Yesterday I received my (custom) Beyerdynamics Manufaktur 880 DT 32 ohms. This are the customizations I ordered:
1. carbon "end piece", housing and mounting
2. leather ear-pad and headband
3. a personalized inscription
Final price including shipping (2 days UPS) - 490$.
Now - in a few words I should say I choose 32 ohms because of VERY close measurements between the 32, 250 and 600 ohms.
Those interested in exact measurements should look at these graphs:
I know the general idea is (that) lower the impedance the heavier the voice coil but on the other hand it is also true that lower impedance the easier to drive. One should also keep in mind the drivers might be slightly different (they are in this case) so in the end - look at the graphs/measurements - I see no reason to choose 600 ohms instead of 32 ohms for the Beyer DT 880. Plus - I'd rather not spend on a dedicated portable headphone amplifier/DAC if I can get by with a simple iPod classic (latest).
How do they sound?
A few years ago I used to own Sennheiser 280 HD Pro. For 2 years I have owned a pair of 125i Grado headphones. To this day I can say they are very good. The Grados are very easy to drive by an iPod and I like their rugged look. I am one of the few who actually finds them quite comfortable.
The Beyer Manufaktur 880 is a few classes above. While the Grados do have a bit of “coloration” the Beyerdynamics are downright “clean”; a different class. Even if I am to consider the report sound quality/$ the Beyer are still ahead.
Here are a few things I have listened to since I got my cans:
a. Dunedin Consort - Mesiah (1742) from Linn Records
b. Blue Coast Records - ESE Sessions (I got this with my NHT XD 2.2 system)
c. J.S. Bach Mass in B Minor - Breitkopf & Härtel Edition, edited by J. Rifkin (2006) from Linn Records
d. Propaganda with Ted Sirota's Rebel Souls
e. some metal and punk (Metallica/Green Day/Offspring/NOFX)
I must say the headphones sound scary. Be warned ! The sound has a lot of detail and clarity. One can easily hear for example when nylon strings are used (Blue Coast Records - ESE Sessions); piano and the organ sound alive and natural, the violin sounds great - I can find no fault to the Beyer DT 880 sound - border to boring (in a very good sense).
This is the first time I have listened to anything like this. Scary. They are fast, detailed and extremely controlled.
Now comes the best - after quite a few hours of listening - no fatigue. None.
How do they look/feel?
They are built using the best materials: carbon (just look at the pictures), leather and steel. These headphones scream quality. They are VERY comfortable and they can easily fit big melons - no problem there. The pressure the headphones put on your head is minimal. You’ll feel very relaxed.
A word about loudness while using an iPod.
The whole idea of buying the 32 ohms version is to use it with a portable player.
Now – the Beyer DT 880 is rated 96 db (32 ohms) and the Grado 125i is rated 98 db (32 ohms). On my iPod the Grados are loud at 25% of the iPod volume - rock/metal/punk level . The reason is twofold – they are over the ear headphones (the driver is quite close to your ear) and they are an easy load.
The Beyer DT 880 pushes the iPod to 50% of the volume for comparable loudness so I’d say they might not be as efficient as they are rated. Still – an iPod has more than plenty to drive them very loud.
At the end a few words about my experience dealing with Peter of North America Beyerdynamics: he built what was promised and he did it in time – I appreciate that.
Last edited by Boerd; 03-17-2011 at 11:59 AM.
I love the custom job. Some of the nicest looking headphones I have seen. A great job. They do scream QUALITY!
The Beyerdynamic DT880 IMO is one of the best headphones on the market. I agree that these are in a totally different class over the Grado's (regardless of model and price) and the 280.
Found something less than perfect on these cans: the 10 feet cable. It's just too long for portable stuff
I wish the cable was 5-6 feet. It makes sense to have a 10 feet cable for studio use but those are the 250 and 600 ohms versions. In respect to sound quality I (still) like them A lot.
I've had these headphones for more than 18 months now (19 I think).
They're really really good. I use them 4-5 days per week at the office.
Now the first problem (sort of) is the leather ear-pads are showing small cracks.
I just ordered today another pair of leather pads since I suspect I got 1-3 months left on the original ones. Kind of a problem if they last around 2 years...
On the other hand the leather headband show no signs of wear nor tear.
Last edited by Boerd; 10-02-2012 at 11:09 PM.
Well, well well
1. The leather pads refuse to die
2. I converted the DT 880 to 600 ohms - I sent them to Beyer to have the drivers replaced.
More controlled sound - more analitical/darker sound now from the 600 ohms drivers.
Fun thread, great pics, and great cans. I use my DT 880s a lot as well, mainly at night when I don't want to bug the rest of the household with my music.
Mac Mini (as server) -> Squeezebox Touch, AE express->Cambridge Dacmagic Plus -> Outlaw RR2150 Stereo Receiver->PSB Image T^6 (dedicated 2 channel system)
Mac Mini -> NAD T747 -> PSB Imagine B, Samsung UN46EH6000, Panasonic dmp-bdt220 (home theater family room)
Macbook-> audio gd fun "b" dac/headphone amp -> audioengine N-22 amplifier -> audioengine P-4 speakers/Energy ESW-M8 sub/Beyerdynamic DT 880 (home office)
I was looking for awhile in the 2-3 k$ range for Audeze or Stax but I just can't justify buying them. If you just look at the measurements of the Senny HD 650s or Beyer 880s ... Very very good measurements above 100Hz. On part with the best cans in the world:
Headphone Data Sheet Downloads
H/T: JTR T8 LCRs, M&K S150 surrounds, Danley CS30 subs, Onkyo Professional pre-pro, dbX dsp, Crest & Crown Amps, Epson Pro projector, Auralex & GIK treatments (Sources: WD Live, PS3, Technics 1200, AppleTV)
2.1 Studio: Bag End PM6s & Infra Pro 12", Focusrite AD-DA, Beyerdynamic DT770s, Auralex & GIK treatments (Sources: MacBook Pro 15" Retna w/ Adobe Production Suite & Cubase)