Why I Need New Headphones - 26 Battle-Tested Excuses For Your Use
Aug 3, 2014 at 10:12 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 6


Stumbling towards enlightenment
(Formerly known as kayandjohn.)
Feb 2, 2014
Poulsbo, WA, USA
I came into this world with zero headphones.  A year ago, after more than six decades of life, I had accumulated 12 pairs, or about one pair every 5 years.
Now just one year later, I have 33 pairs, with three more having been traded away, all in the last 12 months... that is a pair of headphones every 2 weeks, over 100 times the accumulation rate of before!
As a public service, I have elected to share a Double Baker's Dozen of my more useful excuses as to why I need yet another pair of headphones (or IEMs, or amp, or DAC, or test CD):
  • All my headphones are cheap, most having come with something else, like a cell phone, so I need one pair of "audiophile" headphones (led to my Sennheiser HD 598s);
  • Hey, these headphones are both WIRELESS and NOISE CANCELLING, and they won the 2012 CES Headphone Award (this led to my Parrot Ziks, for which I had to wait 8 months after their announcement and prize before their coming on the market);
  • I have NO idea when those Parrot Ziks will come out, so I need some other wireless noise cancelling ones to tide me over (this led to my purchase of the Sennheiser PXC 310 BT, so small it folds into your shirt pocket);
  • Hey, Apple just perfected the in-ear earphones with their new, multiported Ear Pods... I need a pair with a remote! (this led to my Apple Ear Pods);
  • I just got a Kindle Fire, and it plays music, but it can't use the Apple 3-button in-line remote, so I need a pair of earbuds with no remote (hence, my Sennheiser CX-300II)
  • What is this Beats stuff all about?  They just redid their 3-year-old Studio and it looks GREAT (resulting in my Beats Studio 2013);
  • Hey, those Beats are pretty good and they don't fall off my head like the Parrot Zik... I need the wireless version (so I got the Beats Studio Wireless 2013);
  • Wow... both Beats and Amazon are having a SPECIAL:  buy TWO Beats headphones and get 10% off on both... Save Money (so I bought the Beats Pro at the same time as the Beats Studio Wireless);
  • There is this really neat website called "head-fi.org" - they really like the newly-released NAD VISO hp50 (got 'em!);
  • The NAD VISO hp50s are OK, but they are closed.  I need the next step up in open headphones beyond my Sennheiser HD 598s.. (and so enter the Grado PS500s);
  • Gee, these Grado PS500s are SOOO transparent and fast, but they are weak in bass... I remember I auditioned some HiFiMAN HE-500s at the same time, and They Had Bass (and look, used... big savings! - bought the HE-500s with that one!);
  • I need some better IEMs... these Philips Fidelio S2s are really off price if you get them in white (white-and-gold S2s arrived in the mail!);
  • Hey look, this head-fi guy has used Shure SE 535s, new and unopened, WAYYY off new price...  those are top-notch IEMs I've eyed for years (true!)... gotta get'em (yep, did!);
  • I LOVE those Quincy Jones AKG Q701s, and they are well reviewed... whoops, here is the AKG K712, with even more bass, used, way off price, like new (and here come the AKG K712s);
  • I really don't use the NAD VISO hp50s... here's a guy with more bassy IEMs (they have a dynamic bass driver and two balanced armatures for higher frequencies)... NO MONEY needed (traded NAD VISO hp50s for T-PEOS H-200s...Great!)
  • I have three Beats headphones (and love them all), but I don't have any Beats IEMs... here are the HeartBeats 2.0, endorsed by Lady Gaga and quite bassy, and they are *1/3* their original price, new, on Amazon (got 'em):
  • I have some unexpected extra funds earned by some extra work, and I will use it for the creme-de-la-creme of headphones (subject to auditioning them, which I did at a meet) (and I then ordered the Sennheiser HD 800s with the HDVD 800 amp);
  • If I get the Sennheiser 800s from Colorware, it only costs an extra $100 to colorize each, and the paint used is automotive quality and should alleviate the chipping that some folks complain the Sennheiser HD 800 is subject to! (got headphones and amp colorized as in my avatar!);
  • Now that I have one of the top headphones, I need one of the top IEMs... don't like customs (always look like pink embryos to me), but the best universal fits are either the Shure SE 846, the Sennheiser IE 800, or the AKG K3003is, and HERE is a head-fier willing to take my Grado PS500s and AKG K712s in trade with just a bit of money (less than a pair of cheapest Beats) (got the AKG K3003is that I LOVE!);
  • I sure miss those AKG K712s I traded away... I should get the AKG Q701s I wanted in the first place, and Here They Are way cheap!  (yep... lime green AKG Q701s);
