What's a good "portable" closed back headphone?
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And for this, I really do mean portable and not transportable. The closed back's I currently own are the TR-X00 Ebonies and AudioQuest NightOwls and very much enjoy the sound sig on both. Issue is, they are a pain in the butt to carry around even when I have my work/travel bag as their cases just take up a good bit of room. Also, neither isolates very well and the Fostex tends to leak sound like mad.
So far, I have been thinking of the ATH M50x as it's collapsible and and seems sturdy enough to be tossed around in my bag without breaking. I've also looked at the V-Moda M100 for similar reasons. Although they don't collapse, the Sennheiser HD 569/598 Cs look to be very lightweight, sturdy, and overall not very big. I've also seen the Thinksound ON2's here for a good price but I'm a bit apprehensive to get them due to them being more on-ear than over-ear. Their sound sig does seem to be up my alley and they do appear to be rather portable.
For context, I've tried the Status Audio CB-1 in the past and did not like them. I've also tried the Meze 99 Neo's and while I enjoyed the sound, the pads were very uncomfortable and made my ears sweat like mad. The Beyerdynamic COPP's were quite comfy but didn't have the SQ to back it up (my pair had some very bad cup/driver rattle). I also returned some Aeon Flow Closed due to their sound despite them having great build quality, accessories, and comfort (SQ way too lean and cold for my taste).
Price is of no concern as long as they sound good and are truly portable. I tend to prefer cans that have swappable pads (velour vs leather) and cables (length and/or mic'd) but if the headphone is good enough then I guess those two things won't be missed. I also vastly prefer over-ear vs. on-ear.
Any and all suggestions are welcome. Many thanks.
thumb_upAdonancireng, Manbear, and 1 other
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Adonancireng
3
Sep 3, 2018
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I had original Ath-M50, Beyerdynamic DT770 250 ohm and B&W P5 before, now endup using Sennheiser HD 598 Cs, very satisfied with the sound, super comfortable pad, I even fall a sleep couple times wearing it, easy blending in crowded communal place, best soundstage close headphones I ever had
Sep 3, 2018
KESM
171
Sep 2, 2018
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Sennheiser HD1 BT over the ear HPs are my go to cans for mobile use (you can run ‘em wired or wireless)...& they fold for easy carry in the accompanying semi-soft shell case; I typically wear ’em around my neck...they are effortless to use & lighweight...& the SQ signature is classic Sennheiser goodness.
Note: You can also check out the newly released Sennheiser Momentum wireless ear buds (available for pre order); I ordered a pair for mobile options while I’m out (exercising primarily or in office).
One other real world mentionable: ***I have the TR X00 Fostex black edition, Kenningtons Master Pro...in my closed can stable; Aeon Flow Open & Sennheiser HD 6XX in my open can stable. The Sennheiser Momentum (HD1) over the ear cans easily see the most DAILY use...as I’m constantly prone to listening to music via my phone (over my 2 channel stereo or PC HP desk system).***
Sep 2, 2018
rdodev
618
Sep 2, 2018
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As someone who flies ~110K miles/yr only two things matter: comfort and noise cancellation/isolation. I've traveled with both ATs the M40 and M50, neither does a good job at keeping noise out and boy do they get super hot (physically, not musically). Bose is heavily scoffed at and looked down upon, but honestly at 30K feet with turbines hitting 50-60 dBs noise cancellation becomes non-negotiable. While I wouldn't touch Bose with a 10-foot pole on land (and specially at home), you can't beat them for travel: long battery, excellent NC/NI and bearable SQ.
Sep 2, 2018
rdodev
618
Sep 3, 2018
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Anything is possible with the right attitude, my friend. Except for this.
Sep 3, 2018
RayF
21425
Sep 3, 2018
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Sep 3, 2018
MaverickAH
382
Aug 31, 2018
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Your taste in audio seems to be very similar to mine. Hopefully, you will find my insights helpful.
What I have that's travel worthy: Soundmagic E10BT - Bluetooth IEM's, 12hr battery, cut off at the freq. ends but midrange is magic & has that PRAT factor. My go-to when traveling light.
Blue Ever Blue 1200EX - IEM's, took forever to break in (60+hr), Very good bass & overall detail but a little hot on top. V-shaped response. These are probably my least favorite but slap a Bluewave GET on to them & it smooths out that hot treble turning them into magic! (The GET does the same for the 58X as well!)
Sennheiser HD 25 - On ear, original model. Wonderful midrange & soundstage but cut off at both frequency extremes with no a lot of bass detail. Bullet-proof! Power hungry.
