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Headphones, $100-$200 - Suggestions?


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29 replies to this topic

#1 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 18 2007 - 03:51 AM

Mod/Admins : I looked all over for the best place to put this, I'm sorry if it doesn't belong here....feel free to move it...there isn't a headphone forum, so speakers were the next closest!




Anyways, I'm looking to get a nice set of "cover your whole ear" headphones for between 100 and up to 200 dollars (if they're REALLY nice and I can justify it). I've listened to those Bose headphones that go for about $150 (not sure of the model number), but I know how everyone feels about Bose around here, so I figured there had to be some better options. I like my music loud, but want them to last a long time. Also, hoping to have little to no music "leakage" to outside people...

Any suggestions for me?
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#2 of 30 OFFLINE   ThomasC

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Posted January 18 2007 - 04:04 AM

I have the Sennheiser HD280 headphones, and I love them. I'm not sure about leakage, since I usually use them in an isolated room or a loud environment. However, some online reviews say that there is no or little leakage. I've had them for more than two years, and there are a couple cracks in the headband, but it's nothing serious. There have been reports of build quality issues after a couple years of use, but it doesn't seem to be nearly as bad as the Bose headphones. The cracks probably developed because I put them in my bookbag while traveling and it got tossed around. If you take good care of them, you shouldn't encounter any problems. Amazon has them for $86.94.

http://www.amazon.co..../dp/B000065BPB

#3 of 30 OFFLINE   aht3

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Posted January 18 2007 - 04:14 AM

I got a pair of Koss MV1 headphones off Amazon. I really like them and use them when I play video games and listen to music late at night. The come ina case and have great clarity IMO. My wife said that they sound like she wishes our HT didPosted Image

I got them for $117-$120 I think.

http://www.amazon.co....280781-3863800

Hope this helps.
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#4 of 30 OFFLINE   Paul_Dunlop

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Posted January 18 2007 - 04:22 AM

Another vote for Sennheiser

Very comfortable and they sound great
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#5 of 30 OFFLINE   MakubeX

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Posted January 18 2007 - 04:31 AM

Since your main purpose is music, I'd say go with the SENNHEISER HD-595 for $179.99 at JR.com

#6 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 18 2007 - 04:37 AM

Thanks a lot for the suggestions .. I wish I was able to "test drive" these, so to speak. I guess thats one of the main reasons I was leaning towards the Bose, they're available in every Apple store, so I always try them on...

I'll look into these...thanks so much!
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#7 of 30 OFFLINE   GabrielC

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Posted January 18 2007 - 07:49 AM

I bought a pair of the Audio-Technica ATH-A900 headphones a little while back and have been very happy with them. They've brought out the detail in everything I've listened to with (to my ears) a wide and clear soundstage.

They've been compared with the Sennheiser HD-600 here: http://www.head-fi.o....threadid=22964
The A900s are closed headphones, unlike the HD-600's open design.

The place I bought them from is here ($169 until the end of Jan): http://www.audiocube....eadphones.html

#8 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 18 2007 - 08:09 AM

Thomas - Do they sound like $200 dollar headphones? MSRP is like 120 more than that price, is the MSRP just extremely exaggerated, or is that a great deal on a great set of headphones?

I was prepared to spend up to 200, but if I can get a really high class set of HP for only 85 bux or so, sign me up!


These other choices intrigue me as well .. Who knew this wasn't as easy as I thought it would be...
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#9 of 30 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted January 18 2007 - 09:35 AM

I second Gabriel's recommendation of the Audio Technica ATH-A900s. A few years back a friend and I each bought a pair and were extremely impressed with the sound quality. It changed our standards about good sound - after hearing them suddenly all the other speakers in the house sounded like crap. We each paid about 300 canadian dollars for them, so it's looking like a real bargain for $169 US now. These are Japanese headphones that are sold only in Japan. Audio Cubes (the company Gabriel linked to) imports them. My headphones were shipped directly from Japan to me. You can get some info about them here:

http://www.audio-tec...audiophile.html

Sennheiser might make some good stuff, but they also produce lots of mass market crap too. Be careful. I'd rather buy from a company that has an overall high reputation. Plus, having cool headphones that none of your friends have is...cool. :-)

Lastly, what are you using the headphones for? These Audio Technica headphones are light (aluminum) but BIG. They dominate your head and wouldn't look too cool if you want something portable. And if you're plugging them into an iPod or other portable music player you might also want something else, since these headphones are very high quality and may make a low quality source (such as any portable player) sound crappy. Garbage in, garbage out. :-) I use my own headphones for my computer, but instead of plugging them right into the back of the computer instead I run the computer's audio through a receiver and then to the headphones. An amplifier will always give you cleaner sound (not noticable on crappy headphones, but very noticable on good ones).

