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Rank the Headphones that You Own.

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by yikes, Mar 17, 2005.
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  1. god-bluff

    Not true check out the reviews on Amazon. If they don't it's usually a case of driving them with an inferior source. People think because it's a cheap phone they can plug it into a computer directly for example. A decade ago it was high end; one of the top 6 dynamics in the world infact

    Oh and I've always liked them. Beautifully airy generally warm presentation with nice extended table. Rarely harsh and when it is its the recording imo
  2. Tech Junkie
    I own several Beyerdynamic headphones and really enjoy the DT 990 250 ohms.
    I believe that the genre of music you listen to predominantly plays a part along with your preferences of how you like your music colored as to whether you enjoy them. All headphones color music to some degree some more neutral than others. That is why so many people own more than one pair of cans. When you listen to different headphones with the same song it is amazing how different it can sound. Add different amps to the mix and the headphones sound different as well.
    I find the 990's to be a very enjoyable listen and at current prices a true bargain.
    John2e and Surf Monkey like this.
  3. FastAndClean
     1  AKG K4 modded - smooth organic sound, with very realistic vocals and instruments with amazing treble and mids
     2  ER4S - clean and flat reference
     3  Fender FXA2 - warm and bassy with incredible deep bass and creamy mids
  4. DavidA
    Like the other posters above it depends on the choice of music, the individual's hearing and preferences, and the rest of the audio chain.  To me the DT990 is a deal at its current prices, just like the HD700, I'm not interested in neutral, I just like to listen to music.  I don't understand those that are only searching for neutral / natural unless you are a recording engineer in a studio but even then I think you would want to make the recording sound good on all devices (which is also a problem since many are mastered / tuned to sounding good on cheap devices).
    There are some headphones that I think most should try at least once, HD600, HD650 and HD800, these will give a great starting point since almost every new headphone that comes out get compared to them and many ask "is __________ an upgrade" to one of them.
    George Taylor likes this.
  5. TWerk
    I agree with others here, if you amp it well/correctly, they're quite good. Liked them a lot on tubes with the lyr I had.
    But they have a tendency to be very unforgiving in the treble, and yes, midranges sucked back next to that. 
    Without a strategic choice of amp, these characteristics can detract from them in relation to other headphones.
  6. amigomatt
    I really enjoy my DT990 250ohm.  I got them for £65 on ebay and I can't imagine picking up very many other cans at that price even half as capable.  Of course, I'm aware of the treble issues but it's only a pain on certain recordings and when EQ'd, they can sound truly great.  Amazing bass for an open can and very exciting listen on the right music.  If I were to review them, my overall opinion would be highly weighted to the positives. 
    Surf Monkey likes this.
  7. Audioholic123
    1. Audioquest Nighthawk - these set the standard for wooden headphones imho.
    2. Sennheiser HD700.
    3. Denon AH-D5000.
    4. AKG K712.
    5. Technics RPDH 1250.
  8. serman005
    HD681 Evo

    Campfire Nova
    1More Triple Driver

    I like them all and I listen to them all. Grateful to have them.
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2017
  9. marts30
    1. HD800S. I listen to a lot of soundtracks so those are unbeatable. Best comfort.
    2. THX00 Purpleheart. Fun sound for most other genres, very comfortable with Dekoni pads.
    3. Oppo PM3. Mainly use for recording or times I need a closed.
    4. Grado SR60e. Best bang for buck, not very comfy but great for metal and rock.
  10. aomas
    Stax SR-Sigma/LNS
    Stax SR-507
    Stax Lambda Normal Bias
    Fostex TH-X00 PH
    Sennheiser 555(modded 595)
    Steelseries H Wireless
    Beyer Dynamic DT440 (vintage)
    MEElectronics Air-Fi Matrix2 (bluetooth)
    Takstar HD6000
    Philips SHP2000
    V-Moda (i don't even know the model number, it's so **** that even my gf will not want to use it) (accessories were fine)
  11. ScubadudeSA
    Difficult to rank them since each has it's own strengths. Also choice of amplifier and music plays a role, as does my mood. So I group them in tiers ...

