Headphone suggestions for vocals

I think I may have asked this before in different forms, but I thought I would try again. I think it would be a great reference thread. What would you suggest for someone with following priorities:

  1. Midrange. Vocals are the most important part of music, excluding instrumentals of course.

  2. Bass. Strong bass when called upon in the music. Clear and strong. NOT mushy, boomy or artificial (inserting bass where it has no business).

  3. High end/ treble. Just as much as necessary and no more.

Of course we need a budget and I would say $1K. Of course I am Canadian so we need to adjust to the world standard. :smile:

Let’s just say a range of $300.00US to $700.00US with the above criteria.

For vocals, I always recommend Sennheiser HD600…especially if you have a tube amp. Hard to beat that combo for vocals.

Another one that is good, but overpriced are the Shure SRH1840. If you can get a pair at a decent price, they are pretty good.

I am currently listening to that headphone and would not agree. Of course I am not using a “real” tube amp. Kind of soft on bass too.

Definitely soft on bass. What is your source chain gear if I may ask?

I also noticed you have TH610s. For semi closed, those are pretty good. I owned a pair for 2 years. :slightly_smiling_face:

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How about the Elex? DMS said it has a focus on vocal ranges.


I was trying to avoid being that specific with this question, to get a broader range of suggestions.

But, my chain is:
LCX/Liquid Spark/SP200/Burson Fun-Classic/Schiit Vali 2/XDuoo TA-20

I do like them and am debating on getting them Lawtonized. But the full change over would be more than I pad for the 'phones. Maybe just sell and get used 900’s. I also have my eye out for CFA Cascades.

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I wanna say go for the elex or 660 personally I really like the mids on both cans

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I have a set on they way! I resisted the urge all of 2019 but recently gave in. :grin:

I tried the 1540’s and was very unimpressed. Sold them on.

I have never heard the 660’s, but am Very impressed with the HD58X’s. Maybe because they were so cheap?

OK, so you have some hybrid tubes, they do make a difference, just not as much as a full tube. Some headphones you may want to research and consider:

Shure 1840, AKG K701/K702, Focal Elex, Audio Technica R70x.

I personally havent heard the elex, but I have heard the Clear. Great vocals, but of course they are more expensive than the elex. I also believe that the R70x is a grossly underrated headphone, mainly because of price and they can be hard to drive.

Elex is probably a safe choice.

Not the 1540, the 1840…my bad. The campfire audio cascades are freaking incredible IMO, but they are definitely hard to find in stock.

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I had a chance to trade for the R70X, but chose the HD600 instead. Another case of hindsight being 20/20. :slight_smile:

IDK, if he has a 610 I think he already has a good taste of what the cascades offer imo

The r70x is pretty close to the 600 so I would say they are close enough

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You wrote it properly, I was just relating to it. Not sure if I like the Shure “house sound”.

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used vali’s maybe? or save a little more and new? i have not heard them, but based off of others(i know) they might work. and i know a few have them on the forum. one of them can chime in hopefully to see if they would fit the bill.

The HD600 are not bad, they just don’t jump out or excel at any certain thing. I can see them being thought of as great “all rounders”.