Facing a curious dilemma obviously ;)

Discussion in 'Ask The Experts' started by thommohawk13, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. thommohawk13

    thommohawk13 Casual Listener

    Oct 28, 2010
    Okay feel free to correct me at any point, here goes:

    I consider myself a bass head in the sense that I cannot stand it when headphones appear to be ineffective in this area. And I don't mind the 'bassy' headphones (currently own and really like the Koss Porta Pro) but ideally I'd like the bass to not be boomy nor dominant over everything though I'd still like to hear it there when all the other instruments are layered over the top of it if that makes any sense ?

    As I say I really like the Koss Porta Pro's....I like the detail and bass, I also like that the hi hats aren't as bright. In fact my only gripe against them is a physical one - they are not full size over the ear headphones.

    I'll be getting the ASUS Xonar Essence ST sound card to act as my DAC/AMP shortly after (i plug the ps3 audio cables into the sound card as that's where my audio files are;)) so a headphones impedance or need for an amp doesn't apply too much in my case.

    I'm into musical rock of all kinds except guff like death metal (not musical!) I like classic rock too, well glam rock, is late 80's early 90's considered classic now ?! Nirvana and Guns N Roses I'd say so hehe. I also like a bit of Red Hot Chili Peppers, Michael Jackson and Prodigy - oh and quite a few of the dance tunes that make it to the radio. Guilty pleasure for me lol. I'm not into classical nor do I game competitively so imaging isn't as important to me as immersion is (blu ray movies etc).

    I've narrowed my search down to the Audio Technica ATH-M50 or the Shure 840 or a bunch of Beyerdynamics (DT250, DT990 Pro, DT880) not entirely sure which way to turn - my budget is £200 absolute max, preferably £100 - £150 anywhere in that region.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. :)

    Thank you for reading this epic post :p
  2. RobinHiFi

    RobinHiFi Super Moderator

    Apr 28, 2010
    Hi thommohawk13,

    You seem to be in the right ball park. Some of the headphones in this list are closed some are open - Do you need one or the or are you happy with either?

    If it is closed you are looking for with you description of your tastes I would go for one of these.

    Beyerdynamic DT770 PRO Closed Back Headphones 80Ω (DT 770)
    £129.95 - Great bass response, warm sound

    Shure SRH840 Professional Closed-Back Headphones (SRH 840)
    £153.95 - These are the bassiest with a big chunky sound.

    Ultrasone HFI-780 Closed-Back Foldable Headphones (HFI 780)
    £159.95 - Least warm of the three but very accurate well controlled bass

    If an open back will not create problems by spilling noise into the room then these have a wider sound stage and a more 3D sense of stereo - great for films and gaming as well as very natural sound reproduction.

    Beyerdynamic DT990 PRO Open Headphones 250Ω (DT 990)
    £129.95 - Least bass of the three but accurate and well controlled

    Grado SR125i Open Back Headphones (Grado SR 125i)
    £157.95 - powerful and exciting sound, these may be a bit too bright for you

    Beyerdynamic DT880 PRO Semi-Open Headphones 250Ω (DT 880)
    £194.95 - Chunky and powerful with a very sweet and natural top end - one of my favourite open backs.

    Hope that helps!
  3. thommohawk13

    thommohawk13 Casual Listener

    Oct 28, 2010
    Thank you for the response I appreciate the help. :)

    Yes I'd be happy with either but given the choice between either or I'd choose open backs so that I'm not as dead to the world. But closed backs have their uses too. So either way...

    Also the Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO you listed and the Beyerdynamic DT990 PRO listed are the same price - one is open backed and the other is closed backed - but which one out of the two has the more impactful/better bass ? Which one of the two is the warmer sounding ? And which one out of the two has the most detail ? Let's just say it's a straight shoot out between these two headphones that's purely down to sound quality and sound sig rather than form factor and price.

  4. Shaun-HiFi

    Shaun-HiFi Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 30, 2008
    Beyerdynamic DT770 v DT990

    Both the Beyerdynamic DT770 and DT990 are excellent headphones, but have different characteristics.

    The DT770 has a warm sound, with punchy bass and decent positional accuracy. The closed back design gives lots of sound isolation, making it perfect for live recording situations, where microphone bleed is a problem, or in high noise environments.

    The DT990 is not so warm sounding, but has loads of detail in it's presentation. The bass is still present, but this headphone is about accuracy. The DT990 is a great mixing headphone.
  5. shokka9

    shokka9 Well Balanced

    Aug 18, 2010
    can i just add.....

    The Shure SRH840's are not as bassy as people make out.

    I am a 'bass head'. I listen to dubstep, DnB, Rap, Electro (but also Classical too). I found the bass very lacking on my Shures, but i think that was down to the source, an iPhone 4.

    When hooked up to my portable amp and i use the EQ, the bass is there.

    To assist, the Shures can handle the bass (a lot of it), but the source and the material need to be able to fulfill this criteria also.

    Hope that helps.

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