My perfect headphones! The AT A900s
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morganafq

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Well, my search is over. After going through several pairs of mid to high end phones, I finally got the A900s. And let me tell you... I wish I had gotten them right off the bat. These phones are AMAZING!

Once again, my three criteria. First and foremost, they must be comfortable and easy to wear. Secondly, they must have a wide and spacious soundstage (which kills all in-the-ear buds for me). Thirdly and most importantly, they must have a warm, rich, true-to-life sound that is neither too shrilly or brassy nor overly bass heavy.

When I first saw the A900s, I was worried. They are HUGE, much bigger even then the Senns. Furthermore, there is nothing to adjust the phones on your head, so I got very worried. However, when I put them on, I was greatly relieved to find they do cushion the head nicely and the ear pads feel like pillows. Now, they are large and heavy, so if you move your head around a lot they will shift and fall off, so beware of that, particularly if you have a smaller head.

The soundstage on these babies is enormous. Bigger than the Senn 595s, but not quite as big as the Eggos. However, there was ample room for the sound to move around and for everything to take it's rightful place in the soundspace, which made me very happy.

And the sound... I simply cannot say enough good things about the sound. Right out of the box they were a tad of the shrilly side and less on the bass, but still the best out of the box experience yet. I was very optimistic and began the burn. I burned mostly rock, full soundstage and bass-heavy music for the first 12 hours, which did indeed help even out the top-heavy sound. I could hear the extreme ends of the sound evening out, so I spent the next 12 hours burning in wide stage, vocal intensive and multi-tonal music. Again, the sound evened out more, giving me an even wider stage and tremendous definition in the vocals. I burned in another 20+ hours on complete random and took my final evaluation.

The A900s passed my sound test with flying colors. The sound is rich, warm, and beautiful. It is incredibly true to life with a rather vivid reproduction of real sound from digital music. I added a MINT amp built by HeadFi-er meat01 which made the whole experience that much better. Don't get me wrong, you CAN drive these phones without an amp - you jut have to jack the volume quite a bit. With the MINT, the sound is made richer and fuller, the stage becomes wider and the volume is boosted wonderfully.

I really can't say enough good things about these phones. The only two things I would change are the weight and adjustment abilities, and, in a dream world, give them the soundstage of the Eggos. But, honestly... this is what I was looking for. Special thanks to lindrome for suggesting these to me - my great thanks to you.


So... the search is over... until they make a better source, that is....
 
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rsaavedra

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Congratulations on your findings! I haven't listened to them but also think among closed and full sized headphones, the A900 should be among the top options in their price range. The fact they can be easily driven unamped puts them ahead of the AKG271 in my book.
 
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oneeyedhobbit

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Strange, I didn't have to crank up the volume out of my iPod at all. What source were you using?
 
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Andrew_WOT

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Weird that you found them superior to HD595. Senns are much more comfortable, lighter and have a better sound imho.
For me A900 sound is a little exagerrated and unnatural, I found HD595 are much easier for long listening, with them I fill like I'm actually in the room filled with music, with A900 that's the same "speakers slapped to ears experience", even though wide soundstage helps they miss HD595 airy feeling.
But of course for a closed phones they are hard to beat.
 
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philodox

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Quote:

Originally posted by rsaavedr
The fact they can be easily driven unamped puts them ahead of the AKG271 in my book.


the K271S can be driven fine by a portable with a decent built in amp
 
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wallijonn

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Andrew_WOT,

Just remeber that sound appreciation is subjective. We all hear differently. We listen for different thing and listen to different things. We all use different sources and amps which tailors the resultant sound. So everybody's opinions are valid.
 
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CannedHam

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Quote:

Originally posted by philodox
the K271S can be driven fine by a portable with a decent built in amp


I agree (just got mine)... I think the stories of these being hard to drive is highly overstated (then again, my main speakers are CLSIIz's... so my notion of hard to drive may be exagerated!).
 
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lindrone

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I don't think K271 are particular hard to drive from its description, certainly not as hard to drive as Senns... However, I think the view from some other Head-Fiers (I haven't heard them myself) was tha the K271 is not better than A900 when it's unamped. It is only better once you get adequate amping on it.

It'll still sound fine when it's unamped, just not as good as A900 unamped.

At least that's how I understood it to be.
 
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bangraman

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I think I posted my musings earlier. I've 'sidegraded' my opinion of the K271 to more 'odd to drive' than 'hard to drive'. The results definitely do vary and some low-powered devices seem to have no problems driving the K271 really nicely. One reasonable-output device that just doesn't really seem to agree with the K271S is the iPod.


Glad you're enjoying the A900 morganafq... for now

(Although undoubtedly CD3K curiousity will probably get the better of you eventually
)
 
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purk

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Glad to hear that you are loving the A900. I have tried its bigger brother, the A1000, and they do sound very good. I, however, prefer my CD3K over its so the A1000 was sold. I'm second bagraman in the issue of CD3K will get the best of you.



Purk
 
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bangraman

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The A900/A1000 are a bit different. The A1000 is more application-specific.
 
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stark23x

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Quote:

Originally posted by bangraman
(Although undoubtedly CD3K curiousity will probably get the better of you eventually
)


Evil! Shhh. Speak no more on these CD3Ks of which you talk. They are as mysterious and unattainable as the One Ring.

A pox on you if shall their name pass your lips again.
 
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ServinginEcuador

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Quote:

Originally posted by morganafq
Well, my search is over. After going through several pairs of mid to high end phones, I finally got the A900s. And let me tell you... I wish I had gotten them right off the bat. These phones are AMAZING!


If we had a dime for every time that phrase was spoken we'd have a lot of dimes. I think we all start small and try to get a cheaper pair of headphones, but ultimately curiosity gets the better of us and we start upgrading. If I did that I could have saved a cool $1000 or so in lossed for various reasons from buying and selling all the stuff I did.

Congrats on arriving at the sound you were always looking for. It's great to kick back and simply enjoy some awesome tunes with a good set of cans. May you continue to enjoy them for many years to come!
 
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rsaavedra

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Quote:

Originally posted by stark23x
Evil! Shhh. Speak no more on these CD3Ks of which you talk. They are as mysterious and unattainable as the One Ring.


Sounds like the temptation of the CD3Ks will overpower your current headphones, making you cast them into the fire from whence they came
 
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bangraman

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Quote:

Originally posted by ServinginEcuador
If we had a dime for every time that phrase was spoken we'd have a lot of dimes. I think we all start small and try to get a cheaper pair of headphones, but ultimately curiosity gets the better of us and we start upgrading. If I did that I could have saved a cool $1000 or so in lossed for various reasons from buying and selling all the stuff I did.

Congrats on arriving at the sound you were always looking for. It's great to kick back and simply enjoy some awesome tunes with a good set of cans. May you continue to enjoy them for many years to come!



That's true, but if you moved straight to the top of the range can you'd have no frame of reference.


Perhaps given the 'sorry about your wallet' nature of the board, instead of listing our gear in our signatures we should list our losses through used sales!
 
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