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Thread: Audiophile Equipment

  1. #1
    Darth Small Macheath's Avatar
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    Audiophile Equipment

    Anybody have headphones they're proud of?

    I've been using a mediocre pair of Beats Pro headphones at home... they hurt my head, but they sound okay, and while they should probably have been $400, they may have fallen off the back of a truck because I got them for $100. I'm embarrassed to use them in public, though. They're Beats.

    Was just digging around in my desk drawers and found a pair of Sennheiser HD500 phones that... don't work quite right anymore. Which is probably why they're in my drawer. Also shitty and broken are the absolutely terrible pair of Labtec Elite 835 phones that I probably got from the IT guy when I asked for headphones when my Sennheisers half-died. In other words, my cube situation is not great.

    Anyway, a coworker has a pair of Mad Dog headphones from Mr. Speakers, along with a Magni amplifier from Schiit. Pretty expensive for wearing at work, but I just listened to a few seconds of the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack and was completely blown away. I don't wanna be a follower or anything, but damn, it's a nice setup.

    I need to decide on a budget... Magni amp ($99) + Modi DAC ($99) + Mad Dog ($299) = a lot of goddamn money. If I'm not going to be a snooty audiophile, I'm sure I could get something good in the $150 "entry level" range from Sennheiser, Beyerdynamic, or Audio Technica. Just need to read some reviews. The question is whether those headphones will be "good enough" without an amp.

  2. #2
    Darth Small Macheath's Avatar
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    Here's a pretty cool headphone buying guide that I found linked on the /r/headphones sidebar. I'm probably looking for something in the "mid-range" category, and probably an "open" style that I could use at home... and then bring my Beats to work. Where I will be mocked, and I will deserve it.

    There's also this amplifier/DAC combo from Monoprice that I should consider if I'm gonna go fancy, since it'd save me a hundred bucks.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macheath View Post
    There's also this amplifier/DAC combo from Monoprice that I should consider if I'm gonna go fancy, since it'd save me a hundred bucks.
    Reviews make it sound like this thing is phenomenal for its price, though they do suggest that its LED is fiercely bright.

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    Good on you for having an appropriate amount of shame for your beats. They're literally the monster cables of headphones. My kit is a little bit different than what you're probably going for. I have a pair of Sennheiser HD8 DJ headphones that I like very much. I use them for DJing and to simply jam out. I don't have a DAC/amp setup and I can definitely tell the difference between putting them through my iShit vs when I'm listening to a record or DVS through my Z2.

    If you're looking to get into amplified setups, I'd recommend checking out Massdrop. They cater to the audiophile set and seem to push a decent amount of product. I'm not sure what modifications are made to those Mad Dog headphones, but I'd reckon they'd need some extra power to get moving.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raid View Post
    Good on you for having an appropriate amount of shame for your beats. They're literally the monster cables of headphones.
    Oh, believe me, I know. I would never have bought them if it wasn't a $400 pair of headphones for $100. If I'm doing the math right, that's actually the correct price to pay for Beats Pro!

    Quote Originally Posted by Raid View Post
    I don't have a DAC/amp setup and I can definitely tell the difference between putting them through my iShit vs when I'm listening to a record or DVS through my Z2.
    I'd be interested to know if the Monoprice unit makes a noticeable difference. You should spend $98 on it so I can find out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raid View Post
    If you're looking to get into amplified setups, I'd recommend checking out Massdrop.
    I just joined Massdrop a week ago or so. I bought an Orion leather belt. I'll have to search for audio stuff.

  6. #6
    Darth Small Macheath's Avatar
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    My audiophile coworker just brought in a pair of Audio-Technica ATH-M50 ($95) headphones for me to try, and I liked them; really good build quality for a relatively cheap set, and a nice flat sound without too much of the ear-piercing booms and whistles people like out of their Beats (cough). Plenty of A-T headphones in the "buying guide" I linked above, though not this specific pair.

    These are pretty open though, and really, for all of my use cases (listening to stuff at work, recording myself while talking on Skype, sitting on a plane) I should probably stick to something closed. If I wanted a similar set of Audio-Technica headphones that cost a little more and provide better isolation, the ATH-Pro700MK2 ($165) is recommended in the guide, but the phrases "strong clamp" and "mostly for bassheads" worry me.

  7. #7
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    The current deal on Massdrop for the "SoundMAGIC HP200" is enticing; it goes for $200 on Amazon, and it's starting at $170 on Massdrop with the potential to drop all the way to $150.

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    Wow, me and my $10 menards special headphones (on sale) need to stay away from this thread.
    http://www.menards.com/main/electric...83-c-13534.htm

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    It's a little out of your range, but have you considered this MMX300? As far as recording yourself, have you ever tried using headphones as a mic? One of the DJs I'm acquainted with was beatboxing with his headphones after the party got shut down last weekend. It was silly.

  10. #10
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    As of late, this is a widely used track for testing audio equipment.


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