Help me narrow and critique my selections for personal headgear audio please.
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reddiger

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I am completely new to quality personal audio equipment and after a bit of searching and impromptu research, I have narrowed my choices.
First off, the use will be for personal home audio use in a fairly noise environment while listening to music, movies, and occasional video games without the need for a mic. I am eclectic when it comes to musical enjoyment. I listen to whatever strikes me as at the moment including classical to dubstep. Bass is important but it will not be the driving factor as much as clarity and "smoothness".
 
Second, The equipment will be employed in a large open area with kids present and a separate tv in the background so closed back is preferable but not noise canceling. I want to be on average 12' to 15 feet away from the source and any wires will be secured against a wall.
 
Third, my budget limitations are around $300-350 for audio gear. I figure $120 for headphones and 100 each for DAC and AMP, I have been eyeing the Modi and Magni combo. The main selections I have considered are as follows. Sony MDR 7506, Shure SRH440, Sennheiser HD449, Audio Technica ATH-M50. Any other suggestion are welcome of course. 
 
Any recommendations for places to audition these pieces around the Las Vegas area would also be appreciated but I have little choices it seems. Thanks in advance for sharing your experience.

 

 
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BillsonChang007

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Hello!
 
For your needs, and for a under $200 headphones, you don't need such power full amp like the Shiit amp. You don't need such strong DAC too unless you have big boys like the HD600 then you can consider that. For your needs, I would highly recommend you the AKG K550 + FiiO E10/E07K. Of corse, the E10 are better if you are using PC/laptop. This set-up will surely check all your needs. Please be noted that modtmDAC does not work with any smartphone and tablet. You can only by pass amp of it. However, you can by pass the DAC and amp of the PC/laptop. 
 
Anyway, out of your list, all of them lacks bass except for ATH-M50 but it bleeds to other frequencies and slight harshness are there. MDR-7506 on the other hand sounds clean and smooth but it lacks bass. Shure sound veiled, but the mids are really smooth and the highs are clear. It still lacks the last bit of soundstage and details.
 
i hope this help!
Billson :)
 
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streetdragon

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How about the SRH940/840? they are a large step up from the SRH440
 
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BillsonChang007

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Quote:
How about the SRH940/840? they are a large step up from the SRH440
The SRH-840 is just an improved bass version of SRH-440 also better mids to me.
 
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streetdragon

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and the 940 is clearer but has less bass
 
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reddiger

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Thanks BillSonChang007 and streetdragon. I could go with the srh840 and e10 if I were to upgrade and stay within budget but would an fiio e10 drive an srh840 efficiently enough? Also, are there adapters for the e10 for optical or left/right feed? "even though I could not bypass my televisions dac"
 
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disastermouse

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Would you consider used? If so, the HD650 might squeak in with a cheap amp like the E9 and an E7 DAC.
 
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streetdragon

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Quote:
Thanks BillSonChang007 and streetdragon. I could go with the srh840 and e10 if I were to upgrade and stay within budget but would an fiio e10 drive an srh840 efficiently enough? Also, are there adapters for the e10 for optical or left/right feed? "even though I could not bypass my televisions dac"
 
Quote:
Would you consider used? If so, the HD650 might squeak in with a cheap amp like the E9 and an E7 DAC.
actually, i think disastermouse's suggestion of the HD650 may suit you better since it has a smoother sound. the SRH840 and 940 is clear but not as smooth as the HD650. (and the HD650 is a better headphone altogether.)
 
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reddiger

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Even used, the open back HD650 I worry would be merciless to my comparatively meager budget. Plus the open back design would likely leave me wanting for my needs regardless of the quality of sound delivered. Thank you for all your folks help so far.
 
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BillsonChang007

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Heya!
 
If you accept used headphones, the Beyerdynamic DT880 250Ohm are great and the FiiO E10 can drive them. 
 
Yep, the FiiO E10 are able to drive most headphones with impedance below 300Ohm. 
 
I hope this help! 
Billson :)
 
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