sub $300 recommendation - getting bored of my HD558 - eclectic listener
Jun 22, 2015 at 1:21 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 7


100+ Head-Fier
Jun 21, 2015
The Netherlands
Hello guys,
I am looking to upgrade and since having a taste of the AKG Y50, I am getting a little bored of my HD558s. I searched the forums for ideas but it seems most HD558 owners are looking for more of the same, while I'm looking for a bit more excitement.
Personal preferences:
I listen to a big variety of music (rock, metal, indie electronic, triphop, idm, ambient, world fusion, some jazz, new retrowave) and I also play games. Check the collection and wishlist if you're curious on my bandcamp user page: Spookanide.
Things about cans I kind of like: AKG Y50 on-ears (fun tight sound overall, but way boomy and grainy), HD558 (decent sound stage, comfortable forever), low-reaching bass that is punchy and accurate
I don't really like: AKG K550 (sounds like it comes out of a 100Hz high-pass filter), HD558 (dull, bass can get untidy), AKG Y50 (painful on-ear clamping force, fixed with a stretch)
Playback gear: TEAC UD-H01 into marantz PM5004, no EQ. I am not planning to take these out-and-about as I own the Y50s for that.
A selection of things I looked at so far, based on others' reviews:
- PSB M4U1 (don't like the idea of a creaking plastic construction and poor comfort at this price),
- grado SR225e (comfort may put me off, sound description seems fun),
- ATH-MSR7 (bass may not be what i'm looking for)
- NAD VISO HP50 (the sound signature seems to hit the right marks for me, but not sure how laid back these are relatively)
Overall what I'm looking for is a more fun (maybe in-your-face/aggressive?) experience with my headphones, keeping the big soundstage if possible and something that I could wear for hours on end. This is something I don't think I will achieve with a different source paired with the HD558s. It doesn't have to cost $300, just stay well below.
I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Jun 22, 2015 at 2:39 PM Post #2 of 7

Me x3

Member of the Trade: FiiO Store Argentina
Nov 22, 2012
You should consider the Fidelio X2
Best Luck!
Jun 22, 2015 at 8:34 PM Post #5 of 7


New Head-Fier
Jun 19, 2015
Just got my new ATH-MSR7 headphones today.  Here are some thoughts:
Comfortable.  I've been wearing them for 2 hours and haven't shifted them once.  Of course, mileage will vary.
Separation is very good.
Sound stage is average (to be expected, they're closed).
Very clean and crisp at higher volumes.
Mids sound right on.
Highs are sharp, but not overly bright. Might not be bright enough for everyone.
Bass is present, but probably a bit understated for some (doesn't boom like Beats).  I don't like booming bass, so it's right where I like it.
They sound close to reference, which is my preference.  Recommended for the cost, depending on what sound profile you want.
Happy Hunting!

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