Sony MDR-7506
Jun 4, 2015 at 2:56 PM Post #151 of 176

Music Alchemist

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  Or start out slow, build a brand and fanbase at the grassroots level and count your pennies

 
Yeah, working your way up is the conventional, hard way...but I'm too impatient for that. I would probably just have other businesses for the sole purpose of raising capital. I don't care about making a profit for the creative businesses; I just want to create and release the best stuff I possibly can.
 
Were you able to make a decision for your new headphones, by the way? I remember you were looking around.
 
The Sony sounds so much better with that calibration software. Doesn't have the harsh brightness anymore.
 
Jun 4, 2015 at 6:06 PM Post #152 of 176

LNuneek

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Yeah, working your way up is the conventional, hard way...but I'm too impatient for that. I would probably just have other businesses for the sole purpose of raising capital. I don't care about making a profit for the creative businesses; I just want to create and release the best stuff I possibly can.
 
Were you able to make a decision for your new headphones, by the way? I remember you were looking around.
 
The Sony sounds so much better with that calibration software. Doesn't have the harsh brightness anymore.


Sounds like an interesting plan. I gather a lot of people do things that way. Have their money makers and have their pet projects.
 
Yes, I did decide which headphones I wanted next. Thanks for asking. I decided to go with the German Maestro 8.35 D. Just got them today actually. So far I'm really happy. They aren't perfect and have their flaws but they are flaws I can live with for a good long time.
 
Some of my scattered but detailed impressions are towards the bottom of the page here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/406658/the-german-maestro-gmp-8-35-d-monitor-in-the-studio-serious-about-audio-indeed/1065
 
Jun 6, 2015 at 8:57 AM Post #153 of 176

EMC2

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The MDR-ZX600 have received excellent reviews. How is the sound quality of these cans compared to the 7506? Here in Canada I've seen them on sale for less than $49 and barely used ones are as low as $20. Is it worth the extra $$ for the 7506 or not?
 
Jun 21, 2015 at 10:11 AM Post #154 of 176

HotIce

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The MDR-ZX600 have received excellent reviews. How is the sound quality of these cans compared to the 7506? Here in Canada I've seen them on sale for less than $49 and barely used ones are as low as $20. Is it worth the extra $$ for the 7506 or not?

 
I only listened to them for 10 minutes, and sound wise, nothing triggered red flags. Sound was definitely on the "clear" side, rather than "foggy" side.
But a 10 minutes session means nothing.
The felt flimsier WRT the 7506.
I would cough extra $30 and get the 7506, an HP which has been around for 30 years, and that will likely be around us for many more years (during which competitors will have changed about 60 models).
 
Jul 15, 2015 at 11:15 AM Post #155 of 176

audiowatts

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The MDR-ZX600 have received excellent reviews. How is the sound quality of these cans compared to the 7506? Here in Canada I've seen them on sale for less than $49 and barely used ones are as low as $20. Is it worth the extra $$ for the 7506 or not?

 
I only listened to them for 10 minutes, and sound wise, nothing triggered red flags. Sound was definitely on the "clear" side, rather than "foggy" side.
But a 10 minutes session means nothing.
The felt flimsier WRT the 7506.
I would cough extra $30 and get the 7506, an HP which has been around for 30 years, and that will likely be around us for many more years (during which competitors will have changed about 60 models).

 
Totally agree with this, plus you can't go wrong currently priced at $80 bucks for this classic!
 
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/49510-REG/Sony_MDR_7506_MDR_7506_Headphone.html
 
Dec 1, 2015 at 9:48 AM Post #157 of 176

Dave Popovich

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The SONY MDR-7506 is still my most favorite all around headphone. I have tried plenty of different models and sets over the years, and still come back to the 7506 as my reference set. Bass impact is some of the best I've ever heard from a headphone. Most headphones are simply boomy when it comes to bass response. Not the 7506. There is much more info there. Highs are very detailed, and mids are perfect. This headphone set is very reflective of the amp driving it. Crappy amp = crappy sound. At around $100 each, everyone should own a set, just to know what they sound like. They are fairly easy to drive, by any amp. They also get loud without distorting. I am a Radio Broadcast Engineer, and have heard plenty of radio station mixing board headphone amps, and headphones. My favorite outboard amp is the Matrix M-Stage. I once did a sound test with various DJ's at our radio complex. It was a number of years ago. I bought 6 of the most current headphone models and brands on the market. I let the DJ's decide if they favored a different model over the 7506. Out of about 10 DJ's, everyone still preferred the 7506. I have bought boxes of these over the years, and right out of the box, with no burn in time, they sound consistent from headphone set to headphone set. If you don't already own a set, you're missing out on an industry standard.  
 
