New to Drop - Need Advice for New Headphones.
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Hello there! So, looking for new, over-ear circumaural headphones and I'm not privy to the latest popular brands/models. I come from the Denon D2000s which I had since 2007-2008, but they finally bit the dust, so I'm looking to grab a new pair. Here are my listening habits/preferences: 1) Budget = $600 (I realize this is only entry level audiophile territory). Something I can drive with my FiiO E17 Alpine amp would be preferable. 2) Will be used for lossless FLAC music, HD Movies, and some Gaming. The headphones will be connected to my PC through my FiiO E17 Alpine DAC/Amp at all times. I read great things about Planar Magnetic Driver phones as well, so those are of high interest. 3) Will be used mostly in isolation, so I don't mind going either Open or Closed back headphones (albeit my only experience with over-ear headphones has been the D2000s which are closed, so I have nothing else to compare it to sadly). On a side note - how does stock on Drop work? They get a full "run" and then it's gone permanently or? Also, any Canadians here know what shipping costs are like and if there are import fees/duties? If any more information is needed to help suggest some headphones to fit my preferences, I would be happy to add more. Right now, one of my top picks so far is the Senheiser HD 660S V2, but I'm still not sure. Cheers!
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wofse
68
May 19, 2020
I’d back the Sennheiser HD6xx and the DarkVoice tube amp for under$400usd. all day. The HD6xx really does benefit GREATLY from having an amp. If you really want to hear what it can do try it with the aaa789 amp that is available right now for$300usd
dcha12
370
May 19, 2020
I'd also recommend the Sennheiser HD 6XX. It's a terrific baseline to start with (remember that this headphone was TOTL in 2003), and honestly you can't beat it in resolve until you start getting into some really expensive stuff (and even those headphones all have tradeoffs in direct comparison, although total system synergy + personal preference matters more). If you're really interested in planars, I'd recommend the Hifiman HE-4XX. It's a good entry-level planar, and frankly is quite a steal for its performance (no idea if the build quality has gotten any better over the years though). Either headphone is fine to start with and from there, you can pinpoint specific areas you'd like to improve should you decide to plunge deeper into the hobby. On that note though, I do not recommend the HD 660S; it's essentially the same thing as the HD 58X sold here on Drop, and is in my opinion an overall worse headphone than the HD 6XX. With the remainder of the budget, I recommend getting a Schiit Modi 3 and an Magni 3+, and using the remainder to buy yourself some groceries. The Schiit stuff will blow away the Fiio for home use.
dcha12
370
May 21, 2020
The HD 58X sounds slightly clearer and has better bass than the HD 6XX (bass clarity more in line with the HD 600, but better extension). However, it's actually less resolving than the HD 6XX (more apparent the better gear you get), has more treble grain, and is even more laid-back in the upper mids than HD 6XX (so to me it sounds even warmer in overall tone; not something I find necessarily desirable over HD 6XX). I personally find it inferior, but for the cost it's quite good and some might like its sound better. It's not actually that much more efficient. Really, it's just the voice coil is 150 ohms versus the 300 ohms. I can easily get listenable volume out of a Galaxy S10+ with HD 6XX (although the phone doesn't have the oomph nor quality to really drive those). In terms of affordable options, you can also check out the Monoprice Liquid Spark for amps (warmer, more laid back than the Magni 3+). In terms of DACs, the Drop x Grace SDAC is actually pretty decent, but really needs a clean USB source to shine (decrapifier like the now discontinued Schiit Wyrd). Honestly, in DACs the $100 Schiit Modi 3 is the best one I've heard by far. I say it gives you $500 sound. I wouldn't bother with the DragonFly stuff unless you need a portable solution; they're all underwhelming. iFi's new Zen DAC looks quite interesting as well, but I've never heard it. I did hear and like the Pro iDSD (an expensive thing) and the iDSD Black Label (a portable solution). The Texas Instruments Burr Brown chips ain't bad.
Jayce9
1
May 21, 2020
Thanks I'll take a look at the Monoprice amp and the iFi Zen DAC to see how those are. I emailed Schiit to see why their shipping fees are wildly absurd and judging by the response, they couldn't care less. I have no doubt some of their products are great, but the company's name definitely suits their attitude/customer service. As for the headphones, I took the plunge and went with the Hifiman HE-4XX (mostly because I was able to get it here within Canada). It was a toss up between that and the Senn HD 6XX, but after reading a bunch of reviews/user opinions, it steered me more toward the 4XX. Hopefully it was the right decision. I can also always grab a decent Closed back pair down the road if I ever need to. If you have any other suggestions for quality and affordable Amps / DACs comparable too the Modi and Magni, let me know. Cheers!
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pradeep-s
111
May 17, 2020
I have Senn HD 6XX. Its absolutely awesome. Costs 220 now. I bought it for 195$. You need an amplifier, though. Even a low-end DAP like Shanling m0 drives it well. Clarity is very very good. Used with Objective 2 amp, and Centrance DAC (size of a big USB stick), it opens up even more. I guess you are looking for a top-end set, with a 600$ budget. These days, it's not just entry level audiophile headphones you can buy for this amount. Have you considered buying more than one? I usually shift between Meze and 6xx. I alternate between them. And try this info too, though all these might not be available in Drop. https://diyaudioheaven.wordpress.com/ The community has a very knowledgeable and helpful set of ppl. I'd be surprised if folks suggest MASSDROP X FOCAL ELEX or Mr. Speakers ether CX.
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Jayce9
1
May 18, 2020
Yeah the HD 6XX was calling my name, but someone mentioned that I would likely be better off with a Closed pair. I looked at the Mr. Speakers Ether CX, but sadly even with the sale price, it's out of my budget =/. There's not a whole lot of in-stock items to choose from on Drop as far as I can tell. The only Closed pair that seems like a strong choice is the BD 177X GO, but I've read so many complaints about the cable. My FiiO accepts the standard 3.5mm plug, so not sure how that would work. If you or anyone else has any more recommendations, please let me know. All the good headphones appear to be sold out and discontinued. Also from Canada, so still curious to know if there are any fellow Canadians that dealt with import fees/duties, which would be a deciding factor in buying from the site.
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