Do you believe that headphones should sound amazing no matter what genre you’re playing in them? Do you think an inline remote and a microphone are convenient? Would you like to be able to get killer sound even though you don’t feel like buying or lugging around a headphone amp? Do you like to modify and personalize your gear? Do you like the sound profile of the Audio Technica ATH-M50, but wish the ear cups were deeper? Do you want superb passive noise isolation with either pleather or velour earpads? Do you think it’s a good idea to let users modulate the amount of bass a headphone produces? Would you believe me if I said you could have all of this from one of the most respected names in personal audio for less than $200?
Let me state up front that it took me far too long to get around to trying the AKG K-series. The sad fact is, none of the retail outlets in my area carry AKGs or have them out where you can demo them, so you either have to commit to an on-line purchase (and potential return if you’re not satisfied), or find someone else who owns a pair and try theirs.
Just un-boxed a new pair of DT 990 Premiums from Beyerdynamic. According to most of the reviews and Audiophile snobbery I’ve read about these, they are supposed to be the slightly bass & trebble-colored take on the DT 880, which a lot of people complained about being too “flat” and “analytical”. I’ll get to my first impressions momentarily, but first, some comments about the packaging.
If you’re new to the world of premium personal audio (aka headphones), you may find yourself confronting a blizzard of options, foreign terminology, and conflicting advice. Throw in pinch of pseudoscience, two cups of audiophile condescension, and a heaping dose of marketing hype, and you’ll start to wonder if there is any such thing as consensus in this hobby.