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Which of these heaphones would you buy? #2898698
10/09/19 04:09 PM
10/09/19 04:09 PM
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CoJac Online content OP
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Hi,

I am hopefully getting my new DP delivered in a couple of weeks and thought I should get some decent headphones. I'm not looking to spend lots of money and I'm no audiophile so not looking for top of the range or anything. I have read a few thread on here to get some ideas but can't find anywhere local to try them. When I tried the piano in the showroom they gave me a pair of AKG 175's to try. I thought they sounded good but would rather have open backed and over ear if possible.

Using this as a starting point I looked at the AKG K240mkII. They seem like a similar spec but they are over ear and open backed. I also thought the K702 looked good and is a bit of a step up. In a similar price there is also the Sennheider HD559 which looks like it ticks the boxes.

Reading some of the threads a few people mentioned the Samson SR850. On paper this looks like a higher spec than any of these and they are also the cheapest. Does anyone have experience of these? Do they really beat the other big names?

Theres also the question of impedance. I don't know much about it but if I understand correctly higher ohms means more likely to need an amp but too low and the sound could distort? The 175 I tried were 32ohm and I thought they were good. The SR850 are also 32 so should that mean they will work just as well? The other ones I'm looking at range from 50 to about 80. Do you think these will also work well or would anybody think these need an amp?

Any thoughts on the above welcome or other suggestions too!

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Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898702
10/09/19 04:26 PM
10/09/19 04:26 PM
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I, too, like the over ear, open back approach.

I've heard raves about the K240, but also negatives. I don't know what to believe.

I used $100 Beyerdynamic phones for a long while, switching to $170 Sennheisers last year. I've been happy with the under $200 phones.

It's hard to know what you'll like until you try. Reviews aren't helpful. Neither is my advice. Only your ears know what you like.

So ...
1. I noticed that my local Guitar Center has lots of headphones to try. Does yours? Will they let you plug in your cell phone so that you play back some music of your choice?
2. Some people here have ordered headphones online ... and returned them if the phones were not acceptable. That's a cheap way to audition them.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898706
10/09/19 04:37 PM
10/09/19 04:37 PM
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If you are trying the akg 240 I would also try the superlux 681 evo.


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DP: Kawai MP11SE. HP: Superlux HD681 EVO
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898710
10/09/19 04:42 PM
10/09/19 04:42 PM
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I use superlux hd662 evo, these are closed back tough. But, i think they are quite nice, and they were dirt cheap.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898825
10/10/19 03:36 AM
10/10/19 03:36 AM
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From what I've read, AKG has a tendency to be bright, so personally I'd shy away from them b/c I am treble sensitive.

I think before you attempt to buy you need to know what sonic signature you like and then look for that sonic signature in reviews of cans in your price range. That helps to eliminate a lot of the contenders.

You are right to worry about impedance, unless your DP has a nice headamp built in like the higher CA series, try to keep it low. Stay away from 600Ω cans if possible. These are notoriously difficult to drive.

Once you have a few good candidates rounded up, in the world of headphones there is only one thing you can do: try them. No matter what the reviews say, only your ears can make the final judgment. If you have a store nearby where you can demo them: good, better if you can try them on your DP by ordering them online from a dealer with a generous return policy.

Last edited by Granyala; 10/10/19 03:37 AM.

The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898833
10/10/19 04:25 AM
10/10/19 04:25 AM
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For what it is worth I have the Roland RH-A7 Open headphones which are much better than my closed Sennheiser HD 280 pro for my digital at half the price. I also note that Bonners use Roland instore, though they are the closed ones. They also include the RH300 (Closed ones) with the Casio GP510 concert package, but they are expensive and when I spoke to them about the difference between them and the RH200 they said probably not much.


Roland LX7

South Wales, UK
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898873
10/10/19 08:04 AM
10/10/19 08:04 AM
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Cheshire, United Kingdom
Doug M. Online content
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Originally Posted by CoJac
Hi,

I am hopefully getting my new DP delivered in a couple of weeks and thought I should get some decent headphones. I'm not looking to spend lots of money and I'm no audiophile so not looking for top of the range or anything. I have read a few thread on here to get some ideas but can't find anywhere local to try them. When I tried the piano in the showroom they gave me a pair of AKG 175's to try. I thought they sounded good but would rather have open backed and over ear if possible.

