Shure SRH1540 vs Mr Speakers Alpha dog vs other need help
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Flyingdog02

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Im looking to either purchase the Shure SRH1540 or the mr speakers alpha dogs, im also open to any other Full sized closed headphones. Ive read through literally hundreds of reviews and have narrowed my search down to these two, or maybe even some sennheiser hd650's, but a closed back headphone is better.
Please anyone who owns both or has demoed either, please leave any comments
I listen to all types of music, rap and hip hop the least. The headphones will primarily be used at home strictly and they will be hooked up to my ps3. I also need some help on headphone amplication and a DAC if i need one
Im actually really confused about headphone amplifiers and dac's. Im not really sure what DaC'/ do
Im seriously looking at the fiio e07k btw.
If i buy the e07k, my setup will be using an rca adapter to use the av adapter from my ps3, and feed it through the e07k to my headphones, and ill be using the headphones for fps video games, netflix, and just general music. Im also a very avid anime fan, if that helps with the recommendation some how.
Im what you would call a headphone enthusiast noob, and dont know a whole lot. I joined head fi yesterday, and could really use any help or recommendations
Btw i own v moda m 100's
V moda m-80
Ps3 pulse elite headset
Just in case anyone can make some sort of comparison
I also have an iphone 4s and ipad 3, that i will also use with them alot
Btw my budget isnt exactly set, i have several hundred dollars at the moment, and i am going to save up and purchase one of these two headphones and amps in the month or so, so my budget can go as high as up 700-800 dollars if need be
Thx, hope you guys can help me on my first post
 
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imackler

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How do you like your bass?
 
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Flyingdog02

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Im honestly not sure, but i really enjoy the bass heavy sound signature the v moda m100's
So maybe a bassier headphone.
 
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imackler

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Definitely the SRH-1540 then. Its a fantastic headphone but definitely bassier than the Alpha Dog. It's easy to drive and lightweight. 
 
Go buy one and be happy :)
 
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dunkyboy

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Resurrecting an old thread...  (How did you get on, OP?)
 
From my limited experience in a hifi shop (AC Gears, in Manhattan), the Shure 1540 doesn't match the Sennheiser 650 for resolution, inner detail, lack of grain, or tonal naturalness.  (I used to own Senn 600s and 650s for years, so they're my reference for headphone performance.)  I'm hunting for a pair of closed cans that match or exceed the 650s, and I've yet to find them! 
 
I really love my AKG K550s, but they don't match the Senn for resolution, tonal color, or lack of grain, and I'm hoping to find something that does.  Got a pair of Alpha Dogs being delivered today, so hopefully they'll be the answer, and I won't have to return them!  Will keep you posted...
 
Dunc
 
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toadthedry

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I own senn 650 s and do really like them. I need to find some good closed headphones. How did you like the alpha dogs?
Thanks
Mike
 
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UNOE

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  Resurrecting an old thread...  (How did you get on, OP?)
 
From my limited experience in a hifi shop (AC Gears, in Manhattan), the Shure 1540 doesn't match the Sennheiser 650 for resolution, inner detail, lack of grain, or tonal naturalness.  (I used to own Senn 600s and 650s for years, so they're my reference for headphone performance.)  I'm hunting for a pair of closed cans that match or exceed the 650s, and I've yet to find them! 
 
I really love my AKG K550s, but they don't match the Senn for resolution, tonal color, or lack of grain, and I'm hoping to find something that does.  Got a pair of Alpha Dogs being delivered today, so hopefully they'll be the answer, and I won't have to return them!  Will keep you posted...
 
Dunc

Any follow up
 
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domino584

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  Resurrecting an old thread...  (How did you get on, OP?)
 
From my limited experience in a hifi shop (AC Gears, in Manhattan), the Shure 1540 doesn't match the Sennheiser 650 for resolution, inner detail, lack of grain, or tonal naturalness.  (I used to own Senn 600s and 650s for years, so they're my reference for headphone performance.)  I'm hunting for a pair of closed cans that match or exceed the 650s, and I've yet to find them! 
 
I really love my AKG K550s, but they don't match the Senn for resolution, tonal color, or lack of grain, and I'm hoping to find something that does.  Got a pair of Alpha Dogs being delivered today, so hopefully they'll be the answer, and I won't have to return them!  Will keep you posted...
 
Dunc
Please update!
 
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dunkyboy

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  Please update!

I kept the Alpha Dogs, but am now experimenting again.  
 
