I was recently browsing headphone.com and notice the Beyerdynamic DT770 is still being sold and reviewed favorably. It has been in production since 1985. Could anyone outline what improvements, if any, have been made to headphones in general since this era? Are companies basically just rehashing the same old products by using new marketing techniques and gimmicks to keep them going? What justification is there for buying a newer, more expensive headphone if a headhpone made in the mid 80's can still sell for 200 bucks?
The one thing that changed on the DT770's is the impedance rating. The ones introduced in 1985 had a 600-ohm impedance rating. But newer DT770's produced within the past couple of years have a 250-ohm impedance rating.
Herr Babelfish der Übersetzer, he wore a whipped-cream-covered tutu for this title.
Jan 1, 2002
I've thought a bit about this too. What's worse is that many people prefer headphones that aren't even in production anymore (and haven't been in well over ten years) to all of the dynamic headphones made today.
Within company lines, there have been, in my opinion, improvements, but they've been marginal. The Sennheiser HD600 is better than their previous top of the line, the HD580, but not by a lot. Likewise, I for one, do think the Beyerdynamic DT931 betters their previous efforts.
With these headphones a lot of the difference comes from top end extension, taughtness of bass, and resolution -- but again, only marginal.
On the other hand, headphone amplifiers have grown up quite a bit. Amps made by do-it-yourself'ers on this forum blow away professional consumer amps of only a few years ago. (Then again, I'm still rather fond of some of the tube amps that have been in production for a good long while now.)
If you really want to hear the newest technology, stop by a Stax dealer and see what you think of those. I think electrostatic technology is worthy but a lot of people still prefer dynamics. See for yourself.