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++ FULL-SIZE HEADPHONE RECOMMENDATIONS THREAD++ CLOSED: Please post a thread in the Introductions, Help and Advice forum

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  1. olor1n
    OK, this may be a futile exercise, but hopefully we can tidy this forum up and reduce the daily replication of threads that ask the same questions.
    If you're new to Head-Fi and are seeking advice, hopefully this thread will assist you in making an informed decision.
    Head-Fiers are generally happy to help and can draw on a wealth of experience to shed light on a question. All you need to do is give us some context, so please outline some parameters like budget, music preferences, open or closed design, amped or unamped etc. Help us, to help you!
    If this thread serves its intended purpose (and I encourage all members to help in this by referring people here), it should inform future members who'll no doubt formulate the same questions. So ask away.
    Oh, and welcome to Head-Fi. Sorry about your wallet.
    This is the Headphones (full-size) area. Please direct more specific enquiries about iems, portable cans, dac/amp recommendations etc to the relevant subforum. Doing so will likely get your questions answered sooner by someone experienced with said gear.

    Also, we can only get you started on this, you need to scratch below the surface to search out the more detailed reviews and discussions. If you spend a few minutes reading other threads you'll notice that certain (entry level) cans always get mentioned as "safe" options. There will of course be disagreement, but there is also value in consensus.

    Remember, there may be some hyperbole when a headphone is said to be great for one genre but rubbish at another. The M50 for example, won't suddenly sound like an ibud when you listen to rock music, just because there are other headphones that may do rock "better". No headphone is great at everything. The models recommended here are likely great for some things, but merely good at others. "Good" in this instance is far from rubbish.

    At the end of the day though, only you can determine what's right for you. Getting tied down in endless discussions won't change this reality.

    Lastly, please read the last few pages before posting. Searching the site at large can yield strange results but try searching THIS THREAD with relevant terms like genre and price. It's likely an answer posted to a similar question may set you on the right path.
    Some useful links:
    2012 Head-Fi Summer Buying Guide - Start here (download the pdf)!
    InnerFidelity's "Wall of Fame"
    Headphone Buying Guide
    Buying Guide Headphones By Price Range
    Battle Of The Flagships(50+ Headphones Compared)
    Comparison of 5 popular cans in the $250-350 range - K701, HD650, DT990/600ohm, SR325is, D2000 -...
    Mid-fi Shootout - HD600 - HD598 - Focal Spirit One - Philips Fidelio L1
    [review/comparison] Beyerdynamic DT1350, T50p, Sennheiser HD25-1-ii, HD25-13-ii, Pioneer...
    [GUIDE] Sonic Differences Between DT770-DT990 Models & More
    DT880, K702, HD600: A beginner audiophile's thoughts.
    Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide: Updated: 3/15/2012 (Dolby Headphone test on 1st post!)
    Shootout: 100 Portable Headphones Reviewed
    Multi-IEM Review - 131 IEMS compared
    Old Schoot Trio: AKG K701, Beyerdynamics DT880, Sennheiser HD650 | Headfonia
    Closed Cans Shootout: M-50, ESW-9, T50P, HD25-1, Beats Studio, SRH-840, SRH-750DJ, K181DJ, and DJ1Pro. | Headfonia
    Please adhere to the Head-Fi Posting Guidelines
    Riku540, Currawong, sphinxvc and 3 others like this.
  2. ChopaH
    Great idea. I'll start it off with my current decision. I'm going to be buying the ATH-M50's sometime after the holidays. I don't really have enough money yet for a good desktop amp. I've had problems with my headphones in the past not being loud enough and I'm not sure if that's because of my mp3 files, my phone, or the headphones. So I've been considering buying the Fiio e5 to add a little bass (because I listen to 99% hip hop) but more importantly to make sure the headphones get loud enough for my liking.
    In a nutshell my question is if buying an Fiio e5 is going to increase the quality of my new headphones at all or if I should just save my money for an actual desktop amp?
  3. 166848
     had other threads started with good info but will try here.
     trying to choose between Gardo 325i's and Senn 650's.
     also info on a amp around $200/$300.
     music is mostly rock/metal.
     will be listening mostly through a ipod 160gb all in apple lossless.
     thanks for the info from the others already and too the ones that will tell me here (i hope).
  4. olor1n
    ChopaH, your question was answered in your original thread. Save your pennies.
  5. olor1n
    scott6ppc, I love my HD650 and feel it's fantastic for most genres. Equipment matching and finding the right synergy in your setup is key though. I don't listen to metal and I haven't heard the SR325i so I'll leave your question for someone else. Although I suspect they'll recommend you go with the Grado if you enjoy an energetic and aggressive presentation.
  6. ChopaH
    Oh wow, yes it was. Sorry about that. I forgot I posted the thread and now see there are a lot more answers...
  7. Uncle00Jesse
    I'm trying to decide between MS Pro / LCD-2 / or MS2 and work my way up the latter later on. I was thinking of just getting the LCD-2's and being done with the upgraditis. I'd like to be happy for a long time with what I have so I think going all out will solve that problem. What are your thoughts on this? I may also need a new amp, wondering if the Fiio E9 could handle an LCD-2 or MS Pro...
  8. kathros
    Hi there! I'm really new to this headphones things. However, currently I've been wanting one. I'm addicted to music in my ears. So, here goes! Thanks in advance!

