Monitoring headphones 770s or 990s or..?
Apr 13, 2002 at 11:07 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 17

orbita

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 13, 2002
Posts
5
Likes
0
Im looking for a pair of monitoring phones for home studio use.

I've been recommended both Beyerdynamic dt 150s and dt 990 pros, but it seems from scanning the web that Sony also make good monitoring phones.

Essentially I want something that sounds as neutral/flat as possible across the whole audio spectrum.

Ill be making ambient techno /dance music with them.

They dont have to be built like a tank and they dont have to be closed back as I will primarily be using them at home.

They will be plugged straight into a mackie mixer, so ideally they wont need a pre amp.

My budget is about $250.

Any recommendations with reasoning would be very much appreciated

many thanks





OK managed to find other related posts and want to just ask

for monitoring would the 770s or 990s be more suitable. It seems that a number of you prefer the bass on the 770s - i guess because of its bass reflex design. Would you say this makes them More suitable for getting a mix right or less suitable.

Although I want these for monitoring, a closed unit is not important, in fact I would prefer the better soundstaging of an open design.

thanks again
 
Apr 13, 2002 at 8:30 PM Post #2 of 17

blr

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 26, 2001
Posts
916
Likes
11
if you want something neutral and flat sounding IMO you should consider Sennheiser HD 280 as well. These are very flat sounding cans
There are many excellent open phones you can buy on your budget. However, the problem is that most of them may not be properly driven by the mixer´s phone amp. Both DT770 and 990 you mention need quite a bit of power to sound at their best.
If you really want great headphone sound try to stretch you budget a bit and get something loke HD 580 plus an inexpensive amp
 
Apr 13, 2002 at 11:29 PM Post #3 of 17

Tomcat

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 26, 2001
Posts
1,273
Likes
11
I think the DT770 Pros are excellent headphones, but I have never used them for monitoring or mixing. On the other hand, they are used by professionals, and they are even recommended by them. To my ears, the DT990 Pro has slightly less natural tonal balance, is a bit brighter on top and has a slightly loose and bloated upper bass and not as much bass extension as the DT770 Pro.

A standard recommendation for monitoring headphones is the Sony V6 (identical to the MDR-7506), which is widely used by professionals. I have never heard it, though. Another very good monitoring and mixing headphone ought to be the Beyerdynamic DT250. But in terms of accuracy and listening pleasure, I prefer the DT770 Pro. Your Mackie Mixer ought to drive it quite well.
 
Apr 14, 2002 at 3:17 AM Post #4 of 17

Snufkin

500+: Audio Dealer: Headphonic (Australia)
Joined
Jul 11, 2001
Posts
1,436
Likes
11
I'll agree with Tomcat on this one, I've never used the 770pros for studio work but I like their sound very much, I even tend to prefer it to the sound of Sennheiser 580s, and I definately prefer it to the sound of the Beyer 990s which tend to have a slightly more bloated bass with slower response.
 
Apr 14, 2002 at 5:01 AM Post #5 of 17

Ross

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
840
Likes
96
Hmmm, interesting comments, Tomcat and Snufkin. I've recently been comparing my 770s (250 ohm) and 990s (600 ohm) and much prefer the 990s. I find the 990s balance more natural; the bass on the 770s is far too overwhelming for my tastes - fat, boomy and out of proportion to the rest of the music, like a subwoofer playing way too loud. I have some 990 (250 ohms) arriving soon, so it will be interesting to compare them to the others.

Ross
 
Apr 14, 2002 at 8:58 AM Post #6 of 17

Snufkin

500+: Audio Dealer: Headphonic (Australia)
Joined
Jul 11, 2001
Posts
1,436
Likes
11
Yeah, that's odd - it's the exact opposite with my 770 and 990, the 990 has bloated, bloomy, slow and loose sounding bass whereas the 770 is tight, fast and controlled..
 
Apr 14, 2002 at 3:07 PM Post #7 of 17

orbita

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 13, 2002
Posts
5
Likes
0
hi, thanks for your comments..

blr, i would certainly be prepared to extend my budget if I think it will help, I shall look into the 280s and 580s although I would be hesitant about buying an amp for the headphones as it lowers their usefulness and also adds a potential level of colouration to the sound. I've been advised that the mackie mixer (1604) should be fine for powering the 990s.

If I was to look into a suitable Headphone amp though, what recommendations would you make?

I should note that I plan to buy some mackie hr824 monitors for monitoring through speakers, so in a sense the bass extension in the headphones is less important as these monitors will do that superbly.

However, I would like to ask Snufkin - You say you really like the sound of the 770s bass, describing it as tight fast and controlled, wheras the 990s are bloated. Could it be that the music was recorded this way and that the 770s are simply "improving" the sound?. For monitoring purposes, if the headphones tighten up bloated basses this could actually lead to even more sloppy mixes. Just a thought.

A shop also suggested HD600s to me, but they sound more suitable for classical work than the electronic based music I shall be producing.

