Author Topic: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky  (Read 7008 times)

Offline Wolvebain

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Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« on: February 23, 2013, 06:44:22 AM »
Hi guys,

I was wondering, since we have a very limited choice of headphones [over-ear/around-ear/in-ear] locally, perhaps we could put a table of the below, and make it a sticky-thread:
  • headphone [make/model]
  • it's rating [pro/cons]
  • sound type/for music type
  • competitor/rival
  • price range
  • where to buy locally

What do you guys think?
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Offline BWS

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2013, 08:56:11 AM »
This thread sticky'd for that very purpose
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Offline kamikazi

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2013, 04:12:55 PM »
For Westone's excellent in-ear monitors guys can contact Noise Clipper based in Persequor Park, Pretoria.

I have the Westone 4s and they are easily the best IEMs I have ever listened to without going the full custom route. They have 4 balanced armature drivers with a 3 way crossover. Their sound can only be described as balanced, smooth, slightly warm with a nice representation of all frequencies and as such they are suitable for all music genres. I particularly like them for classical and alternative music. The mid-range is perhaps their greatest strength and it is able to dig out details and transients that I have rarely noticed on my other over ear headphones. The Westones are quite pricey (+-R5k - R6k), especially with the current poor exchange rate, but Westone offers an excellent warranty and it comes with plenty of accessories and different style eartips out of the box and their build quality should mean that they will last quite some time. The IEMs are designed to be worn over the ear style. They are easy to drive and require no amplification. They sound great out of my Samsung Galaxy phones and even better out of my desktop DAC.

For alternatives people can look at at the Shure SE535 and then there is also Sony's XBA-4 and I have heard that recently it is possible to get Ultimate Ears IEMs in South Africa where the UE900 is a competitor. For over ear headphones options with a similar sound signature I have often found that the Westone 4 are compared to the Sennheiser HD650 and the Sennheiser Momentum range.

Rating: 4/5 (superb allround sound, a bit too expensive)

« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 04:36:05 PM by kamikazi »

Offline kamikazi

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2013, 04:24:03 PM »
Another IEM, the Yamaha EPH-100. Check out the thousands of posts on Head-fi on this excellent In Ear Monitor. Originally considered a FOTM there, it still generating strong interest more than 1,5 years after its release which implies that it has comfortably shaken off that tag and can be considered a game changer in the IEM market.

Considered amazing value in Britain and the US at around 100GBP/$150. In South Africa you can find them for less than that! How cool is that? I paid R800 for mine in April 2012 and they are simply the best sound I have ever purchased for that kind of money. To give the EPH-100 high praise, there is not a lot that separate them from the much more expensive Westone 4s that I currently have. In fact I would venture to say that they have better oomph in the bass and a comparable mid-range. They are also great lookers with a sleek aluminium housing. Where I do fault the EPH-100s is I don't find them particularly comfortable to wear due to the large nozzles and they have a slightly odd sounding treble though in no way grainy or harsh. I am still trying to source tips that would allow a more comfortable fit for my ears. I take along the EPH-100s whenever I travel and don't want to risk damage to my Westone IEMs and for that purpose they are fantastic. For electronic and dance based music I don't think there is a better IEM out there. They are also great for female vocals.

I sourced mine from Sounds Great in Centurion, but I noticed that Balanced Audio has started marketing these on their website so I presume that availability of these should have become better than in the past. At the price I don't believe these IEMs have any rivals in South Africa.

Rating 4.5/5 (would be an easy 5 if the fit wasn't an issue)

« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 04:33:36 PM by kamikazi »

Offline Atom8

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Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2013, 09:21:23 PM »
On Kamikazi's recommendation in a post last year, I bought a pair of the Yamaha EPH-100, and absolutely love them. Outpace the Sennheiser cx-300 by about a hundred miles - in fact I don't find the Sennys better than stock i-earphones apart from a better shape.

If R 850 ish is your budget I'd grab the Yamahas without hesitation.