Using this as a starting point I looked at the AKG K240mkII. They seem like a similar spec but they are over ear and open backed. I also thought the K702 looked good and is a bit of a step up. In a similar price there is also the Sennheider HD559 which looks like it ticks the boxes.

Reading some of the threads a few people mentioned the Samson SR850. On paper this looks like a higher spec than any of these and they are also the cheapest. Does anyone have experience of these? Do they really beat the other big names?

Theres also the question of impedance. I don't know much about it but if I understand correctly higher ohms means more likely to need an amp but too low and the sound could distort? The 175 I tried were 32ohm and I thought they were good. The SR850 are also 32 so should that mean they will work just as well? The other ones I'm looking at range from 50 to about 80. Do you think these will also work well or would anybody think these need an amp?

Any thoughts on the above welcome or other suggestions too!



Hi CoJac,

1) What's your budget range in £?
2) Also, do you like neutral sounding cans or a bit cans with more bass?
3) a) In ear, b) over the ear or c) on-the-ear cans?
4) If 3b or 3c, do you want open-back or closed back cans?

Kind regards,

Doug.


Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898889
10/10/19 08:59 AM
10/10/19 08:59 AM
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My experience is that, a good headphone to listen music may not be good use with DP. I have 2 nice headphone for music but when I use it for DP, it does not sound good. especially one of them is very bass heavy, it make the piano sound so unreal.

I dont know this apply to every DP and headphone. Just sharing my experience.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: KL NY] #2898904
10/10/19 09:38 AM
10/10/19 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by KL NY
My experience is that, a good headphone to listen music may not be good use with DP. I have 2 nice headphone for music but when I use it for DP, it does not sound good. especially one of them is very bass heavy, it make the piano sound so unreal.

I dont know this apply to every DP and headphone. Just sharing my experience.

Agreed.


Roland LX7

South Wales, UK
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898908
10/10/19 09:57 AM
10/10/19 09:57 AM
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Regarding headphones that sound good or bad with differing equipment.... my my my what an audiophile-like observation.... There are two possible reasons for this. First, the "system" of cheapie headphone amps in our keyboards and the faults of an inexpensive headphone could compliment each other (mask their faults) or exacerbate their faults (such as a bright amp chip and a bright headphone will do). The other is impedence mismatches and this can be caused less by the headphone, but more likely the cheapie and cheaply designed headphone amp in the keyboard.

Short answer: try a few and if possible, on the keyboard you will use it with. Not easy to do, I know, but unfortunately, that is how we are supposed to do it... reviews and opinions will break down because, in most cases, folks are buying inexpensive headphone (say sub $100-$200) and our keyboard just have crappy, cheap amps in them (ever read a review where the keyboard reviewer talks about the headphone system?)

Peace
Bruce in Philly


Peace
Bruce in Philly
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899004
10/10/19 01:16 PM
10/10/19 01:16 PM
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CoJac Online content OP
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Thanks everyone for the responses. I've contacted all the local music stores and hifi stores to see if I can try any of these. Nobody has them available. The music stores tend to just have cheap ones to demo and hifi stores mainly have really expensive ones! Think I'm looking for something in the middle! The hifi stores also mainly have closed ones available to demo. Also cant find anyone in the uk that lets you return if they are used so cant use that option to demo.

I think I'm looking for something fairly flat that wont alter the sound. I did like the sound of the AKG K175 that I tried in store so thinking leaning towards the K240 as they seem like an open back over ear version with other specs quite similar. That said the impedance is slightly higher so may not get quite the same result.That said the k175 goes for around £110 and the K240 for about £60 so thinking there must be other differences.

As for budget I'd prob go to around £120 but I'm definitely intrigued by the cheaper brands like samson and superlux. Some the reviews compare them very well against much more expensive models. Maybe I should just try one them and can always upgrade later if I don't like them!