I am not after a "great" pair of headphones in the sense of making the music sound as nice as possible but more an accurate pair that will represent the music i make as well as possible, so that hopefully it will sound good on anything.


need to find a shop near me that stocks them all to try
smily_headphones1.gif

 
Apr 15, 2002 at 12:29 AM Post #8 of 17

Snufkin

500+: Audio Dealer: Headphonic (Australia)
Joined
Jul 11, 2001
Posts
1,436
Likes
11
Ok, if I compare the bass response on the 770s to the 990s, the 831s, the hp890s, the ksc-50s and the dt231s and the only one that sounds slow and bloated is the 990pro, I'm guessing it's the headphones, not the mix
wink.gif


The 770pro has a LOT of bass, the 990 also has a lot of bass, but at times it's just too much - in all styles of music as well. I think it's more interesting that Ross has the exact opposite experience that Tomcat and I have!

FYI if you check the product measurements at headroom, you can pretty much see where the 990s bass bloat comes from.
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 5:27 AM Post #9 of 17

Dusty Chalk

Head-Fi-holic: With headphones would just be a benny.
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
6,565
Likes
15
Quote:

Originally posted by orbita
I should note that I plan to buy some mackie hr824 monitors for monitoring through speakers, so in a sense the bass extension in the headphones is less important as these monitors will do that superbly.


Uh...no. The HR824's drop off sharply before 20 Hz.

http://www.mackie.com/Products/HR824.asp

Most good headphones will do better than that.

There are two schools of thought: make accurate music on accurate equipment, or make compensated music on coloured equipment. Either way, you should get to know your equipment. I happen to be in the latter school of thought. Sony V6/7506's. A little hyped, but if you can make it sound good on them, you can be pretty sure it will sound good everywhere.

Another way to do it -- if you can make the tightest-ass bass that you can on a monitoring system that has loose and floppy bass, then you can be pretty sure that you will have tight bass in most playback systems.

But again, the most important thing is that you should know beforehand what sort of mix your monitoring system is going to give you (combined with your mixing talents, of course, of which I have none).
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 6:35 AM Post #10 of 17

orbita

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 13, 2002
Posts
5
Likes
0
Hi again,

Dusty, yes they do drop off at 20hz, but as far as I know the human ear cant actually hear much around this frequency anyway. Most speakers drop off around 40/50hz.

Snufkin what is headroom? is this a website I can checkout? Could you give me the url.

I think ultimately it will come down to practicalities and the comfort elements + single sided coiled cable of the 990s are probably going to do it for me.

It seems there isnt allot of difference in quality between these phones and for monitoring purposes it is probaby better to go for the ones that improve the sound the least. I think the 990s fit the mould best for now, but to be honest It probably doesnt matter too much which ones I get so long as I learn the sound.

Maybe the best thing long term will be to have a couple of pairs to use for comparison. Ive seen that the HD600s are at a reduced price and may be they would make a nice complimentary pair - they seem to be extremely transparent and revealing.

Thanks again for your comments.
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 6:58 AM Post #11 of 17

Dusty Chalk

Head-Fi-holic: With headphones would just be a benny.
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
6,565
Likes
15
Quote:

Originally posted by orbita
Dusty, yes they do drop off at 20hz, but as far as I know the human ear cant actually hear much around this frequency anyway. Most speakers drop off around 40/50hz.


Two things -- IMHO, that information is still useful. You don't want any inadvertant rumbles in your recordings. #2 -- before 20Hz -- look at that link I posted again, the rolloff is more like...hold on, I'll look...well, it's +/- 1.5 db down at 39 Hz (according to the text), and looks like it's a whopping 10db down at 30 Hz (from the picture).

I have a pair, and I use a sub with them.
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 7:14 AM Post #12 of 17

orbita

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 13, 2002
Posts
5
Likes
0
ah u use them, how do you find them?

a sub is out of the question for now, more $ and the people downstairs would probably kill me
smily_headphones1.gif


when I get a place of my own Ill look into that. I gather that the bass extension and control on the 824s is better than most similarly priced monitors anyway

u may get a response from lower frequencies on headphones but really u want to feel the bass to get a good idea of how it sits in a mix. for me headphones have never provided that, but then ive probably just been using the wrong phones
smily_headphones1.gif


lets see
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 8:17 AM Post #13 of 17

Dusty Chalk

Head-Fi-holic: With headphones would just be a benny.
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
6,565
Likes
15
I love them, of course! They're pretty transparent. I need a better sub, though. My sub ain't no slouch (Tannoy PS110B), but...they deserve better.

No, I wasn't saying get a sub, I was saying use headphones for the extreme bass. You can use the speakers for monitoring most of the time, but you gotta run through headphones to tweek the extreme bass stuff. Especially on electronic stuff, which can get insanely and unrealistically low.

You need to hear really good headphones with a nice bass extension such as the Sony's or the Beyer DT770's. The psycho-acoustic effect is really pretty convincing. You'd be surprised by how little you miss.
 
Apr 15, 2002 at 11:17 AM Post #15 of 17

orbita

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 13, 2002
Posts
5
Likes
0
right..

ive decided to be greedy and go for a pair of HD600s AND DT770s as this seems to provided the best of both worlds.

some closed phones for late night listening that wont annoy my flat mate, that should give a solid bass end and will block out external noise.

some open phones that are ultra revealing and suitable for detailed mix adjustments and general hifi listening.

I can get both sets for £200! so that seems the best option all round.

thanks for all your advice

biggrin.gif
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top