~$700-1000: FPS, critical positional accuracy, open-back

New or used. What would be your top 2 picks for hearing the enemy if your life depended on it?


  • No Beyer.
  • No Focal.
  • No estat.
  • No Sundara.
  • Natural soundstage size & shape, with excellent depth from near to far.
  • Full frequency range ; at least some bass is needed to hear bass sounds(crawling).

Sounds I like a lot for FPS:

  • HD660
  • FD5(iem)
  • AD700X/900X
  • Mobius (closed-back!)

Thoughts so far…

  • LCD-GX
  • Arya
  • ZMF something?
  • AD2000X…?
  • Dan Clark something?

I would have a look at the Dan Clark R/T.
It might be good for gambling.
It’s also fast and has a high resolution.
The disadvantage is that it needs power.


Agreed with the Dan Clark recommendation the newer ones seem to be really great. The new Aeon 2 closed set I heard was sensational

Its a shame you ruled out the Focals as you like the HD660 and they have incredible imaging.

AD2000X of course is top tier.

ZMF every pair I’ve heard has incredible imaging. I own my Aeolus without the Bopp filter it is brighter but the soundstage and detail is deeply improved. Its never the competitive pick as I’m sure the Verite line would be better but definitely can be done.

Definitely pick a denser wood if you’re buying a ZMF the speed is sensational with a dense wood.


out of all the headphones i’ve gone through for gaming my top 2 are:

GL2000, but only if modded and are fantastic with any game. The depth control they have is fucking outstanding. There’s this odd quality they have to place 2 sounds in the exact same direction and have a dead silent middle ground between them that makes the distance both sounds are at VERY noticeably separated with a dead silent middleground between them making it easier than any other headphone I’ve ever heard to place multiple enemies coming from the same direction.

T1.2 I love for almost every single game but the bass can occasionally get in the way of some really overly boomy games with constant explosions (warzone/battlefield) but it’s very rare that it’s a problem.

Honorable mention should be for the aeon 2 open and with some pad rolling the he6 is phenomenal as well but just like the T1.2 you need a decently beefy amp to make them shine.


Hifiman Ananda probably really good positional accuracy especially depth. But I’ma big beyer fan I really like and am familiar with the way the position so beyer t1 MK2 is my actual pick


The anandas and sundaras have some odd overlap between left/right and center.i think it’s some kind of tuning choice to bring the mids forward a little and you’d never notice it in music but on games where you can see what you’re hearing, it’s pretty noticeable. It’s like 30° off straight in front of you that the imaging is sort of iffy.

What’s the mod?

Do you play PUBG?

No love for the GX yet…?

Oooh, a new phone? :0 “Dan Clark is one of the top ten motivational speakers” Hm, do you feel they are motivational?

(What does R/T mean?)

r/t is the “retuned” model. the og model of the open is actually amazing for gaming but if they retuned it to be more musical it may not be the same. haven’t heard the r/t so i cant say for sure though.

not anymore but it’s along the lines of most other games in terms of what frequencies are important.

i hate everything audeze i’ve ever tried, personally. lcd-x/2/3 all of them. haven’t tried the 4.

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Haha, whoa…! I was extremely impressed with 3(just as much as he6), and 2 was still quite nice sounding, but beyond the context of music there is surely better.

GL2000 double magnet, of course?


mods i’ve done so far are:

and more recently

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Can you make any comparisons of them to these other phones? I have owned 700X, 900X and 1000X, so after hearing the small differences between these, I’m not expecting 2000X to differ much =p It would be sweet if 2000X had a totally different, bigger driver! I think the cable might be detachable, or at least better quality, from vague memory…

VO will be my next major all-arounder phone, 100%. So hopefully one of these specialist phones will beat it for FPS ;p

You guys are killing it with the suggestions here… :+1:

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I’m not 100% sure if they’ve made the cable detachable that was my main gripe.

The imaging detail within its soundstage is N U T T Y. Very precise. Excellent detail the soundstage is identical to the previous headphones. A bit larger but nothing like an Argon.

They are great if you’re a pro gamer and money is on the line. You’re going to be playing for money then it’s up there with the beyers for imaging or the focal elex.

Definitely. I will say after owning my Aeolus now for about half a year and hearing a verite closed… I can see why a the magic is in his closed backs. I definitely will own a Verite closed in future.

