Headphones dictating your tastes?
Aug 31, 2011 at 8:51 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 32

jimbob747

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This is just a personal grip I have, moving from the downstairs 'serious/fun listening area' to the 'laidback' bedroom cans. While i have submitted to the contrasting phones ideal, I can't stand it... I think most people (me included) simply go through phases of listening to certain headphones, then change at a whim.

What I notice more and more as I go up the price scale, is the signature of each headphone and how much longer it takes to acclimatize to a change. Moreover is how much these different headphones (not forcefully) dictate what music i'm enjoying listening to and what I CAN listen to. So if i feel in the mood to listen to anything in particular, I have to change headphones and therefore signature reducing enjoyment.

This is only for my own sanities sake, I do completely understand the idea of having some D7000s and K701s but at the same time it's incredibly counterintuitive to my listening. If I listen to my D7000s then all I want to listen to is instrumental tracks taking advantage of the V shaped sound, meaning my K701s are deemed moot and the same vise versa, flatter, more detailed etc...

I think no headphone, can truely be an individual's 'ideal headphone' in this hobby, afterall we all listen to such a variety of music that surely no signature will satisfy everyone's taste will it?

If anyone either doesn't mind the transition between headphone styles or has their ideal all rounder, I will tell my self you are a liar and envy you for the rest of my audio career... As i'm driven into secular listening of my headphones favourite albums...
 
Aug 31, 2011 at 8:54 PM Post #2 of 32

BotByte

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And now you understand why I will never venture farther then the $200 range for my personal headphones.
 
All my headphones are like Wives to me, they all are different for a reason and if I hate or love them; they are still mine for a reason.
 
As you said, the higher you go, the less FUN they are.
 
Aug 31, 2011 at 9:01 PM Post #3 of 32

jimbob747

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Don't get me wrong they're FUNN to listen too, as long as i'm not checking my bank account...

I do in a way regret spending more but i still enjoy my Sonys and DT880 as soon as 'i get used to them' but i guess you're right the changes are less noteworthy... Still felt the same when it was my triple fi to etymotics though, i think i'm just a sucker for EQ of music... I guess i could start EQing but i've heard it's a dark art ha. 
evil_smiley.gif


Edit: Besides the idea was what those headphones make you feel like listening to, i just got carried away... Other issues obviously haha.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 4:44 AM Post #4 of 32

Uncle Erik

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I've had a few good "all-around" headphones. The Sennheiser HD-600 did well with everything. The HD-800 is doing that for me right now and I've also been happy with everything I've thrown at the Sony MDR-7509HD, though I prefer the HD-800. The ProAc Response 2.5 clones, while not headphones, are great with everything I've thrown at them.

I think it's more of a matter of how much gear you're exposed to. Something out there will do it for you. You just have to recognize it when it turns up.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 5:03 AM Post #5 of 32

MalVeauX

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Quote:
If anyone either doesn't mind the transition between headphone styles or has their ideal all rounder, I will tell my self you are a liar and envy you for the rest of my audio career... As i'm driven into secular listening of my headphones favourite albums...



Heya,
 
I think you need to find a headphone that can handle basically everything. The challenge is finding a headphone that has excellent mids while still having a good powerful bass that isn't just a punch. Then you'll basically get whatever you need for most genres. Then simply get one that has the treble you want, rolled off smooth if you like that, or not, if you want hyper detail sounding stuff. Basically get a good neutral headphone with extension and good sound stage. That's an expensive order and hard to find. For me for example, I loved the SRH940 for it's detail and mids (more so than the K701's), and loved the PRO900's for their visceral bass (over the D2000's). But I wouldn't listen to EDM on my SRH940's and I wouldn't want acoustic on my SRH940's. So I needed a headphone that did both of those things in one headphone. For me, after many headphones, has been the HifiMAN HE-500. All my bass. All my mids. Great detailed non-sibilant treble. I love it because when I change tracks, no matter the music time, it's able to do it. I don't feel like reaching for another headphone. I don't worry about it. And this is from someone who literally had a headphone per artist. I had a headphone just for listening to Ani Difranco. Think about that. Now, I don't even change headphones (unless I'm going out, portable). So just look for the headphone that delivers at both ends. Everyone likes their intimate detail monster and everyone likes their bassy fun headphone. You need to find one that does both of those things for you.
 
Out of the mid-tiers, I couldn't find anything that did the bass and detailed highs and forward mids that I wanted. The DT880, SRH940, K701, etc, just didn't give me what I wanted in a single headphone, so I always ended up having at least two headphones during the day to cover my choices of music per mood. The only headphone that ever came close was the HD580 for me. But it was too laid back for me, I needed less rolled off highs for detail perception and energy. I suppose I should have tried the HE-300's, and I still might, but as for now, I found what I needed in the HE-500. Now I just play around with lower end headphones just to review as it's a hobby of mine.
 
