The Headphone Thread! Share Your Gear and Impressions, Etc.

Discussion in 'Headphones and Earphones' started by afterlife2, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. slipperybidness Audioholic Spartan

    slipperybidness
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    Yup, similar with my Philharmonics and my Rythmik sub.

    At first, I thought the bass in each sounded a bit thin. Then I came to realize that I had been used to bass bloat and distortion from crappy subs. More likely that my ear became more refined vs. the speakers breaking in.

    Now, that Rythmik--The first time I was playing COD BLOPS2 and got hit with an EMP--Dang, for a split second I thought a truck had hit the side of my house! The neighbor probably thought the same thing :)
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  2. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

    2channel lover
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    If you mean true cans...yes...that is a part of what you pay for. In addition to sound quality, comfort.

    I can wear my Hifiman cans for an entire CD or a 30 song playlist w/o having to take them off.
    Last edited: May 18, 2017
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  3. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

    2channel lover
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    That's another one of those questions where the answer might be subjective in nature. I'm a couple of weeks away from placing my order for pr of Salks and a center channel to put a cap on this rebuild. In the interim I've spoken with Jim Salk a couple of times and he did mention a "break in" period before really cranking them up. I really didn't probe into this area much, but the RBH sales rep I spoke to just a few week ago mentioned break in period as well.

    What it really means in terms of sonic quality, I'm not sure.
  4. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

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    Aside from better midrange/highs...there is a huge improvement in comfort with brands like Sennhisers, Opps, Hifiman over something like Beats imo.
  5. Pogre Audioholic Ninja

    Pogre
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    Gotcha. I'm just getting started with my consideration for a set of cans. Any suggestions where to go to audition a few you mentioned?
  6. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

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    I suppose it would be the same where you are if you are in a larger metropolis.

    BB Magnolia is not a bad place to start. I've found that not all of them carry the same things, but most of them will have the B&Ws on the high end and some might even have the Oppos. The regular part of the store should have Beats, Sol, etc. just to be able to discern the difference.

    Sennhisers and probably Oppo as well from my experience here in the ATL area will be in the boutique type hifi dealers...those retailers are not around like they used to be, but that's where I found them...a website search might reveal the dealers near you. Grado and Hifiman for sure are direct sales. I heard my Hifiman from a friend actually.

    One question you're going to want answered early on...do you want open back or closed back designs? Oppo/B&W are good closed back designs, I think Senns have both types...Hifiman are open back....pretty much what you are thinking...open backs allow more sound to bleed thru to your surrounding.
  7. Pogre Audioholic Ninja

    Pogre
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    ...and closed back can get uncomfortable over time, right? I'm thinking probably closed back, but I'm also thinking allowing for a little breathing might be a good thing.

    I do have a Best Buy Magnolia room that's in reasonable driving distance. I'll find an excuse to be on that side of town in the next couple of days.
  8. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

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    The earcups on a good pair of closed backs will be fine, but the breath ability factor obviously won't be the same.

    I think the open, broader soundstage of open backs won me over more so than the comfort factor initially. I've really come to appreciate the comfort factor now that I've had them for a while.

    hifiman he400i.JPG

    These are mine...a notch or two above entry level in the hifiman line. Fairly sensitive so you can get reasonable performance with a computer or ipod, but you get the full potential out of them with a headphone amp/dac imo.
  9. Pogre Audioholic Ninja

    Pogre
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    They look very nice. Comfortable. I'll get out in the next day or 2 and report back my findings/brands I got a chance to listen to. Oh, I wear glasses. Does that normally pose a problem with wearing ear cups?
  10. killdozzer Senior Audioholic

    killdozzer
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    Personally, I've never experienced the break-in phenomena with audio equipment. I did notice that I like my speakers more and more as the time goes by, but I haven't noticed the change.

    I did noticed a lot of changes; few inches further from the wall and the boomines dramatically drops and I get deeper bass, the sound changed when I changed the amp (I'm not claiming this has to do with the actual amp section, both were intgr. so it might as well have been because of the pre-amp section), different rips - different sound obviously, even when I connect the source to a different port on the amp, but this still has to do with the pre-amp section as one port completely by passes it and the other doesn't.

    So I can detect nuances, but I've honestly never detected the change from break-in.
  11. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

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    I don't wear glasses so I can't say for sure. There is some pressure from clamps, enough to where the cans are not going to move around much. It's offset by the softness and padding of the ear cups. So they don't feel like they are squeezing your head, but it could be enough pressure to pose a problem.

    I'll put them on with my sunglasses this evening and let you know.
  12. slipperybidness Audioholic Spartan

    slipperybidness
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    To be very honest here, you really MUST prioritize COMFORT first for headphones. If they are not comfortable to wear for you, then ALL other factors like cost and sound quality go right out the window!

    What's the point of having the most amazing headphones in the world, if you can only stand to wear them for 20 minutes?

    And, as you know, the most comfortable headphones for ME may be incredibly awkward or uncomfortable on YOU.

