Some help choosing headphones [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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03-14-2008, 12:06 AM
Hello there...

I have pair of senn. HD590 I'm quite satisfied with. Not that I've had anything to compare them with, they're the only hi end headphones I've ever used.
Anyway, after a lot of abuse they still work fine most of the time but occasionally there are some audio cuts in the right speaker when I tilt my head in a certain way. So I'm thinking maybe is time to get some new headphones.

After some research I did on the internet, I'm leaning towards three models: Senn. HD600, Beyer DT990 and AKG K701.

What are the differences between them and which would you suggest?

Also, I think I'm going to buy a headphone amp along with the headphones. Until know I listened with the HD590 through the phones output of a sony hifi system and they sounded fine. However I've read that the HD590 don't benefit that much from an headphone amp. Do you think is necessary to get one with the models I mentioned earlier? I don't want to spend a lot of money on a headphone amp, will a cheap one like this: do a decent job?

03-14-2008, 04:32 AM is a good place to compare. But sounds like you want personal anecdotes. I'm a step down on the 580s so I'll defer to others with better cans.

03-15-2008, 12:31 PM

Have you considered any cans from the link above? I love my 225's. Grado and Sennheiser are my favorites. Unless, you want to talk about inner ear buds. Then my favorite is Sure. I can't believe the sound from my SE420's. No amp needed though I am curious what that would sound like. I do know that Beyer and AKG have certain models that are very good but that is about all I know.

Jack in Wilmington
03-16-2008, 11:34 AM
Have you considered used. I upgraded my HD590's about a year ago and got a great pair of HD-600's from Audiogon for $175. There are a couple pairs of HD-600's and a couple pairs of HD-650's on there. Also a pair of Beyer DT990's for $225 and some 701's.

03-23-2008, 12:20 AM
I have a pair of HD-595s and love them. I have not tried the 600 or 650s but I am sure they are excellent as well. Grado makes great cans and I love the way they sound, but I can't stand their on-ear design, I find them very uncomfortable - I need something that goes over the ear. That is personal preference, though, and if you find the Grados comfortable, they're definitely worth listening to. I was lucky in that I have a few friends who own Grados, but, if you're lucky, a good audio store should have some for auditioning.

As far as an amp, I found most amps (i.e. those at Headroom) to be well out of my budget, except for the idea of building my own CMoy amp. I am not handy with such things, though, but fortunately you can buy them on eBay for $40 - $50. They're small, handy, and effective - most of the ones on eBay are sold in empty Altoids cases. Regardless, an amp is good for listening to music at high volumes, especially bass-heavy music that your "regular" amp (the one in your receiver, computer, iPod, etc) will distort or clip. Your receiver may or may not have a decent headphone amp in it, it varies a lot. That said, I very rarely used my CMoy as the HD-595s were more efficient than I had anticipated and it was able to perform well without the amp. If you do buy one, I recommend getting one with a rheostat. Mine is just a straight amp which means you can get a fair amount of noise in the background at lower volumes (thus, I wouldn't use it at low volumes).

Best of luck!

03-24-2008, 01:47 PM
my friend who is into headphones says
dont get the beyer dt990 or the akg k701
they were both "underwhelming" (his word)
the senn hd600 is a safe choice
but there are others
he says the beyer dt880 might be a better choice
depending what you want
so what do you want?