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Offline Wolvebain

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2013, 07:36:17 PM »
Also picked up a pair of Yamaha EPH-100 from Sounds Great, at the Centurion Mall, for R.649.oo...  WoW!!! Just using them on my MBPwR & mainly on my Rockboxed Sansa Clip+, they seem to sound brighter [mids] & have slightly tighter/more punchy bass than my Vsonic GR07 Bass Edition's...

They do have some downsides tho..
One of them is the fit & feel.  My Vsonic GR07 Bass Edition's are far more comfortable and are more secure, even without it's removable/attachable around-the-ear bands [ which I'll use with these Yamaha EPH-100:) ] and without the Sony EPEX10A replacement ear-tips [as in stock set that came with GR07 BE's].

On topic of ear-tips... Sadly, the Sony EPEX10A replacement ear-tips won't fit on these Yamaha EPH-100 :( I'll do some investigating and see if I can find something similar to the EPEX10A that works on them.

Final gripe is the cable.. They tangle VERY easily... And I don't believe I'm saying that due to the friendly [tho candy-striped] cable of the Vsonic GR07 Bass Edition's, but I can't say I'm not biased because of them.  Tho, I've seen & used worse cables..

Overall, these R649.oo IEM's are worth FAR more than what they cost...
Thanks to kamikazi for this amazing recommendation!!! You're the MAN!!! :)
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Offline Prince

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2013, 11:27:25 AM »
 8)

I bought a pair of Sennheiser HD201 cans for PC and general stereo listening. All I can say is that the Sennies sound brilliant for their price. They have great clarity, with good bass articulation. Very comfortable for long listening. I'd rate them 4/5 as the head band is not adjustable and the cord is overly too long. I bought my pair from Audiovision, Canal Walk for R499.



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Offline Wolvebain

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2013, 05:55:09 PM »
Small heads-up on the Yamaha EPH-100:  I read online that some folks had better comfort using the smaller ear-tips, so I've just tried it out for myself.  Currently using the SS ear-tips,as they seem to lodge deeper without pushing, and don't move around; so better fit  Comfort/feel wise, I've been using them for about 30minutes, and because I haven't pushed them in to fit securely, it feels much better than before.  Sound has degraded at all either :)
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Offline CORY

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2013, 05:01:29 PM »
I didn't get the Sennheisers, but somebody please rate them. They must be in here , somewhere
Cory Voigt
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Offline Wolvebain

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2013, 08:37:42 PM »
Headphone [make/model]: JBL J88 over ear headphones
Rating [pro/cons]: 7/10 - Pros: Great mids & mid-bass [punchy bass]. Cons: Lacks sub-bass rumble/boom; Ear-pads are a tad too small [for me & some vulcan people]; Insulation is lacking [sounds bleed is noticeable]
Sound type/for music type: All, although I'd not look at these headies for dubstep & other sub-bass focused music
Competitor/rival: At it's price range, nothing that I've found & tried locally.
Price range: R.1,299.oo - R.1,600.oo
Where to buy locally: TakeALot.co.za

Construction:
The ear-pads on them are not very comfortable as they are slightly on the smaller side for my ears.  The ear-pads themselves are on the puffy/thick side, so the headies look rather big when the are worn.
Also, the insulation is not the best; both external noise/sound seeping-in and sound bleed seeping out are noticeable.
Overall construction is solid & secure, but tho the cable is replaceable, it seems to use a proprietary lock mechanism/bevel which might mean some modding if using a generic replacement cable.

Sound:
As for the sound, it's not perfect, but not too bad either.
The mids are are very pronounced and clear; very nice indeed.
The highs are there, ever so slightly dull but still present...
The Bass is strange tho... the mid-bass is ever present, which gives it great punchy-ness... However, the sub-bass lacks significant rumble/boomy-ness; which can be somewhat compensated for with the right EQ settings.