  • Look here in the mail...I FINALLY got the written permission I requested from FIAT Chrysler Automobiles to put their logos on a pair of custom shields with the V-MODA M-100s (had to get them... didn't want to let FCA down!);
  • At the ChiUniFi headphone meet, Jude let me try his Sony PHA-1, which I've been intriqued with due to its ability to directly read the digital from both the 30 pin and the 8-pin Lightening iPod/iPhone connectors... and here is a like-new used one (got it!);
  • WOODEN IEMs?  And at less than $50 (used, like new)?  And BASSY?  ("Send" on PayPal brought me my WooDuo HW2's);
  • Look!  There are the Sony DR-7As like I had 45 years ago that got me interested in this... and cheap on eBay!  (Enter the Sony DR-7As);
  • Beats is suing Yamaha for their "Dr. Who?" ad for their PRO headphones... how CLEVER of Yamaha... and look, the PRO 500s are said to be great, and lookee... like-new used at less than 1/2 price (got the Yamaha PRO 500s!);
  • FIFA World Cup Beats Studio 2013 in Brazil's yellow and green? I spent a summer in Brazil... but I already have FOUR Beats... Oh lookee, Lookee... Sennheiser is making its on-ear Momentums in green and yellow for the event, calling them the Samba... and the event already has happened, so I got these cheap (my latest excuse, and latest acquisition... Sennheiser On Ear Momentums Samba version)
I realize that it is hard to keep 26 separate excuses ready at your fingertips, so I have defined seven easy-to-remember categories to help:
  1. Balance:  "My headphone inventory needs these to become balanced! (e.g. I have too many closed headphones, or a top-end headphone but no corresponding top-end IEM" (#10, #16, #19);
  2. Entitlement:  "I deserve it... I haven't gotten that for AGES and I have earned it!"  (works for #1 and #17);
  3. Free:  "It's a TRADE!  No (or not much) money required!" (#15, #19);
  4. Opportunity:  "Events have conspired to make this Just The Right Time to buy these... It's A Sign!" (#21, #24, #26);
  5. Regret:  "I sure MISS those headphones I traded away... I have to replace them!"  (#20 and my next purchase... see below);
  6. Experts:  "These headphones are declared by Experts to be A New Revolution in Greatness!" (#2, #4, #9);
  7. Savings: "I'm saving LOTS of money at this price!!!" (#8, #11, #12, #16, #20, #25).
The letters that start each of these seven types of excuses are  B (Balance), E (Entitlement), F (Free), O (Opportunity), R (Regret), E (Experts), and S (Savings).  This list of seven can be instantly recalled in an emergency with the simple mnenomic device, "BEFORES."
Use in a sentence to fix the idea? "BEFORES are behind us... let us make some AFTERS together!!"
Like any master, I still have some types of excuses in reserve.  I've not yet used the "Scientific Value" excuse ("I NEED these headphones to compare and publish results, because no one has ever compared the HE-300 to the Beats Studio before!" - and I have even posted about a dozen detailed 3-way comparisons of headphones!),  Nor have I used the "keeping up with the Jones" excuse yet ("Currawong just bought one... I need one too!")
My trepidation at being found out as a headphone addict by sharing this with you is overcome by my sense of public duty to arm you with your own set of excuses to help you purchase that next set of headphones.
Oh, and my next excuse and purchase?  "I REALLY miss those Grado PS500s I traded away, and I even have posts on the Grado thread... so I HAVE to get some more Grados, and they have to be what the Grado experts say is the prototypical Grado signature... the RS1 with wooden buttons." (Excuse category Regret).  Since they are HARD to find, I think it will slow my acquisition rate down (thankfully!).

Jan 10, 2015 at 12:44 PM Post #3 of 6
I think most of these excuses work because she's using the same excuses on you for another pair of Louboutin shoes...

Jan 10, 2015 at 4:43 PM Post #4 of 6
I think most of these excuses work because she's using the same excuses on you for another pair of Louboutin shoes... :D

Well, she DID hand me this "Price List For Spousal Approval of Headphone Purchase:"

Jan 10, 2015 at 4:45 PM Post #5 of 6
I think most of these excuses work because she's using the same excuses on you for another pair of Louboutin shoes... :D

Oh, and like me, she only buys Grados, not Louboutin.

The Grado driving moc costs the same as the Grado RS-2:
Jan 10, 2015 at 5:22 PM Post #6 of 6
All I had to do to keep my Stax Lambda Nova basic set is offer her my Sennheiser Momentum Ivory over-ear. And she didn't even mind that I bought a separate Tivoli Audio CD player so I can have everything within reach by my chair.
And she's easy on the eyes as well.


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