Forgiving headphones
Jul 24, 2008 at 7:38 AM Post #16 of 38

catscratch

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If the HD600 sounded thick, slow, and overly bassy, then it's not driven well. It should sound forward, not necessarily quick but not very slow either (for a dynamic), and very lively with excellent dynamic range. A well-driven HD600 is one of the best dynamic headphones you can get your hands on, IMO, regardless of price. Its greatest asset is its nearly completely accurate and life-like tone. Instruments just sound right, giving it a lot more transparency than its speed and resolution would have you believe. Ultimately, you want to drive it balanced, but it can work quite well with single-ended amplification too - which, in my experience, is not the case with the HD650. That beast not only needs more power than the HD600 but also really does need balanced drive in order to shine. But, oh man, does it ever shine when you drive it right!

Neither is very forgiving. The HD650 will give more body to thinly-recorded music, and sibilance will be heard but won't hurt your ears. Still, bad-sounding records will always sound bad with either one.

I would suggest looking into the Stax SR-003, which comes as a part of the Stax SR-001 MkII system, or the SR-005a system. Don't let the diminutive size fool you, this is a killer headphone. It's not forgiving in terms of source, but it's a very smooth-sounding headphone that still packs insane speed and excellent detail. You will hear flaws when they're there, but badly recorded music will still be listenable and fun. Oh, and the bass is something else. Don't think that because it is electrostatic it is lacking in bass, because it will satisfy all but the most die-hard bassheads (and even them in the right system).
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 7:50 AM Post #17 of 38

kostalex

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HD650 is quite forgiving, Beyers are not.

I believe you should try tube or hybrid amp instead of the new headphone.
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 10:20 AM Post #19 of 38

metalears

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Quote:

Originally Posted by moogoob /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Lol.
smily_headphones1.gif
I'm listening to Dimmu Borgir's In Sorte Diaboli right now on my 325is. Wow... that bass kick...
eek.gif
Hellhammer is astounding. SR80s make Black Metal sound nicer, 325is make it sound... scarier.
eek.gif



I'd really love to step up from my sr80's to 325i's but if only they weren't that heavy with the aluminum sound cups
frown.gif


I can feel what you're feeling with all that bass kickin' in black metal
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 10:35 AM Post #20 of 38

nickchen

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In order to get a forgiving presentation, you need a backstep towards "Lini" groovelizers IMO. I think of DT440, K240S, A900 or an old DT531 in that respect. However, it's questionble if such a backstep would be a very pleasing experience.

I personally gave up the forging midfi/groovelizer path. If a recording is too bad, it is simply being excluded from my collection.
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 10:39 AM Post #21 of 38

tfarney

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Quote:

I have heard the HD600 out of an iQube briefly. I don't know if the iQube is driving the HD600 properly. It sounded really thick, slow and bassy to me. But may be that's because I am coming from AKG and Etymotic. Despite that it doesn't sound "right" to me, there is a certain richness that I find rather addictive.


I think it's what youre used to. I have HD580s and Etys. It always takes me a few minutes to adjust to the thin sound of the Etys, a few minutes more to finally start to hear that little trace of bass back there. Going back to the Senns is like going home and finding a warm fire burning in the hearth. Addictive indeed. I think if you listened to a pair of HD600s for awhile, they would not sound thick, they would sound like music. And when you returned to the Etys they would sound paper thin and fragile. I can't speak to the AKGs.

No top-quality phone will really cover up bad recordings, though. An HD580/600 will make a boosted upper midrange, or artifacts in the upper midrange more tolerable, because it doesn't emphasize that range like so many do. So, I guess I'm saying try the HD600. I don't think it will forgive your bad recordings. But it may help you forgive other phones for making them worse.

Tim
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 11:03 AM Post #22 of 38

Tiemen

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Quote:

Originally Posted by nickchen /img/forum/go_quote.gif
snip...I personally gave up the forging midfi/groovelizer path. If a recording is too bad, it is simply being excluded from my collection.


I'm considering that too.....
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 11:28 AM Post #23 of 38

nickchen

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Sanip??
confused.gif
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 11:31 AM Post #24 of 38

Tiemen

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Quote:

Originally Posted by nickchen /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Sanip??
confused.gif



Hmm, should be 'snip', as to say I didn't quote all.
Repaired it.

