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Decisions, decisions.

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by Audiotfoot, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. Audiotfoot

    Audiotfoot AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Lewistown, Montana, USA
    It's time to purchase new headphones. My vintage Lafayettes sounded pretty good compared to my inexpensive modern phones. But, alas, those have perished. And then my son let me listen to his Sony MDR950N1 Bluetooth noise canceling headphones. Holy great sound, Batman, my old Lafayettes and the departed inexpensive new headphones sound like tin can and string setups in comparison.

    It was tempting to go the boy one better and buy a Sony WH-1000XM2. But reviews and comments indicate that the headphones in that line have a tendency to break where the headband connects to the ear piece.. And Sony appears to consider that user abuse, not covered under warranty.

    So - lots of time on AudioKarma and other places on the net looking. Cordless? Corded? Each has benefits. Noise canceling? I'd like that, a lot of my headphone use is in noisy environments. But the inexpensive units I've tried - sub $100 - haven't been very good at cutting the noise. So is the extra complexity and bother of charging or changing batteries worth it? Hmmmm. Over ear is essential. I've had a set of on-ear phones, and don't like them. Then there is the matter of ear size. Does the fact that my nickname as a kid was Dumbo the Elephant give a clue? And now, 65 years later, they have grown. The last pair of over-ear phones were only partially over-ear.. Incidentally, that is a real advantage of the Lafayettes - there is room to spare for my ears.

    Then there is SQ. I Need, not want, what was heard last week.

    Oh well, we're headed to town Friday, guess I'll see what Best Buy has to offer. Our local ShopKo has nothing. But, if anyone has thoughts about what might meet my needs (wants?), well, those thoughts would be appreciated.
     

     

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  2. judsonw

    judsonw Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    796
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA, USA
    I have two questions.

    1. Budget?
    2. Do they have to be over-ear?

    If they need to be over-ear, you can disregard the rest of this post. Otherwise, read on.

    My reason for asking number two is that I have rather enjoyed my Etymotic HF5 ear buds. They are not noise cancelling, but have really good noise isolation (website lists them as 35-42 dB reduction), They sound quite good in my opinion for the price and they made doing non-call center work in a call center environment possible.

    The one drawback I have with them is that if your source is not good, you will hear that. I have some music on my work computer I listen to from time to time, but the work computer is very noisy in the electrical sense. If I have excel open I can sometimes hear a tone whenever I click the mouse button. I have, in times of mild delirium, pretended it was the button for a telegraph and that I knew Morse code. However, with a decent source, such as my ipod, that noise is not there and the sound is crisp.
     
  3. Audiotfoot

    Audiotfoot AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Lewistown, Montana, USA
    Budget. Up to 350. As for earbuds, I have a relatively inexpensive pair that provide really good sound and good noise isolation. However, to use them I have to remove my hearing aids. I do that at times but really would like to have over-the-ear headphones that can be used with my hearing aids. Thanks for the suggestion I appreciate your time.
     
  4. bluenote79

    bluenote79 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    61
    What did you end up going with @Audiotfoot ? I travel for work so I'm in airports and airplanes more than half the year. I currently have a 10 year old pair of wired Bose noise canceling headphones. Looking for Blutetooth, noise canceling headphones that sound good with a $250 or so budget.
     
  5. Audiotfoot

    Audiotfoot AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Lewistown, Montana, USA
    Sony WH-1000X2. It was a toss-up between them and Bose (don't remember the model). Reviews on both were great, but Sony seemed to hold the edge on noise canceling, which was the deciding factor. It works well, but as with all noise canceling I've tried, when no music is playing outside sounds come through faintly. They can be used wired or Bluetooth. Bluetooth works well, it syncs with every Bluetooth device I own except our Samsung TV. Apparently Samsung devices are needed to connect to the TV. I have quite large ears, but these headphones are comfortable, a little less so if worn with behind-the-ear hearing aides. The Sony app for smart phones allows equalization adjustments that match what my hearing aides do for music, so that isn't really a problem. Battery life is good, 40 hours per charge is claimed, I've never run them that long without charging though. And last, and first, they sound great. At least they do to my ears.

    I paid $350 for them at Best Buy. My son has a set of $250 Sony headphones that make me wonder if the extra $100 was worth spending. I don't remember the model number, but it wouldn't hurt to look at some in that price range.. Also, Sony has just come out with the WH1000X3 headphones. You might find a WH1000X2 at a discounted price.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018 at 11:08 AM
    cratz2 likes this.
  6. cratz2

    cratz2 Addicted Member

    Messages:
    5,546
    Location:
    Indy, IN
    I have a pair of Sony WH-CH700s that are my only activel noise cancelling Bluetooth headphones. I bought them for plane use.

    At my work, I'm often surrounded by multiple machines the size of a small apartment. I tried them at work one day. The noise cancelling is simply too effective. I'm not a jumpy person at all, but people were always walking up and tapping me on the shoulder and I had absolutely no idea they were there.

    In a more relaxed environment, they would be fantastic and I'm sure the newer and higher end WH1000X2s are very effective at noise cancelling.
     

     

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