A good forum for headphone info is "Headfi". They can help you the best:

http://www.head-fi.o...display.php?f=2


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#10 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 18 2007 - 09:49 AM

Jonny K, thanks for the links. My iPod and portable use is generally done with cheap Sony headphones, but I suppose on longer trips I'd bring these.

These are more for dorm room use, my computer, and my video games when my roommate is sleeping (or doesn't like my music selection!)

I'm glad those are light though... I'll def look into them!
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#11 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike Frezon

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Posted January 18 2007 - 11:49 AM

Mike:

Maybe this will be of some help. jr.com has just started a headphone sale!

Some of the headphones mentioned in this thread are featured...including models by Sennheiser, Koss and Bose!

There's Jessie the yodeling cowgirl. Bullseye, he's Woody's horse. Pete the old prospector. And, Woody, the man himself.Of course, it's time for Woody's RoundUp. He's the very best! He's the rootinest, tootinest cowboy in the wild, wild west!


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#12 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 18 2007 - 12:21 PM

Thank you very much Mike!
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#13 of 30 OFFLINE   frogpond

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Posted January 19 2007 - 12:08 AM

Actually Audio Technica is a half way decent pro brand. Thier ATH-440 are decent as well as Sennheiser HD 280. Two other brands to mention are Ultrasone HFI series (can get a little pricey) or if you really have money to burn on headphones, Grado Labs. Of course the other brands get up thier in price as well just not as high as GL.

#14 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 19 2007 - 03:26 AM

Alright well I'm about 99% sold on the AT A900's. It seems without an Amp they are going to give me the best sound, and they look really cool.

Couple questions. I read a lot of online reviews that said the low - end of sound is really great. Is this true? I listen to a bunch of hard rock and rap, so I want some thump to my low end.
I won't be running an amp, just my iPod and my PC's sound card (Some Audigy thingy), but I like my music loud. I assume they can handle this?
For travel use, are they delicate? Can I put them in my backpack and expect them to be alright bumping around a little?

Finally, a little silly maybe, but I have a set of diamond stud earrings that I wear all the time. Since these are my first pair of closed ear headphones, can I expect a problem from this? I only ask because I don't want to be wearing them and notice some fabric tearing or puncture marks....


Thank you guys SO much for everything you've offered up. Hopefully I can get some quick answers and order my set tonight!
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#15 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 20 2007 - 06:44 AM

Alright well after doing some more research into the matter it seems like these are my perfect set of headphones.

I'm putting through the order right now, and hopefully I'll recieve them sometime next week.

Once again, thanks to EVERYONE who posted!
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#16 of 30 OFFLINE   GabrielC

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Posted January 22 2007 - 06:19 AM

Sorry for the late reply, about your questions (although you've purchased already)... They can withstand a bit of bumping around, I could probably see them getting scratched up depending on what you bump them around with b/c of the aluminum design. But they won't fall apart easily or anything =) You may want to watch out to make sure you don't have anything in your bag that could puncture the mesh on the speaker side of the headset. You'll be glad they're made so light when you wear them though, they're easy to wear for longer periods.

About the studs...well...sorry, I can't really help you there, you'll know when you get them, depends on your ear size and fit around your ear I suppose...

They've also done very well for me without external amplification when in use with small MP3 players. I do like them when run on my receiver though =)

Have fun with your purchase and let us know how they do for you!

#17 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 22 2007 - 07:22 AM

Gabriel -

Thanks a ton for answering. Yeah, I ordered already, but I appreciate the responses. They'd generally be in my backpack with maybe my laptop and some notebooks, or a newspaper. Nothing like scissors or pens, etc. Thanks for the warning though.

In terms of the diamonds - well, I guess like you said, I'll figure it out. If I start to see wear, I'll figure something out.


Glad they work well without amps. Posted Image

It says it'll take 1-2 days to process, then 4-7 days once shipped, so I'm praying end of this week, but thinking more likely next Monday.

I'll let everyone know how it goes!
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#18 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike Frezon

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Posted January 22 2007 - 07:45 AM

Ever the smart shopper, I'm curious.

Mike: what kind of price did you find and where did you end up ordering them from?

There's Jessie the yodeling cowgirl. Bullseye, he's Woody's horse. Pete the old prospector. And, Woody, the man himself.Of course, it's time for Woody's RoundUp. He's the very best! He's the rootinest, tootinest cowboy in the wild, wild west!


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#19 of 30 OFFLINE   Mike~Sileck

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Posted January 22 2007 - 04:07 PM

As per the links here, I did the Audio Cubes deal. 169 + 12 dollars shipping to the US = 181$ total...
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#20 of 30 OFFLINE   mazersteven

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Posted January 23 2007 - 02:43 AM

No one even ask him with what source (I-Pod, DVD player, Receiver) will he be using these headphones with. How can anyone make a suggestion without knowing.

Ask your question over at headfi.com