I hear as well an entry level closed back is coming soon too

interesting post, rather curious why you would rule out the beyers and focals considering how good they are in this particular area… is it that they are too bright?

interesting… ad2000x would definitely be a good recommendation at that point if you appreciated the 700 and 900… considering just how much it gains in the case of imaging capabilities and sound quality.

in the case of critical positioning, fps, etc and strictly in this case… I would never recommend somebody an audeze… more than likely they need good amounts of EQ and many will attest to that fact topped off with most of them just are quite ass for competitive gaming. GX is alright, it has good verticality and its well rounded but for the price? Hell I would just stay with a dt 880 or something at that point.

Arya is a monster in its own right… soundstages extremely well and the imaging is quite holographic though its not completely accurate it still does the job splendidly… though for just gaming cases this can be seen as extremely overkill… the arya I would say is one of those potential “end games” for a fps gamer considering what it can do

AD2000x is just the upgraded variation of the previous headphones… it fixes practically everything sound wise with previous versions from the separation, to the imaging, to the weird soundstage, to slight metallic tonality of the 900x, many benefits imo from this headphone. My biggest gripe is that they still prefer to use such a cheap pathetic build… to me the comfort is a hard pass but its alright for some… just nothing id write home about

Dan Clark? Skip the ethers… aeons are alright but are more well rounded. I wouldnt say they outpace the ad2000x or aryas in this use case whatsoever though. Aeon 2 is pretty damn good for just general use in any scenario though and has good timbre imo.

confused as to why the focal were ruled out due to this… headphones like the clear are easy step ups from there.

this headphone isn’t bad and what it does best is soundstage… its quite massive all honesty… and I would rate it better than the sundara and ananda in gaming for that particular aspect… however depending on the game the imaging can get a bit janky. This headphones capability to vertically place sounds is pretty insane though I will give it that… only a small handful keep up with this one in the price range for that.

agreed here on the bass, one of the reasons the 1990 is somewhat better but I just dont like so much aggression out of the 1990… the T1’s better soundstage and more relaxed nature makes me appreciate it a hell of a lot more.

more than likely no… not gonna find much love here, I couldnt care less on reading others claims on that one… I tried it, gave it well over a month. Hot hot garbage in comparison to many other headphones much cheaper in terms of FPS and if I want a casual gamer headphone hell I can just grab a cheaper lcd-2c, nighthawks, argons, etc etc. It’s just not in a good place imo topped off with the typical EQ thing with audeze and there rather weird timbre.

can’t really speak on ZMF as I haven’t sat with them personally, aeons are probably one of the better ones that just kinda fit everywhere though… they really are incredibly good.

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Agreed I don’t know why either. It would be such an easy just one and done recommendation either the elex or Clear. It definitely retains that HD660 mid range character. Timbre is different it’s a lot more amp dependant but this is pretty much the perfect headphone recommendation for your taste.

well… there is the whole thing of the more metallic timbre. Then again… I have been gaming a hell of a lot with clear mg… does exceptionally well

I tried a Clear recently, with D50s+ATOM, and it definitely didn’t speak to me. :\ I wasn’t thrilled with the comfort, either, for such a price. Beyers, too dry + hot, though I haven’t heard 1770 or 1990 yet. Expecting more of the same, 100% lol.

Seems like GL2000 and AD2000X are sticking out. I can’t believe AD2000X going for $670 today still!!! Haha.

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Definitely not a good amp/dac for the clears. Make them run sterile and rather hot on the treble at the same time with that. They are picky headphones is the thing. Can’t just go grab any high budget headphone and expect the fullest from lower ended units of the sorts. Topping amps can make things a bit brighter as can JDS and THX

depends on the beyer… 1770 are V shaped like 770 and honestly I would recommend a 177x go over the 1770 as I really hated the 1770. 1990 is neutral bright but still quite hot on the treble. T1 2nd gen is remarkably different closer to that of a HD800 in terms of frequency responses.

if you want to see those two go head to head… T1 in green there vs hd800 in purple. Though HD800 is still the soundstage king

They are worth a shot. If arya is out of the question itd be worth testing the GL2k out. AD2000x excels in imaging… not so much soundstage so more of a flip of the coin between those two imo

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It is true the clear needs a smooth amp or else the treble and timbre don’t sound great.

Have you tried the DT880? definitely one of the best all rounders of the DT line it is still bright but not as hot as the rest.

Yes the 1990 wouldn’t be the way to go. Bass on the 1770 may be too much if you’re being hyper competitive

You don’t think Arya would be too unnaturally wide sounding? And less accurate? I think the AD stages are about perfect, as far as being natural sounding, I guess. HD800 I’m not sure about, since I haven’t heard it, but exaggerated space isn’t good, especially if it means there’s a deadspace at the center of the stage where nothing sounds close to you. The imaging accuracy has to be there, firstly.