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Author Topic: Headphones!  (Read 851 times)
Onio
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« on: February 14, 2023 @892.69 »

What kind of headphones do you guys jam with?

I'm not an audiophile by any means, but I can say that some pairs sound better than others to my ears.

I finally fixed up some old Grado SR225E headphones that I've not been able to listen with for years! I'm happy to be able to use these again because I love the way they sound!

I also have a pair of DT880s that are very nice, but they don't have that immediacy and texture that the Grado phones do!

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« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2023 @923.06 »

Headphones are one of those things that a person can get addicted to (like keyboards) :tongue:

Currently I have/use daily:
  • Grado SR125s (on ear) - Got them when I lived in NY and they really sound great! (but one always rattles and the wire is annoying)
  • Sony MDR-7506s (over ear) - These are just a classic and everyone who's into sound should have a pair!
  • Apple Airpods 2nd Gen (in ear) - I use these a lot for casual listening.
  • Sony WF1000XM3s (in ear) - For travel or when noise canceling is needed!
  • Koss Porta Pros (on ear) - These are great out and about phones!

The graveyard - phones Iv lost or have given away:
  • B&O H6s - Awesome high detail headphones - gave to a family member
  • AKG K702 - Good headphones - gave to a family member
  • AiAiAi TMA2 (S05) - Never liked them, ugly and muddy sound - sold on ebay
  • Marshall Major Is - Good as a starter pair - I used them till they were trashed!
  • Moondrop Stardusts (in ear) - Awesome in every way - stolen by an ex!

To drive them - I have a few cheaper DACs made by Schiit audio, they are ok, but my best sounding DAC is my Oppo HA-2!

I have a love of good quality affordable equipment - I get genuine joy from a product that anyone can buy but is still great quality without extra frills, so a lot of the ones Iv kept kinda fit into that category :grin:

Its also nice to have different ones for different moods or kinds of music - sometimes you want much more isolation, sometimes less!
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Onio
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« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2023 @937.94 »

That keyboard topic actually got me to fixing my Grados. I was looking at all these prices for different parts, and then I looked over at my sad pair of Grados and thought.. why not just repair those instead XD Ordered some new earpads (trying the bowls this time instead of the on ear - pretty comfortable,) fixed the grattle and shamelessly hot glued that headband back on. I am very pleased.

How do you like the Grado sound? I hear there's not too much difference between the 225 and 125, and I love mine! Have you ever considered building a pair of headphones similar to them? You can get wooden cups online and install a pair of Symphones V9s inside - I've read they sound great.

I haven't heard of the MDR-7506s, but given the huge number of positive reviews (I just skimmed over a few) and their low price, I might have to give those a try some day!

My buddy had the AKG K702s! I liked them, they sounded nice, but I think they were a little too neutral for my tastes (great for producing though.)

Sorry about your Stardusts :(

The only other pair I've had that was worth mention was the Audiotechnica ATH-AD700 - completely lacking in the punch and bass department, but I liked them for what they were. That was so long ago.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2023 @941.57 by Onio » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2023 @159.86 »

So, here's a list of the audio equipment I have and use! (Updated on 2/22/23 to add a couple I missed the first time)

* Koss Porta Pro X: My main. I always loved the lightweight form-factor Koss had for their headphones, and it's a little disappointing no one else does this. Especially since Koss's stuff tends to be fragile. (To explain: I've gone through another Porta Pro, two KPH30is, and a KSC75x.) My hopes are that this one WILL last me a long time...
* CCA CA4: Current wired portable earphones. They've got some really good sound, but they're rusting like heck.
* JLab Epic Air (1st gen): Current wireless. Mostly used for voice calls, admittedly.
* JLab Studio (wired): While build quality is much better than the Porta Pro Xes, the sound quality isn't. Still good for playing with EQs on!
* Some cheap Monoprice one I only really use when using a certain computer. Almost the inverse of the JLab Studio in that while build quality is terrible, sound quality is surprisingly good!

