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Need good pair of headphones for recording! Help?
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Jessem166
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#1
3rd October 2011
Old 3rd October 2011
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Need good pair of headphones for recording! Help?

Okay, I have realized recently that my headphones I am using are giving me a feeling of insecurity you could say about my music productions. I thought maybe my equipment was the problem. Everything I listened to, the vocals always sounded a bit dark, drowned out, and reverbed a little. They don't sound good at all. Then I listened to some purchased tracks along with my own productions. I realized that alot of music I have purchased on the internet from Pros. Has that same similar sound my music does, back to back. They sound crappy and have that dark drowned out background sound instead of the upclose sound I am looking for, but they sound similiar. I want it to sound clear, a real sound. So then I realized my headphones I am using suck! I then listened to alot of my productions on my MP3 Player with Earbuds, that sounds better. Possibly cause the buds are directly in my ear? maybe that's how I get the type of sound I am looking for lol, no idea. But on my MP3 Player, with earbuds. My music back to back against the pro's music. The vocal quality is so close and so much better then my headphones I record with.. IDK.

So. I need a good pair of headphones that will give me a REAL SOUND. Something that isn't colored. I am currently recording and monitoring all my stuff with a new pair of sony MDR-ZX100 I just bought thinking it would give me a better sound over my last pair of Sony MDR-v150's. Nope. Sounds are damn near the same if not the same, they just are not cutting it out for me at only $20.

I know somebody will probably mention getting a pair of studio monitors. That is just not going to cut it for me right now, I just need a decent pair of headphone. I've been eyeballing these Audio-Technica ATH-M50 Studio Monitor Headphones. They have an amazing rating, if they don't work and sound the way I want. I could aways return them I guess.. Right now I listen to my productions through a variety of sound systems, Car, Earbuds, Headphones, Stereo... But If I could find a pair of headphones that could potentially get me close to a more realistic sound that would be great. Something that doesn't color anything or focus on anything inparticular possibly. The ones I currently own seem to focus on the low's and drains out the highs it seems like. Maybe that's just my imagination.

So I thought I'd ask you guys, what headphones should I get? Any recommndations? Any experiences with the Audio-Technica ATH-M50 Studio Monitor Headphones?

THANX
#2
3rd October 2011
Old 3rd October 2011
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MDR-7506 would be cheaper than the M50 and they're de facto industry standard headphones.
#3
4th October 2011
Old 4th October 2011
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I would not call the MDR-V6 the industry standard.
I used many popular models over the years before settling on Beyerdynamic DT-770s. While no headphones can completely replace proper studio monitors--I use them for a reference on all mixes I do in conjunction with my speakers.
In fact, I would probably trust a pair of DT-770s with a Focusrite VRM set-up a lot more than some mediocre boxes in a sketchy room.
Jessem166
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4th October 2011
Old 4th October 2011
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Which ones would you suggest? I see many different DT-770's online ranging from various prices, I see premium headphones, studio headphones, closed studio headphones, monitoring headphones and alot at different OHMS. But, these are a little spendy, not much more then the ones I was looking at but, I'm not to fond of sony's headphones so I'll check these out.
#5
4th October 2011
Old 4th October 2011
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If you buy the M50s, soundprofessionals.com is the cheapest place as far as I know. $109 plus shipping.
#6
4th October 2011
Old 4th October 2011
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I'll throw another vote for the 50's. I have the 50's, the ATH-M40fs (third pair of those) and the 30's. All for different reasons/uses. They have all been great phones.

I loved my 40's and didn't think the 50's would be that much of a bump in performance....but they are. I now use my 40's for casual listening, tracking, DJ'ing and some live sound. 50's for all critical listening if needed.

Howie J

That being said...The new Shure phones (SRH 940/840) got a great review in PAR. The previously mentioned Beyers always come up, and Ultrasone makes nice cans. Sennheiser HD 280's are respectable as well.
Jessem166
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#7
6th October 2011
Old 6th October 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howie J View Post
I'll throw another vote for the 50's. I have the 50's, the ATH-M40fs (third pair of those) and the 30's. All for different reasons/uses. They have all been great phones.

I loved my 40's and didn't think the 50's would be that much of a bump in performance....but they are. I now use my 40's for casual listening, tracking, DJ'ing and some live sound. 50's for all critical listening if needed.

Howie J

That being said...The new Shure phones (SRH 940/840) got a great review in PAR. The previously mentioned Beyers always come up, and Ultrasone makes nice cans. Sennheiser HD 280's are respectable as well.
I hear the M50's sound terrible straight out of the package and require multiple hours of burn in time before the true sounds comes about. Was that your experience with them and about how many hours of burn in was needed?
#8
6th October 2011
Old 6th October 2011
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You need to determine wether you need open back or closed back headphones. Open back sound better but you can't track with them, closed back are good for tracking but naff for mixing.

Then buy whatever cans you need. I recommend sennheiser for about everything. I have HD600s and love them.
#9
7th October 2011
Old 7th October 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessem166 View Post
I hear the M50's sound terrible straight out of the package and require multiple hours of burn in time before the true sounds comes about. Was that your experience with them and about how many hours of burn in was needed?
I would say that I didn't experience this with ANY of my AT phones. I rarely use them for detailed mixing. Editing, yes, detailed mixing...no.

They have sounded just fine since they were new. I'm not a believer in "burning in" of headphones so take that into account.

