Drumming Headphones
Sep 27, 2009 at 5:49 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 24

gogi-goji

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Guess what? I'm a new member here looking for headphone reccomendations (I bet you've never heard that before
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).

In short, I'm looking for headphones to use while drumming. Now here's the long version:

Just a few weeks ago, I started learning to play the drums, and I quickly realized that the amount of sound created while playing in my basement was very loud. I like to play along to music (so I can at least pertend I'm pro), but I do not have any headphones to play along with, only speakers. This is an issue, as the volume levels required to hear music through my stereo while drumming can reach the point of pain. Not good. My goal is to dampen the sound of my drumset greatly, to the point where I can listen to music at a reasonable level through headphones of some sort, while still being able to hear my drums.

I'm going to venture that I'd prefer some kind of circumaural headphones over IEMs. This mostly comes from the only thing close to IEMs that I've every owned, Skullcandy Ink'd buds (for the record, I never really liked their sound, it seemed kind of flabby, if that makes sense). With these Ink'd buds, I found that I constantly had to keep pushing them back into my ears with the medium sized inserts (they kept loosing their seal), the "fat" inserts never really fit in my ears, and the "skinny" inserts provided no seal for me. I'm not sure if this experience would repeat itself with "real" IEMs, but it certainly has me leaning away from them. I've also wanted to own a pair of big over-ear headphones for a while, but I can certainly hold off if I can be convinced that IEMs are the way to go. But just so you know, I am slightly biased against IEMs from the get-go.

Those Ink'd buds that I mentioned before (sadly) were my only headphones that I owned. And (again, sadly) they recently broke, and the left one popped apart for no apparent reason. I'm not exactly rolling in the dough, so whatever headphones I purchase for drumming will also likely be used for all my other headphone needs. They will be used around the house, on the computer, and on the bus. However, my primary requirement is for them to be great for drumming, so I can put up with many flaws in this department.

If required, I have an amp, but I'm really unsure of it's quality. I've never had a good pair of headphones to use with it, and it was designed to power some fairly large tower speakers (these unfortunately are no more, and ex-friend "accidentaly" kicked in the speakers). The label on them reads "JVC A-X30 Stereo Integrated Amplifier". They were originally my dad's, and are from the 80's, I believe. I have no idea how much use this amp would be to me.

As for my musical taste (if this matters), I have a somewhat ecclectic collection, about 2/3 of which is flac (I've never had a good pair of headphones, but I feel bad degrading the quality of my "masters", so I have high quality files available for whatever. I've mirrored this collection into ogg vorbis for use on my iPod). Most of my collection is modern rock, including the likes of the Foo Fighters, Muse, the Silversun Pickups, Mother Mother, the Kings of Leon, etc. I also have a very good dose of older rock there, too. Jazzy stuff (especially swing) is also present, as well as various ska, electronica, pop, and a little dose of classical.

I've rambled on for a while now, so I'll finish up. I'll say my absolute price limit is about $250 CAD, but I'd certainly wouldn't mind paying less
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.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 
Sep 27, 2009 at 5:59 AM Post #2 of 24

KingStyles

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Dt770 would be a good one to use while drumming.
 
Sep 27, 2009 at 6:35 PM Post #4 of 24

ratz

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If youre going to continue playing and perfoming music in the future, it might be worthwhile investing in some musicians earplugs. They reduce the sound a lot and they are also small enough to wear underneath a pair of full-sized headphones.
I dont know if they would suit you or not, but its worth considering
 
Sep 27, 2009 at 6:47 PM Post #5 of 24

cyberidd

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I use my DT770 when I'm drumming. It works quite well for me, but I haven't tried drumming with any other headphones.
 
Sep 27, 2009 at 7:13 PM Post #6 of 24

hungryduck

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I have a pair of custom Etymotic ear-plugs from Sensaphonics - Sometimes I'll use them under some headphones.

I know many drummers use these: Stereo Isolation Headphones.

However, they don't sound that great and they block out too much in my opinion.

I just end up using some Shure IEM's usually if I'm playing along to a track/session or live monitor mix.
 
Sep 27, 2009 at 7:48 PM Post #8 of 24

Meliboeus

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AFAIK beyerdynamic makes a special version of the Dt-770, Dt-770M which is made for drummers and should provide better isolation via leather pads and, i think, sound absorbing material in the cups.

Don't know if they are easy to find.
 
Sep 28, 2009 at 12:09 AM Post #11 of 24

gogi-goji

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Thanks for the reccomendations so far. My internet has been down for most of today, so that's been a pain.

My local music store carries both the DT770 Pro ($215CAD) and DT770M ($230CAD), so those would be easy for me to purchase, so that would incline me to lean that way. From what I've read, the DT770 Pro sounds much better than the DT770M, but I don't know how "tight" it is on the head, or the level of isolation it would produce. If it came down to those two headphones, I'd prefer to go for better sounding, but do the Pros still sit well on the head while drumming? Like, I assume that the Pros will sit on my head well, and still provide the right amount of isolation, no? (I'm not sure if I really made sense there, so tell me if I didn't, and I'll try to ask again in a clear-er manner)

From my quick glance at reviews of the Etymotic ER-6i, I'm not sure if it's the way to go. I understand that it will have excellent isolation, and sound great, but I really dislike skinny, tangle-prone, microphonic wires. The alleged "weak bass" is also somewhat off-putting for me, even though I really have nothing to judge that on.
 
Sep 28, 2009 at 1:16 AM Post #12 of 24

KingStyles

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You are correct that the pro's sound better than the m's. I dont think it should be a problem for the pro's to stay on your head. See if your local store will let you try one on.
 
Sep 28, 2009 at 4:39 AM Post #13 of 24

MightyCharlou

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I have some experience with headphones and druming but not exactly what you want to do.
A friend and I play electronic drum and we love the drum sound in Senn. CX300 (electronic drum sound, not music while playing real drum). I never never fell if they are inserted corectly. I use an extention and put the plug in my back pocket. Another advantage of small IEM is your ears doesn't get warm like with bigger circumaural headphones, Ath-A900 are the worst. I now use Sony MDR-V6 to play drum and my ears doesn't oversweat too much and they stay on my head with light/moderate headbaging.

As for sound quality... i'm not sure it matter that much. I mean, you play real drum while listening some music. There is a lot of noise from outside and i don't think you will pay much attention on sonic details and sound signature. IMO What is important is that you can hear everything clearly while playing.

I've never heard of DT770M before i saw this thread. The noise attenuation is a good thing for your earing, you will play music "less loud" than with most other headphones with less attenuation. I played drum with some bigg earmuffs and sounded kinda cool. The general low-end, especialy the bass drum, was more present. I guess DT770M and the vic frith head phone should have the same effet.

I hope it helped.
 
Sep 28, 2009 at 10:08 PM Post #14 of 24

gogi-goji

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What exactly does "noise attenuation" mean? I read a couple of definitions, but I don't really understand what it means.

I was considering going for sound quality over "Designed for drumming" because I'll be using the headphones for other stuff, too.
 

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