Audio Why is everyone throwing away their wired headphones


Rockfella

WFM blues ...
Section Mod
Which one are you eyeing? I have very limited access to chi-fi stuff..only few KZs and the Blon bl03.
Yes to hell with wireless...I would rather walk like a human bomb in the empty streets... enjoying my music..
BTW Julian, how are your ears now?
I have the blon 03 and love them but I don't see myself using it much because I'm too much happy with my LP6s. Blon 03 is really good but I feel that if I use it daily I might become a bit deaf. It's very engaging and fun but harsh on the ear drums ..
 

Rockfella

WFM blues ...
Section Mod
Very true, I often tend to sleep listening to music/ audio books, very difficult with Blons.
BLON 03s are like "dance till you drop or go home" and in some indian songs "listen to each word and understand why it's said" it's too analytical .. :) Very good for the price .. but it WAKES me up! Forces me to listen to the music .. and enjoy it but not for long.. It is fatiguing :)
 
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red dragon

Justiceforall
Veteran
Did you try the BL 05s?
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I have a very old pair of RE400, those are good to fall asleep with
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My uneducated understanding of popular BTNC over ear headphones:
1. QC35- Noise cancellation: excellent with mild to moderate cabin pressure effect.
Sound quality: surprisingly not bad at all, but character changes considerably with increase in volume.
** Very comfortable. An honest, unassuming tool, but certainly not for critical listening.
My unit doesn't work in passive mode. Can not charge and listen at same time.

2. Bose 700- Other than ANC, absolutely garbage sounding, not comfortable at all. QC35 is a much better buy ( the microphones are possibly SLIGHTLY better)

3.PXC 500: ANC: Gen 1- average, gen II- pretty good ( yet to try on airplane)
Sound: Really great considering the general standard of wireless headphones. When used with USB sounds FANTASTIC ( the driver is top notch)
Slightly harder to drive with BT connection, scales wonderfully in passive mode with both portable and dedicated amp in audio interfaces.
Fairy comfortable and VERY light.
** Smart pause is not working for me anymore after FW upgrade in gen II-.

4. 1000XM3- ANC- FANTASTIC!! with very minimal suction effect.
App: the companion app is really well made.
Not uncomfortable. Can use normal aux cable.
** Everything else sucks. You can make it either a bass or treble canon with the app but can not bring out any detail. Forget details, never heard anything this congested and unnatural from Sony ( used and still using 7506/V6 for 15-20 years in studios)
I know many people love the sound ( including Zeos Pantera from YouTube, and I generally tend to respect his opinion and have become an online friend after buying some stuff from his yard sales) and Zeos sent me some eqs to try, which made them somewhat listenable, but these are bad, really bad for the price.
Moreover the microphones are not usable.

XM4- used them very briefly ( 20 minutes at most) sounded like XM3 with some accentuated highs. Can not really comment on them.

5. HD4.5 BTNC-
Simplest of them all, ANC - very decent, not very comfortable, but definitely serviceable for shorter flights ( heavier than PXC550)
Sound- decent for price, not resolving or anything, but much more balanced and non congested compared to XM3.

6. Beats Solo 3- Don't know where from it came to our house. It doesn't have ANC, not very comfortable, but sounds decent!!
Don't have any interest in testing them ( plus they are yellow!!) However if anyone's interested, please collect them from my place and if you can source me an Anker USB C PD charger for laptops (65W) will add the XM3s too with the Beats.
 