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899005
10/10/19 01:18 PM
10/10/19 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by CoJac
Maybe I should just try one them and can always upgrade later if I don't like them!

If you order from Amazon.co.uk, you often can return them and get other ones without any questions ask.


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Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899021
10/10/19 02:12 PM
10/10/19 02:12 PM
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There's no such thing as flat in the headphone world.
Originally Posted by CoJac
I think I'm looking for something fairly flat that wont alter the sound.

All you can do is try to find something you like ...
Originally Posted by CoJac
I did like the sound of the AKG K175 that I tried in store so thinking leaning towards the K240 ...

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899028
10/10/19 02:35 PM
10/10/19 02:35 PM
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I wouldn't let this open back, over the ear.... or whatever limit your choice at this point. Just try what is available first. Just try them.

Peace
Bruce in Philly


Peace
Bruce in Philly
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899034
10/10/19 02:53 PM
10/10/19 02:53 PM
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CoJac Online content OP
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Yep that sounds like good advice. Suppose you wont know what's best until you hear it! Thinking i might take a chance on one of the cheap ones anyway. Figure if they're not great I wont have spent much and they'll do as a second pair for lessons or whatever.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899035
10/10/19 02:54 PM
10/10/19 02:54 PM
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Another aspect, besides neutrality in FR, is comfort. After all, I assume you want to wear them for extended practice sessions.


The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899301
10/11/19 03:16 PM
10/11/19 03:16 PM
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Doug M. Online content
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Originally Posted by CoJac
Thanks everyone for the responses. I've contacted all the local music stores and hifi stores to see if I can try any of these. Nobody has them available. The music stores tend to just have cheap ones to demo and hifi stores mainly have really expensive ones! Think I'm looking for something in the middle! The hifi stores also mainly have closed ones available to demo. Also cant find anyone in the uk that lets you return if they are used so cant use that option to demo.

I think I'm looking for something fairly flat that wont alter the sound. I did like the sound of the AKG K175 that I tried in store so thinking leaning towards the K240 as they seem like an open back over ear version with other specs quite similar. That said the impedance is slightly higher so may not get quite the same result.That said the k175 goes for around £110 and the K240 for about £60 so thinking there must be other differences.

As for budget I'd prob go to around £120 but I'm definitely intrigued by the cheaper brands like samson and superlux. Some the reviews compare them very well against much more expensive models. Maybe I should just try one them and can always upgrade later if I don't like them!


I have the Audiotechnica MRS7 closed back ote cans. They are around your budget and known as a cheaper alternative to the Sennheiser HD600 in terms of their neutral character. I decided after watching a bunch of YouTube reviews as the neutral aspect was my desire also. . They are OK for long practice so long as you bend the headband to adapt the shaping to your skull (that tip was on YouTube). The sound is good to excellent for the price point.

I think one has to go to the £230 mark to get something a grade up.

Kind regards,

Doug.


Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899324
10/11/19 04:03 PM
10/11/19 04:03 PM
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Just to repeat what I said earlier, the Roland RH-A7 Open headphones which are much better than my closed Sennheiser HD 280 pro for my digital at half the price. That is around £70 cf about £125 though they are now nearer £90. And Bonners used the Roland closed RH200 (c £90) instore for demo purposes.


Roland LX7

South Wales, UK
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899449
10/12/19 08:30 AM
10/12/19 08:30 AM
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CoJac Online content OP
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Thanks again for all the great info. Lots to think about. Think I will go round the hifi shops and try what's there even if it's not on my list (or budget). Might help get an idea of different brands and how different designs fit. Think I will still get a cheaper one now so I have something to use with the piano when it arrives and also I can see how much difference there is in the expensive ones. If it's worth it I can always upgrade and keep the others as a second pair.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899511
10/12/19 12:15 PM
10/12/19 12:15 PM
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Doug M. Online content
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Originally Posted by CoJac
Thanks again for all the great info. Lots to think about. Think I will go round the hifi shops and try what's there even if it's not on my list (or budget). Might help get an idea of different brands and how different designs fit. Think I will still get a cheaper one now so I have something to use with the piano when it arrives and also I can see how much difference there is in the expensive ones. If it's worth it I can always upgrade and keep the others as a second pair.


