Hello, I'm looking to purchase a set of headphones for my nephew. The primary use for these headphones will be for music listening (he's a big Hendrix fan) from an I-Pod or computer. Full Sized headphones are preferred. I've seen on-line recommendation for Sony MDR-7506, Sennheiser HD 280 Pro, M-Audio Q40. Headphone.com seems to really like the Superlux HD668B for $49.95. Your thoughts and recommendations would be grealy appreciated.
I'm less familiar with the others. THe Superlux look very promising for the price, but I'm working on no more information than you are.
Models in the price range from Audio-Technica and Shure have their fans around these parts, maybe they'll chime in.
EDITED TO ADD: Oh, I didn't even realize I was talkin' to Mr. "Workin' on 6000 posts" Mazersteven. I automatically assumed anyone popping in to ask about something for their nephew is a newbie. Had that "newbie" smell, I thought.
I probably didn't say anything you didn't already know.
Last edited by zhimbo; 03-12-2012 at 10:17 PM.
Great to see you posting again!
I don't have any full-size headphone recommendations, but I wanted to mention something that I've noticed in the past three pairs of earbuds that I got. The more efficient the headphone, the more noticeable the amp noise is. My iPod Nano sounds pretty good, but my computers (MB Air, HP desktop) have a pretty loud noise floor. Using Apple iPod earbuds, I can't hear it at all. Using higher-end earbuds, it's very noticeable and annoying. Something to think about, as you mentioned that he'll be mostly using an iPod and computer.
Mains and Surrounds: NHT 1.5s, Center: NHT AudioCenter-1, Subs: SVS PC13-Ultra, SB13-Ultra, Receiver: Pioneer Elite VSX-23, Amps: Emotiva RPA-1, POS-1, Display: Panasonic TC-P50G10
Most of the usual suspects for full-sized cans in this price range have already been mentioned. I'd be partial to the Sennheisers or the Sonys out of that list.
If your nephew is open to the idea of in-ear monitors though, it's tough to beat the Shure SE215 in the $100 price range.
I'm just thinking along the lines of portability and listening in public. The IEMs offer a bit better isolation. They're easier to carry around and less conspicuous. You can easily get replacement cables and/or cables with a control button and volume controls in line (with a mic too if using an iPhone). The SE215 also have strong bass performance. The low end on the SE215 is tipped up a bit, but it sounds pretty great for music on the go. Bass is often a bit lacking with cans in this price range.
So yeah, for under $150 and for iPod and computer use, I'd go for the Shure SE215 IEMs myself
I'd like to mention my recent purchase thou - B&H has Fostex T50RP on sale now. These were sold originally for $199, now b&h has them for $74
I own T20rp and I love the sound and fit, I hope my new t50rp will be even better - unfortunately I'm not sure they would work with ipod/phone without amp
I'd like to toss out a recommendation for Grado's headphones. The Grado SR 125i would technically be in your budget, but the SR 80i would probably still be a great set for $100 or so. I've personally owned the 225 for about 5 years now and love them. Only things to note about them are that they aren't terribly comfortable and they are not sealed, so they are basically mini speakers strapped to your head. Sometimes that's actually nice though because with long gaming sessions I set them on my desk and can still hear everything fine.
HT: Panasonic TC-P55VT50 |Yamaha RX-A800 | EMPTek E55Ti L/R & E56Ci Center | Infinity P153BK RL/RR | Rhythmik D15SE | Thorens TD-166 Mk II w/Shure M97XE | Grado SR-125 | PS3 | X360 | Wii | PS2 | Xbox | Gamecube | Dreamcast | PS | N64 | Saturn | 3DO | Neo-Geo CD | Jaguar | SNES | Genesis | NES/Messiah NES
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Server: SuperFlower SF-201T3-BK | C2D E8400 | Intel S3210SHLC | 2GB DDR2 | 1x 320GB + 15x 2TB
Yeah, I've been enjoying my Shure SE530 for many years now. It might seem ridiculous to pay $400 for earphones! But I've honestly got zero regrets. The SE530 are fantastic and about as good as you can get without custom ear mold models.
For a MUCH more reasonable price though, I'm really impressed by the SE215. The old SE210 earphones didn't sound as impressive. Technically, they were a bit more linear. But since the bass started rolling off up around 50Hz with the SE210, they just didn't sound all that impressive.
The new SE215 have a bit of a bass boost built in, but it honestly sounds great - especially for portable applications. What I really like though are the wires. They're nice and thick, so you don't get any microphonics - aka "cable thump". Microphonics are a problem with a lot of in-ear monitors like Etymotics or Klipsch, which are great otherwise, but suffer from that "cable thump" annoyance.
Honestly, it's my dream to win the lottery and just buy hundreds of pairs of SE215. I'd walk around the city and whenever I'd see some poor, misguided soul listening to the god-awful white iPod earbuds (usually bothering everyone around them since they leak sound like crazy too!), I'd walk up to them, cut the wire to their earbuds with a pair of scissors and then hand them a brand new pair of SE215 and walk away without a word
For mobile use I'd recommend iems. I used a pair of etymotics on a flight this spring and they have great isolation.
Since the OP had said "Full sized headphones preferred" The SRH is Shure's full sized series. They have gotten some good press, but I've never heard them myself. Maybe someone who has can chime in.
The Audio-Technica ATH-M50 has been raved about as well, I think this goes on sale at the top of your price range.
Harman Audio had some good prices on AKGs. If you like the akg sound you can look and see what they have. I got the k601's and like them but they were more than you're looking to spend.
I have a pair of Grado SR-60s and like them, but they are uncomfortable after a while. I've heard you can use the 'l-cush'? pads and they are far more comfortable but I haven't tried them.