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Headphone Audiophiles - Page 32

post #931 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by pbarach View Post

^^

I have never found any over the ear phones to work on airplanes unless they are either noise-canceling or turned up excessively loud. I bought Bose QC15 phones. The sound isn't as good as, say Sennheiser HD600, but their nose cancellation is unparalleled and they are very comfortable. A little above your budget, but they work and they will save your hearing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

^^^^
I agree. Bose QC15 will be the quietest, but sound quality will not be as good as a true audiophile headphone (they are a bit treble recessed (not sparkly) and boomy).

A passive closed headphone gives you the chance to get truly good sound, but at the expense of noise isolation. Here, the KEF M500 has been getting very good reviews.

Personally, I wont fly without IEMs. Period. You might experiment with different tips to find something comfortable. A pair of Etymotic HF5 would be my suggestion for superb sound and isolation. Etys come with a variety of tips so comfort is possible.

The airline provides me with Bose QC15's for international flights, but I never really cared for the sound given the expensive price tag. I wouldn't buy those, but they are comfortable and work well at blocking engine noise. Although it masks outside noise, I do tend to fixate on the ambient hum the headphones give out and that drives me crazy. I'll head to a few Hi-Fi stores in town to audition some headphones this weekend.
post #932 of 1190
how about monster headphones?
post #933 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by Agnieszka View Post

how about monster headphones?

Interesting - they seem to be now competing with their own Dr. Dre brand.
post #934 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Interesting - they seem to be now competing with their own Dr. Dre brand.

Beats and Monster are separate companies. They had a manufacturing agreement until last year and Beats now manufactures their own headphones.
post #935 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Interesting - they seem to be now competing with their own Dr. Dre brand.

Beats and Monster are separate companies. They had a manufacturing agreement until last year and Beats now manufactures their own headphones.

...and the Dr. Dre marketing agreement has a sundown and Monster has had their appetite whetted for that market?
post #936 of 1190

I currently use an old pair of decent AKG over-the-ear wired headphones, I bought them years ago and probably paid $300 or so for them.  Now that we have the house paid off, kids thru college, retirement fund in good shape, I'm in the process of doing another major music audio system upgrade and will be shopping for a "dream" pair of cans.

 

I'd like to get a wired set of over-the-ear headphones, that can be properly driven by the headphone amp built into the McIntosh MAC6700 receiver (with their new "high drive" headphone amp).  I've auditioned a lower-priced model of Sennheiser phones (probably the HD600's or HD650's) and read on the web about how fine the HD800's are.  Does anyone have input on those cans, and others I might consider that can be driven by that amp?

post #937 of 1190
I looked for specifications on the McIntosh "high drive" headphone amp but couldn't find anything. Without knowing the specs, all you can really do is experiment with different headphones to see what you like.

Yes, the HD 800 is a very fine headphone. Many people love it. Many don't. Like all high-end Sennheisers, they have a wildly swinging impedance curve that makes them change in character from amp to amp. Generally speaking, when powered by a low output impedance amp they sound bright, airy, and articulate. Plug them into a high output impedance amp and they turn more lush and full-bodied.

I guess it depends on your personal preference. Did you like the Sennheisers you listened to? Do you remember which model it was (600 or 650)?
post #938 of 1190

Palmfish,

 

Thanks for the great info.  I do not remember if I was listening to the HD600's or HD650's, it was in a store display using some other amplifier, listening to music I wasn't familiar with.  Which ever model they were, I do remember them sounding "balanced", not to bright, not to bass heavy and the mids (violins, voices, drums, etc.) sounded really natural.

 

Since the HD800's are so expensive, I'll see if I can find a McIntosh/Sennheiser dealer and audition them "in person".

 

Thanks for the info!

post #939 of 1190
It sounds to me like you tried the HD 600. The 600 has a speckled blue plastic frame and is a very balanced sounding headphone. The 650 has a darker solid grey frame and is less sparkly and bassier than the 600, but also a little smoother sounding.

I owned a pair of 600's before I moved to the 800. The 600 is a jack of all trades kind of headphone. It has been around for 20 years and is almost universally loved for its balance and ease of listening. It just does everything well and gets out of the way.

Compared to the 600, the 800 is a little brighter in the treble and the bass goes deeper yet is more controlled. The 800 is also noticeably "faster" and more spacious (three-dimensional) sounding. Some people are bothered by the added treble though, and some feel it tilts a bit too far on the analytical side and is therefore not as easy to listen to for long periods like the 600.

I absolutely love my HD 800's but I will admit that they are so impressive, they sometimes seem like they are reminding me of how impressive they are vs. the HD 600 which you just forget you're wearing (except for the clamping force), if that makes sense. But you really owe it to yourself to audition the HD 800. It will knock your socks off!

Please come back and tell us what you endied up with (with pictures, of course) biggrin.gif
post #940 of 1190

Palmfish,

 

Once again, thanks for the great insight!

 

Nice to hear from someone who actually owns a product I'm looking to buy.  I did find a McIntosh dealer on the other side of DC (not my long-time dealer in Maryland), that has Sennheiser.  At some point, when I have the time, I'll grab a pile of CDs and head down there.