Howie J
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7th October 2011
Old 7th October 2011
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Don't use earbuds ever. You need a good pair of cans. Akg, beyer dynamic, or Sennheiser
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#11
19th October 2011
Old 19th October 2011
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Just got a pair of Audio Technica ATH-M50s myself, I can tell you that even with my high expectations of them after reading reviews and such, I was still pleasantly surprised. At 160$, I would recommend them highly.
#12
19th October 2011
Old 19th October 2011
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beyer dynamic))))

The DT 150 is a closed dynamic studio headphone with a modular construction offering excellent ambient noise isolation. The powerful neodymium magnet system provides high-fidelity reproduction and a balanced sound. The headband and earphone cushioning systems have been carefully designed for maximum comfort and serviceability. The padded headband can adjusted to fit on every head.

? Closed headphone
? Excellent ambient noise attenuation
? Powerful neodymium headphone system for excellent reproduction accuracy
? Wide frequency response (5 - 30.000 Hz)
? Capable of handling very high SPL
? Rugged, easy serviceable construction as all parts are replaceable
? Single-sided, detachable cable
? Circumaural ear pads
? Excellent comfort for long-term wearing

I was suprised couse sounds as described. I use them while mixing as well in turns with my monitors. If something sounds good on both... it sounds good on everything else car audio, ipod etc
#13
21st October 2011
Old 21st October 2011
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I was in a similar debate not long ago and decided to invest in the sennheiser hd 650s and was blown away. It made it a lot more difficult to get a nice sounding mix since it reveals so much, but they translated beautifully when I referenced on my monitors to check out the low end. These were seriously the most drastic improvement to my mixes now that I can hear everything
#14
22nd October 2011
Old 22nd October 2011
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Check out the Denon AH-D2000/AH-D5000 line.
#15
22nd October 2011
Old 22nd October 2011
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DT 150
#16
23rd October 2011
Old 23rd October 2011
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The Sennheiser HD650 headphones are a dream to mix and monitor with. I've been using them since they came out and the get better the longer you have them. They're sublime. Also there are some really good deals for them these days.
#17
23rd October 2011
Old 23rd October 2011
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senns are the best imo. build quality, sound quality....
#18
23rd October 2011
Old 23rd October 2011
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Someone beat me to Sony MDR's. I have the MDR XB-500, they have an extended bass response and extra padding. The extended bass is just a personal taste and I wouldn't call it a boost really, but they still sound better than any other "cheap" headphones I've used. They were like 85 dollars at best buy. I didn't rely on best buy sales associates for research though
#19
23rd October 2011
Old 23rd October 2011
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M50s. So solid and natural.

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#20
24th October 2011
Old 24th October 2011
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I use Sennheiser HD600s.



They are AWESOME and have lasted me 10 years already. The foam lining on the inside is starting to wear out, so I may be forced to replace them soon.
They are a bit on the pricey side though...

If you're willing to shell out some cash for mindblowing audio quality, I would highly recommend them. If you're made of money, I'd also strongly recommend an aftermarket headphone cable. Stefan Audioart do some, I bought one after losing 2 manufacturer-supplied headphone cables in a row, and my experience with the new cable has been excellent.

HD650's are even better apparently, but that is really getting into the realms of ridiculous expense.



Actually I would recommend some decent studio monitors instead of headphones. Headphones only really work well for stereo imaging work imho. Although you get a lot more audio quality per $ from headphones...
#21
24th October 2011
Old 24th October 2011
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You cannot go wrong with Sennheiser HD650 or AKG 702 (I have the latter, they're so good for checking mixes against monitors). Remember though that these are open format so if you're going to do recording, you'll need a closed pair of cans like MDR7506 - I'm not a fan of these for checking mixes but they're great for dubbing.

... and +1 on the need for monitors. Headphones - regardless of how good they are - should be intended to augment not replace monitors.
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25th October 2011
Old 25th October 2011
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I can also vouch for the senheiser hd 650. They have great clarity and detail.

I'm also keen on the focus rite vrm box and particularly their simulation of the Yamaha ns110. Mixing with this emulation definitely helps to bring out any of the boxy frequencies or any mid range frequencies which are harsh.
#23
9th November 2011
Old 9th November 2011
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What's so pleasing about the Sennheiser HD650's is they're a bit like Wine or Stilton cheese, they improve with age. When I first got them I thought they sounded great. Now they sound astonishing. There are no frequency curves designed to slap you round the face, or rattle your head with bass. If you want that, do it through your own production.

I had a horrible scary evening about three weeks ago when I suddenly got bass rattle in my left ear and immediately went into hyper-panic. After frantically searching the net, I found an obscure forum with a post from a guy who'd experienced the exact same problem. He took his left earphone apart and on the tiny, tiny cone was a hair, which he removed with a soft anti-static dusting brush.
Tentatively, I took mine apart, which in fact was a piece of cake, and took under two minutes. There on the cone was the most minuscule hair I think I've ever seen - it was probably a hair from the leg of a spider. I managed to remove it by using the technical method of rolling up a rizla paper until it was like a thin straw and then I flicked the hair off (thankfully I'm extremely short sighted and didn't have my lenses in, so I can see really well close to), put it all back together, and YAY! - The rattle had completely gone.

So... If you ever get a rattle on a pair of HD650's...... Get an anti-static soft brush ^_^
#24
9th November 2011
Old 9th November 2011
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SRH940
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