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The headphones for movies thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by bwr827, Jan 12, 2015.
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  1. bwr827
    I want awesome headphones 95% for movies. I've spent the past month reading countless posts on head-fi, and have found that music reproduction dominates the conversation. When movie audio comes up, there are often responses pointing users to budget-fi or low mid-fi models in the midst of discussion of more serious headphones. Obviously the majority cares most for music.

    Fair enough! But I'd like to carve out a little space here to talk about the best headphones for movies. Movie audio is pretty demanding, and it deserves some attention.

    I'm new here, so it's probably highly presumptuous to put "the" and "thread" in this title, but I'd love to see this become the go-to for those of us more concerned with movie audio than music.

    So, which headphones do you think perform best for movies?
     
    TheNoose and barq like this.
  2. xeizo
    This thread has the potential to be monumental, cinema audio seems to be more technologically demanding than old school stereo audio. From a quick look at an AV-site I get the impression wireless and different forms of multichannel processing are on demand on top of pure SQ:
     
    https://www.avforums.com/forums/headphones-portable-music.164/
     
    I wonder where this will go  :wink:
     
  3. bwr827
    I'll share brief thoughts on the headphones I've experienced so far, all powered directly from my Yamaha receiver. I have an O2 amp on the way.

    Sennheiser HD555: My movie headphones for the past six years, these have offered pretty good overall sound. They lack bass, detail, and the excitement factor, but they have a good soundstage.

    Sennheiser HD598: I've had these for about a month. Immediately noticed their huge soundstage, which is great for movies, putting you inside the scenes. Better detail and highs than the HD555, but less bass. They're also really comfortable, which is a plus for movie-length listening.

    Sennheiser HD600: I've had these for a week. Better detail than HD598, and better bass, but the soundstage lacks the open feel that works so well for movies. It's more intimate, which is great for dialogue, but you don't feel inside the environment of a scene. They're quite comfortable, but less so than the 598, likely because of their heavier weight.

    Up next, I've ordered a lightly used pair of Beyerdynamic 990 Premium 250 ohm, which I'm told have better bass and soundstage than the HD600.
     
  4. bwr827
    I can see the appeal for wireless, but it seems like a major compromise in sound quality because you're paying for the wireless technology as part of the package.

    I haven't seen much about multichannel headphones, but that does sound interesting.

    I'm certainly hopeful about this thread!
     
  5. NemoReborn
    I am using my dt990 600 ohm  directly from my yamaha rx-a1010 amp ... sound really good , nice soundstage and details .. high are nice for all the sci-fi audio effect !!! bass are good , but might be a little more good with the 250ohm version ...  at least this is what ive noticed in music .. the 250ohm version seems to be a little more bassy than the 600 version ...
     
    i can not compare with other headphone since this is the only pair i own , but im looking forward about this tread !! really interesting 
     
    bwr827 likes this.
  6. bwr827

    Nice, I'm looking forward to trying the 990s when they arrive in about a week. I was curious about the 600 ohm vs 250 ohm, but there didn't seem to be a definitive answer.
     
  7. NemoReborn
    there is a pair that come to my mind ... have not tried them , but from the review i saw , the SRH1540 have all the element to be a good theater headphone ...   Warmer sound ( not basshead but like still bassy and prescise bass ) , good mid and treble ... but its a closed model. but they kind of creat a present soundstage anyway in music ...
     
    id like to have more info if some1 have them and using it for movies !!!
     
  8. NemoReborn
    another tought       Alpha dog ?  must be really good ... since LFE is important in Movie too !!!!
     
  9. derbigpr
    There's no  such thing as great headphones for movies (well, not entirely true). Movies always have audio either in 2.0 stereo or multi-channel surround...none of which work properly with headphones. The only way to have a truly great movie experience with headphones is by using DSP's and soundcards that support multi-channel audio.  That way, you can turn even the cheapest headphones into amazing surround sound experience.  So...they key are not  headphones, they key is the source of the sound you're using has to be capable of turning 7.1 surround into something that will sound great on headphones.  To give you an example, I prefer my Sennheiser HD202's plugged into Logitech's little USB dolby headphone soundcard that  I received with a 70€ Logitech G430 headset over my Beyerdynamic T1's plugged into 2 grand worth of equipment when it comes to watching movies.
     
  10. NemoReborn

    I am not thinking this way but not at all .. Thats your oppinion tho... A low end headphone cant reproduce sound quality a bass punch as a high end headphone does...

    For my part , when i listen to movie with headphone , i am not seeking for sorround sound. But quality sound ... Stereo is just perfect.. A good old stereo paired with good headphone can put you into a great sound stage..

    And i wont start talking about 7.1 compression degrading sound quality...

    But yea thats my opp.
     
  11. bwr827

    I'll have to read about those Shures. I wonder if any owners report experience with movies.

    I take it closed cans can have large soundstages too?
     
  12. NemoReborn


    Well. They can .. But nothing compared to open one ... Great soundstage need air.. What open headphone have
     
  13. cdsa35000
    To me any "high-end" HP that can reproduce the audio recording as accurate enough is good for any media movie/gaming/music etc.
    Whats important is the Virtual Surround HP decoder, can it simulate accurately the 5.1/7.1 speakersetup into HP.
    I use my "perfect" same gear for any media media movie/gaming/music etc.
    http://www.head-fi.org/t/748785/dolby-home-threater-v4-7-1-vs-sbx-pro-5-1
     
  14. Zoop
    i like my senn momentum on-ear the most for movies. the way it delivers the bass is impressive. very close to a true sub-woofer. i even prefer it over my denon d7100 (definitely more so than my grado and AKG) 
     
    shame the headband is quite tight so i cant wear it for a full 2 hours film. but otherwise tv drama is rather good.
     
    i just wish it has a tiny bit more clarity.
     
    my pair of sony xbx H3 is stucked in post, i hope it will deliver similar performance but with in-ear experience.
     
  15. bwr827
    I found that thread you linked difficult to follow. Do you know of any good sources of information about virtual surround decoders?
     
    Many head-fi users talk about different headphones for different genres of music. It's rare to see comments suggesting one model is good for everything without caveats like, "jack of all trades, master of none."
     
    Obviously movies can include any genre of music, so that makes things difficult. But are there key differentiating factors in movie sound? I think bass, the LFE channel, is probably one of them. Anyone who's added a good sub to their home theatre setup has marveled at the new depth of the movie-watching experience in epic sequences.
     
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