Headphone recommendations please

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jonathan Lofgren, Jun 10, 2002.

  1. Jonathan Lofgren

    Jonathan Lofgren Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2001
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am considering the purchase of some headphones in the near future. I am looking for something that I can enjoy for several years, but that I don't need a headphone amp for. For now they will be used with the headphone output on a receiver, a computer, and with a portable cd player. I am thinking about Sennheiser HD 580s. Is this over kill? Is there anything else that's better for the same price? Cheaper and the same performance? All help is greatly appreciated. Thanks
     
  2. Todd Schnell

    Todd Schnell Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 21, 2001
    Messages:
    255
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jonathan, I do believe you would need an amp to drive those
    HD 580s with your PC & portable.
    I recommend you check out the Grado SR60 for about $70.
    Many consider these the best headphones for portable use without an amp.
    Excellent bang for the buck phones.

    Todd
     
  3. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2000
    Messages:
    1,165
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have the Sennheiser HD580's and use them with my Denon 5803 without an amp. I do have a Grado RA-1 amp but, don't use it (don't need it). You may find you'd need an amp with the portable with the 580's. I think the Grado's mentioned will be easier to drive but, i find Grado phones TOO bright and hurt my ears. The 580's go easy on my ears.. Good luck deciding. [​IMG]
     
  4. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Messages:
    2,050
    Likes Received:
    0
    How about Sony MDR-V6?

    hififorless.com via eBay has them for $62. I love mine after 6 years, and would buy them again.
     
  5. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2002
    Messages:
    1,865
    Likes Received:
    0
    On my PC, and portable CD players I use Sennheiser EH-2200. They can get loud without one of those pocket amps and sound clear enough for studio use.

    I got mine for $40 from Guitar Center which was a steal because I've seen them retail for $130.

    The Sennhesier HD 580 would be overkill for a portable amp or computer. The source for those components are usually too bad to invest so much in headphones. If you will be using those a lot with a receiver then I can see getting a higher model.
     
  6. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2000
    Messages:
    1,165
    Likes Received:
    0
    I got my 580's for $140.00. I didn't think that was extremely expensive.. They may be overkill for you, i dunno..
     
  7. Matthew_Judd

    Matthew_Judd Extra

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2001
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'll also vote for the Grado Labs SR60. I have used a pair for about 3 years now and have been pleased with the sound.
     
  8. Mike Matheson

    Mike Matheson Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2000
    Messages:
    416
    Likes Received:
    0
    While not exactly the standard idea of headhpones, lots of folks like the Etymotics. You can find them at www.headphones.com.
    There's a nice comparison of the models here.
     
  9. Shiva Singh

    Shiva Singh Extra

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2001
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    As someone who has both Grado SR-60's and Sennheisser HD-580's, I use the 580's all the time. I rarely use the SR-60's, they are uncomfortable and are not in the same class as the 580's.

    Portable cd players and mp3 players can drive them to very loud levels with ease. I originally listened to the advise that they need an amp and bought one (actually a portable one and a home amp). I almost never use the headphone amps, and never go past 1/4 volume on either amp.

    The 580's can be had for under $200, the 600's for around $200. You should also look into the etymotic research er4 "in ear" phones. They cost $270, but are regarded as a great headphone as well.
     
  10. RajeeK

    RajeeK Second Unit

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 1999
    Messages:
    394
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had grado's before also....but they were sooooo damn uncomfortable on my ears they actually really hurt after about 10-15 minutes of wearing them. I eventually got Sennheiser 600's, sound wonderful and very comfortable to wear.
     
  11. Ken Leggatt

    Ken Leggatt Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2001
    Messages:
    94
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have the Sennheiser 590's and I like them a lot. My portable CD and Minidisc have no problem powering the phones. I highly recommend them.
     
  12. Matt Gordon

    Matt Gordon Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2001
    Messages:
    534
    Likes Received:
    1
    I've had multiple Sennheiser headphones over the years and have always been happy. I have found that under daily use, the build quality of Sony headphones leaves a lot to be desired (like any sort of QUALITY!). Never used Grado's, but I can give Sennheisers five stars: [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  13. Ed E Lee

    Ed E Lee Agent

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2001
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    0
    I own an Alessandro MS-1 which is a modified Grado, and it suits my needs.
    Check out head-fi.org and do a search on their forums for all sorts of ideas.
     
