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Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

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Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby Imran500 » Thu Oct 10, 2013 7:26 pm

Seeing as I'm going through a thorough upgrade of my gear, my headphones have come to mind. I don't have a treated room so can't use the monitors so was wondering if these cans cut the mustard.
Should I shell out for something superior?
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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby alexis » Thu Oct 10, 2013 7:37 pm

Imran500 wrote:Seeing as I'm going through a thorough upgrade of my gear, my headphones have come to mind. I don't have a treated room so can't use the monitors so was wondering if these cans cut the mustard.
Should I shell out for something superior?

There are some 990s out now, but I don't know how much if any better than the 880s they are (I've got a pair of 880s).

The 880s are open-backed, so at least theoretically you could get some bleed into a mic if you are tracking with them on. I've got a pair of 770s for that purpose.

As I'm not in a position to use near fields, I am dependent on cans also. I kind of like alternating the two when I mix ... for some reason they sound different than each other, which is worrisome if I start to think too hard about why that might be. Be that as it may, it's nice from a mixing point of view, it's like the headphone equivalent of a 2nd set of monitors!

As far as whether spending more on a different brand will be a good investment, those who have made the comparison will chime in with help soon, I'm sure.

Have you seen this yet SOS Headphone Shootout, Jan 2010 ? It's getting a bit old, but still helpful perhaps.

Also, Martin Walker's great Mixiing On Headphones article ...
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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby mjfe2 » Thu Oct 10, 2013 9:53 pm

alexis wrote:There are some 990s out now, but I don't know how much if any better than the 880s they are (I've got a pair of 880s).

The 880s are open-backed, so at least theoretically you could get some bleed into a mic if you are tracking with them on. I've got a pair of 770s for that purpose.

Beyerdynamic's model numbers are confusing because the 880s are actually their flagship studio cans. The 990s are priced more like the cheaper 770s. I tried the 880s but didn't like the highest highs because they seemed a bit sibilant. Settled on Sennheiser's HD600, which are darker sounding but in terms of detail didn't seem any better.

Sure you can get more expensive cans (e.g. beyer do a 'T1') but personally I can't imagine headphones sounding much better than the ones we're talking about. Also, I know plenty of pro classical engineers making records today who are still happy with their HD600/650s so I can't see myself ever upgrading.
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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby Slash7 » Fri Oct 11, 2013 5:30 pm

I think it also depends on the music genre you work.
But in general these headphones are good
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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby Imran500 » Mon Oct 14, 2013 11:35 am

After all of that I'm actually using DT770s
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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby bonesinc » Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:18 am

I have a couple of different headphones and I find that, for mixing, the DT-770 is a bit too heavy on the low end for me. But if you know your headphones really well and you listen to your music through them you might want to stick to them.

I use a pair of Fischer Audio FA-003 headphones for mixing duties. I do most of my mixing on my near-field monitors but for things like checking the low end and cleaning up tracks the Fischers are indispensable for me.

What is currently feeding your headphones? My experience is that a dedicated headphone amplifier can make a positive audible difference over most integrated headphone outputs. For example the low end sounds much more solid on my DT-770 with a separate headphone amplifier instead of using just the headphone output of my audio interface. It's not just speakers that like a bit of power driving them.
Try listening to the same song(s) from different headphone sources and I think you'll hear differences.

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Re: Should I upgrade my Beyerdynamic DT 880s?

Postby Karl H. » Fri Oct 18, 2013 7:01 pm

I am using DT770s, and I noticed a huge difference when I switched soundcards. Before, I was using a Delta1010 LT card, and was monitoring through a cheap Behringer mixer as the soundcard only had line outs. Then I replaced that with a MOTU 2408 mkII, which has a dedicated headphone output. The MOTU is relatively high-end compared to the Delta1010, and the sound quality difference over the headphones was huge. I'm not particularly golden-eared, but the MOTU brought out lots of more details. Possibly a good dedicated headphone amp will be even better.
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