Driving them with a Rockboxed Sansa Clip+ works well, tho some additional amplification helps.
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Offline SwitchZA

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2013, 11:15:37 AM »
On Kamikazi's recommendation in a post last year, I bought a pair of the Yamaha EPH-100, and absolutely love them. Outpace the Sennheiser cx-300 by about a hundred miles - in fact I don't find the Sennys better than stock i-earphones apart from a better shape.

If R 850 ish is your budget I'd grab the Yamahas without hesitation.

If you're in Joburg / Sandton, Judy on the forum can help you.

Hi guys.

I'm looking for somewhere to buy a pair of the Yamaha eph-100. Couldn't see a 'Judy' in the member list. I'm in Joburg / Sandton area - any ideas where I could get hold of these?

Offline Family_Dog

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2013, 02:43:29 PM »
Judy


Click on 'Judy".

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Offline SwitchZA

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2013, 08:53:12 PM »
Aha! it's a disguise :) Thanks.

Offline Wolvebain

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2014, 09:29:20 PM »
Headphone [make/model]: Sennheiser IE 80 In-Ear
Rating [pro/cons]: 9/10  - Pros: Amazing Sound detail & space.  Great highs & bass [sub + mid bass]. Replaceable cable + various in-line MIC/ControlTalk cables in the market.[/sub] Cons: Stock ear-tips are not the greatest of fit/comfort, and have poor insulation [sounds bleed is noticeable].  Sound bleed is from the bass-tuning cavity is very noticable [tape-mod sorts this out]. Price is really out there
Sound type/for music type: All
Competitor/rival: At it's price range, nothing that I've found & tried locally.
Price range: R.4,099.oo - R.4,720.oo
Where to buy locally:
Construction:
Solid built units, that are aesthetically impressive with it's brushed-metal housing.  Weight of the units are not noticable to me.
The bass-tuning feature is great, but the cavity for tuning causes a lot of sound bleed.  I've used a piece of tape to block this cavity, which resolved the issue.

Cable is interchangeable, with a variety of custom choices available from on-line stores.  Sennheiser also has a stock cable with in-line MIC/ControlTalk features; again, variety of custom choices of this type of cable is available.
Stock cable is fairly good.  I rarely used it, as I use a custom cable with in-line MIC/ControlTalk with my phone [HTC One M8]

The stock ear-tips are a really disappointing, considering the price & quality of these earphones.  They are uncomfortable & have poor insulation.  The boxed foam-tips do provide better comfort, but have the worse sound bleed.
I've replaced the stock ear-tips with the medium double-flanged ones that came with the MEElectronics Original Eartips for M11+/M11P+ Earphones (10 pairs of ear tips) (Black) I purchased.  This provides a great fit, comfort, and insulation.


Sound:
These earphones sound amazing.  Definite upgrade from my Yamaha EPH-100's.
Sound is very detailed and clear.  Highs & Bass are really stunning. 
The Highs are crisp & present, but not too sharp [no ice-pick in left eye feeling].
The Mids are are present and clear; not dull in the least, but slightly less pronounced as the Highs and Bass.  Easily compensated for with EQ settings to bring their brightness up to the same level as the Highs & Bass.
The Bass is clear, not over-cooked nor dull.  Both Sub-Bass & Mid-Bass are exceptional, providing both great punchy-ness & rumble/boomy-ness

Final word
These are truely amazing IEM's.  Stock, they are great.  With a bit of changes [cable, ear-tips, blocking the bass-tuning cavity] they are INSANE!
They are easily driven by my HTC One M8 phone [crazy loud at full volume],  which removes the need for additional a portable headphone amp, and makes them the perfect on-the-go In-Ears for commuting, work, and play.
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Offline Curlycat

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Re: Headphone rating/recommendations sticky
« Reply #14 on: November 09, 2015, 07:27:38 PM »
I discovered this site, very informative with short concise info on cans.

http://ko.goldenears.net/board/GR_Headphones

You will have to translate to English - in Chrome it's right click and select translate page...