My hopes are to find a good "classic-style" earbud (not IEM) to serve as my next wired portable audio listening device. I personally prefer more "open" sounding stuff since I can hear my surroundings.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2023 @176.93 by CyberCat2000 » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2023 @372.63 »

I've only discovered good headphones relatively recently - for most of my life it's mostly been whatever cheap junk I could get my hands on. This changed when I got a pair of Audiotechnica ATH-M40x headphones a bit over a year ago. The sound quality on them was great - I'm no audiophile but I can definitely tell when I go from built-in device speakers to nice headphones and the bass frequencies suddenly appear - but one of the swivel joints snapped after only a year and since then build quality has been a huge deciding factor in which headphones I buy, but not at the expense of sound! Currently I'm rocking (pun intended):

  • Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro (80 Ohm) which I use for music production and general listening at my computer. They're built like a tank and the sound quality is even better than the M40x's, but they don't come with a detachable cable :sad: but I know how to fix that! I bought my pair through a modding company, and now they have a mini-XLR port on them! Supposedly Audiotechnica's headphones are bassier, but I haven't really done a comprehensive test.
  • KZ ZSN Pro earbuds - they cost me about $20 USD, but they sound good, look beautiful, and are built shockingly well! They even come with a removable cable! I use these for everything when I'm away from my computer. It's because of headphones like this that I still refuse to get a phone without a headphone jack - although you can get a wireless adapter for these on Amazon...

I've also had a pair of Skullcandy Crushers, the original 2014 ones that didn't support bluetooth. They have haptic motors in them to emphasize the BASS, though the motors only worked with the original cable. These were wired headphones that took a AA battery! They were hilarious. Shame the port for the removable cable wore out and became unreliable after a few years... maybe if I learned to solder I could replace it :omg:

I've considered getting more headphones for more specialized purposes, but I've found that at least for now these two are all I need. Headphones are expensive... I've also considered getting a DAC/amp for my DT 770s, does a nice DAC and amp make a difference in y'all's experience compared to just running out of your computer's audio jack directly?
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« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2023 @757.05 »

I've only discovered good headphones relatively recently - for most of my life it's mostly been whatever cheap junk I could get my hands on. This changed when I got a pair of Audiotechnica ATH-M40x headphones a bit over a year ago. The sound quality on them was great - I'm no audiophile but I can definitely tell when I go from built-in device speakers to nice headphones and the bass frequencies suddenly appear - but one of the swivel joints snapped after only a year and since then build quality has been a huge deciding factor in which headphones I buy, but not at the expense of sound! Currently I'm rocking (pun intended):

  • Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro (80 Ohm) which I use for music production and general listening at my computer. They're built like a tank and the sound quality is even better than the M40x's, but they don't come with a detachable cable :sad: but I know how to fix that! I bought my pair through a modding company, and now they have a mini-XLR port on them! Supposedly Audiotechnica's headphones are bassier, but I haven't really done a comprehensive test.
  • KZ ZSN Pro earbuds - they cost me about $20 USD, but they sound good, look beautiful, and are built shockingly well! They even come with a removable cable! I use these for everything when I'm away from my computer. It's because of headphones like this that I still refuse to get a phone without a headphone jack - although you can get a wireless adapter for these on Amazon...

I've also had a pair of Skullcandy Crushers, the original 2014 ones that didn't support bluetooth. They have haptic motors in them to emphasize the BASS, though the motors only worked with the original cable. These were wired headphones that took a AA battery! They were hilarious. Shame the port for the removable cable wore out and became unreliable after a few years... maybe if I learned to solder I could replace it :omg:

I've considered getting more headphones for more specialized purposes, but I've found that at least for now these two are all I need. Headphones are expensive... I've also considered getting a DAC/amp for my DT 770s, does a nice DAC and amp make a difference in y'all's experience compared to just running out of your computer's audio jack directly?

I really liked the DT770s! I haven't owned my own pair, but I've had few friends who did, and I was originally planning to purchase a pair of those (I think I did one day, but returned them the same day because I realized I needed the money for adulting :sad:). I ended up purchasing DT880s over the DT770s as a result of reading that the DT880s were more neutral, and I wanted a pair of cans I could produce music with. Still find myself wanting to try the 770s again.

