On-ear, up to 130 $. Need help to decide.

Discussion in 'Portable Headphones & Earphones' started by Cassegrain, Jul 21, 2014.

  1. Cassegrain

    Cassegrain Casual Listener

    Jul 21, 2014
    Hi everyone,

    it's my first post here, but I am lurking through the web for some time to find closed on-ear headphones (supraaural) and eventually found some candidates for my future headphones.

    First of all, my experience with on-ear headphones is rather small. Never bought any by myself and never used such. Untill now I was IEM user (Brainwavz Alpha and a-Jays Two).

    I'm listening to non-commercial electronic music, to be specific - techno, house, ambients. Thus I am looking for the good, warm, but not so boomy(bumpy?) bass without sacrificing mids.

    After reading many (too many..) reviews, including dalethorn's ones (which in my opinion are most factual and concrete reviews I've found in the net) I've chosen some models:

    Beyerdynamic DTX 501p
    SoundMAGIC P21 (but I don't really like that black-red combination)
    SoundMagic P30
    Audio-Technica ATH-WS55
    Audio-Technica ATH-SJ55
    AIAIAI TMA-1 (used, found them priced at 125$, but used for about a month)
    AKG K-451 or the other AKGs that match my budget and are portable sized. (couldn'f find any good review of these ones)
    Phillips Fidelio M1 (found them priced at around 100$, what is kinda suspicious)

    In reference to AIAIAIs I have a question: how is their (TMA-1X's) isolation compared to the other ones listed above? Do they sound significantly better than the other ones? I want to be totally sure about this AIAIAI model because there is no place to check them out in Poland.

    AbsoIutely I am opened for any other headphone recommendations that suit my budget (130$) and have some similiar looks to the models I've listed.

    I will be greatly thankful for any help,


  2. john-hifi

    john-hifi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 27, 2012
    I haven't heard the TMA-1X but I don't believe that they are a superior model - they are a more portable and lightweight version. They are based on the TMA-1 though and if they sound as good as them for less money then they look like a great choice!

    I'd see if you can get hold of a Sennheiser Momentum On-Ear for a good price or even the Sennheiser HD-25 - They are classics :)
  3. dalethorn

    dalethorn Obsessive Auditor

    Jul 3, 2011
    Charleston South Carolina
    Thanks for the vote of confidence. The Beyer DTX501p is very good, much better than the TMA-1x that I had. The new Soundmagic P21 is great - I've had mine for 2 days and it sounds as good as the DTX501p. The P21 red/black is not nearly as offensive as (for example) the Phiaton MS400, since when you're wearing it the thin red strip under the headband won't show, and with the soft earpads compressed on your ears, there's also very little showing there either. But they also have white and green. I love the P21, and should have the review up in a couple days.

    Edit: I have the WS55, which might be OK for some outdoor use, but it's far below the DTX501p and P21 in sound quality.
  4. john-hifi

    john-hifi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 27, 2012
    Good call on the SoundMAGIC P21's Dale - you can't get anything better for the price :)
  5. jerryhere

    jerryhere Well Balanced

    Jul 30, 2014
    recommend you SoundMagic P30

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