 

Once again, Thanks!

post #941 of 1190

Im looking for a mid-sized DAC+AMP with Equalizer

OR

Both separated

 

*Need an optical in and 6.3mm out*

Wanna adjust hi-mid-lows on it, frequencies if possible.

Headphones impedance is 50 ohms (sennheiser hd558)

looking to pay ±300$

 

Any thoughts ?

post #942 of 1190
There are plenty of Amp/DAC's out there, but none that I know of with built-in EQ/tone controls.

The only thing I can think of is a full size integrated amp. Onkyo and Marantz both have them with built-in DACs and tone controls on the front.
post #943 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

There are plenty of Amp/DAC's out there, but none that I know of with built-in EQ/tone controls.

The only thing I can think of is a full size integrated amp. Onkyo and Marantz both have them with built-in DACs and tone controls on the front.

Are the tone controls active when you plug in a headphone jack? I know on an AVR the tone and audyssey controls are defeated when using the headphone jack.
post #944 of 1190
Have Senn 580s but currently using them with whatever they plug in to. Had the urge to part with some cash so I think I'm going to order the Bottlehead Crack kit. Seems to be a moderately priced amp well suited to the cans. For a DAC, for now, I'll just use something I have laying around....Analog Devices AD1955 eval board, MSB Link DAC III, or Emotiva XDA-1.
post #945 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by glangford View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

There are plenty of Amp/DAC's out there, but none that I know of with built-in EQ/tone controls.

The only thing I can think of is a full size integrated amp. Onkyo and Marantz both have them with built-in DACs and tone controls on the front.

Are the tone controls active when you plug in a headphone jack? I know on an AVR the tone and audyssey controls are defeated when using the headphone jack.

That's not universally true for the tone controls. The Audyssey should be defeated, but I've had AVRs where plugging in the headphones had no effect on the tone controls - they kept right on working.

That all said I my system personal has a dedicated DAC, stand alone 30 band headphone equalizer, and a dedicated headphone amplifier so I can listen to the headphones without even turning on the AVR.
post #946 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by glangford View Post

Are the tone controls active when you plug in a headphone jack? I know on an AVR the tone and audyssey controls are defeated when using the headphone jack.

Both of my AVRs (Pioneer) keep the tone control settings in play when I plug headphones in.
post #947 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoaru99 View Post

Have Senn 580s but currently using them with whatever they plug in to. Had the urge to part with some cash so I think I'm going to order the Bottlehead Crack kit. Seems to be a moderately priced amp well suited to the cans. For a DAC, for now, I'll just use something I have laying around....Analog Devices AD1955 eval board, MSB Link DAC III, or Emotiva XDA-1.

I love my Crack! It was fun to build and it was MADE for the high impedance Sennheisers. You're going to love it! More than a few Crack users (addicts?) pair theirs with the ODAC, but it's USB only. I think any of your DACs are just fine. I cant really tell one DAC from another, and the Crack is no detail monster anyways, so i think you're good to go!
post #948 of 1190
post #949 of 1190
here is nice unboxing video of the HD800 with a nice sound track.
post #950 of 1190

Palmfish,

 

I was able to bring a pile of my favorite CDs down to the McIntosh/Sennheiser dealer and listen to the HD800s on the same CD player I have at home, and was really impressed by the sound of those cans, bought them.  When I got them home, listening to the HD800s driven by my receiver (with the McIntosh "high drive" headphone amp), they sounded even better, the unit in the receiver with more "headroom".  I tried listening to a bunch of other (lower priced) cans, but these HD800's were so good, "you only live once"!

 

Thanks for all your valuable info!

 

McIntosh MAC6700

McIntosh MCD500

Furman Elite-15 PFi

Totem Element Fire Monitors

B&W CM5's

Velodyne Optimum 10 Sub Woofer

Sennheiser HD800's

 

Nice cabling

post #951 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by ejr1953 View Post

Palmfish,

I was able to bring a pile of my favorite CDs down to the McIntosh/Sennheiser dealer and listen to the HD800s on the same CD player I have at home, and was really impressed by the sound of those cans, bought them.  When I got them home, listening to the HD800s driven by my receiver (with the McIntosh "high drive" headphone amp), they sounded even better, the unit in the receiver with more "headroom".  I tried listening to a bunch of other (lower priced) cans, but these HD800's were so good, "you only live once"!

Thanks for all your valuable info!

McIntosh MAC6700
McIntosh MCD500
Furman Elite-15 PFi
Totem Element Fire Monitors
B&W CM5's
Velodyne Optimum 10 Sub Woofer
Sennheiser HD800's



Nice cabling

I'm glad to hear it! You're fortunate to have a local dealer with gear you can sample. It makes shopping so much more enjoyable and efficient. Enjoy your cans!
post #952 of 1190
Has anyone had experience with Phonon SMB-2? The guy at my stereo store was pushing them on me -- $350. The only review I found on-line looks suspicious.

I'm also considering:

Vmoda 80 or 100
B&O H6
Sennheiser Momentum

These will mostly be used with an iPod. (My ENT told me to stop using ear buds.) But also through my Peachtree Nova.

