Bombardment of over ear in the market

There are more and more over ear on the market. Almost models come out every month. Today, what is the best sound you can have for less than €450?
The main use is to enjoy varied music. Enjoy, don’t analyze. A good soundtage is appreciated. Amplifier theme, I have one but I don’t want to talk about it (now). Only models.

I include models in offers.

  • HIFIMAN 400 SE
  • SIVGA ROBIN (I have it and I love. Yes, I try other models with higher cost to compare).
  • AKG K612
  • AKG K712 PRO
  • VERUM 1
  • MONOLITH M1060
  • MONOLITH M1070

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Current hypetrain is the Edition XS, haven’t heard it, but I’ve seen enough to believe that it is likely superior to Sundara - which would likely be the top vote champion previously.

HOWEVER - it really depends further what someone is looking for. Open-back planar would certainly be a good contrast from your Robins - but also… a contrast. The only closed-backs here are the Robins - do you have those because of a particular use-case? Soundstage is important? Pull the Sennheiser 6__ series models.

It’s complicated, probably why we don’t see a ton of polls here.


almost every model you list has been out for a long time. I agree with your IEM thread; we are being bombarded with IEM’s. headphones? not so much.

suggestions can be made only after we know a few things:

  • what kind of music do you like to listen to?
  • what is your source? desktop? laptop? phone? tablet? streaming service? other?
  • what is your sound chain? DAC and Amp

some headphones do better with one genre than another. if we don’t know what your headphone amp is, we can’t recommend any high impedance headphone is, and you have several in your list, because it may not be able to drive them.

we know your budget and desire for soundstage and if we give advice based on just that you may get a headphone that won’t be what you’re looking for. also, are you open to suggestions for headphones that are not on this list?


Gotta be the Aeon Closed RT for me. Such a lifelike sound

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what kind of music do you like to listen to?
Edm, 80-90 pop, chill out music, BSO, ambient, classical.

what is your source? desktop? laptop? phone?
A powerful phone/laptop, i have a dongle dac, and a i have the ifi hip dac.

tablet? streaming service? other?
Streaming and offline WAV.

what is your sound chain? DAC and Amp

Please center on models!!!

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Planar Magnetic: Sundara 2021
(havent heard XS)
Dynamic: HD650/600,r70x for “neutral/studio” sound Harmonicdyne Zeus for mid bass boost or used T1 gen 2 for treble accentuated
Biodynamic: If you can stretch budget to 600 you can get the TH900 used
Electrostatic: ESP95X (?)

My personal picks would be an HD600 or a used Focal Elex if you get lucky with used market pricing, but I haven’t heard lots of these other headphones, so these are really the main two lower-end over-ears that I can really vouch for. (The 400SE isn’t as good as either of these, but it’s also cheaper, so you know, fair.)

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I think that the decition is between Edition XS (i found It below 400€ new) and maybe the sundara.
What about focal elegia? I think. If i LOVE my Sivga Robin sound…maybe that focal is an update.

any particular reason you are limiting your options? there could be something you’re not aware of or don’t think is applicable and learn something new :slight_smile:

Want fun not analytic, want soundstage, not throwing them a ton of power - why not Zeus?

from previous conversation with our lord master M0N, he has repeated that the Focal Elex is a very fun headphone.

Beyerdynamic Tygr 300 R:

Somewhat competes with the Sivga Robin in price, and is open-back. Has decent bass & sub-bass, and you can tune the sound to your liking with ear pads. (I use Dekoni Elite Velour)


I don’t play video games often, but I do watch shows on Netflix. I recently binged & completed Arcanum, and I had a movie theater-like experience. Sometimes, I will confuse audio for real-life events.

Tuning: Graphs will suggest that these are warm, but I will add that mids & treble are not muddied.


Relatively cheap ~$180 USD, and prices can drop down to ~$160 USD during Black Friday & Cyber Monday (these are the prices as of 2021)

No amp needed, but I would use one for precise volume control.

Very lightweight, and the headband can be bent to adjust clamping pressure.


Stock pads have nice foam, and the velour feels very silky. However, the shape of the pads are convex, and that causes a pressure point for my head. The pressure point was tolerable, but I swapped pads because I’d rather not feel it at all.

As I said before, these headphones respond well to pad-swapping, but the journey to find The One True Pairing (for You) might be.

Ever since they have debuted, these headphones are known to be sold out. Therefore, you might have to wait for these headphones to get back in stock, or look for alternatives.

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Second that

So, my decision is that.

Continue with sivga robin or try focal elegia.
Try Hifiman Edition XS in some weeks when I can see on amazon.

I am aware of the differences between an open and a closed one.
In the end the cons I see are:

Focal Elegy (500€)
-Poor scene?
-Overprice. 4 times more expensive than sivga robin. At best it will be -twice as good and I don’t think so.
-They talk about missing bass.

Hifiman Edition XS (€500)
-Need yes or yes amplification. It makes it more dependent on a time and place where you have that amplification.
-Its design similar to the ananda and having tried the sundara make me think that it will be like having speakers in your ears. Your leaks will be high. I’m not saying this to bother others (also) but because you don’t have a bit of privacy, nor does it isolate you a bit from normal sounds that you can hear like a vehicle passing by or an ordinary sound like the computer fan.