(Takes another cup of coffee to wake up more...)
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 12:14 PM Post #25 of 38

Navyblue

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Thanks all for your advices.
smily_headphones1.gif


I don't really have a problem with old or mono recording. My gripe is with the distortion in the recording, and sometimes treble that hurt my ears (not exactly pronounced sibilance, but somehow it hurts). Some older recording have booster upper midrange and no bass, but I can somewhat live with that.

I am realistic with what I am expecting from a more "forgiving" headphone. Of course crap will remain crap no matter what gears I use, what I want is something that would make crap a little more palatable.
biggrin.gif
The absolutely bad ones would probably have no cure to them, But I hope I can salvage some borderline cases.

I'm aware that all my gears are on the "analytical" side. I've never thought of the tube amp idea, thanks Kostalex
smily_headphones1.gif
, I think I should look into it, at least sometime in the future if not now.

I'm also not looking for a lo-fi headphone. I'd prefer a decent headphone that I can add to my main collection at the same time, after all this is a birthday gift to myself, and I'd hate to receive an iBud as present
biggrin.gif
. So I'm guessing it would be some headphone or amp that has the smoothening or groovelising effect.

AKG K240 Sextett caught my attention too. I know very little about older headphones. Is the current K241/K242 sound anything like that? How about the K271/K272? it seems like these models aren't mentioned often here.

Would the HD650 be more forgiving than the HD600? So the HD650 is less lively/exciting sounding than HD600 yet still very dynamic? It's really hard to imagine.
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 12:59 PM Post #26 of 38

kostalex

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Navyblue /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I'm aware that all my gears are on the "analytical" side. I've never thought of the tube amp idea, thanks Kostalex
smily_headphones1.gif
, I think I should look into it, at least sometime in the future if not now.



I just received my TTVJ Millet portable. I am listening to it with OK1 and ATH-CM700. Both of these earbuds were too resolving to listen with SS amps. Tubes change all! Now I enjoy OK1 like never before and I may tolerate CM700, which is unbearable otherwise.

Try tubes and never look back
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 1:45 PM Post #27 of 38

Tiemen

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Navyblue /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Thanks all for your advices.
smily_headphones1.gif


I don't really have a problem with old or mono recording. My gripe is with the distortion in the recording, and sometimes treble that hurt my ears (not exactly pronounced sibilance, but somehow it hurts). Some older recording have booster upper midrange and no bass, but I can somewhat live with that.

I am realistic with what I am expecting from a more "forgiving" headphone. Of course crap will remain crap no matter what gears I use, what I want is something that would make crap a little more palatable.
biggrin.gif
The absolutely bad ones would probably have no cure to them, But I hope I can salvage some borderline cases.

I'm aware that all my gears are on the "analytical" side. I've never thought of the tube amp idea, thanks Kostalex
smily_headphones1.gif
, I think I should look into it, at least sometime in the future if not now.

I'm also not looking for a lo-fi headphone. I'd prefer a decent headphone that I can add to my main collection at the same time, after all this is a birthday gift to myself, and I'd hate to receive an iBud as present
biggrin.gif
. So I'm guessing it would be some headphone or amp that has the smoothening or groovelising effect.

AKG K240 Sextett caught my attention too. I know very little about older headphones. Is the current K241/K242 sound anything like that? How about the K271/K272? it seems like these models aren't mentioned often here.

Would the HD650 be more forgiving than the HD600? So the HD650 is less lively/exciting sounding than HD600 yet still very dynamic? It's really hard to imagine.



The K271 are rather detailed, so you hear quite well what's going on on a recording. But they are not bright. Some say their highs are rolled off.
When I used them I had less problems with bad recordings.
So maybe they are an option as well.
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 3:11 PM Post #29 of 38

Navyblue

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I'd think that some sort of effect boxes or software plugin might work. However, a Foobar plugin doesn't make good birthday present.
biggrin.gif


Ok, let me confess, I'm going to spend on something for my birthday, but I don't quite really "need" anything that cost about a few hundred bucks.
biggrin.gif
I have two directions to go, one would be to enhance my current setup (Marantz CD6002), another is to have an alternative setup (a less analytical and more forgiving headphone/amp).
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 8:37 PM Post #30 of 38

vvanrij

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Yeah go for the sextett, you can always upgrade, but you can't have another year without the sextett.... ahh the horror.... ... yes.
 

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