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Best headphones for recording bass?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by ProtegesOfPeace, Jan 12, 2012.

  1. ProtegesOfPeace


    Jan 12, 2012
    hello i'm new her, anyway i was just wondering what are the best studio headphones for recording bass. my cheap 30 dollar headphones just don't cut it. iv'e heard good and bad about beats by dre's, do they live up to all the hype they've been getting? iv'e also heard about brands such as AKG, and sennheiser. what are your suggestions?
  2. Not the Dres. They're not as good as the price would suggest, plus, they're for bopping down the street to some phat beats with, not for getting a good studio sound from.

    When my band recorded its first disc last year, the studio had beat-to-hell AKGs that sounded great.
  3. Triangle


    Jan 10, 2012
    Lawrence, KS
    My experience is fairly limited, but for home use I use a pair of Grado SR-60s that sound great and they're fairly cheap (~$80) compared to alot of other headphones with similar stats and reviews. Unfortunately, they're open-can style so they might get a bit loud in the studio.
    Also, my local craigslist seems to be full of people selling old studio gear including headphones so you might want to check out that before ordering new.
  4. I also think that for recording, you want the best headphones for sound fidelity, rather than just for bass. Otherwise, you might end up mixing the bass too low in the mix because your fancy mega-bass headphones didn't give you a true representation of the mix.

    EDIT: This might help.

  5. Spencer!


    Jun 25, 2006
    Owner, Pike Amplification & 3Leaf Audio
    It's always a compromise because there isn't a pair of headphones in existence that can accurately reproduce bass (that's what studio monitors are for). I've tried just about every pair out there and the ones I keep settling on are the Beyer DT770's.
  6. I recommend Shure 840. It's a really flat-sounding headphone (flat-sounding headphones are often considered as monitoring/studio-recording headphones.)
  7. Spencer!


    Jun 25, 2006
    Owner, Pike Amplification & 3Leaf Audio
    I just sent back a pair of Shure 840's - I couldn't get used to the reduced soundstage and more present upper mids when compared to the Beyer's.
  8. Ever Tried the Audeze LCD-2? I've never, just asking to see if you had an opinion on it given your best headphone choice.

    That said, I really like my Audio Technica ATH-M50, Been rocking them for over 5 years, really thick sounding bass there. What are you looking for in headphones though: cans that give you a nice feeling about how your bass sounds when tracking, or something that's gonna give you as accurate a picture as possible?
  9. Spencer!


    Jun 25, 2006
    Owner, Pike Amplification & 3Leaf Audio
    No, but they're open-backed which is useless in the studio. If I'm listening for pleasure, I'm not using headphones. Anyway, I get suspicious when the ad copy makes a big deal over the carribean rosewood box...the only people spending 1000 bucks on headphones are self-proclaimed "audiophiles" who get suckered into buying them from the advertising.
  10. I have these and they're great. $25 bucks and available at best buy and the like - great reviews and great sound.

  11. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2011
    West Bend, Wisconsin
    I did a lot of research and ended up with a set of Sony MDR-V6. They're just as awesome as the venerable Sony 7506 ones I tried out at work. They don't have gold connectors and they have a different sticker. I think the warranty might be different, too. Otherwise they do use the same replacement parts. And I love them to tiny little pieces.
  12. JZQuantum

    JZQuantum Supporting Member

    Oct 12, 2008
    I think you'd do better to ask the question, "What is a good pair of phones for monitoring my mix?" If so, these:

    KRK KNS 8400 ($120 online)
    Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro
    Sony MDR7509 HD
    Sennheiser HD 650
  13. ProtegesOfPeace


    Jan 12, 2012
    thanks for the tips guys. sorry for sounding like a noob. what i was trying to say with my post is my recording sounds different when i play it on a cd player of mp3. i hope i make sense.
  14. John Burgess

    John Burgess

    Nov 28, 2011
    I have some Beyerdynamic DT150's which work well for studio usage. Theyre a sealed design, have large comfortable drivers and theyre built tough. The sound isolation is good, so you can keep the volume lower, which is good for your ears and the drivers themselves.

    Theres some slight coloration to the sound, there isnt as much high frequency content as other more hi-fi headphones, and youll need a good quality headphone amp as the DT150 is 250ohms unless you can find a lower ohm model.

    Really though I cant fault them.
  15. kraigo


    Jun 21, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    I'm not going to hold them out as the greatest things ever, but I've had my MDR-V6s for about 20 years now and they're still going strong. I've been happy with the sound, but I haven't done much comparison.

  16. metalguy2


    Dec 26, 2004
    +1 on the Sony 7506. These made me love headphones. Got them for 40 bucks on ebay. Changed my life!!
  17. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2011
    West Bend, Wisconsin
    I actually did a side-by-side comparison between the MDR-7506 at the MDR-V6. I could not distinguish them. Both were clear and responsive across the frequency spectrum, both had a tremendous sense of "space" in the recordings. The differences seem to be a) different magnets, different stickers, different (gold) connectors, the warranty. And as I said, they even use the same replacement parts for ear cups and cables, etc.

    Unfortunately the V6 don't appear in stock at Amazon. I got mine for about $65 a couple of months ago.
  18. I'll just mention two things from my experiences:

    1. Don't rely on any single sound source, listen through a variety of speakers/phones to get a better take on how things are sounding

    2. Headphones such as Beats which emphasise low end can be very useful. I find usually the problem with recording bass guitar is that it has too much low end in the mix, and that will really be apparent in a headphone or speaker that pushes the low end even more.
  19. bass12

    bass12 And Grace, too

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    I use AKG K181DJs both live (instead of in-ears) and in the studio. While most of the headphones I've used have the bass sounding like little more than a beefed up mosquito buzz the AKGs produce a nice, round bass tone.

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