prefer the old version! 3) It might simply improve on everything I liked about the stock DT 990, without changing its basic character. I know that HeadRoom has a Cardas option for the DT 880, so they must feel that changing the wire can be worth-while; but then again, I'm talking about using wire that's a lot less dear than Cardas.

So here's my question: would this change the sonic signature of my DT 990s? -- and if so, would it likely be one that I like even better? What would you do?

Thanks!

= davebot =
 
Mar 4, 2006 at 11:20 AM Post #2 of 2

davebot

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Hmm. No one's tried this?

Maybe I should just hand 'em over to Beyer and let them slap a stock $10 cable on 'em - ?
 

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