Hifi stores aren't that useful.
They don't stock many of the products or brands useful for digital pianos and comparisons are quite difficult given in store comparisons are limited to the stock they have (and their lack of pianos).

I went through pianoworld posts and shortlisted the ones frequently cited as good for piano. Then I YouTubed them to get ideas about the pros and cons from audiophiles to complement the advice here. MacMacMac has also done an analysis which is posted somewhere, ie. we both have some spreadsheets with the data combined.

Here is my excel ws on headphones under £100, plus a link to Sennheiser outlet (good deals).

Headphones under £100.xlsx

This has some useful info and more expensive cans.

Headphones pianoworld users have posted about & headphone amps

Although it might not feel right, IMO, shortlisting to 3 options and buying on amazon all three then returning the losing cans is a way of testing the most likely options on a digital together. After all, the online retailers are the reason for the lack of hifi stores and the limited stock of remaining stores, so that makes me feel more comfortable about ordering for the purpose of testing and then returning.

Kind regards,

Doug.

Last edited by Doug M.; 10/12/19 12:18 PM.

Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899549
10/12/19 03:05 PM
10/12/19 03:05 PM
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Check out www.audiogon.com for discussions about headphones, and used gear for sale.

Last edited by LarryK; 10/12/19 03:05 PM.

Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Doug M.] #2899663
10/13/19 04:00 AM
10/13/19 04:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
Hifi stores aren't that useful.
They don't stock many of the products or brands useful for digital pianos and comparisons are quite difficult given in store comparisons are limited to the stock they have (and their lack of pianos).

I believe he can still find a signature he likes by testing way more brands than he could possibly order online.
Esp when he wants to know what goes on in the more expensive area of cans.

If he likes a can, it isn't hard to add a small headphone amp to any digital piano and make driving them possible.


The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Doug M.] #2899684
10/13/19 06:18 AM
10/13/19 06:18 AM
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I like this idea ...
Originally Posted by Doug M.
... shortlisting to 3 options and buying on Amazon all three then returning the losing cans is a way of testing the most likely options on a digital together. After all, the online retailers are the reason for the lack of hifi stores and the limited stock of remaining stores, so that makes me feel more comfortable about ordering for the purpose of testing and then returning.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Granyala] #2899712
10/13/19 08:46 AM
10/13/19 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Granyala
Originally Posted by Doug M.
Hifi stores aren't that useful.
They don't stock many of the products or brands useful for digital pianos and comparisons are quite difficult given in store comparisons are limited to the stock they have (and their lack of pianos).

I believe he can still find a signature he likes by testing way more brands than he could possibly order online.
Esp when he wants to know what goes on in the more expensive area of cans.

If he likes a can, it isn't hard to add a small headphone amp to any digital piano and make driving them possible.


Hi Granyala,

If that were the method used to evaluate the sample tone of a digital piano, I would concur. Except that a low sample quality (lower sample resolution) can ruin the enjoyment of a nice sample tone.

From my understanding, there are several considerations:

1) Manufacturers create headphone models designed for radically different purposes, and most stores cater for hifi systems, computer games and cell phone cans rather than digital pianos.

You might well enjoy the tone of a pair of OTE open cans on a hifi, your iPhone or through a computer headphone socket ie, for listening to films/TV, classical music or video game background music and sound effects. That doesn't mean those cans will suit a specific digital piano.

2) Products through individual product lines---ie that share a design purpose---vary vastly in the quality of the components, altering the quality of the output.

Ideally at lower price points, you're looking for a product that has higher quality components than similarly priced products eg a low-cost/higher quality business strategy (maybe Grado and Samson open OTE cans).

3) There is the question of whether buying an external amp to use with cheaper cans would stress low-quality components, making things worse.


