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What are your go-to headphones?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Penny24, Jan 19, 2021.

  1. rocnred

    rocnred Southwest Desert Freak-a-zoid

    San Diego, CA
    Critical Listening: Grado H2 - Limited edition made from Cocobolo wood. They sound great. Open-air. The earpads take a little getting used to. They are not overly comfortable to wear, but the sound negates all of that.
    Critical Monitoring: AKG K702. Very neutral sounding and picks up everything. Bad recordings sound bad and good ones sound good. Unforgiving. But that is what I use them for.
    Robsonschoice and mikeyt like this.
  2. John Buchanan

    John Buchanan I'm just a headphone kinda guy.

    Listening now to the latest (used, but near mint) headphone in the pack - the AKG K812. Very very nice it is too. A little top end spikiness, as expected by nearly every review, but not as obvious in either frequency or magnitude of occurrence. Beautifully made, it's definitely a keeper and at AUS$800, about 1/4 new price. I'm loving them.
    mikeyt likes this.
  3. doctor fuse

    doctor fuse Forum Resident

    I've gone planar magnetic with my speakers - now I have got to try a pair of planar headphones.

    Suggestions on inexpensive models (under $200, if that exists)?
  4. vanhooserd

    vanhooserd Forum Resident

    Grado SR 80e
    peskypesky likes this.
  5. pressureworld

    pressureworld Forum Resident

    Atlanta, GA
    Sennheiser HD600
    kBear and Wngnt90 like this.
  6. SteveS1

    SteveS1 Forum Resident

    Weald, England, UK
    I've experimented with headphone and amp combinations, some great fun with various Beyerdynamic, Grado, Mr Speakers, Senn, AKG, Audeze the ones I come back to are the Senn HD600. They just don't do anything wrong to my ears, which may not seem like a ringing endorsement - but it beats being impressed and then tiring of a sound. That has happened a lot.

    I also find them very comfortable, which is essential if you are ever going to use them much.
  7. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    Drop HiFiMan HE 400i's at work, driven with a Schiit Modius DAC and a LYR 2 headamp. Loudspeakers at home.
  8. BayouTiger

    BayouTiger Forum Resident

    New Orleans
    Funny that I don't consider myself a "Headphone Guy", but I do have three pair hanging over my desk at home and a couple more in the cabinet'
    1. Audeze LCD2Closed - Recent purchase, Heavy as hell, but still comfy and just amazing sound and isolation.
    2. Fostex TH-900 - Light and really comfortable - almost too loose, very detailed and nice bottom, but can be a little bright on top.
    3. Senn HD700 - I did not like these for ages until I got a dragonfly, now I like them, but they do lose out to the ones above handily.
    4.Monoprice M1060 - Boought just to see what the fuss about Planars was. Pretty decent for the price, but only a gateway to much better cans.
    5. Senn TW Momentums - Better than the Airpod Pros but also fussy, less battery and more connection issues.
    6. Airpod Pro's - Just great everyday carry arounds.
    7. Sony WH-1000XM2 - Only for air travel, great ANC, and nice sound as well.
    8. Bose QC20 - Bought while traveling when I forgot my others, Pretty good,at everything but don't excel at anything either. Had it in my head that I couldn't use BT on a plane, should have returned them. But prior to the Airpods they were decent to carry around.

    It is amazing what a rabbit hole they really are. Now I am demoing a Woo WA22 that my dealer has on consignment and it is pretty amazing.
    mikeyt likes this.
  9. Ham Sandwich

    Ham Sandwich Forum Resident

    Sherwood, OR, USA
    Oh cool! Woo has some neat tube amps. I haven't been able to try a WA22. It's one I'd like to try.

    Check the power of the WA22 with your Audeze. Make sure it is able to get quiet recordings loud enough without compromising dynamics. General power recommendation for the Audeze headphones is a minimum of 2-2.5 watts at around 50 ohms for solid state amps. Tube amps can get by with less power because tube watts are magic. The Audeze headphones will get plenty loud with less power. The extra power is for headroom. To make sure dynamics are fully dynamic and don't suffer compression in dynamics or soundstage. Audeze used to have a help page that explained why they recommended around 2-2.5 watts. But they've backtracked on that a bit. Probably because it made marketing difficult when other planars were claiming they needed less power (but really needed similar power to retain headroom and dynamics). The WA22 is likely at the borderline for tube watts to power the Audeze headphones with headroom. But test with quiet recordings to make sure.

    The LCD-4 is a different beast since it is a 200 ohm headphone. Needs an amp that can do about 0.25-0.5 watts at 200 ohms. That's a lot for an amp to do at 200 ohms. Many good solid state amps won't do it. Tube amps can.

    The amps I use with my LCD-2 are hybrids and SS. Capable of around 3-6 watts at 50 ohms.
  10. BayouTiger

    BayouTiger Forum Resident

    New Orleans
    Yeah, it was good just connected to my little Cambridge DacMagic100 (that little box is absolutely amazing at it's price point). So I pulled out the Gumby to test the balanced inputs and that made a pretty big different in dynamics. It's really way too big for my desk but it may be too good a deal to pass up. Should mention that all the tubes are upgraded so I can't even tell what it might have been with stock glass.
  11. luiscardoso88

    luiscardoso88 Forum Resident

    Sennheiser HD600 for me. Just about perfect for the money for indoors use.
    Wngnt90 likes this.
  12. Pancat

    Pancat Senior Member

    Still EU. For now.
    Sennheiser HD660S and Oppo PM3, both with custom balanced cables.
  13. Ham Sandwich

    Ham Sandwich Forum Resident

    Sherwood, OR, USA
    It's a balanced amp and will likely do better using the balanced inputs. The unbalanced inputs use a phase splitter and those things often impact sound quality a bit.
    BayouTiger likes this.
  14. Ham Sandwich

    Ham Sandwich Forum Resident

    Sherwood, OR, USA
    doctor fuse likes this.
  15. all24bits

    all24bits Mature Adult

    Try an Audioquest Nighthawk. Hoo, boy.
    Swann36 likes this.
  16. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    There's another variation of the HiFi-Man HE400i, available through Drop. Navigate to the Audiophile section, and tons of headphones are listed. Scroll down for the 400i's. I just bought a pair myself. Great so far, with a Schiit DAC and headamp.
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
    doctor fuse likes this.
  17. rcsrich

    rcsrich Forum Resident

    Likewise... :)
    mmars982 likes this.
  18. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    Which speakers?
  19. Ntotrar

    Ntotrar Nope

    Tri-Cities, Tn.
    Beyerdynamic DT 880 and A20.
  20. Mortsnets

    Mortsnets Forum Resident

    AQ Nighthawk Carbon
    Massdrop Senn HD58x
    Oppo PM3
  21. Mortsnets

    Mortsnets Forum Resident

    Pancat, what benefits do you hear in going balanced? Where did you get the custom cables? What amp do you use?
  22. Migas

    Migas Well-Known Member

    Meze 99 Classics
    harlemvalley likes this.
  23. I have about five pairs of headphones but I seem to always use my Grado SR-80 headphones.
    Robsonschoice and mikeyt like this.
  24. doctor fuse

    doctor fuse Forum Resident

    Custom made, from a now defunct company called Alternate Audio. The man who made them added ribbon tweeters and made a sweet birch frame. They look and sound excellent.
    StimpyWan likes this.
  25. DiggyGun

    DiggyGun Well-Known Member

    Focal Elear with a CustomCans cable

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