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Hate the 1990s Pro, Looking at the new LCD2 Classic

  1. Cybertox

    In 2016 I got myself the at the time new Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro, they were pretty much my first "high-end" headphones. Prior to them I had my Beyerdynamic Custom One Pro, Sennheisers (forgot which model) and the Philips SHL5800. Out of all those headphones, I felt like the Custom One Pro were by far the best.

    Once I have accumulated a reasonable amount of money, I decided on spending it on a new DAC+AMP and a new pair of high end headphones, so I got myself The Element from JDS Labs and the DT 1990 Pro from Beyerdynamic, the reason I got them was because I have never tried open headphones before and also because I really enjoyed the elegant and slick German design. I read and viewed pretty much all of the reviews that were available at the time and committed to the purchase. Unfortunately, still to this day, I really dislike them and feel like I have wasted a big portion of my money. Since when I got them which was back in 2016, they have been doing nothing but sitting in that professional audio box that came with them. Reason being the sibilance which is pretty much unbearable...

    It is hard for me to assess my personal sensitive to sibilance and treble, but certain songs made the DT 1990 physically unbearable, the amount of sibilance and hissing I would hear would be unbearable. But even tracks with moderate amounts of highs would output unpleasant amounts of sibilance and hissing to the point where I just got mad and decided to give up on them and keep on using my Custom One Pros. I felt like I wasted 600 CHF for something inferior than what I had. Obviously, things like clarity and soundstage as well as many other aspects of sound were noticeable better when compared to the Custom One Pro but I felt like the sibilance pretty much diminished all of those advantages making the headphone pretty much unusable for me.

    As Switzerland is not really a country full of audio hardware enthusiasts, I had trouble selling my DT1990s and still to this day they remain unsold. This whole situation left a bad taste and since then I pretty much gave up on enjoying any music on any type of stationary set-ups which would involve various high-end audio hardware.

    But as someone who really enjoys listening to music, here I am back again. With a bigger wallet, more experience in the audio sector and newly generated enthusiasm. Now I always looked up to the LCD line-ups and with the introduction of the new LCD2 Classic, they got me interested. Would they be something that would bring back what the DT 1990 Pro took from me? A pleasant high end audio experience?
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
  2. WildStyle-R11
    Well I currently have LCD2C... I have had a lot of headphones and because of previous experiences tried to stay away from LCD, thinking they would be dull, because people describe it as laid back and relaxed. Well in the end it is good that I waited for the LCD2C to come out, but then again I had a lot of headphones along the way...Including DT 1990, which I also kinda wanted to trow away because of the highs, then I got something that was supposed to be more tame HD 660 S and same story different packaging not the high as much as the IN YOUR FACE sound signature. So I just said **** it, I will go more expensive but polar opposite and see where I stand, if not just give up.
    Well I only have the LCD2C for about a week, but so far I haven't had a moment where I want to take them off. They are not annoying how about that? And yet, if you want to enjoy aggressive music, it can do it with ease and not give you a headache. It has enough energy to not be dull and at the same time just tame enough to not annoy you. So far. ^^
    volly and Cybertox like this.
  3. Hifiearspeakers
    If you want a very pleasant and balanced headphone from top to bottom, without any sibilance unless it’s already in the track, is comfortable, easy to drive, and has a large soundstage, then you want the Hifiman Edition X V2. The LCD 2 might go too far in the other direction for you. It has a big roll off in the upper mids/lower treble region so it loses a lot of detail, and it has elevated bass which further obscures details. It also costs more than the Edition X V2.
  4. rredge
    Hi Cybertox,

    In other words, you are complaining about headphones that are designed for people who mix and master, but you do neither.
  5. grae313
    It's not like the DT1990 is never recommended for people listening to music. Give him a break, it's hard for people new to headphones to know what they'll like until they go and try it.
  6. rredge
    Huh? Beyerdynamic states expressly what these headphones are for. Five paragraphs of complaint from a person who doesn’t use them for what they are sold for?
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
  7. grae313
    I'm not talking about the manual, I'm talking about the reviewers and enthusiasts that will rave about the sound of a headphone for music listening. Don't act like no one has ever spoken highly of the DT 1990 or other studio monitors for general music listening. If every reviewer said "great studio monitor, but not enjoyable for listening to music", then that would be one thing, but that's not what they say. It's not like OP is calling Beyers trash or saying it's anyone's fault, just realized he bought the wrong headphones and wants some advice. Give the kid a break.

