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Moving on up from HD 58X

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#1
Hello everybody,

I wanted to ask more experienced people (maybe someone who walked a similar way) about headphones upgrade. From the title, I currently own a HD 58X, powering them with Aune X7S + Topping D10, equalized by PeaceEQ using a preset.
Now, talking aside this setup, generally I love and enjoy female vocals (kind of a drug for me, I'm mesmerized by certain female voices), instruments like acoustic guitar, bass, blues, indie genres, dream pop, pianos but when the mood is right also classic rock/metal, maybe even some rap.

With these preferences, what headphones would you suggest for me if I wanted to upgrade from HD 58X? Headphones need to be opened.
I've been looking into LCD-2 C being worried about their comfort and rolled-off higher mids (female vocals?). Comfort is a big deal for me - I hate when headphones slide off and need to repeatedly adjusted (i.g. I would "murder" designers of ATH AD700X for their head bridge).

Thank you a lot for any tips and suggestions
 

daftcombo

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#2
If you already EQ it, then what you'll want is headphones with larger soundstage or more comfort.
 
OP
E
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Thread Starter #8
First, it's always better listening to something before buying it. Especially for the pricier things.

Saying that, if you want to experience things outside of the sennheiser brand, the Focal Elex might be a worthy upgrade for you.
That goes without saying! It's easier said than done though. There is a shop where you can test headphones but their models available are very limited. Of course, there's a 14 day refund policy in my country, so I could buy any of headphones, try them for say 10 days (not nearly enough to judge) and return them. But I find this practice morally disgusting, well, with headphones anyway (I wouldnt mind doing it with keyboards or PC displays/monitors). But how else to try comfort and sound?
 
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#11
I own and have listened to some very expensive headphones, I have the 58x to reference, HD800s are a very good upgrade and ZMF headphones are another very good headphone upgrade, I have Aeolus and want Verite closed, currently I am listening to the Hifiman Edition XX and for the price these large planers would be a huge comfort and sound upgrade for the money.
 

JJB70

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#12
If you want more premium build, or comfort or just want something with more wow factor then there are a lot of options to step up from the HD58X. However, if it is about SQ then you have already gone past the point where you will notice a really significant improvement in SQ in my opinion.
 

Veri

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#13
I own and have listened to some very expensive headphones, I have the 58x to reference, HD800s are a very good upgrade and ZMF headphones are another very good headphone upgrade, I have Aeolus and want Verite closed, currently I am listening to the Hifiman Edition XX and for the price these large planers would be a huge comfort and sound upgrade for the money.
that's a lot of headphones :)
 

Fluffy

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#15
That goes without saying! It's easier said than done though. There is a shop where you can test headphones but their models available are very limited. Of course, there's a 14 day refund policy in my country, so I could buy any of headphones, try them for say 10 days (not nearly enough to judge) and return them. But I find this practice morally disgusting, well, with headphones anyway (I wouldnt mind doing it with keyboards or PC displays/monitors). But how else to try comfort and sound?
I think you can find physical stores with the major brands in most countries. Doing some leg work can actually save you money and time in buying and returning (or reselling) gear.
 

flipflop

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#17
Hello, it was a preset made by a guy called Oratory1990. Details here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/lr0t5bm0g9h167t/Sennheiser HD58X.pdf?dl=0
Thanks.
Unfortunately, it's a very aggressive equalization based on a single measurement. I've made a new preset for you that takes both oratory's and Rtings' measurements into account, only making adjustments to problems they both agree on. It's a lot more subtle, but it won't make anything worse.
Download: https://mega.nz/#!t9xCxATT!tKuMJNW6Z9_WMygMUvubt5U7sQ4twGK7L8wGwPRDXYM
Or if you want to do it manually:
Filter 1: Peakfilter, 19 Hz, Gain 6 dB, Q 1
Filter 2: Peakfilter, 230 Hz, Gain -1 dB, Q 1.5
Filter 3: Peakfilter, 4500 Hz, Gain 3 dB, Q 12
Preamp: -6 dB
Note that the preamp is 0.5 dB lower than the oratory EQ, so you will have to lower the preamp of your current EQ to -6 dB if you want to do an A/B comparison.
 
