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Are there any headphones like the hd820 but way cheaper?

the sennheiser hd820 are the pair of headphones I’ve been looking for. They are closed back with a very wide soundstage, they apparently sound great, it has light isolation and they look sick! The only reason I’m not getting one is because the cost 2400 bucks. Is there any pair with same features but cheaper; like 700 or less


Feb 24, 2020
I hereby bring to your attention another possible "low budget" alternative to HD820 (in addition to my earlier suggestion: Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro @250 ohms + Asgard 3): Austrian Audio (run by former AKG technicians and management) will soon release the (closed back) Hi-X 55. I haven't heard it yet, but it looks promising. It's about the same price as an HD600 In Europe, and @25 ohms easy to power.
Mar 10, 2020
I'm sorry, I don't know that, you would have to contact Apple, maybe they know. Or mail to Austrian Audio, they likely tested the thing on an iPhone. If someone else on this forum knows: feel free to jump in :)
Merv73I used to work at Apple, but I don’t have any contacts who would know that info 😅 I probably should have just googled it... there are websites devoted to measuring impedence (output and input), and ironically they often don’t trust each other’s results. Regardless! The Austrian Audio Headphone should probably sound great! And I get the impression that most audio enthusiasts who choose a phone with a headphone jack will probably gravitate towards an LG phone, and others (like me) are using a player or DAC/amp instead of our phones. its funny... I don’t find new smartphones all that compelling these days (other than computational camera features and gaming performance). Others may disagree here, and be excited by the 25% or 100% improvements in compute or graphics power. But I’d rather “complete” my digital ecosystem at this point, buying a smartwatch, thermostats and lights (the lights have been nice energy savers, though I just got another that I think will be great for urban gardening!), have an tablet that can replace a laptop, get a cool music player to separate me from everything “phone” (unless I want to stream), etc.
Feb 24, 2020
They don't sound great. They have a huge hole in teh sound signature in the lower mids from resonance cancelling itself out. They are one of the biggest oofs in headphones, they are a engineering marvel, and look great, but they sound quite bad, especially for the price. look up any measurement of them, and youll see the gaps in sound. Makes them sound hollow.
Feb 18, 2020
Take a look at Beyerdynamic MMX 300 (2nd Generation) They look nice, and the soundstage is really wide, but the treble needs some taming (2 ply of paper towel is perfect for me). They are really detailed and cheap also. I was not expecting to love this more than my Ether CX - but I guess that the wider soundstage + the light weight allows me to wear them a lot longer. I've also swapped pads with Dekoni choice leather and that makes them super plush.
Feb 14, 2020
These don't look sick, but the soundstage is super wide like the 820. You may want to look at the Modhouse Argon Mk 3.
Mar 6, 2020
briantotheyanyanThe Argon Mk 3 are awesome. Super fun. I love my pair. And the soundstage is great. But they are also quite bass heavy and warm, which is (from what I've heard) quite different from the sound signature of HD800 series headphones. This is an interesting pursuit though. While acknowledging shortcomings, perhaps something from AKG's K700 series lineup might do the job.
Feb 14, 2020
Maybe a ZMF Atticus or the T5P by Beyerdynamic.
Feb 12, 2020
DT770 Pro @250 + Asgard 3
Mar 10, 2020
too bass heavy for my taste and the midrange was wooly, i found the dt1990 with analytical pads more to my liking but its been a while. I just may give the dt1770 another try
Mar 10, 2020
TerryUyWhere do you try it ?What is wrong with the mid range ? From your memory, how do you recall to the DT1770 in comparison to DT 770 pro ?
Feb 12, 2020
Focal elegia are on sale now .
Feb 12, 2020
jesterkenmuraoWhere? thanks
Feb 13, 2020
jesterkenmuraoI wasn't impressed by it.
I... would look to other headphones before spending on an HD820. At CES 2018 I was excited to demo them after our meeting with Senn, and Axel basically slapped them out of my hands, telling me not to listen because he needed to overhaul the sound. Axel left a couple months later before making changes. I haven't kept up on the HD820 development since, but unless there's been a dramatic re-tuning (or you've tried and really love this tuning), I'd recommend you explore other TOTL closed-back headphones.
If you like the tuning, go for an HD820. If you're looking at TOTL closed-back in general, it's worth exploring the options before making your decision. Check out ZMF's offerings (best closed-back if you can handle the weight IMO), Ether C(X), and DT177X.
