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The best pair I have heard so far are ... the Dr. Dre Beats ... mind you they are a little heavy on the bass, but overall fantastic sound. I recommend the metal ones, the plastic ones are flimsy. And they are a little expensive compared to most. Other ones I have are an older pair of Sony headphones and they are pretty good, along with a pair of AKGs K171 MKIIs.

I can't stand the in ear buds at all as they irritate the crap out of them. So I go for the full muffs. Ones I want to try, are the KRK headphones. I have the Rokit 8s as reference monitors and have been quite impressed with them, so I would imagine they put the same quality into a headset.

You want a pair that has a flat sound graph (most likely you already know this), Good luck, be interested to know what you decided to go with. I just know if my ears like them, .. I buy em.

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You want a pair that has a flat sound graph (most likely you already know this), Good luck, be interested to know what you decided to go with. I just know if my ears like them, .. I buy em.

This is why I don't really care for the Dre Beats, even the studio ones. They don't have a sound signature that hugs zero. That's fine, depending on what you're into. IIRC, you're into electronic and club music, no? I think that would explain your preference for Dre Beats. They sound great, but they definitely have a signature sound that amplifies bass, which would appeal to anyone that listens to a lot of bass-driven music.

My problem is that I really listen to a broad range of things from electronic artists like Grimes, Beach House (dream pop) or Burial (dub-step ambient) to indie rock acts like Arcade Fire, Bon Iver, Metric, Wolf Parade to hip-hop/R&B like Frank Ocean, The Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar, and The Roots. I also like to listen to a variety of jazz and classical when I'm reading.

So as you can tell, there's quite a bit of variety. From what I've read, it seems the Grados are the best for rock/folk/singer-songwriter music. Since I spend the majority of my time listening to this stuff, that's why I decided on them. They SR80i headphones, according to reviewers, are a little warmer and have more bass than the SR125i. Since I listen to some electronic, rap/R&B, I figure they would strike a nice balance.

I think I've decided on the Grado SR80 headphones, but I just want to hear others' experiences. Maybe someone will know of something that I haven't considered and change my mind.

Oh and I've heard good things about some of AKG's products.

I really wish there was a good hi-fi store around here where I could audition headphones. Major cities tend to have shops like this, where you can bring your music in with you and listen to it on different headphones to get a sense of what sounds best to you. Unfortunately, there is nothing like that anywhere near where I live.

Edited by cybercoma

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I think I've decided on the Grado SR80 headphones, but I just want to hear others' experiences. Maybe someone will know of something that I haven't considered and change my mind.

I have never had the pleasure or opportunity to even hold a pair of Grado headphones but I don't think you will go wrong with them.

Shure is the brand that I tend to buy and I love them - but I do have my eye on the Grado Prestige series since you can never have too many headphones!

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I have never had the pleasure or opportunity to even hold a pair of Grado headphones but I don't think you will go wrong with them.

Shure is the brand that I tend to buy and I love them - but I do have my eye on the Grado Prestige series since you can never have too many headphones!

There's a shop in town that sells higher-end electronics (not top of the line) that's an authorized Grado dealer. I had a pair of Shure earbuds before I bought the Grado ones. Believe it or not, the Shure buds were more expensive and didn't sound half as good as the Grado iGi buds. Of course, they were lower the low end of what Shure produces. They make some fantastic products in higher price ranges of course.

If I were buying earbuds again, I would hunt down the Etymotics MC5 buds. Apparently, for about the same price as the headphones, you can go to an authorized Etymotics audiologist and have your ear moulded and Etymotics will create custom ear moulds for your buds. All totalled, I think you can get these in Canada for around $300. That's an amazing price for custom-moulded earphones and Etymotics has perhaps the truest sound signature of any earphones on the market.

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Any good retailer will allow you to listen to the headphones before you buy. I use Steve's Music here in Ottawa and have listened to a few before I bought the AKGs.

And yes I listen to a lot of electronic music, but I still prefer a flatter sound from headphones. My pal has the Dre's , I prefer eveerything out of the monitors myself. Only times I use the headphones these days are for mixing sets.

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If I were buying earbuds again, I would hunt down the Etymotics MC5 buds. Apparently, for about the same price as the headphones, you can go to an authorized Etymotics audiologist and have your ear moulded and Etymotics will create custom ear moulds for your buds. All totalled, I think you can get these in Canada for around $300. That's an amazing price for custom-moulded earphones and Etymotics has perhaps the truest sound signature of any earphones on the market.

