FOSTEX T40RP-MK3 by PB+J
So backstory, I do home production semi-professionally. I'm not a professional audio engineer but I['m not completely clueless
I had ben using a set of Shure srh940s which I thought sounded good but which I had a hard time mixing on. They tended to accentuate reverb and I ended up with bass heavy mixes when I tested in the car. Also they were really crap, construction wise, despite costing 300 bucks. The swivels the earcups are mounted on broke within a year. I managed to patch them together, twice, but they are beyond repair now.
So I wanted a replacement that was
B not hyped in anyway
I saw these on sale at Guitar Center for 70 bucks and said why not.
These are "planar magnetic" headphones, which means the "speaker" is a square membrane rather than a cone. Sort of like a ribbon mic.
The downside is that you get less volume--my primary interface is an Apogee duet, and it takes a good bit more gain to get to the same listening level. The upside is a flatter eq profile
Ok the good. They have what seems to be a very very "flat" sound. I can detect no obvious hype. There's no high end sparkle, no whomping bass. If anything they are a bit bass shy. They have a less "open" sound and maybe a bit less mid detail than the Shures. They have an odd kind of "black background" thing going on, like everything is on a background of black velvet. Smooth, but not dull. The Shure's have a more in your face quality. It's hard to describe.
The upside is the mixes I've tested with the car test are translating much more readily. So happy!
Other upside: they appear to be extremely durable--no plastic mounts and no swivels to wear out
The bad. the lower volume. If you like to crank'em high it might be hard without a good headphone amp. They're big and don't don't fold up. The headband says FOSTEX in huge white letters--like really do I need to advertise? It's not especially well padded and gets a mite uncomfortable with long use. The earpads were a little thin, and I swapped them out for the set from the Shures.
Overall I'm highly highly impressed with these and very happy. Great rice, effective sound. They are not "put them on and go wow," beats by dre style, which I think is why I'm finding them more effective