First Headphones for Casual Student
Sep 5, 2009 at 3:17 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 15

efesach

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hey guys, i'm pretty glad i found this forum. i've been doing some light research (googling "best headphones" etc.), and was going to end up buying bose before reading about how bad the value was on here.

so anyway, i just finished my first week of college, and noticed that i really need a pair of headphones. ipod earphones won't last me lol. my budget is up to $250, but preferably less.

my main uses will be for music (i listen to rap and rock), movies, youtube, and videos for class. i will be using it with my laptop (thinkpad t400, if that matters), and something that i can wear for a long time without causing discomfort. i'm a casual user, so i don't want something that requires a lot of tweaking. i will be using it mostly in the library or in my dorm room. portability would be nice, but it's not a bit deal.

try to bear with me if i ask a lot of questions or seem clueless, because i am clueless. but i'll try to skim these forums in my spare time. thanks a lot!
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 3:22 AM Post #2 of 15

EugeneK

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Rock without amp will get you a lot of recommendations of grados and alessandros, so i guess i'll start. hehe.

I'm not sure what headphones go with rap.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 3:29 AM Post #3 of 15

redlinez33

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I believe a good phone for you and will save good bit of money is the Audio Technica ATH-M50.

Good sound, good isolation, good comfort. Though I said good and not GREAT, they are about $100 and well worth the money. I doubt you will find much better (unamped) for under $200 that are closed design.

Open design will leak sound, which being a college student I am not sure you want.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 3:42 AM Post #4 of 15

efesach

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thanks for the replies people!
the audio technica ath-m50 looks good. just picking from all 3, how does it compare against the alessandro ms1 and the grado prestige sr 125?
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 3:48 AM Post #5 of 15

EugeneK

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redlinez33 makes a good point, grados and alessandros are open headphones, which means they'll be hard to use in a noisy environment (on a bus) or when silence is necessary (in a library). Open headphones are really a home headphone solution.

Closed headphones like the M50 would be better suited as a general purpose headphone.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 4:05 AM Post #6 of 15

efesach

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alright, the M50 it is!
smily_headphones1.gif


their website lists it at $200, but there are tons of other sites that list it at ~$120. there shouldn't be any differences buying from a 3rd party site, right?

thanks for all your help guys! much appreciated.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 4:27 AM Post #7 of 15

flatmap

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I use Audio Technica ATH-M50's everyday at the office. They cut out the distracting conversations in the next cube and other worker's endless telecons. Even better I can have my music at satisfying levels without bothering anyone around me. Also very rugged and they can withstand getting stuffed in backpacks etc.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 7:17 PM Post #8 of 15

efesach

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they sound good, but i've read stuff about how they're sometimes uncomfortable on the ears?

what if i told you guys i was willing to spend $100 more? what would that offer in terms of value and quality? the most important things are that they're closed, are comfortable, and has great value.
thanks very much people.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 7:27 PM Post #9 of 15

redlinez33

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Would you consider your ears average in shape/size (or smaller)? If so the ATH-M50 are fine. For bigger ears you might find them uncomfortable. Buy them off ebay from an authorized reseller. They cost about $100. Btw there are TWO versions, one with a straight cable and one with coiled.

ATH-M50 = coiled
ATH-M50s = straight.

For $200~ There might be some that are better, but without an amp there arent many.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 9:08 PM Post #10 of 15

LeftyGorilla

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Quote:

Originally Posted by efesach /img/forum/go_quote.gif
alright, the M50 it is!
smily_headphones1.gif


their website lists it at $200, but there are tons of other sites that list it at ~$120. there shouldn't be any differences buying from a 3rd party site, right?



If you spend another $100, then you'll end up with something that would likely need amplification, which, as a "casual student" you are probably not really interested in doing. Unless you're considering Audio Technica ESW9.

But don't pay $200 for the M50. They are available new from good sellers on ebay for around $100.

I use them a lot at work, too. They are portable (I keep them in my laptop bag) and comfortable.

If you really want to spend more than $100, you could get a USB soundcard for to get better sound out of your laptop. Like that shiny (unreleased) fiio e7 or a nuforce mobile icon. Or an ibasso Boa. Mmm.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 10:32 PM Post #12 of 15

flatmap

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Hope you like them. If it does turn out that they aren't comfortable (on your ears), you shouldn't have any trouble selling them.

For my head, these are a good fit. I can wear them for hours at work. But let's face it -- headphone fit varies by individual.
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 2:43 AM Post #13 of 15

jewman

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I hope you like them as well!

I tested them out a few months ago, and they really impressed me. The isolation was great, especially with music playing. I tested the bass out with "Boys In Da Hood" and it was very tight. However, the bass was not overpowering. I also enjoyed the percussion as well, very realistic.

The comfort was good. You might have to give your ears a breather every once in a while, but overall I was pleased. I look forward to hearing your impressions!
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 4:09 AM Post #14 of 15

FlurryShuffle

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Just got my ATH-M50 last Friday from eBay. Burned-in 24 hours. Never thought I'd ever want another headphone again, I've been enjoying my Grado SR80 for over 8 years now. My research for a closed set for the daily train ride brought me to head-fi. I am now loving the M50 and the sound still keeps improving.
 

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