    Top tier (some or several aspects of reproduction are truly outstanding): HD800, K1000, 2016 model LCD-2.2 pre fazor, HE560

    Middle tier (solid, enjoyable performance): early LCD 2.2 PF, HD650, HD600, DT990, HP50

    Bottom Tier: SR60i, Momentum On-Ear, M40x, SHP2000

    The strong correlation between ranking and price indicates careful purchasing at the respective price points ... that or confirmation bias ...
  12. sheldaze
    I guess it is time to do my once-a-year post here. I'm surprised how much has changed since last year. The HD650 and HD800S remain on my list, though two headphones, LCD-X and Aeon, are inbound soon, perhaps perturbing the list a little. As of today:
    1. Focal Utopia
    2. Sennheiser HD800S
    3. Sennheiser HD650
    4. Sennheiser HD600
    The most surprising thing to me is how little separates the top from the bottom of this list. There's just no longer a lot of difference, to my ears, between competent headphones. And I get the HD600, whereas I did not before. It might be higher on some people's list - just not mine. As the electronics feeding the headphones decrease in quality, the HD600 starts to move up the ranks holding stubbornly to its sonic quality, better than any other headphone on the list.
    Don't let anyone tell you the Utopia does not take much to drive. While that is true, it is unyieldingly revealing of the entire chain. I've needed to shift my focus upstream, since its acquisition. I've learned more about power and USB in the past 6 months than in the two years prior to its purchase, when I was a recently joined member of Head-Fi, but using other headphones like the HD800, HD800S, HE1000, and HE6. Nothing tells you something is broken in your chain as much as the Utopia.
    John2e likes this.
  13. geoffalter11
    Thank you for sharing.  I listened to the Utopia on several different high end set ups at Canjam was surprised by the differences.  That being said, on the Headamp GS-X MK2 the Utopia's detail retrieval and overall sound was startling good.  I felt walloped by how wonderful it sounded.  I own the Elear and have always been told it is 80% of the Utopia.  That may very well be, but that extra 20% sure does matter.
    sheldaze likes this.
  14. lfsszd
    My favorite has to be Hifiman HE1000 V2. HE1000 V2 is really transparent and clear with a fantastic dynamics in musical sense. It is easy to make a headphone with a heavy bass while it is hard to make a headphone could tell the subtle change of volume. Since I got this headphone last week, I almost has spent no time with other headphones.
    Here is the whole list:
    1. Hifiman HE1000 V2
    2. Audeze LCD-3 
    3. Fostex TH900 mk2
    4. (tied) Fostex TH900, AKG K812
    LCD-3 by Audeze is also a really good planar headphone but it isn't as good as HE1000 V2 since diaphragm is nanometer level on HE 1000 V2, but it's thinner than a human hair on LCD-3. I guess LCD-4 should be as good as HE1000, but LCD-3 isn't detailed enough.
    TH900 is really warm and is easy to drive, but the bass is too heavy to me. I had a headache after listened it for hours. Th900 mk2 has a lighter bass which is an improvement to me.
    AKG K812......
    I looking forward to trying Sennheiser HD800 which I should get this week. I will add it to this list after trying it.
    knopi likes this.
  15. phaeton70
    time to update my ranking.... including also cans I have already sold.
    Utopia is still my favourite can, it really has everything I'm looking for, extremely live and dynamic, good timbre, excellent resolution. the only defect, well, you already know, the price...
    Second is HEK v2, more relaxed than Utopia, less resolving, less "live", but still an excellent can for long sessions.
    Second shared is for sure Sony Z1R, even if for my taste maybe a little bit too "boomy" and less resolving than both Utopia and HEK v2
    Third HEK v1 (yes, I own both, but I think v1 is going to leave soon...), even more relaxed than v2, with slighlty recessed mids, but at the current price point I think it's a bargain
    Fourth HE6, good overall can, but simply not at the same level as the others.
    Fourth shared the Stax 507, very natural timbre but lacking bass and liveliness
    Fifth Pioneer SE1, very musical, but for my taste too "colored" and "boomy"
    1. Focal Utopia
    2. Hifiman HEK v2 / Sony Z1R
    3. Hifiman HEK v1
    4. Hifiman HE6 / Stax 507
    5. Pioneer SE1
    I'm leaving the Abyss AB-1266 out of this. I still have to decide if I love it (and in this case would be 1st together with Utopia) or I hate it, and I will need more time and listening
    Wilashort likes this.
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