WillYou’re certainly entitled to your opinion! Some timeline info for you Will: Axel is of course a bit of a perfectionist; he had prototype V5 at CanJam NYC just a month later after CES, and he said he had another prototype back at headquarters that was even closer to what he was targeting. He certainly did make several revisions between CES and release, before he stepped down from Chief Engineer in January 2019 and became “just” a consultant. When talking to him at CanJam NYC 2018, he said one of his goals with the revisions was to move that small dip up higher in frequency (I think 80 or 100 Hz was his goal, my memory isn’t completely exact on that), because a little dip right there in a closed headphone helps prevent some of the apparent bass bloat and muddiness. You can see that, overall, the HD 820 has more bass than the HD 800 S... some people really wanted that, some people don’t realize the HD 800 and HD 800 S actually has more bass extension than the HD 6XX (and the large ring driver gives it a really tactile feel with both the HD 820 and HD 800 S). I admit I don’t have insight into the dip centered around 290 Hz... other than how reviewers often cite that range as contributing to a “cuppy” or muddy sound as well, though on the other hand too much of a dip at that range can lead to a feeling of “hollow” or “disattached” bass. The final judge should always be listening for yourself! Personally, when I tried on the headphone, I was kind of “meh” when the prototype headphone was placed with the driver centered over my ear canal. It was indeed spacious, and isolating well, but when I moved the earcups down and a bit forward on my head, I got a fuller bass experience which I found very satisfying, and more natural compared to a Sony Z1R and Denon D5000 that I had side by side with it. That’s just personal anecdote and preference, but my “trick” has pleased me with subsequent listens at future CanJams (it has been a few months since I heard it last). I have not heard Drop’s Ether CX, because I haven’t seen Drop at the shows I attend (and sadly I can’t buy everything I want, problem for everyone right??). When I heard the original Ether C, I easily preferred the open Ether. I could see some people preferring the Ether C(X) though. One objective thing I would like to ask if you have the data: is the Ether CX fully sealed, or is it a vented design? I share your adoration for Zack’s headphones, also quite chuffed when I get a chance to spend time with the man himself, but my knowledge of his latest closed headphones is also out of date (there’s that money problem again!). I remember the Ori was vented, so while it still had some isolation, it didn’t block leakage or environmental noise as much as the HD 820 would, which may not be important to some or crucial for others. The DT1770 (or DT177X Go) might be a viable option for our original poster due to it being within his budget, and due to being a sealed/closed headphone. However, it does NOT have close to the soundstage size and “open sound” of the HD 820. The DT 1xxx series made great strides in addressing my main issue with the “classic” DT xx0 headphones: the treble spike that aggravated *my* ears and left them ringing. Other people who don’t wear small IEM tips might not have the same issue as me. It is fairly well detailed, so a surround DSP may help with the “in your head” small soundstage, but they only perform small miracles 😉 The HD 820 might be big, or even overkill for studio monitoring use while recording a track, but it could do it. For me, it just won my top spot because it was the “no compromises” option, and I happened to like the sound a lot (when placed a little off center). I tried to state the objective alongside my opinion, because of course my opinion is subject to change with experience 😉 I hope to get a little more during CanJam NYC this weekend!
WillByyyyy the way, any chance of a Drop edition ÆON closed or Ether open? 😃
Hey Pork, The whole thing about the HD 820 and why it costs more than the HD 800 S is that Sennheiser had to invent and innovate to get it to sound as open with as large a soundstage as it does, while staying truly a closed headphone. I think the isolation is rated at -26 dB, which is actually quite good for a closed headphone. Next closest current production headphone are the Fostex TH-900 (and the very similar out of production models from Denon). The TH-900 has great soundstage and clarity, however it has a v-shaped sound tuning (emphasis on treble and bass) and it escapes the usual honkiness of closed headphones by venting the cups... it’s not truly sealed, it’s vented. The HD 820 is a little more detailed while also sounding a little more refined and relaxed. Same goes for the Sony Z1R, which has an even more massive bass boost, the mesh back is also vented. ZMF makes great headphones as well, but they’re vented. I’m not sure about the Dan Clark Audio Ether C Flow being vented or not, but I personally just don’t enjoy it’s colder sound signature as much. Audeze makes high-end closed headphones as well, but they don’t have as much soundstage and they’re HUGE (and I think they’re vented as well). Nothing gives the same isolation as the HD 820, while sounding like an open headphone. I actually prefer them over the HD 800 S, because it has better sub bass extension (the lowest frequencies stay balanced with the mids), and the hybrid pads are a nice touch. Sennheiser wouldn’t say one has sound quality better than another... merely that they designed them for different use cases. Never say never though... Now that Sennheiser has developed the HD 820, maybe they’ll apply a similar design to the HD 660 S, which would then fit right into the budget you’re looking for. The HD 660 S (in my opinion) sounds right in the middle between the HD 650’s warmth and level of fidelity and the HD 800 S’ agility, clarity, and level of fidelity. The HD 820 will still have a more speakerlike, out-of-your-head presentation with more soundstage (you definitely get something for your money), but a closed HD 660 S might be a good compromise for your budget. But by the time they finish developing such a headphone, you probably could have saved up for the HD 820, so keep that in mind.
I don’t think the HD 650 “is veiled” either! Not like it has a muffle or like a trumpet with a mute, but I think the best way I can describe it is the beginning and end of each note starts and ends quicker. Another thing to consider is all the equipment upstream. Right now, I’m using my Sennheiser HDV820 most of the time, the amp is really good like a Cavalli Liquid Gold, the DAC is ok (Sabre’s previous home theater flagship, the 9018S (S version is an 8 channel variant)), though I think I could squeeze out a little more performance if I had a Hugo 2 to use as a DAC. The HD 650 sounds quite different connected to my Sony ZX300! Also, measurement gear has become more sophisticated and accurate over time, and the best measurement rigs are something like $60,000, but even then measurements aren’t completely consistent because small changes in placement of the headphone on the microphone will make significant changes in the frequency response and square wave measurements. I saw Axel Grell today at CanJam NYC, I forgot to ask him about the driver but one of the things he’s really interested in right now is advancing headphone and IEM measurements and ways to make the results more repeatable.
Feb 17, 2020
EvshrugI’ve got a Hugo 2, and a HDV 820, and a HD 6XX. Let me know if you want me to test something.
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