Closed, Semi-portable Headphone?
Apr 1, 2005 at 4:10 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12


100+ Head-Fier
Feb 23, 2004
It's that time again

I'm looking for a (preferably) full-sized, closed headphone. My current main headphone setup is an EMU0404 > PIMETA > HD555, which I'm satisfied with though I'm mulling an upgrade, so something with a similar sound characteristic would be nice. Sometimes I'd like some isolation sometimes so I'd like to get a closed set. I'd like to use these headphones traveling on occasion also (mostly bus/plane), so some portability would be nice. Canal-phones are a no no, I'd much prefer full-sized headphones. I listen to a variety of music but mostly jpop and classical.

I've been looking at the new Senn HD215s and I've considered the 280s (though I'm concerned about the brightness & clamping) and the A500s (though they seem too big for any portable use and I'd like a good midrange). I'd prefer something ~$100 unless it's worth replacing my main headphones with, at which point $250-$300 is the limit. The 215s have been really tempting me but the lack of reviews/opinions has made me hesitant. Any thoughts, suggestions? Thanks
Apr 1, 2005 at 4:36 AM Post #2 of 12
Maybe look at some Sony D66 Eggo's?
Apr 1, 2005 at 4:46 AM Post #4 of 12
"Semi-Portable" that is a good phrase. I have some HD280s - and they do fold some but are still fairly big. Not A900 big - but big.

I wonder two things:

1) Can I make it through the summer with the hd280s in the heat and using a backpack?

2) How do hd280s compare to real portable phones like canal phones and the HD25.

But, I better start another thread. I was just focusing on the "semi-portable"!!
Apr 1, 2005 at 7:47 AM Post #6 of 12
the 280's arent bright IMO, and if they are to some people then it cant be by much. The clamping force of the 280's gets much better with use, not only do they stretch out quite a bit, but you just get used to the fit. If you love the mids on your 555's you will love the mids on the 280's, both are very smooth and have a good soundstage presence. The 280's bass isnt thumping without an EQ but its decent, especially with the extension. But once you use the EQ the bass can really thump. Also, as you may already know, the bass extension on the 280's are so low that given the right song large animals flee in terror of an earthquake. I prefer the highs on the 555's because they are crisper and more detailed than the 280's, but the 280's aren't any sloutch.

As for donaldekelly's questions,

1. it all depends on how hot your summer is
2. there was a recent thread about the 25's vs. the 280's just go check out that thread for a more in depth review of the two. The highest end canal phone i've heard is the e3c, given its performace compared to the 280's i have this to say.

If my 280's took a dump, they would most likely crap out e3c's.

the e3's are great for portable isolation, some highs, and mids. And thats about it. (this is in comparison to the 280's of course)
Apr 1, 2005 at 12:58 PM Post #8 of 12
AKG K 271S is fullsized (circumaureal), and a very good closed can.. or 171S, closed supraaureal little brother to 271S.
bought mine 171 for 99$ so its under 100$
Apr 1, 2005 at 1:13 PM Post #9 of 12
I've had my 280s for years and don't notice any brightness at all. The clamping effect that everyone talks about also seems overblown to me too. It could be that mine are just well broken in by now, but I don't have any issues with them other than a touch of flabbiness in the bass. I definitely prefer the sound of my Grados, but the Senns are good for the money and work wonders when you don't want sound leaking in or out.
Apr 1, 2005 at 2:35 PM Post #10 of 12
philodox hasn't chimed in yet?
Hmm.. On behalf of philodox i recomend the AKG271S

No, but seriously, they are on top of my "must hear list" for semi-portable closed headphones.
Apr 1, 2005 at 3:53 PM Post #12 of 12
Hmm, I've read that the D66s don't isolate all that well, and I'd like fairly good isolation.

The K271s are tempting but their pricing/overall quality seems to put them pretty near the 555s, while I'd prefer either something relatively cheap to supplement or a noticeable upgrade to replace.

At this point I'm leaning towards the 280s, but I'm still thinking about just going for the 215s and reporting back.

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