I wear Etymotic Er6i's while on the motorcycle and on flights.... great sound out of them.

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Not an audiophile but have been researching headphones lately because my old Sony's broke.

For Xmas I got a pair of $40 on-the-ear Sony headphones, but I want an upgrade to something of excellent quality without going price-crazy and that's-over-the-ear (Circumaural) and therefore more comfortable (for me). I plan to buy a pair of Audio-Technica ATH-M50 headphones. They're in the $130 range but superb quality for the money.

CNET has tons of reviews of every seemingly headphone available.

Edited by Moonlight Graham

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I have a pair of V-Moda earbuds and they are absolutely great.

I don't know how their over ear headphones are, but I would certainly have a look/listen if I was in the market. http://v-moda.com/over-ear/

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Sorry CC, I don't really have much input since I'm not an 'audiophile', but I thought I'd ride your coat-tail on this thread with my own questions....

I just have a set of earbuds but I hate how they get stuck on things and yanked out of my ears. I've been thinking of going wireless but I didn't really want to spend the money.

I saw some at Amazon below (I can't get the link function to work for some reason) and they're on a Boxing Day blowout for $80 from $200!

I've never heard of this brand though, does anyone know anything?

Also, ear-buds are so discreet I'm not sure I want something that huge on my head. From I've heard the sound is way better so it's a tradeoff - discretion for better sound and wireless. True? Is it really that much better?

I often wear a hat when I'm at the gym or running, I just can't see how something like this would work with a hat on.

$80 is not a lot to spend to find out but I just don't want another unused piece of equipment in the house.

http://www.amazon.ca/Miikey-Wireless-Rhythm-Bluetooth-Headphones/dp/B006Z963FQ/ref=br_lf_m_1000895211_1_5_img?ie=UTF8&m=A3DWYIK6Y9EEQB&s=electronics&pf_rd_p=1448774402&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_t=1401&pf_rd_i=1000895211&pf_rd_m=A3DWYIK6Y9EEQB&pf_rd_r=0R78EB4DTA4RSBNX7QH6

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Make sure you get the gold plated connector plugs, it makes a big difference

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For the past 4 or 5 years I have used this set of in-the-ear earphones made by Jays of Sweden:

http://www.jays.se/products/d-jays

I have used several different in-the-ear earphones, and these are my favorite. They don't have the excessive bass response that seems common among in-ear phones. I've been very happy with them and they have lasted extremely well.

-k

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So my birthday is coming up and my wife got me the Grado SR80i headphones a bit early because she heard me talking about them.

There's not much I can say that hasn't already been said by all of the reviews out there.

They're a fantastic headphone for rock, but in my opinion also music that is bass heavy like rap and some electronic. Guitars and vocals shine on these headphones and the dynamic range is quite large without any noticeable clipping. They're very neutral, but the bass is tight and has some punch on mixes that emphasize it. For instance, listening to Modest Mouse, you're not beaten over the head with the bass because it wasn't engineered that way. The focus of their music is the guitars and vocals. However, when I listen to Portishead, the vocals shine without being sibilant, while there is incredible depth and range to the bass with the appropriate amount of punch.

One of the biggest drawbacks to these headphones are the open backs. This gives you a more true and neutral sound, but they're not something you can listen to on a crowded bus/train/plane, in an office, or around other people. Your music leaks out from them. But I didn't buy these for use outside of the home. I bought them for kicking back in my favourite chair at home with a glass of scotch. I have earbuds for travelling and public spaces, which are better because they're noise cancelling. That's another downside to open-back designs. They don't block out ambient noise.

Regardless, these are a great affordable pair of headphones with tight bass and absolutely incredible midrange. They seem to me to be very neutral with the appropriate amount of warmth that doesn't muffle or muddy your music. I would definitely recommend them to someone that's looking for a pair of phones for around their home when they're relaxing, but they're definitely not what I would use on the go or in public spaces.

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Thanks for the review, CC.

Um, could I borrow your wife when we get closer to my birthday?

It's only for the headphones, I promise! wink.png

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Thanks for the review, CC.

My pleasure.

Um, could I borrow your wife when we get closer to my birthday?