Sennheiser HD1 - On ear with a very similar sound sig to the HD 25's but with better extension on both frequency ends. (On loan to niece)
JBL E55BT Quincy Edition - Bluetooth, Over ear. Decent passive noise reduction. A good solid pair of fun, every day headphones that do nothing terribly wrong. They are warm sounding with a tube-like quality. They do lack a bit in the area of detail retrieval though. Very efficient w/ high volume.
Sennheiser PXC 550 - Bluetooth, Over ear, Active NC. My favorite with excellent sound & high PRAT factor. Not a throw-around pair of headphones. They do fold & travel well in case though. Software app is pretty good.
B&O H7 - Bluetooth, Over ear (barely). Wonderful sounding headphones with a few minor quirks. Detail in the upper range is excellent but the midrange can sound a little recessed on some material. They're the best looking & best built of the bunch. Definitely not for throwing around! Noise isolation is lacking as is the software app.
I am seriously considering the German Maestro 8.35D as a good, bullet-proof, throw-around pair of travel headphones.
Aug 31, 2018
Stunt
30
Aug 31, 2018
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One more suggestion if you're planar magnetic guy. The audeze sine. This is a heavy recommendation especially if your iPhone user.
Aug 31, 2018
Stunt
30
Aug 31, 2018
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Honestly for portability and the tons of reviews that I have read. When the drop returns you should roll with the thinksound on2. It had amazing reviews for multiple critics. Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to get a pair but I wish I had grabbed it in the last drop. I ended up choosing the hifiman 4xx. Which this is my first planar magnetic which I do like. But I wish I would have kept the drop for the thinksound on2.
Aug 31, 2018
ohsigmachi
225
Aug 31, 2018
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The ATH M40x is a nice lightweight can for not too much money (and I prefer it's sound to the M50x).
Step up to the MSR7 for a bit more cash and "refinement."
Personally though I love my Sony WH1000XM2.
Aug 31, 2018
ProfessorPat
370
Aug 31, 2018
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Looks like you're pretty set against the on ear option, but the HD25 (at least in the 25-1 II variant) is fantastic, light, durable, and while not a huge concern for many, rebuildable.
Swappable pads, removable cable (with the same plugs Senn uses on the HD580/6xx and whatever else it's popped up on), and they are essentially designed for broadcasting, so isolation is pretty solid for what you're getting in terms of size and clamp.
Better options out there I'm sure, but my HD25-1 II gets a solid bit of my ear time, portable or not.
Aug 31, 2018
texindus
155
Aug 31, 2018
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My current favorite closed-back(s) are the 1more Triple Over-Ears and the Takstar Pro 82
The 1more's are raved and are even on Tyll's wall if that's worth anything to you. I'm also a bit biased towards 1more and have been a fan of their works since the Xiaomi Piston 2, so there's that as well. Only con at glance is the pads - although they are technically swappable, the design of the pads themselves are very much integrated in the tuning of the headphone (hence why some air pockets exists around the cup). Fantastic, but just a bit too power hungry, but I doubt you wouldn't bring a portable dac/amp when you're this invested already. Comfort could be better (on-ear, lot of headband pressure). Sound is pretty damn good. Detachable LR 2.5mm cables and collapsible. Considering it's 2 misses on your list, I'd move on to the Takstars:
The Pro 82 I love for being so light, so good (bass port gimmicks either off or middle depending on your genre/mood), and very comfortable. A glance at the design you'll see it's a rip of the Sony MDR1A, which one can assume that they were probably manufactured/sourced by Takstar to begin with. Best general review I can give them is that they are a half-priced, tamer MDR1A. This headphone has a cult following on Head-Fi, where one poster in particular makes comparisons to the Fostex TH-900 due to the Takstar's strong scaling. Detachable 2.5mm. Pads aren't user-changable but still can be done.
I know price isn't a factor but in terms of closed back performance, these haven't disappointed me. FWIW my brother tossed me back his ATH-M50 after receiving a Pro 82 as a gift.
Aug 31, 2018
DontDooDad
94
Aug 31, 2018
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Focal Listen. $149 during Black Friday. Better than the M50x in every way except you cannot rotate the earcups. But more comfortable, better sound signature (less harsh, more bass, without going crazy), great imaging, very efficient. Love em.
Aug 31, 2018
DontDooDad
94
Sep 1, 2018
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True, I'm lucky that my ears fit, just barely. I'm adjusting the headband to the second furthest point, too. I have heard from someone else who claims to have a large head that the Listen weren't for them.
Sep 1, 2018
ridhuankim
598
Sep 3, 2018
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amen
Sep 3, 2018
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