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Rockfella

WFM blues ...
Section Mod
Not yet. I am yet to use 03s as my go-to. Zues is good but since the time he has praised the Swans M50W and a few more (He sort of praises almost everything he reviews) I don't take him seriously anymore. I had good expectations from TinAudio T2 but I found it flat and boring (maybe that is what it is made to sound like) so bleh ... it is end user experience that matters. I have more faith in audio science review guy but again I don't under those graphs at all hahaha.
Moondrop Starfield / Audiosense T800 are some names that on my mind yet ... I no longer look at consumer brands.
PS: I am extremely happy with my monitors for now. Just called my carpenter to make some stands/raisers for it. Will post pics soon. Don't wanna spend 10k on :
IsoAcoustics ISO-155 Adjustable Monitor Stand
Did you try the BL 05s?
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8 BA drivers!! That's pretty insane, even for 300 USD.
I was thinking about selling everything else except Sundara ( open back planer), HD600 ( open back dynamic) one closed back ( possibly NH20) and a single NC ( for air travel) and go for something absolutely crazy like the Odin!
Now this seems a very sensible option ( though no idea how to source them in absence of the beloved AliExpress)
Is Ali still shipping to India?
However I must say this reviewer possibly doesn't understand what dynamics mean. Old rock and metal music ( pre DAW era) do not lack dynamics, firstly in 70s, producers didn't use analog compression on every drum track( like today) and only used it when absolutely necessary ( like Keith Moon's drum takes)
Compressors are the biggest enemy of dynamics ( they are only necessary when the loudest and quietest part of a recorded stem vary wildly in amplitude)
Secondly, the compensation gain knobs in analog compressors don't act linearly unlike the best digital comps of today ( Fabfilter's Pro C2 for example)
So the perceived/ (often)true loudness of the master chain output of older recordings sound quieter compared to modern day's digital recordings.
A highly dynamic mix is always quiet compared to a compressed mix. V or U shaped FR curve can never sound more dynamic ( though it may sound pleasant) We tend to confuse loudness with dynamics.
Many love the sound signature of cans like XM3, because the DSP circuit in it is tuned for a very high compression ( possibly more the 8:1) and aggressive loudness compensation.
These DSP "corrections" in all BTNC cans made them unusable for mixing/ mastering.
Bose also does the same but they use slightly slower compression ( more release time)
Sorry for this long and possibly useless post. Was measuring the BTNC cans for last 3/4 days.
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Yes, this is very strange. I just tested with my wife's HD 4.5, even when the headphone is switched off and connected to a laptop with the cable, microphone works. It's possibly the laptop's/ mobile's microphone.
I am not BUY ANYTHING FROM ALI EXPRESS for a very long time :)
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Even the MI Dual driver IEMs (Rs. 799) are damn good but they are a bit big to be slept with so I got their cheapest ones hehe. They really make good stuff at respective price points.
 
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red dragon

Justiceforall
Veteran
You made a very good point. We should never deny our own experiences.
I tried a lot to like the XM3s, but really could not. With QC35 and Solo HD, just the reverse happened. Those Beats specially sound really good.
 

rdst_1

Well-Known Member
Veteran
You made a very good point. We should never deny our own experiences.
I tried a lot to like the XM3s, but really could not. With QC35 and Solo HD, just the reverse happened. Those Beats specially sound really good.
Did you try the XM3 with NC turned off. When i went to audition BT headphones they sounded the best out of the lot but only after I turned off the NC. I only auditioned them for 1 song though and the Senn PXC weren't available in the store. I just plain hated all the other offerings including the Senn 4.4 and 4.5 etc.
 

red dragon

Justiceforall
Veteran
Yes, I did. It's intolerable to me with NC on. The drivers in them possibly are very easy to drive compared to 550 (I tried both in passive mode, it's a pain to kill the pxc550 II battery, as its new) the 550 scales very well with powerful desktop amps, XM3s don't change at all with amping, except getting louder.
Low volume in PXC550 is a very common problem.
4.5/4.4 use completely different drivers. I'm trying to get a momentum 3 wireless to compare.
Who puts a difficult to drive unit in a BTNC can!!??
Sennheiser goes crazy at times.
 

red dragon

Justiceforall
Veteran
Just one last attempt to understand the XM3 and why can't I like it (I don't hate bassy cans, playing bass guitar for more than 2 decades now)
One thing I know very well, how to tune a 4 string bass, perfectly tuned the Warwick, played the easiest bassline in history (Seven nations army) G D A E basically, recorded it directly in the DAW ( Amplitube 90 percent DI and 10 percent Amplitube's solid state amp and some Fender bass cab emulator) didn't use a proper amp as I might screw up placing mics and recording the signals ( it was mostly DI anyway)
Now listened to it directly from the DAW without exporting the stem using XM3 and NH20 ( as reference)
Now I know how much Sony coloured the signal....the E sounds somewhat between E and A and the G sounds completely alien to me.
And I'm more than sure it was done on purpose ( Sony of all brands knows how to make studio monitors)
Headphone/ speaker manufacturers usually plays with EQs fine tuning the drivers ( in passive drivers) but with active DSP they can do pretty much everything with sound ( even transpose up/ down certain frequencies...that's exactly what Sony is doing, as turning them off and using wired, at least the tuning don't sound that far off).
The drivers are really strange ( very very slow, almost impossible to play any open string note as the drivers keep on rumbling with terrible sounding overlapping notes) but extremely responsive, possibly due to very high sensitivity and engineers at Sony did something magical to make them non hissy over Bluetooth with such amazing ANC ( extremely hissy in passive mode with very high powered amps, specially tubes)
I do understand that it's really complicated to make ANC this perfect and that's the main selling point of these cans. But the online reviews made me think that their sound quality is also awesome.
 
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