Help a noobie pick out a pair of headphones!
Jul 20, 2009 at 12:46 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 5


New Head-Fier
Jul 20, 2009
I'm brand spanking new to the world of high-end headphones. I've googled and amazoned and cnet.ted (I doubt those are verbs but wtv) and I've shortlisted a handful of headphones for use on my mp3 player. I've written them in decreasing order of preference.

- Grado SR60
- JVC HA-NC 250
- Sennheiser HD280
- Sennheiser PXC250

Right, I'd really appreciate help with weighing out the pros and cons of each. I'd really like to get a pair of noise cancelling cans but I'd have to sell my kidneys to get a decent pair, but I've got hold of two n/c headphones that I might be able to afford the HD280 and the JVC. I'm in my final year of high school, and I'll be commuting to university everyday by train and the engine noise really ticks me off.

My playlist consists of Indie rock, classical rock and an array of corny acoustic tracks.

I'm looking for something that will 1.) Introduce me to the world of high-end cans aptly and 2.) Something that won't break easily as I'll need it to last for a minimum of two to three years.

Thanks much people, and throw in any suggestions you find in the 50-100 bucks price range if you think they'd suit me.

Much appreciation,
Jul 20, 2009 at 6:03 AM Post #2 of 5
Wow! I've never gotten to say this yet... ahem...

"Welcome to Head-Fi! Sorry about your wallet."

If you are riding a train, it will be difficult to listen to open cans without cranking them up (which is bad!). As someone who is listening to a pair of Grado SR-80s now, and who also owns and enjoys the RS-1s, I highly recommend Grado... but definitely not for noisy environments. But they are muy durable and are a great gateway can.

I know that you mentioned "cans" but IEMs might be worth checking out as well. You will definitely be able to listen on a train/plane as long as you please quite comfortably, at the expense of not having as "big" a sound. Amazon is selling the Etymotic ER6i for $75.06, which is in your price range. I own this particular pair and use it solely for commuting.

So, which is more important - music during your commute, or music at uni?

Finally, check the used section of the forums. You won't be able to post but you can still PM. You might find cans that would normally be out of your budget for a good price.
Jul 20, 2009 at 7:12 AM Post #3 of 5
I second the IEM idea. You don't necessarily need full size cans to be introduced to high end sound, at least in this price range. IEMs will ultimately prove more convenient for your commute and will (usually, depending on the IEM) block out more sound.
Jul 20, 2009 at 12:15 PM Post #5 of 5
@mteorman, lmao, thanks. As I was browsing through old threads yesterday, I predicted that my budget will be taking a hit shortly. Well, a couple of hits.

I think that music at university is more important than just the train ride.... And yeah, I've heard that the only con of the Grado's is that they leak noise because of their whole open air deal. But I'm in love with the retro look and the badass sound quality that nobody can get enough of.

I don't have anything against IEMs in particular, but I've been using earphones for a while, and they are really starting to tick me off. I don't think I could stand using the in ear monitors although they'd most definitely suit the purpose.
Thanks again!

@1Time: I love the ones you suggested too and they're definitely within my price range.

Frankly, buying online isn't an option for me right now because my parents are paranoid about getting their credit card numbers stolen by geeky hackers in India.

It probably will become an option if I ask around and I find someone willing to spare their credit card for a bit.

Does anyone know about the sound quality of the JVCs? I frankly think it's going to be a cop-out between the JVC HA-NC 250/100 and the Grado SR60.

Thanks much people!

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