    I'd like it to be lesser than 100 USD. I'm going to use it on my Nokia E72, Ipod nano, and maybe my kindle ebook too. I currently love house music and  melodic trance. (eg benny bennassi, daft punk, DJ Tiesto) However when i'm studying i'd switch to operas and classical. Oh, and when i listen to those house musics i like it to be .. how'd i say it. A bit more bass-ier? >;( As in i like it to be thumping in my head? I hope you get what i mean >.< Sorry! Sometimes i might bring it to college. It doesn't have to be really small(somewhere like shure240), as i carry huge bags. Plenty of space to fit em! Thanks alotttt!
  9. system11
    Great idea - I'm new to the forum and didn't like posting yet another advice topic in a sea of hundreds.
    I listen to my music mostly on a portable player (Cowon D2, X7 when it arrives), everything is FLAC or 320k mp3.  I like a lot of types of music, mostly prog rock though - about the only genre I don't listen to is techno/dance in its many forms.  I like a warm sound with good bass on tracks that demand it, the highs can't be too harsh as I have tinnitus and too much raspy treble sets it off.  Having said that I don't want the treble to be flat, just not drilling into my head on every cymbal.  Closed circumaural are a must as I use them in an office environment and don't like to subject other people to my music.
    I currently use Panasonic HTX7 which work fine unamped at volume 10-14/40, I'd like to avoid having to add an amp - budget is under $1000.  If it helps at all I always hated Japanese speakers back in the day for being too harsh, and preferred the sound that came from old 70s Mordaunt Short and Leak speakers - if anyone remembers those you'll probably remember the sound I mean!
    I've started wondering if Denon AH-D7000 would be what I'm looking for, but other suggestions are welcome!
  10. Anjexu
    I currently have a pair of Sennheiser HD 428's being shipped to me.  I want to use them as my portable headphones - will I need an amp for it, if my source is my iPod Nano 1G?
    I was thinking of buying a cheap portable amp, like the FiiO E5, but was unsure if it'd be worth the investment.
    No real budget .. but if someone can think of a better setup (I can try to sell the HD 428's when they get here, if I'm unsatisfied with their sound) for about the same price, I'm all ears.
    Not a bass head, mainly listen to "pop" (of course, pop seems to cover a wide range of sounds nowadays).  In fact I'd really prefer a clear/accurate bass instead of a boomy one.
  11. olor1n


    I suggest you look at the Audio Technica ATH-M50 if you're after a closed design. They're pretty balanced with good bass that extends deep. They seem to have gone up in price recently but you may be able to source them around that price. They often pop up in the For Sale forums if you don't mind going that route and saving some $. Be wary of fakes though if you're looking to get them cheap on ebay.
  12. aleex
    If this thread is to succeed I think it would be good to set up a proper template to follow when you're posting, even if you stated that it is (indeed) good to post parameters like price range, taste and all that.
    I need help myself though.

    Music genres: I'd say 40% hiphop, 30% acoustic-electro-hybrid-bands(wide genre, can take examples. Often no vocals.) and 30% indierock, 60's, 80's like Paul Simon and pop. No classical or metal.
    Portable: No, only at the computer.
    Price range: with an amp/a dac I'm willing to spend up to $600 but not more than that, rather much less. 
    Amped: Yes^, don't know which though.
    Closed/Open: I'm going to use them at home and at home only so doesn't matter. I've got a pair of open cans now and I enjoy 'em, so let's say open.
    Headphone preference: I'd rather like something funny than neutral/analytic. I don't want to sit and analazye every piece of instrument, I want to listen and enjoy the music.
    brendonintendo likes this.
  13. 65dos
    please help me.
    I want new headphones for less than $ 150.
    I listen to mostly rock, classic rock, post-punk, shugeyz, sometimes jazz and metal. I would like to clean and balanced sound. I will listen only to the PC, I have no amplifiersor sound card, but I think to buy them later. also please write a few models, because maybe I will not find a model
  14. impaledface
    I have the hd438s and they sound great for my rock/metal music. The only thing you have to realise is that they need a fairly long burn in time 40-80hours or more. My hd438s have as you want pretty clear accurate bass compared to some other cheaper headphones. Also You don't need an amp I got a fioo e7 and nothing changed. I sent it back because of a defect but anyways the 438s or 428s don't need an amp to sound good. Also right know I am using my hd438s with my ipod nano and they work fine.
  15. 65dos
    thanks, but I would like some models, because I do not know whether there is in my town they are.
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