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Recommendations for headphones with better bass response at under $200

sharock

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I don’t think anything beats the Shure SRH 840 at or near its price.
SRH440 (non-A) is cheaper and measures maybe a bit better out of the box?

1703064246024.png


I have a pair of SRH440 and K371.

For me, the K371 didn't seal very well until I got Brainwavz oval pads for it. Bear in mind, it measures differently with the pads. Oratory has measurements and EQ with Brainwavz:

1703064430244.png
 

Bernard23

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SRH440 (non-A) is cheaper and measures maybe a bit better out of the box?

View attachment 335677

I have a pair of SRH440 and K371.

For me, the K371 didn't seal very well until I got Brainwavz oval pads for it. Bear in mind, it measures differently with the pads. Oratory has measurements and EQ with Brainwavz:

View attachment 335678
I've just ordered the 840A and the K371. I'll likely use Oratory EQ settings as a starting point, as they're generally very good.
 

Bernard23

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For me, the K371 didn't seal very well until I got Brainwavz oval pads for it. Bear in mind, it measures differently with the pads. Oratory has measurements and EQ with Brainwavz:
Which pads did you get? There is quite a choice....
 

sharock

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Which pads did you get? There is quite a choice....
"Angled Oval Headphone Memory Foam Earpads"


I think try the K371 first and see how you get on.

I nearly sold mine because any head movement with the stock pads broke the seal and killed the bass response.
 

Bernard23

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"Angled Oval Headphone Memory Foam Earpads"


I think try the K371 first and see how you get on.

I nearly sold mine because any head movement with the stock pads broke the seal and killed the bass response.
That's the issue I have with my IEMs, i can't find a tip that seals effectively enough in my right ear.
 

Bernard23

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I closed the day off by grabbing a pair of Shure 840A as they were going cheap, binned the idea of thd 371s and just decided to try the DT770 pro 80 ohm. I was after the 700 pro x but couldn't find a suitably cheap bargain to justify the speculative punt. I figured the 770 will be close enough after EQ for the best part of £100 cheaper.
 

Bernard23

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SRH440 (non-A) is cheaper and measures maybe a bit better out of the box?

View attachment 335677

I have a pair of SRH440 and K371.

For me, the K371 didn't seal very well until I got Brainwavz oval pads for it. Bear in mind, it measures differently with the pads. Oratory has measurements and EQ with Brainwavz:

View attachment 335678
The 840A arrived today, plugged in I can hear why for those with younger ears are put off, they just sounded bright with a bloated mid bass. I've just setup the EQ as above and a big improvement. Bass is still a bit one note-ish but I'm comparing them to the LCD-X which is a bit unfair. No problem with seal or comfort so straight away these are keepers for mobile use.
The Beyers arrive tomorrow.
 

Bernard23

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Question for @solderdude: comparison of your FR plots and noting a bass hump of +8dB at 120Hz, but Oratory1990 doesn't see the same spike. Either way, did you come up with an EQ profile based on your measurements, would be an interesting comparison exercise.
Oratory1990.png
Solderdude.png
 

sharock

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Bernard23

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Aha, yes, most likely. Nothing like comparing two varieties of apple.....
 

solderdude

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Bernard23

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different headphone
I realised that after I posted...:facepalm:
different target
OK, I naively assumed you were both Harman?
different test fixture
This is more concerning. If you obtain wildly different results of the same measurand using different techniques, then at least one of those techniques is unsuitable. How do we establish which one is reliable? Apologies, I don't know the details of the test itself, and aware that for many things we have differing standard test methods etc.

That said, I appreciate the effort that you and others go to test this stuff, and share it for free to help us make more informed choices!
 

solderdude

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I have my own target that deviates a bit from Harman in shape and amplitude.
I find the raise in lows artificial and a bit overdone because it follows a preference (they played with EQ sliders).
This als explains the dip around 150Hz to me as otherwise the bass lift would become a bit muddy.
My compensation follows a more natural curve and has less boost, there is some boost though, just not artificial in shape and amplitude.

I use a pinnaless and ear canal less fixture as I am interested in what comes out of the driver and am not interested in what some fake ear and earcanal makes of it (adds) and then have to try and compensate that again which is the difficult and insccurate part. Peoples ears do not comply to standards.

So my measurements do not adhere to the science. This becomes evident when angled drivers are used.
For non angled drivers there is a reasonable likeness with Amirs measurements.

In this case the biggest culprit is that the headphones differ.
 

Bernard23

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Thanks for sharing that insight. Its interesting to note your thoughts on the Harman target, I have similar conclusion. I have cut the bass shelf that oratory or Amir have developed by 1-2dB. I also find the bass in the supposedly target flat truthear zero Reds to be overpowering and have had to add some EQ below 120Hz.
 

Bernard23

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The 840A arrived today, plugged in I can hear why for those with younger ears are put off, they just sounded bright with a bloated mid bass. I've just setup the EQ as above and a big improvement. Bass is still a bit one note-ish but I'm comparing them to the LCD-X which is a bit unfair. No problem with seal or comfort so straight away these are keepers for mobile use.
The Beyers arrive tomorrow.
Few days in and some observations, all made after using Oratory1990 EQ settings for both phones. I think the Shures are great for low end clarity, for everything else the Beyers are better, though I find they have an odd sealing effect when I tilt me head...maybe I just need to lose weight. Beyers just seem to punch faster, which given I've EQ'd them both to the same taregt means in theory the subjective differences are not entirely FR related. However, the Beyers need more juice to drive them, and they don't isolate so well. Shures probably will get more use as more practical with a phone and a dongle etc, and better sealing, though I do slightly prefer the 770s out of my desktop setup.

Without EQ they're both a bit meh, if you've older ears like me, the 770 would be the better (inherently flatter) bet.
 
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