As far as a DAC/amp - this is why I don't tell people I'm audiophile. With my headphones, I barely notice a difference. I haven't tried a premium standalone DAC yet, but I've tried a couple amps and I just don't hear that much of a difference, even with the 250ohm DT880s. Right now I'm running through a DAC/AMP combo that came in the MOTU M2 audio interface, and my DT880s sound just a sliver better than they do plugged right into a PC. Does that stop me from wanting to purchase. I have a Fiio E7 that barely makes a difference in sound quality over just plugging the DT880s straight into the laptop. By barely, I mean, I've spent time switching back and forth between plugged into amp and plugged into laptop, playing the same songs, trying to perceive some noticeable difference before having to just convince myself one is better than the other.

The DAC on my motherboard and the DAC inside of my Macbook seem perfectly fine. I think a DAC would be an improvement if you're noticing noise, distortion or artifacts. I think an AMP would be an improvement if your headphones seem quieter or muddier than you believe they ought to be, especially if they're a higher impedance. I have no idea how much money I would have to spend on a DAC/AMP combo just to plug my headphones in and instantly think, "Oh, this sounds better!" Not even a lot better - but just definitively better, as in I can actually perceive it without switching back and forth a hundred times to convince myself it is better. The last time I really heard a difference from DAC to DAC was going from the CreativeLabs Soundblaster X-Fi XtremeMusic sound card to an Asus Xonar Essence STX sound card back in like.. 2009.

I guess my thing is this: I can HEAR and appreciate the difference from headphone to headphone, but I just barely notice it, if at all, hopping from dac to dac or amp to amp. I feel like I'd have to pay $600+ for a DAC/AMP combo that I'd actually hear the difference from, and for $600+ I'd rather buy a new pair of cans or two that I've always wanted to try, or just try modding or even making a pair, than to shovel that money into an AMP or DAC that miiight make a difference to my non-audiophile ears? Better yet, for $600, I'd like to get an analog synthesizer :P

Nevertheless, I still find myself wanting to buy a tube amp, something I haven't had experience with yet, and I'm curious if that might color the sound somehow in a nice way.

Those Skullcandies sound like a blast XD That would be fun to repair just to have them around for their quirkiness.
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« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2023 @317.11 »

I'm no audiophile either. I prefer in-ear headphones, and when I was forced to go wireless with my current phone I bought the Sony WI-C200 headphones. They worked pretty well. Never had any connectivity issues and the sound quality was great for my purposes. They were also pretty cheap  compared to all the other wireless headphones they had in stock (about $60 CAD). But they only lasted a year before they started having charging issues and then eventually wouldn't turn on at all even after a full day's charge.

So I decided to splurge and replace them with the Beats Studio Ear Buds, hoping they'd last a lot longer. However, I had to exchange them the next day because the audio kept cutting in and out. It sounded exactly like a skipping record. And then the replacements had the exact same issue, so I returned them and bought the even cheaper Sony WI-C100 headphones. $45 and I haven't had a single issue. Even if I have to replace them again in a year, I'll have gotten my money's worth.

I'll never buy Beats again. This isn't even the first time I've been burned by that brand. I had an old set years ago that lasted about a month before the left side suddenly became way quieter than the right. I figured it was just bad luck so I gave them another chance. Never again.

Has anyone else tried Beats and actually liked them? Am I just really unlucky or are they really charging hundreds of dollars for poorly made crap?
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« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2023 @4.97 »

I appreciate some good audio quality, but I am by no means audio-obsessed. I use Audio-Technica's ATH-M50x. They're an excellent pair of over the ear headphones that I use every day. They've been through h3ck and back and I've had no issues with them. I never have much luck with earbuds. My ear canals are just shaped weird I think, so they always fall out, lol.
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« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2023 @129.32 »

Honestly my only input I can add is that SkullCandy has been with me through everything! Super durable and nice quality headphones. I had a pair for 6 years before they gave up on me, then I decided to invest in a real expensive pair of them.. I'm pretty happy with the purchase!
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« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2023 @229.03 »

Honestly my only input I can add is that SkullCandy has been with me through everything! Super durable and nice quality headphones. I had a pair for 6 years before they gave up on me, then I decided to invest in a real expensive pair of them.. I'm pretty happy with the purchase!

