Sennheiser HD 800 S
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I've owned many different types of Head Phones. Previously owned the Sennheiser HD598, HD600, HD700 and now the endgame, HD800S. Never owned or even listened to the original HD800 but read a lot about them. Here is my set up for reference: CD, SACD, DVD-A, Blu-Ray, ALAC 96/24 files > OPPO BDP105D > balanced interconnects > Sennheiser HDVA600 > a balanced cable > HD800S. I am totally satisfied with this setup - the HD800s with the balanced cable are perfect for my tastes (light jazz, classic rock, folk, some alternative rock). The cable added a bit extra weight to the low end and smoothness to the top end - they already sounded pretty great but this is an additional enhancement. Everything you read about the wide sound stage on these HPs is true - astounding. Everything you read about them being light on bass is not true - if there is heavy bass on the recording it will be faithfully reproduced. Just like everything else on a recording, you will hear it accurately, good and bad. Some of my albums were not well recorded (muddy, harsh, compressed, etc.) and the flaws are certainly shown up by with these HPs. On the other hand, well recorded albums sound fantastic and these HPs bring that wonderful music that was well recorded, mixed and mastered to the fore in glorious fidelity. I have to believe this is the end game for me.
Pros: Excellent fidelity, accuracy, construction, comfort, sound stage. End game HPs for a reasonable price.
Cons: Need a good amplifier to be driven to their heights (but it's worth it).