Any comments/advice would be appreciated.
post #953 of 1190

My gear is in my signature. I do not think it is possible to achieve a better sound. Every day enjoy and marvel. A great combination!

post #954 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dstone001 View Post

Has anyone had experience with Phonon SMB-2? The guy at my stereo store was pushing them on me -- $350. The only review I found on-line looks suspicious.
Suspicious would be an apt description for the product web page too. "The sound the world's top audio professionals have been raving about!" The only "audio professionals" I know who rave over headphones are salespeople, and that's their job! rolleyes.gif The 'phones themselves have specs almost identical to the Audio Technica ATH-M50 (they look quite similar too), which is only $100 on Amazon. Makes me wonder who the OEM is for the $350 ones.

Quote:
These will mostly be used with an iPod. (My ENT told me to stop using ear buds.) But also through my Peachtree Nova.
Smartphones in general aren't known for having much power to spare for the audio outputs. Apple in particular has been sued by parents of kids who have gone deaf from playing their music too loud on their products, so I'd expect an Iphone to be especially weak due to their litigated low power levels. Earbuds are about the only thing that I feel comfortable using with my phone, since I don't want to turn the volume all the way up and into distortion just to get a noise. If your ENT says no, then the next best thing would be a small (not circumaural) and efficient.

Back in the '80s I picked up a nice Sony product that fit that mark, and haven't found anything quite like them since. They were a nice fit with early portable CD players of that time. So other than a recommendation that you get them small and close to your ear drums as possible, that's about it. I stopped looking when the airlines cracked down on electronic devices; hopefully there's something good out there by now. Good luck!
post #955 of 1190
There are plenty of sensitive circumaural headphones that sound great out of an iPod or Sansa Clip (my two favorite DAPS). I love my Sennheiser HD 558 paired with my Sansa Clip Zip smile.gif

Of course, ear buds are no more or less a danger to hearing loss than any other kind of ear/headphone. All that matters is the SPL entering the ear, and one could argue that a noise-isolating in ear monitor is best because music volumes can be kept quieter because there is less background noise to overcome.
post #956 of 1190
It's not a hearing issue -- it's a wax issue. My ears don't drain well (I get a lot of ear infections), and the ear buds were pushing wax down into my ear canal.

I demoed the Senheisser Momentum yesterday, along with Vmoda 80 & 100. I liked the Senheisser, but it's a little too pricey.

Oh -- All of my music on my iPod (classic) is 256 -- to fit more. Will I notice a difference if I synch the full resolution (or the highest iPod will do.)?
post #957 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dstone001 View Post

It's not a hearing issue -- it's a wax issue. My ears don't drain well (I get a lot of ear infections), and the ear buds were pushing wax down into my ear canal.

I demoed the Senheisser Momentum yesterday, along with Vmoda 80 & 100. I liked the Senheisser, but it's a little too pricey.

Oh -- All of my music on my iPod (classic) is 256 -- to fit more. Will I notice a difference if I synch the full resolution (or the highest iPod will do.)?

That's interesting. When I do extended listening with my Sennheiser wireless headphones my ear canal gets warm enough to melt any wax so that it runs right out. Takes several hours, though.
post #958 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dstone001 View Post

It's not a hearing issue -- it's a wax issue. My ears don't drain well (I get a lot of ear infections), and the ear buds were pushing wax down into my ear canal.

I demoed the Senheisser Momentum yesterday, along with Vmoda 80 & 100. I liked the Senheisser, but it's a little too pricey.

Oh -- All of my music on my iPod (classic) is 256 -- to fit more. Will I notice a difference if I synch the full resolution (or the highest iPod will do.)?

I have both the Momentums (over ear) and the M-100s. The Momentums are great all-around, multi-genre and can easily be driven by my iPod Touch (5th gen). The M-100 is more of a basshead can, geared towards more specific music akin to electronica, etc. It's a bit recessed in the mids, but is helped by ordering their XL pads. These pads are not only more comfortable, but opens up the soundstage and pull the mids forward a bit. I do feel that the bass impact is also lessened ever so slightly.

Both are great though and will really depend on what music you're into.

Btw, I definitely notice a difference when listening to lossless music vs. the typical 256kbps ones from iTunes. I also usually listen to flacs on my X3 and 256kbps songs on my Touch, so it could also be the difference in DAPs.
post #959 of 1190
thanks.

I ended up going with the Vmoda M80s. The M100 were too heavy on the bass, and the Momentum were too expensive.
and I upgraded the music on my iPod to full res -- although I guess it only supports 16/48 out.
post #960 of 1190
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dstone001 View Post

thanks.

I ended up going with the Vmoda M80s. The M100 were too heavy on the bass, and the Momentum were too expensive.
and I upgraded the music on my iPod to full res -- although I guess it only supports 16/48 out.

I've not had a chance to try the M80s, but I hear a lot of good things about it. Still a pretty solid choice - congrats!

And yes, only 16/48 on the iPod.

Btw, guys...Linn Records is offering a free 24-bit download daily called 24-bits of Christmas. It's well on its way (day 18 today), but there's still some to download. LINK.
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