  14. Jonathan Lofgren

    Jonathan Lofgren Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2001
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you all for all of your replies. I appreciate them. I had considered the Grados, but I have a rather large head and rather big ears and I concluded that the Grados might not be that comfortable. I am intrigued by the Etymotic er6. Has anyone compared these to the Sennheisers? I also hadn't fully understood the open design of the Sennheisers and am wondering how loud they might be if someone else is in the room with me while I am using them. Once again, thank you for all of your replies.
     
  15. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2001
    Messages:
    8,390
    Likes Received:
    0
    umm...sorry for this really stupid question.
    what do you mean by using headphones with (or without) an amp?
    don't all headphones need to be attached to an amp - or at least some sort of amplification device? or are you talking about headphones like the staxx (sp?) which attach to that external box thing-a-ma-jig?
    i'm sure i'm missing something silly....
    [​IMG]
     
  16. jeff peterson

    jeff peterson Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 1998
    Messages:
    675
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have the Grado SR-80s and love the sound. 10 days ago, they developed a short in the cord; probably because I throw them in my backpack for daily use at work. I emailed Grado to ask them for instructions on how to take apart the driver case to replace the cord. I figured I'd do it myself since I'm handy with a soldering iron and these are at least 5 years old so I thought any warranty they had was long expired.

    Grado replied, just mail them to us and we'll take care of it for you. Last Monday night, I put them in the mail to Brooklyn. Yesterday (Tuesday) they were back! Only a week's turnaround! They didn't ask for my original receipt for warranty purposes or even how long I had them. The invoice on the box just said, headphone repair, N/C.

    Now, not only was the cord replaced, I think they replaced the drivers as well. The driver openings have thin, white cloth covers that had yellowed on my pair but on the returned headphones, they were white again!

    What customer service! On a par with those 2 wackos from SVS.

    YMMV
     
  17. Jason P. Brett

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2001
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have the Grado SR125's. These are GREAT headphones, a little bit more than the 60's or 80's (I paid $115) but also a little better. Make sure you try before you buy, though. Several of the others here have had comfort issues, although I find them very comfortable myself. Good luck!
     
  18. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Messages:
    2,050
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ted -

    In some cases with certain headphones, you can max the volume control on portables and not get the level you need, or you want to use a component's RCA outs into a dedicated HP amp.

    They are just gain controls / boosters, but are very cool too.

    That's how I see it, I never have owned one, but I'd like to build one some day.
     
  19. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2001
    Messages:
    8,390
    Likes Received:
    0
    ahh...i see what you're getting at. thanks for the clarification colin! [​IMG]
     
  20. Todd Schnell

    Todd Schnell Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 21, 2001
    Messages:
    255
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jonathan,
    Just another note on the Grado SR 60s.
    You should try these for yourself.
    I've used these for years & don't find them uncomfortable.
    I usually fall asleep with these on at night.
    The newer ear pads are also softer than the originals.
    I also don't find these bright in the least.
    I would describe them as full & warm.
    Again try for yourself.
    For the price I have not heard a headphone (without amp) I like better with portable/personal devices.
    I also picked up the Etymotic ER6s a few months ago. I wanted the 4s but the cost on these put me off.
    A headphone amp is not a must with these.
    I've had a bit of mixed results with the ER6 phones at first.
    I tried these with an Archos mp3 Jukebox Recorder originally.
    I noticed on material that was mixed with a bit of treble edge they sounded quite bright, even brittle.
    However part of this I attributed to the Archos (which btw I returned).
    Now listening to the ER6s with a Slim X cd/mp3 player & they sound very nice.
    The Slim X player is super awesome btw!
    Also the ER6 plugged into the computer sounds quite nice as well.
    Very detailed, perhaps slightly bright, & less bass than the Grados.
    The Grados have a big full sound, but the ER6s are more detailed imo.
    The big thing with the Etymotic is they really block out outsider noise very well.
    I've used these on a flight recently & they work wonderfully!
    While I am not blown away by the sound of the ER6 phones I am quite happy with them.
    A couple of thing to note:
    You have to really place them in the ears well.
    This is critical for bass especially.
    They can be a bit physically uncomfortable to your ears with extended listening.
    I've heard some people just can't get used to these.
    To give you an idea, if you have ever tried the rubber (or perhaps its silicon) type hearing protection that you insert in your ears, that is how these feel.
    The cord is pretty short.
    Good luck & try if you can.
    Take a look around www.headphone.com
    Todd
     

Share This Page