Very best,
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 5:36 AM Post #6 of 32

jimbob747

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Once again guys, while I do envy you, my idea was more that the headphone adapts what you want to listen to, not IF you enjoy listening to... Personally with most of my top tiers, if i've been using them for awhile i CAN listen to everything, they just slowly change my taste... The whole point, got really bogged down by a whole other issue, that probably will deserve another thread but there are 1,000,001 threads out there for 'all round can' so i'll resist. 

On a side note i should actually be testing the HE-500 and HE-6 sometime next week (looking forward to my first top-teir orthos -smeggy thunderpants)
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 5:39 AM Post #7 of 32

Croozer

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As you said, the higher you go, the less FUN they are.


I don't buy that one.

I had some $200 cans (Denon D2K) and I was happy with them, later I got a good deal on some Denon D7K's and I grabbed them and I can honestly say they completely blew away the lower grade cans in all aspects.

If I subscribed to the idea that higher line cans are less fun I would have never experienced the D7K which for me is a very FUN set of cans.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 6:38 AM Post #8 of 32

kingtz

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Fortunately, it just so happens that my favorite headphone's sound signature is highly suitable for the type of music that I listen to. But yeah, should I ever venture into other genres, I can see myself being a little restricted. But I actually prefer the idea that certain headphones "synergize" with specific genres and excel at what they do, rather than the obvious alternative of having mediocre jack-of-all-trades type headphones.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 6:46 AM Post #9 of 32

ohhgourami

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I have an ideal all-around headphone and that's my HE-6.  It just so happens my taste and ideal sound signature fits the HE-6 perfectly.  I like nice mids with nice treble with neutral bass.  Anything more than neutral bass is too much bass for me plus I don't listen to all this electronic stuff a lot of ppl on headfi like.  The occasional rap is ok.  All I listen to is mainly chinese pop and heavy metal.  Double bass pedals are awesome but guitars are even more awesome so that's where the treble kicks in.
 
It does everything so well, why would I ever want to reach for something else?
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 6:58 AM Post #10 of 32

DaveBSC

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Quote:
Once again guys, while I do envy you, my idea was more that the headphone adapts what you want to listen to, not IF you enjoy listening to... Personally with most of my top tiers, if i've been using them for awhile i CAN listen to everything, they just slowly change my taste... The whole point, got really bogged down by a whole other issue, that probably will deserve another thread but there are 1,000,001 threads out there for 'all round can' so i'll resist. 

On a side note i should actually be testing the HE-500 and HE-6 sometime next week (looking forward to my first top-teir orthos -smeggy thunderpants)


For me the Stax Omega 2 does it all. Its sound signature fits me like a glove, and if anything sounds less than great on it, it's the fault of the recording, not the headphone. 99% of the time, its performance ranges from excellent to out of this world. At some point I would like to hear the LCD-2 and the HE-500, but for now I'm more interested in getting an LA7000 as my secondary headphone. All of the other dynamics I find too flawed in one area or another.
 
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 7:06 AM Post #11 of 32

n00kie

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I also blame the recording if the music doesn't sound right to my ears. Regardless I still listen to any kind of music genres as long as I like it. Sometimes I get into some classical audiophile recordings to enjoy the analytical strength of the headphones.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 9:23 AM Post #13 of 32

Chris_Himself

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Yuup. I only listen to rock and metal now.
 
I guess I like the headphones more than the music.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 9:52 AM Post #14 of 32

deadlylover

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Quote:
For me the Stax Omega 2 does it all. Its sound signature fits me like a glove, and if anything sounds less than great on it, it's the fault of the recording, not the headphone. 99% of the time, its performance ranges from excellent to out of this world. At some point I would like to hear the LCD-2 and the HE-500, but for now I'm more interested in getting an LA7000 as my secondary headphone. All of the other dynamics I find too flawed in one area or another.

 
Same here, Father Stax must have had a picture of me on his desk and just said "I think I'll make a headphone for this guy".
 
Little did he know, I'm wasting his once flagship on mainstream top40 and other various poor quality recordings.
tongue.gif

 
Unlike many here, I don't ever blame the recording, because music is music. If it doesn't sound like music, then my gear wasn't good enough. I approached my journey with this in mind, and this is where I ended up ^^.
 
Sep 1, 2011 at 10:13 AM Post #15 of 32

nanaholic

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Since all my equipment is with hand's reach headphones don't dictate my music, it's quite the other way around.  I was alternating between my W1000x and K701 depending on the music I was listening to, if I wanted something a bit more musical I would put on the W1000x, if I suddenly craved for the wide soundstage for a live concert recording I would reach for the K701.  But now I found my all-rounder in the T1 which really does everything very well.  It could be that I'm still in the honey moon period but I find that with the T1 I have no need to switch headphones any more.   
 

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