What works for specific pianos:

So one the issue IMO is determining which product lines work well on the digital piano you own.
For instance, my Kawai MP7 headphone output isn't powerful enough to drive Sennheiser HD800 headphones without an external amp as those cans have an impedence higher than my MP7 's output can cope well with.


Like - for - like holistic comparison

If you are comparing 3 competing products that occupy the same price point within the same product positioning, ideally you want to holistically compare the 3 products side-by-side, so that you can determine which option you overall prefer. Whilst you may like some aspect of a set of cans you tried on a hifi in a hifi store, you have no reference to judge the performance level of that aspect between competing products on your digital.

Another for instance: Testing the Grado SR80 against the Sennheiser HD558 might be considered a price point equivalent comparison of similarly positioned products, but comparing the SR80's to the Sennheiser Momentum headphones (a very popular product at hifi stores) might be considered a misleading comparison ie because the product positioning of the Momentum cans is different to other competing Sennheiser products.


I think that headphone choice is challenging throughout the different price ranges as...

1) Hifi stores don't offer home test drives of products you request they buy in for you !
2) There are so many manufacturers, models and product positions that choices are almost overwhelming.
3) Users offering advice on pianoworld have different tastes, digital pianos and they are from different age groups so their appreciation of sound varies.

For all these reasons, I think researching the cans and their competitors (eg on YouTube audiophile reviews), getting advice from pianoworld users, and buying 3 cans from a shortlist to compare on your own piano is a good idea.

Kind regards,

Doug.

Last edited by Doug M.; 10/13/19 08:47 AM.

Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Doug M.] #2899762
10/13/19 12:05 PM
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Granyala Offline
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
1) Manufacturers create headphone models designed for radically different purposes, and most stores cater for hifi systems, computer games and cell phone cans rather than digital pianos.

Quick answer, not much time right now, so I read & reply to the rest of your post later:

A headphone is a headphone. End of story.
Only the impedance rating is important when it comes to device synergy, sth. you can circumvent by putting a Headamp into the chain.

Stay tuned until after my raid. laugh


The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899766
10/13/19 12:10 PM
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@G-man ... Yes, the "purpose-built" thing can be stretched too far.

Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Doug M.] #2899832
10/13/19 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
2) Products through individual product lines---ie that share a design purpose---vary vastly in the quality of the components, altering the quality of the output.

3) There is the question of whether buying an external amp to use with cheaper cans would stress low-quality components, making things worse.

[4] If you are comparing 3 competing products that occupy the same price point within the same product positioning, ideally you want to holistically compare the 3 products side-by-side, so that you can determine which option you overall prefer.

[5b]I think that headphone choice is challenging throughout the different price ranges as... [/b]
For all these reasons, I think researching the cans and their competitors (eg on YouTube audiophile reviews), getting advice from pianoworld users, and buying 3 cans from a shortlist to compare on your own piano is a good idea.

Okay, time for the rest laugh

2) Yes, there are some outliers that indeed offer better quality at the same price but in general, when it comes to transducers, you get what you pay for. I wouldn't fuss too much about finding some rare outlier and rather invest the time & energy to up the funds.

3) With all due respect Sir (or Ma'm), that is the whole point of an amp. To take a weak signal and make it bigger to be used in later stages. Amps have very high input impedance, so they DON'T interfere negatively with the stages before them. If that wasn't the case, then stuff like super sensitive instrumentation amplification of extremely weak signals in scientific applications would not be possible. Again: a point any consumer should not worry about unless he builds amps themselves or buys the cheapest and badly engineered junk he can find.

4) Yes, comparing side by side using your own equipment is always best. Sadly, esp when one considers the prospect of a potential expensive purchase, that isn't always possible. So going to the store and trying multiple cans using the same equipment is the next best thing.

5b) Oh absolutely it's a challenge. The market is vast and choosing a HP or speaker is an very personal endeavor. That's why I recommended education first. Before one looks at pricepoints, compatibility or anything else, one must learn what one wants in a speaker or headphone. If you know the signature your ears like, you can start reading bode diagrams (also known as frequency response graphs) and eliminate A LOT of the competition. Again: hearing different systems is the only way to do that.