It's only for the headphones, I promise! wink.png

I don't think so. :)

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Make sure you get the gold plated connector plugs, it makes a big difference

Yea because the electrons care about the tiny difference the gold plating would make over the feet of copper both inside the amp and the cabling, there is no difference, none. Double blind testing proves that people cannot tell between different types of cabling regardless of its type or purity, its all snake oil, if it makes you feel better and enjoy it more then good for you, but don't be fooled. Also I wonder, and I don't mean to refer to anyone here, but how many people are buying headphones worth hundreds of dollars and then listening to low bite rate mp3's with them? That is one epic failure, it's more for fashion for a lot of people you see with them.

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wonder, and I don't mean to refer to anyone here, but how many people are buying headphones worth hundreds of dollars and then listening to low bite rate mp3's with them? That is one epic failure, it's more for fashion for a lot of people you see with them.

About MP3s (well, AACs), you should check out the Ars Technica article on Apples new "Mastered for iTunes" initiative.

http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/04/does-mastered-for-itunes-matter-to-music-ars-puts-it-to-the-test/

We came away from the process learning that it absolutely is possible to improve the quality of compressed iTunes Plus tracks with a little bit of work, that Apple's improved compression process does result in a better sound, and that 24/96 files aren't a good format for consumers.

You should read the whole article though. It's really good. In the opening paragraph he mentions another article that they published. That one is HERE. Also worth reading, as it explains just what the heck Mastered for iTunes means.

edit: trimmed quote

Edited by cybercoma

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Make sure you get the gold plated connector plugs, it makes a big difference

That is a total fallacy, gold is not a good conductor. The connector might be gold, but the port where you plug them in is not gold plated. And the inside of the plug on the headphones is copper or other metals. It's nothing more than a selling point scam. There is no way you can hear the difference.

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Yea because the electrons care about the tiny difference the gold plating would make over the feet of copper both inside the amp and the cabling, there is no difference, none. Double blind testing proves that people cannot tell between different types of cabling regardless of its type or purity, its all snake oil, if it makes you feel better and enjoy it more then good for you, but don't be fooled. Also I wonder, and I don't mean to refer to anyone here, but how many people are buying headphones worth hundreds of dollars and then listening to low bite rate mp3's with them? That is one epic failure, it's more for fashion for a lot of people you see with them.

Most people cannot hear the difference between 128kbps and 320 kbps. Although the 160kbps does not sound as good as all the others.

FLAC is the lossless format from Apple and can have the same fidelity as a good analog signal.

You also have to consider how the recording was made. I have some CDs that were terribly produced and mastered, so no matter what you rip it at, it will still sound quite crappy. One of my all time fave CDs was from the Pursuit of Happiness called Love Junk. Great music through the CD but terribly mastered as you can hear many anomolies in the original recording.

Some of the best mastered/produced stuff sounds great at any bitrate you rip it at, while the crappy mastered/produced stuff sounds like garbage no matter what you rip it at.

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One of my all time fave CDs was from the Pursuit of Happiness called Love Junk. Great music through the CD but terribly mastered as you can hear many anomolies in the original recording.

GH - I am surprised to hear that, as it was produced by super legend Todd Rundgren: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Junk

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GH - I am surprised to hear that, as it was produced by super legend Todd Rundgren: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Junk

Well either the producing or the mastering. Could be the technology at the time or budget constraints. But I must admit, I only heard the anomalies after buying my studio monitors and had to re listen to a lot of my music. I guess the KRK Rokit8s really bring out those anomalies because they are meant for producing/mastering. But they are a great set to even just listen to music when doing things around the apartment.

Some of Rush's stuff sounds bland and some sounds great.

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You seem to know what you're talking about, which is why I expressed surprise. Maybe the thing of it is that Todd knows how to assemble a great-sounding tune but is a little short on the details ? I don't know.

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You seem to know what you're talking about, which is why I expressed surprise. Maybe the thing of it is that Todd knows how to assemble a great-sounding tune but is a little short on the details ? I don't know.

It's not easy that is for sure. To be honest most of the tracks I have done have been bland (to most) but I have focused on the mastering portion of producing tracks. Ever since I started producing and specifically producing my music through the KRKs, I have inadvertently trained by ears to hear the garbage in order to filter it out. Many times I needed a specific sound to be a little louder but when increasing the volume, it drowns everything else out. Compression, limiters help with that but can neuter the sound a bit so it does not sound as full as you want it to be. Also the way two sounds interact with each other can also produce unwanted anomalies in the sound and can be a bitch to try and resolve. I am self taught through a lot of trial and error, and there are many youtube vids that have tutorials for the software I use which has helped a lot as well. I've been doing this for over 5 years now and I'd like to think I know what I am talking about! :D

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