Dec 1, 2015 at 12:22 PM Post #158 of 176

_js_

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Yeah, for me the 7506's are the best headphone I've listened to under $100.
 
It's interesting to me: it seems the tide has turned here on head-fi regarding the 7506's.  All previous threads I ever dug up about this can had a preponderance of posts about how it was sonically impressive but basically unlistenable for any length of time due to being fatiguing in the treble, hot, harsh, etc.  And, I admit that if I try to listen at high volume to the 7506's that they are a bit fatiguing.  But, fortunately, I don't listen to my music at high volume, and find these cans best at just a bit under my normal listening SPL preference.
 
Mostly I use these for playing my synthesizer and they sound awesome right out of my Korg Triton Extreme.  They also sound very good out of my Apogee Duet when I am tracking / recording / mixing in Logic Pro X.
 
However, all that said, I find that for music listening straight out of my iPhone 5S I prefer my Sennheiser HD-595's to the 7506's, but the 7506's are still really good straight out of the iPhone too and I am perfectly happy listening with them if I need a closed headphone for whatever reason.
 
I find the bass of the 7506's just slightly boomy, which is due to resonance in the closed cans I suspect.  That's the only negative I would mention in terms of sound.  And I guess the treble can be a bit more fatiguing than, say, the Senn's.  But overall, it's pretty incredible that you can get this sound quality in a closed headphone for like $80.  Pretty darned awesome!
 
Dec 25, 2015 at 9:12 AM Post #159 of 176

blis

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I had to register and login, because the MDR-7506 deserve the recognition as tried and tested headphones.
 
I introduced the MDR-7506 into the production team producing local lifestyle tv. Prior to that, the technical director chose to buy cheap hypermarket plastic packs because the failure rate was so high headphones were deemed disposable, Being responsible for all video and audio equipment I replaced each failure with a MDR-7506. Early on the list was the executive director, she wasn't an easy to please type, she placed them on her ears (always replace with pearstone soft ear cups) and shooed me away like the Prada Devil Lady!!!
 
This exchange of MDR-7506 continued over a period of two years, Not one failed, and more so impressive, not one complaint, impossible!!! Short of a few growing legs and walking out of the office and a few with a "cup and tuck" of the ear pads they are workhorse headphones. They've got enough separation to shot list vision with good mid audio levels and in an office environment perform well at low volume. 
 
The spiral chord helps, it's got plenty of length, the metal connectors can't be bought outside the states from B&H for some reason and they are the best connectors I've had to solder. I've listened for extended periods for years, all the producers and camera operators use them and they get a beating in the field with outdoor lifestyle docs.
 
They aren't an audiophile's headphone, there's obviously a huge array of choices and if you wan't more than a MDR-7506 offers, then money shouldn't be an issue. If money is an issue, then value wise an MDR-7506 is the best headphone as it will outlast it's competition many times over.
 
</endrant>
 
Dec 25, 2015 at 11:26 AM Post #160 of 176

Dave Popovich

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Within the past week, I have purchased and sampled, both the SONY MDR-7510, and MDR-7520 (the next pricier models above the 7506). I am returning both sets, as IMO, neither compares to the balance and depth that my set of MDR-7506 can attain. If I don't recognize potential, right out of the gate, I typically don't allow any burn-in time. I have also found a new favorite headphone amp - it is the Supreme Sound "Lycan" (Distributed by Burson Audo). My SONY 7506's sound 2-3 times better (as in jaw dropping), playing through the Lycan. I do consider myself an audiophile (been buying and updating equipment now over 4 decades), and after sampling numerous sets of headphones over the years (I should be keeping a list), the SONY MDR-7506 is still my reference set. I have also been an on-air disc jockey for many years, playing free form progressive rock formats (a rare format where the DJ picks all of the music). When you spend thousands of hours listening to audio through headphones, through many different radio station studio mixing console headphone amps (none of which are ever the same), it seems to now make it much easier for my brain to immediately recognize a high quality headphone, or headphone amp.   
 
Dec 25, 2015 at 12:39 PM Post #161 of 176

conqr

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Had mine for maybe six years, mandatory DT250 velours installed same time. One year in my little dog got hold of them and chewed on both exposed leads going to the right earcup. Despite this the right cup still worked, and only recently started cutting out - time to replace or rewire. If not for pup, they'd be in perfect shape still. These cans are wonderful for movies and tv - the 'subwoofer in the room' startle effect puts a smile on my face every time. I was at first utterly underwhelmed by the lack of bottom but the low end has really settled in well.
 