    So, find ones that are comfortable and within your budget, then start looking at sound quality, style, and build quality.

    Open back vs close back: I have only heard 1 pair of open backs, my Senn 598. Open backs are an odd listening experience for the first time user! It really seems to sound more like listening to speakers than headphones (assuming that you have only heard closed-back in the past). On the other hand, closed back seems like the "music is in your head". I own both, use both, like both. It's hard for me to say which I really prefer, they are just different. Closed back has a head start for better bass performance, but my ears tend to sweat a bit more while wearing the closed designs. I probably lean a little more towards preferring the closed backs, but I do really like the audio experience for open backs.

    I also own a set of the RBH BT ear buds. I'm not really a huge fan of ear buds, but these are good. If I am being very active, they work better for me vs traditional headphones. And, I love that I can just shove them in my pocket. But, the main reason that I bought these is because our city has a hands-free phone ordnance for driving, and my car is too old for built in BT. It's a $500 fine here for driving with your phone in your hand!
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  13. 2channel lover Senior Audioholic

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    Several good points there Slippery.

    You are so right on the sound of open backs...they do mimic speakers in your home system more than closed back. Within the same pricepoint, imo the bass in closed backs is a little more pronounced.

    Comfort...agree 100%. When you get into the midfi/ hifi category with headphones, most of them are going to sound pretty good, what will set one apart from another should be comfort. From my experience demoing maybe 12-15 cans before I bought mine, I think you're going to know within 5 mins or so if the cans are going to work for you. If you feel like you're "tolerating" them after a song or 2, they're probably not for you. One the flip side, if you've listened to 3 or 4 songs and don't even think about taking them off, comfort wise, you might have found the right pair.

    That said, for me the sweat factor is a component of comfort. Even the nicest closed back pair that I demoed, after a few songs I had to take them off for my ears to breathe a bit.
  14. slipperybidness Audioholic Spartan

    slipperybidness
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  15. rojo Audioholic Samurai

    rojo
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    I got a pair of thinksound ts02+ with mic from Massdrop.

    [​IMG]

    They sound pretty decent -- not audiophile snob clear, but still passable. They're worth about what I paid for them ($43 shipped), but I'd probably be disappointed if I paid the Amazon price for them. I'm listening to them now. They're mid-bass heavy and thick sounding. With strong bass content, the midrange can suffer and sound choppy, a common problem among all single-driver earphones that I've heard. They're super sensitive with 16Ω impedance. 35% volume on my phone is plenty loud. Sound isolation is surprisingly effective, cutting the outside noise by at least 30dB for me, maybe more. The stock installed tips were a perfect fit for me, and I hadn't realized I'd ever find any silicone tips that could make a proper seal in my ears. These things are comfy. Different tips might make them a little less midbass-biased, and a few extra sizes of tips are included. But I'm reluctant to change the tips due to the comfort of the factory-installed ones. Best use for these I think will be listening to audio books while mowing the lawn.

    FWIW, I've seen several owners complain that their buds came apart after some use. However, the top Amazon review of them explains that thinksound has added threading at the shell union to address the problem. They seem pretty solid to me, but I've only had them out of the box for about an hour now. I suspect the wood casing might expand and contract with temperature and humidity changes, which might partially explain the disintegration. If these fall apart, well, at least they weren't a pair of $150+ RBH earbuds.
    rojo,
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  16. afterlife2 Audioholic Spartan

    afterlife2
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    Discomfort happens when new to earphones. Took me a while to adjust then the comfort is much better. I never like to stick anything in my ears either but you get used to them. If you wanna try earbuds they more comfy try the Awei ES10 or E11 on eBay. I just got the Awei ES10 and I like them with good mids and highs. Bass is good as well. On eBay of course.
  17. afterlife2 Audioholic Spartan

    afterlife2
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    Man you should do more pro write-ups. Excellent overview. I'm thinking with time they will open up to your liking.
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  18. Pogre Audioholic Ninja

    Pogre
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    I'm still having issues maintaining a good seal. Mainly my left ear. It keeps popping out. I have to really jam it in there to get a seal, but it creates too much negative pressure inside my ear and is not only uncomfortable, I can't hear anything on that side when I do that.

    I can get it to where it sounds awesome, but I have to either keep a little pressure on the left one or not move at all. They came with 3 different size earbuds. The large seem to work best.

    I'm still waiting on the Awei ES10 - Q7i I ordered a couple weeks ago. I'll take a look at the ones you just suggested too. It's kind of fun trying out different buds when they sound so good. Especially at just a few bucks a pop.
  19. afterlife2 Audioholic Spartan

    afterlife2
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    I think you ordered the Awei q7i earphones only. The tips are much more comfy and they are interchangeable. The ones I just mentioned are the Awei ES10 & 11 are earbuds. The pricing is definitely fantastic.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
  20. Pogre Audioholic Ninja

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    These are the ones I have now and these are the ones I'm still waiting on. I like how they sound. The bass was the real surprise to me. I swear I can almost "feel" it.

    *Everyone was out of black for some reason...

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