    Would you rather he not post and ask for help? You'd rather he just didn't make the mistake in the first place? Okay, but people make mistakes. Let's help him find his sound.
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  8. Cybertox
    Yeah because everybody on this forum who bought the beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro is a professional music producer and sound engineer who mixes and masters on a regular basis.

    Its like saying, why did you buy a Ferrari? You are not a professional racer who runs circuits.

    The fact that the headphone’s main use is mixing and mastering, does not explain as to why it should have such bright and aggressive treble to the extent where sibilance is a big issue, even on very well produced and mastered tracks.
    grae313 likes this.
  9. Cybertox
    Here in Switzerland, the Hifiman Edition X V2 costs twice more than the LCD2-C.

    Apologies for the double post. Have trouble quoting on mobile.
  10. waveSounds

    @Cybertox I don't think you can go wrong with the LCD, but if you're hesitant to invest a relatively large amount again given your previous experience then you can pick up a new AudioQuest NightOwl for pretty much half of their original price. Either should give you no treble issues and a warm, lush sound.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
  11. Hifiearspeakers
    It’s worth it.
  12. Arniesb
    Dt1990 with balanced pads is not so harsh, but the PROBLEM is your ELEMENT. Try something like beyerdynamic a20 + some warmer dac
  13. rredge
    I agree with Grae313 that you should be seen as having made a mistake and helped to purchase headphones that are more suitable for your use.

    That said...

    Any reviewer who recommends these headphones for casual listening is in my view not worth listening to. Personally, I am not aware of any serious reviewer who has made that claim. Names please.

    I think that you need to learn the difference between a Ferrari Formula 1 car and a Ferrari street car. In any event, the analogy doesn’t work because Beyerdynamic says specifically that the DT 1990 is for mixing and mastering. Apparently, you decided to ignore that.

    Finally, three comments about your assertion that the DT 1990 has excessive, sibilant treble:

    First, presumably you read about this alledged fault before you bought them. So why did you go ahead?

    Secondly, there are lots of people who don’t see this “fault”.

    Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, it’s clear from that statement that you don’t understand what mixing and mastering are about. High on the list of things that mixers are concerned with is sibilance, which is why professional sound editing software like iZotope RX addresses it specifically. But you don’t even know what iZotope RX is, do you.

    The fact is, people who actually mix and master, who are the people that Beyerdynamic designed these headphones for, are not complaining.

    If you get your “reviews” in part from YouTube, Warren Huart, an actual serious record producer, musician, composer and sound engineer who knows considerably more about professional music production than all of your audiophile “reviewers” put together, and albeit in a giveaway context, has nothing but good things to say about these headphones.

    If, as I suspect, you have no idea who Warren Huart is, look him up on Wikipedia.

    As Grae313 says, you need assistance. However, blaming the product because it is for a use that you neither have nor understand is problematic, which is putting it very charitably.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
    earChasm likes this.
  14. rredge
    Alternatively, use these headphones for what they are designed for instead of spending hundreds of dollars to try to turn them into something that they aren’t designed for.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
  15. Rhamnetin
    I would recommend the ZMF Ori instead. Similar sound and the same strengths, but without the severe treble weakness (and perhaps upper mids depending on your definition). For reference, I even prefer the ZMF Ori to the Audeze LCD-4, and the LCD-4 is better than all the lower end LCD models in every way. Even though the LCD-4 excels even more in the same areas where the ZMF Ori excels, the one exception to this was the treble which is just far too problematic, veiling, and realism destroying especially for vocals and pianos most of all (but other sounds as well).

    Or you can even cut down on costs and take your gamble with a HiFiMan Sundara. Replace the cable too and I bet you'll hear the sound difference. Why is the Sundara a gamble? Because of potential faults and then having to RMA. The chance of that is significantly higher with HiFiMan than with Audeze, Beyerdynamic, and ZMF Headphones. But it is my favorite sub $1,000 open back headphone (although I have never used a Stax Lambda).

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