The Dogs are great - detailed (on par with the Senn 650s, but with less grain), tonally rich and sumptuous, great bass, great dynamics, great fun all round.  But they're not perfect - they're very mid-forward, without much treble sparkle, and the mids get congested in busy pieces, and they sound a bit closed-in, with a very intimate soundstage (has its pluses).  And the bass blooms a bit too much for my taste.
 
So I bought Audeze EL-8Cs to try.  They fix all of the Dogs' issues - they're the most open-sounding closed-backs I've heard, with real treble sparkle.  And they're technically amazing - really detailed; huge soundstage; very neutral tonally; great dynamics; deep, tight & super-clean bass.  And they're super well-composed, holding it together really well even in very busy, dense passages.  But....  the treble is unbearably bright!  Sharp, glarey, screechy...  It's so disappointing, cos the rest of the sound is so good.  So I'm returning them.
 
Last week I bought a pair of Alpha Primes, taking advantage of the $200 discount (makes them juuuuust about in-budget for me).  These are really nice.  Not *that* different from the Dogs, but they solve a lot of the weaknesses IMO.  They're more open, have more treble sparkle, and they don't get congested.  Plus the bass is tighter, and the mids are glooorious.  Really great all-round phones.  I'd keep them for sure, except...
 
I've just ordered a pair of ZMF's Purple Heart special editions...  (They're basically Blackwoods.)  Should arrive next week.  I'm really curious to hear them, as the people that like ZMFs looooove them, and usually rate them higher than the MrSpeakers equivalents.  More "natural", supposedly.  So we'll see.  Should be a good showdown. :D
 
I'll definitely sell the Alpha Dogs, in case anyone's interested...  Mint condition (brand new, really), red cups, 1/4" jack, all original packaging, accessories, etc.
 
Cheers,
Dunc
 
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Pretty much agree with everything you say about the Alpha Dogs and the EL-8C-I have both also. 
 
 Those screeching highs on the EL-8 are very distracting at times but they sound sensational on certain songs, so I guess I'll keep them. 
 
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This is good to know. I'm somewhat debating now between ZMFs and Paradoxes. There's a place nearby that's a big headphone reseller - I'm looking to audition the Audeze Deckard as a DAC/amplifier - but I can only listen to the more "mainstream" H/Ps, not custom builds like ZMFs.
 
'Tis a shame about the Shures not pulling their $500 price tag - they certainly have more aesthetic flair going on than a set of painted T50RPs 
 
 
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inthere

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Also remember the Alpha Dogs have adjustable bass-an allen wrench came with them but if you lost it any correct sized allen wrench will do. You can also adjust the highs if you remove one or both of the felt pads when you remove the ear pads to give you better clarity and separation. I've been experimenting with replacing with felt pads with dynamat. 
 
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Got the ZMF Blackwoods today (with OCC copper litz cable).  Been listening the past couple hours via iPhone 6, swapping with Alpha Primes.
 
Man, this will be tough.  First impressions:
 
The Primes are warmer, richer, sweeter, more refined, and possibly higher-resolution, and they're bigger-sounding, and make music easier to listen to (everything sounds good and involving with them).  The richness, tone, and texture of the mids really stand out.
 
The Blackwoods are wide open, agile, punchy, fun, beautiful, and have a very natural and believable, with an almost neutral balance.  The openness really jumps out at you - they sound almost like open-backs.  The Primes sound thick and dense and closed-off by comparison.  And instrument separation is much better on the ZMFs, so instruments and vocals hang in space around your head, rather than being crammed inside your head like the Alphas (Dogs too).
 
The Blackwoods have more grain, and can be a tad more unforgiving on bright or badly-recorded tracks.  And they've already given me a smidge of fatigue on some records, unlike the Primes which coddle your ears and make you listen effortlessly for hours on end.
 
I think the Primes justify their higher price with their higher resolution and refinement.  But the Blackwoods have their own charms.  I'm starting to see why hardcore Head-fiers own multiple high-end cans.  But I can't afford that sort of lifestyle (I also prefer simplicity), so I'm going to have to choose one.

And the money-back trial period expires the day after tomorrow for the Primes, so I'll have to choose quickly!  Zach said the Backwoods come pre-run-in, so hopefully they won't change significantly in character over time.
 
It'll be interesting to see how the Schiit stack at work synergizes with the Blackwoods.  The iPhone makes some beautiful sounds with them, but it's definitely at the edges of its power envelope, needing full volume for many tracks, and with the bass sounding audibly patchy on peaks.
 
Will update.
 
Cheers,
Dunc
 
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