The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899850
10/13/19 03:18 PM
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Purpose built.... naw.... a headphone is a headphone. The higher the quality (and usually price) the more accurate it aspires to be. That's about it. However..... there are brands that cater to ignorant youth and have big boomy bass..... OK, that is a purpose built phone but not for a class of device, but a class of consumer.

Peace
Bruce in Philly


Peace
Bruce in Philly
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2899942
10/13/19 09:06 PM
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I am about to learn if either (or perhaps both?) of my two very-nice pairs of headphones will make my soon-to-be-delivered new Casio Privia PX-870 digital piano sound good. I currently own the outstanding Sennheiser HD-598 headphones, (over ear/open back) as well as a compact (on ear) pair of Bang & Olufsen H2's. So I'm just curious if any of you may be using either of these two models with their digital piano, and if so, what do you think of them? Will they be a decent match for my new Privia-series piano?

Last edited by camperbc; 10/13/19 09:08 PM.
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2900004
10/14/19 04:08 AM
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With impedances around 50Ω i don't expect any problems.

Whether the Casio has nice sounding samples in the first place is another matter.

And of course, the ultimate deciding factor is your playing. laugh

Originally Posted by Bruce In Philly
However..... there are brands that cater to ignorant youth and have big boomy bass..... OK, that is a purpose built phone but not for a class of device, but a class of consumer.


*chuckles* Quite right. laugh

Last edited by Granyala; 10/14/19 04:09 AM.

The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: camperbc] #2900017
10/14/19 05:11 AM
10/14/19 05:11 AM
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Doug M. Online content
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Originally Posted by camperbc
I am about to learn if either (or perhaps both?) of my two very-nice pairs of headphones will make my soon-to-be-delivered new Casio Privia PX-870 digital piano sound good. I currently own the outstanding Sennheiser HD-598 headphones, (over ear/open back) as well as a compact (on ear) pair of Bang & Olufsen H2's. So I'm just curious if any of you may be using either of these two models with their digital piano, and if so, what do you think of them? Will they be a decent match for my new Privia-series piano?


Hi Camperbc,

We have a Bang & Olufsen store somewhere in Manchester I think. I would like to know your opinion on how they sound compared to the HD598's on your Casio because I am interested in the Bang brand but worried they won't work well on a digital.

I guess you can always purchase a VST to determine if the Casio PX-870 is flattered or not by the cans :-). Certainly if the HD598's are a popular choice, so should be fine for your Casio---unless the Sennheiser sound isn't your cup-of-tea.Will you let us know if the B&O's sound better or even on-a-par with the HD598's, as not many people have commented on them on Pianoworld.

Kind regards,

Doug.


Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Granyala] #2900023
10/14/19 05:24 AM
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Doug M. Online content
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Originally Posted by Granyala


3) With all due respect Sir (or Ma'm), that is the whole point of an amp. To take a weak signal and make it bigger to be used in later stages. Amps have very high input impedance, so they DON'T interfere negatively with the stages before them. If that wasn't the case, then stuff like super sensitive instrumentation amplification of extremely weak signals in scientific applications would not be possible. Again: a point any consumer should not worry about unless he builds amps themselves or buys the cheapest and badly engineered junk he can find..


Hi Granyala,

Thanks for your view on this, I have heard different opinions on this issue of adding headphone amps to a cheap set of cans: people seem to be of differing opinion as to whether it helps or not. This is why I had it down as a question in my mind i.e., I couldn't rationalize how adding an amp to cheap cans would make things worse (as some have said) unless it was stressing some of the cheaper components or amplifying a poor sound quality to exacerbate an unwanted quality of the sound...

That's why I appreciate your take.

I am interested to know if a good headphone amp can improve sound quality or just makes the sound of cheaper cans louder. My previous understanding is that people tend to turn up the volume too much on cheap cans, which just causes distortion; hence, using a headphone amp get's perceived as an increase in sound quality at higher volumes compared to no amp. Then others were saying: no if anything, adding an amp to cheap cans makes things worse. Confusing!

