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Which of these heaphones would you buy? #2898698
10/09/19 05:09 PM
10/09/19 05:09 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 58
Glasgow, Scotland
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CoJac Offline OP
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CoJac  Offline 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 05:26 PM
10/09/19 05:26 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 9,447
Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
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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 05:37 PM
10/09/19 05:37 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
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Sheffield, UK
K
KevinM Online content
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KevinM  Online Content
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K

Joined: Feb 2019
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Sheffield, UK
If you are trying the akg 240 I would also try the superlux 681 evo.


Mendelssohn Song without Words Op19,2 and 19,6, Jensen Sehnsucht Op8,5. Chopin Nocturne C# Minor. Schumann Hasche Mann from Kinderszenen Op15,3. https://soundcloud.com/sheffieldkevin
DP: Kawai MP11SE. HP: Superlux HD681 EVO
Re: Which of these heaphones would you buy? [Re: CoJac] #2898710
10/09/19 05:42 PM
10/09/19 05:42 PM
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U3piano Online content
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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 04:36 AM
10/10/19 04:36 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 04:37 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 05:25 AM
10/10/19 05:25 AM
Joined: Sep 2017
Posts: 850
South Wales
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Colin Miles Offline
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Colin Miles  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2017
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South Wales
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 09:04 AM
10/10/19 09:04 AM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,460
Cheshire, United Kingdom
Doug M. Offline
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Doug M.  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2014
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Cheshire, United Kingdom
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 09:59 AM
10/10/19 09:59 AM
Joined: Mar 2019
Posts: 68
New York
K
KL NY Offline
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KL NY  Offline
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K

Joined: Mar 2019
Posts: 68
New York
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 10:38 AM
10/10/19 10:38 AM
Joined: Sep 2017
Posts: 850
South Wales
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Colin Miles Offline
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Colin Miles  Offline
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C

Joined: Sep 2017
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South Wales
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 10:57 AM
10/10/19 10:57 AM
Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 273
Philadelphia
Bruce In Philly Online content
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Bruce In Philly  Online Content
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Philadelphia
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 02:16 PM
10/10/19 02:16 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 58
Glasgow, Scotland
C
CoJac Offline OP
Full Member
CoJac  Offline OP
Full Member
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Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 58
Glasgow, Scotland
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 02:18 PM
10/10/19 02:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,043
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
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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 03:12 PM
10/10/19 03:12 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 9,447
Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
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MacMacMac  Offline
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Raleigh, North Carolina
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 03:35 PM
10/10/19 03:35 PM
Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 273
Philadelphia
Bruce In Philly Online content
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Bruce In Philly  Online Content
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Philadelphia
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 03:53 PM
10/10/19 03:53 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 58
Glasgow, Scotland
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CoJac Offline 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 03:54 PM
10/10/19 03:54 PM
Joined: Nov 2017
Posts: 602
Celestis
Granyala Offline
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Granyala  Offline
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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 04:16 PM
10/11/19 04:16 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,460
Cheshire, United Kingdom
Doug M. Offline
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Doug M.  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,460
Cheshire, United Kingdom
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 05:03 PM
10/11/19 05:03 PM
Joined: Sep 2017
Posts: 850
South Wales
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Colin Miles Offline
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Colin Miles  Offline
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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 09:30 AM
10/12/19 09:30 AM
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Posts: 58
Glasgow, Scotland
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CoJac Offline OP
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Glasgow, Scotland
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 01:15 PM
10/12/19 01:15 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,460
Cheshire, United Kingdom
Doug M. Offline
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Doug M.  Offline
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Cheshire, United Kingdom
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 01:18 PM.

Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
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