MXRC
242
Apr 24, 2018
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There are two answers to your question. A: Straight forward, subjective answer / B: Complicated objective answer

A: Start with Philips Fidelio X2/27. If you’re just getting into headphone audiophilia, this is the easiest thing in my mind to recommend. It will give you a good baseline reference on what to listen for since it exaggerates everything in a very pleasing way. Soundstage width, 360 location, stereo separation, bass response/extension/speed, high clarity/air/sparkle, mid presence, and overall frequency response is present, accounted for, and emphasized. It’s a nice transition into audiophile headphones, that’s easier for new-comers to appreciate than super flat response, hi-fidelity headphones. You wont’ even need an amp.
B. Once you have a baseline comparison of lower consumer headphone performance to the entry level, audiophile headphones, you can start to determine what aspects of the sound profile are important to you. This will inform your purchase decision rest of the way down the rabbit hole when looking for new headphones and eventually, amps to pair them with. To be honest, asking for recommendations is never satisfying even when you get plenty of responses. The enjoyment comes from exploration of options and trying different headphones out with your favourite music.
But we’re here to hopefully keep you from investing money on something you’ll regret. So yeah... please refer to answer A.
Apr 24, 2018
ohsigmachi
231
Oct 3, 2018
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I wish the X2HR or the Audioquest Nightowl had been my first purchase. I might have stoped right there!
Oct 3, 2018
Michael.R
3
Sep 22, 2020
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Do you think you would still suggest the same 2 years later?
Sep 22, 2020
MXRC
242
Sep 30, 2020
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I think more so now since you can find them brand new for as low as $150. I am looking forward for the gen3 of those headphones, but Covid-19 has delayed its release. The new X3s will be around $400 though, so I think the X2s are still the most viable entry level headphone for upcoming enthusiasts.
Sep 30, 2020
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