OP
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Thread Starter #19
Thanks.
Unfortunately, it's a very aggressive equalization based on a single measurement. I've made a new preset for you that takes both oratory's and Rtings' measurements into account, only making adjustments to problems they both agree on. It's a lot more subtle, but it won't make anything worse.
Download: https://mega.nz/#!t9xCxATT!tKuMJNW6Z9_WMygMUvubt5U7sQ4twGK7L8wGwPRDXYM
Or if you want to do it manually:
Filter 1: Peakfilter, 19 Hz, Gain 6 dB, Q 1
Filter 2: Peakfilter, 230 Hz, Gain -1 dB, Q 1.5
Filter 3: Peakfilter, 4500 Hz, Gain 3 dB, Q 12
Preamp: -6 dB
Note that the preamp is 0.5 dB lower than the oratory EQ, so you will have to lower the preamp of your current EQ to -6 dB if you want to do an A/B comparison.
Thanks a lot, I will try that out!
 
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#20
I have been on a similar search looking for that next headphone, trying to stay in the Mid-Fi range ( < $700 ) I rolled through a few of them, I like intimate vocals, blues, rock, Alternative/indie and step into some classical one in whiles.
  • AGK 712 earlier headphone;
  • Hifiman
    • HE 4xx Drop,
    • HE-560,
    • Ananda $699 at Amazon and Headphones.com; <- just made a list with a price drop.
  • Sennheiser HE-6xx;
  • Focal Elex <-
  • Dan Clark Aeon X (an alternative is Aeon 2 note is above my mid-fi range @ $899)
Right now, I have XD05 Plus DAC/AMP with 1W @ 32 Ohms paired with it AK4493 DAC. For a portable solution, it plenty of power to support any of these headphones.

In this space of mid-level headphones, I say look at the headphones above; I would say Focal Elex or Hiifiman Ananda would fit your needs. They are both very good headphones that are easy to drive but open up with more powerful amps. There are both great with female Vocals, Piano, Bass, and Guitar.

Focal reaches higher and still has excellent bass Extention with a wider, more full stage. Electric Guitars like on AC/DC "Ride On", just seem to have little more detail and are tonally correct to that Marshell sound, (I play the guitar with Marshall JMP 100 and JTM45 amps) One beautiful thing the Ananda and Elex use the same headphone cables so you can interchange them.

Ananda is a little darker, the treble is not as rich and bright as Focal, but the Ananda has a very good reveal of bright instruments like triangles, both have great midrange, great bass. They are very complementary.

If you want something warmer but even more intimate but with excellent instrument separation good staging, and deep bass. I have been enjoying the Aeon X, but be prepared to get an upgraded amp; if it were a new purchase, I l would look at AEON 2. This super comfortable headphone that is easy to listen to for longer sessions. Now I would get Ananda or Elex before Aeon. But has something different when playing Vocals with a darker background.

Tracks I have have been using to test female vocal are which get you a few more instruments as well ; )
  • Diana Krall " Fly Me to the Moon"
  • Christina Aguilera "Beautiful"
  • Lana Del Ray "Blue Jeans"
  • Elia Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong "Summertime"
  • Jefferson Airplane "Lather" and "White Rabbit"
  • Telepopmusik "Breathe"
  • Berlin Philharmonic, Mirella Freni, Herbert von Karajan, Luciano Pavarotti, Elizabeth Harwood, Rolando Panerai, Gianni Maffeo & Nicolai Ghiaurov. "La bohème, Act I: "Sì. Mi chiamano Mimì". ( Note I prefer the Aeon for this piece)
Two tracks I like for testing Male Vocal is John Lee Hooker's "Jesse James" and Sonny Boy Williamson "Bring It Home."
 
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