Wow, huh. I always had the impression Skull was a "unreliable" or "cheap" brand. Goes to show I better stop judging books by their covers. What type of headphones did you have for six years, over the ear? No issues sound-quality wise?
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« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2023 @600.69 »


Wow, huh. I always had the impression Skull was a "unreliable" or "cheap" brand. Goes to show I better stop judging books by their covers. What type of headphones did you have for six years, over the ear? No issues sound-quality wise?


I think most people give them judgement from their earbuds, which is reasonable since they are cheap and not exaclty durable. However, people do not give them a chance with their headphones they are really good quality!
The ones I had for six years I wore every single day was the hesh 2 wireless ones, they were pretty durable especially for a middle schooler.. i got those things so scuffed up in the past but the sound was always perfect i never had issues with it, and the durability was amazing. again, i was in middle school and i was very energetic and ambitious so that thing went through hell and back it was very scuffed up at the end  :ohdear:

I think the only reason I stopped using those headphones is simply because they were a bit chunky and a bit hard to incorporate in my day-to-day life . i.e. wearings earbuds in class vs wearing headphones in class, you get the drift.

EDIT: Those headphones were only $30-$50 bucks too so It was a good deal for how long it lasted me! I think my newer SkullCandy is uh.. $200? $250? Since it was a brand that stuck with me due to how good my experience with my last pair was, I decided to splurge. They are even better than the ones I had before since its very portable and more of a neater appearance, as well as a bass boost feature in the headphones.

EDIT 2: As for my computer.. I don't use headphones I prefer speakers more! It helps you to be more aware of your surroundings methinks
« Last Edit: February 23, 2023 @602.92 by dotmidi » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2023 @803.78 »

I think most people give them judgement from their earbuds, which is reasonable since they are cheap and not exaclty durable. However, people do not give them a chance with their headphones they are really good quality!
The ones I had for six years I wore every single day was the hesh 2 wireless ones, they were pretty durable especially for a middle schooler.. i got those things so scuffed up in the past but the sound was always perfect i never had issues with it, and the durability was amazing. again, i was in middle school and i was very energetic and ambitious so that thing went through hell and back it was very scuffed up at the end  :ohdear:

I think the only reason I stopped using those headphones is simply because they were a bit chunky and a bit hard to incorporate in my day-to-day life . i.e. wearings earbuds in class vs wearing headphones in class, you get the drift.

EDIT: Those headphones were only $30-$50 bucks too so It was a good deal for how long it lasted me! I think my newer SkullCandy is uh.. $200? $250? Since it was a brand that stuck with me due to how good my experience with my last pair was, I decided to splurge. They are even better than the ones I had before since its very portable and more of a neater appearance, as well as a bass boost feature in the headphones.

EDIT 2: As for my computer.. I don't use headphones I prefer speakers more! It helps you to be more aware of your surroundings methinks

That's quite the testament to the overall quality of those headphones, that it can survive middle school!! Hahaha. It really can be tough when you get older to find the right pair of earbuds or headphones to use on a daily basis. My brother and I have both struggled with that I think for a multitude of reasons. I'll have to give Skull a try sometime in the future.

That is incredible value gained for a mere $30-$50. Also, I probably haven't used speakers with a computer myself since middle school when we had a computer in the living room. Would be worth it to go back to that setup and see what it's like.


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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2023 @576.85 »

i'm using razer kraken Xs i got for christmas a couple years ago, they're not the best by any stretch but they're all i have and they get the job done haha. when i'm out and about or if i just get sick of wearing big headphones though i use these cheap philips earphones that are... surprisingly good? i mean, they're clearly cheap supermarket earphones and they sound like it but i actually rather like the sound of them for what they are. they're also really comfortable, earphones usually don't stay in very well for me but these ones fit just perfectly.
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« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2023 @141.09 »

I can't tolerate any kind of earbud or in-ear headphone, usually when i'm listening to music i'm at home and using my cute pink jbl clip speaker an ex gave me.

i only own one pair of headphones, they are the sony studio monitor mdr-v6 model. i've had them for over 10 years and they're incredible, but i just did a quick search and apparently they were discontinued in 2020?! it seems like the sony 7506 that melon recommended is the closest best alternative.
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