Kind regards,

Doug.

P.S. you'e very polite, I felt like a teacher (being addressed as Sir/Madam).


Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2900123
10/14/19 11:38 AM
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A good amp can improve the sound over a crappy amp that doesn't have enough juice and runs at or even beyond designed capacity.

Electrically speaking, aside from the power requirements, the damping factor (also referred to as impedance matching) is the most interesting aspect of it.

Example: I use a Titanium HD soundcard. Quality of the components is good but it has an output impedance of 35Ω.
That's not a problem for my 250Ω DT-880 but the damping factor gets too low with my Focal Clear, which has 55Ω impedance.

As a rule of thumb, you want your can to have > x10 the output impedance of your amp. That ensures low resonance of bass frequencies and tight control of the drivers.

Now my DT-880 has 250/35 = 7.1
A bit on the low side but should be high enough to not affect the frequency response of the headphone in an audible way.

Focal Clear has 55/35 = 1.5
That's too low. The result is a somewhat exaggerated bass. It adds somewhat of a warm character (which I quite happen to like).

Now, there are amps with a .1Ω output impedance. It may very well be possible that switching now would make it sound cold, uninvolved, even clinical. A.k.a.: technically more correct but possibly less fun to listen to. That's why many people love tube based amplification, though technically inferior to solid state (dodges some stones) they add what many call "pleasing distortions".

Keep in mind, these effect are very subtle but noticeable to an attentive listener.

Beyond that, there is A LOT of audio-vodoo going on in the world of amps and DACs. Tread with caution.

Originally Posted by Doug M.
you'e very polite, I felt like a teacher (being addressed as Sir/Madam).

Thanks, I strive to be, though I don't always succeed. laugh

Last edited by Granyala; 10/14/19 11:41 AM.

The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future will be, the use of electrical Power.
VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 6 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: Doug M.] #2900171
10/14/19 02:19 PM
10/14/19 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
Originally Posted by camperbc
I am about to learn if either (or perhaps both?) of my two very-nice pairs of headphones will make my soon-to-be-delivered new Casio Privia PX-870 digital piano sound good. I currently own the outstanding Sennheiser HD-598 headphones, (over ear/open back) as well as a compact (on ear) pair of Bang & Olufsen H2's. So I'm just curious if any of you may be using either of these two models with their digital piano, and if so, what do you think of them? Will they be a decent match for my new Privia-series piano?


Hi Camperbc,
We have a Bang & Olufsen store somewhere in Manchester I think. I would like to know your opinion on how they sound compared to the HD598's on your Casio because I am interested in the Bang brand but worried they won't work well on a digital.
I guess you can always purchase a VST to determine if the Casio PX-870 is flattered or not by the cans :-). Certainly if the HD598's are a popular choice, so should be fine for your Casio---unless the Sennheiser sound isn't your cup-of-tea.Will you let us know if the B&O's sound better or even on-a-par with the HD598's, as not many people have commented on them on Pianoworld.
Kind regards,
Doug.


Doug, I recently bought the B&O H2's, as I wanted something more compact than the Sennheisers, for when I am laying down listening to music or watching tv shows/movies on my tablet. (the HD598's get a bit "bulky" when I lay my head on a puffy pillow, for instance) I was pleasantly surprised to discover just how similar these two completely different types of headphones actually sound. As so many of us know, you can't go too far wrong with a pair of lovely HD598's.

So you can just imagine my surprise in learning that the H2's do indeed sound, to me at least, to be every bit as nice as my trusty Sennheisers... that's pretty darned impressive! As for comfort level, the H2's are very light and comfortable, but they did require about a week or so of wear for me to get accustomed to the more snug (yet just as comfy) fit. And they look amazing too! Wow, these things are so well-made... top-quality materials/craftsmanship through and through... also the velvety-soft, genuine-lambskin ear pads are a very nice touch!

Yes, I will certainly report back here, once my new Privia PX-870 has been delivered, (hopefully within the next few days) and I've had an opportunity to compare both pairs of phones while playing my early Christmas present!

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