Have to admit I slightly prefer my newer M40x for music. For better or worse as studio cans the top end is more forgiving/smoother and the mids/low mids much meatier. Metal/Hard rock is especially glorious on the M40x - thick, warm crunchy walls of sound, plus nicely impacting low end that is also settling nicely with time. speaking of which, we'll see how these contenders hold up over time.
 
If these cans were guitars I'd say the 7506 is a Strat, while the M40x is a Les Paul - both fantastic in their own ways. But like a Fender, the 7506 still does what it does like no other, massive value for money overall.
 
Dec 25, 2015 at 1:57 PM Post #162 of 176

HotIce

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I use the MDR-7506 stock (no ear cups changes), and it is the most comfortable HP I have ever had on my head. To the point, I forget having it on.
So for me it is not only crystal clear sound, where there is no effort in picking up instruments and vocals, but, at the same level of importance, comfort.
There is no point, in my books, of having very good sound, if after 30 minutes you feel the need to stop listening music because your head hurts.
 
Jul 2, 2016 at 6:09 PM Post #163 of 176

milleron

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No posts for 6 months? I feel a need to bump this thread back into existence.
 
The thread has been very useful to me in searching for the best reasonably-priced phones I can find -- i.e., less than $400. The search was necessitated by an acute cochlear injury that left me nearly deaf for 24-48 hours and has been slow to resolve. It initially left me with hyperacusia and some terribly annoying extraneous sounds. I most enjoy listening to classical crossover and operatic sopranos, but those vocal parts  have been the ones that seem to engender an extra sound I'll compare to static. It's now going on 5 weeks, and I'm nearly back to normal, but there were some very tense moments a month ago wondering if my days of enjoying music might be over forever. During that time, I was seeking ways (a little wildly if I'm honest) to make music sound like it used to. 
I found that my computer has a digital output, so I started by running an optical cable to a DAC that, indeed, made things sound better (phones and speakers), but the improvement was so slow, albeit steady, that I found myself perusing all the threads on Head-Fi that had were titled with specific headphone makes and models. Now, as it turns out, I have owned MDR-7506 phones for about three years, and I've always been very happy with them, but because they cost me only $80, I assumed that there would be something that would be better but still under $200. I received the ATH M40x from Amazon and put them on expectantly. They were, however, significantly inferior to my  current headphones. I gave them a few hours of burn-in without noticeable effect and sent them right back to Amazon. There was way  too much bass, and I  couldn't prevent it from interfering with mids and vocals with equalizers. I tried some QC20s that my brother recommends highly. They're amazing for in-the-ear phones, and I actually purchased my own for mobile situations, but they are not MDR-7506s. Same for Sennheiser 558s.
 
Sometimes, the answer you're looking for is right under your nose all the time. After a very interesting 5 weeks, I'm coming to the conclusion that there's probably little use in continuing the searching. I think that for the kind of listening I do, in which exaggerated bass must be avoided, the Sony MDR-7506 may be the perfect sweet spot, especially  considering that its bass capabilities are more than adequate for the rock and pop I listen to. I  still need a second set of phones for use in a different part of the house, though, so I've decided that my next purchase will be a MDR-V6 just to see if, as some say, they may be marginally better for protracted listening. Whatever the result, I'm sure I won't be returning them.
 
So, I want to extend sincere thanks to all those knowledgable folks who posted in this thread and from whom I learned so much. I still have two questions, though.
1 -- For the second set of Sony phones, I'll be buying an amp because their input will be from an iPhone or iPads. I have my eye on the Fiio A3 (successor to their E11). The only cost limitation is that I'd like to spend less than $200, and I'd prefer that the amp be portable. Is this A3 a good consideration?
2 -- The DAC I installed between my Mac and my phones is the Orei DA21. It's billed only as a DAC, Orei makes no  claims for it as an amplifier, but the signal it puts out is very strong, so strong that I had to insert an inline volume control between the DAC and the MDR-7506s. It's externally powered, and I think it's obvious that it does amplify as well as convert the digital signal. I must say that the Sony phones sound really good in this setup, but my question is whether a dedicated amp could add anything here.
 
Ron
 
Sep 17, 2016 at 10:17 PM Post #165 of 176

HotIce

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Another 6 month. Are these still relevant now in 2016?

I am looking to purchase a closed back for use in the office (must not leak). Are there any other contender in this price range?

 
That only your own ears can tell you.
They have been my office choice since a long time, and they get 80% of usage time at home as well.
On top of that, it is my preferred airplane HP. I wear them for the 10+h trans-oceanic flights with no signs of fatigue.
If you like to read something, here it is:
 
http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/the-best-150-over-ear-headphones/
 
But you should really listen with your own ears, and put little trust on what other people thinks.
 

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