Let's settle this//buying advice again -_-

I’m an all-rounded gamer( 40% casual and 50% comp 10% music). I need a headphone that is great for RPG games which I pickled for several months(Witcher 3,ac origin) and I’m looking forward to future immersive titles cyberpunk 2077 and AC Valhalla for example, but I also play a comp game(only apex and valorant).
// Cans I would prefer
Anything that great for both worlds( no poor separation or poor detail in treble and not overwhelming bass that covered gun direction and footsteps, great imaging,good soundstage and no harsh bass=comfortable)
I’m new to audiophile world so pls explain a sound signature that is good for both worlds
I don’t if I like a big bass or not because this is my first purchase after getting a snake oil poisoned to me.
Pls tell me if my eng grammar have any mistake cuz I’m a Thailand student
This forum has been helping a lot, thanks
Tier 1: 1-50$

Tier 2: 50-150$

Tier 3: 50-300$

Tier 4:+300$(not prefer)

Note: lower tier doesn’t mean a poor quality// my limit is 300 bucks but you guys can also recommend good cans above it.
Cans that I had got recommended// superlux668b,grado sr80e, AD500x,700x,900x,58x,DT880,770,990, AKG q701,k702,k612 pro, monoprice 108323, Hd 419,429,518.598,m40x, Beyer custom one pro
Pls, discuss these upper cans after answer tier 1-3 cans.

It will be great if I get an essay answer like what falenkor did, thanks bud

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But for real I think that I don’t like a big explosion sound

Have you seen this gaming headphone guide?:

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@vintageLC Alright, so from you description it sounds like you may want a more balanced or warm headphone so I can chime in here. Let’s start with your recommendation list.

Superlux would be alright it’s decent well rounded and may suit you they are usually pretty cheap,

I don’t recommend grado bad experience with them and they sound like crap imo your experience or others may vary take it as you will,

ad-00x series this is more of a competitive headphone you may not like the headband as it fits really weird and some people have taken to modding it outright or placing rubber bands to kind of make it more comfortable that’s not to say this headphone set is bad by any means they are fantastic for competitive gaming however in a casual gamer sense this headphone lacks a bass presence which may not be what you are looking for

Sennheiser 58x Jubilee: Let’s definitely get this one described. This headphone and the HD 598 or HD 599 are absolute incredible all rounder headphones. Definitely one of my favorites and a balanced headphone nothing is overwhelming here very open and middle ground sound stage. personally, I love this headphone and it’s price point is hard to be beat.

Beyer DT series: This is a bit of a tough one. 770 carries a closed back U shape signature and its bright. what this means is that it will have a better bass and a higher treble but recessed mid frequency it’s not for everyone but it does do great in action packed shooters and the like however to some people that higher treble can appear sibilant, meaning the SSSS sound can be too sharp and be painful to your hearing. 880 this is the neutral all round of the 3 and semi open back still bright less bass than the 770 and stands good in both casual and competitive this headphone is quite the favorite and highly recommended on this site if you want a brighter headphone of the 58x jubilee this is definitely a very strong choice. 990 I cannot for the life of me recommend this headphone without a strong setup to go along with it the treble is so strong here its painful to my ears and I am someone who adores treble I had to go trade in my 250 ohm version to the Edition version 600 ohm and buy a liquid spark amplifier just to reign this headphone into acceptable levels this headphone is absolutely fantastic but its a V signature and a very sharp one at that only recommended to those who love super bright headphones and have the money to backup a good setup. Final notes on DT series the issue here is that these headphones just don’t sound all that great in their lower ohm versions. 32 ohms or lower is what you want in a headphone for gaming generally due to the consoles not being able to push any higher. If you were to go higher than 32 ohms you would need an amplifier which I can list some when I am done with the headphone listing to try to help. Personally I love the beyer lineup but I can attest that they are definitely not for everyone especialy not those who want a warmer headphone or just hate bright headphones.

AKG q701,k702,k712,k7xx,k612 pro you get the point, these are actually a very solid recommendation but in most cases the bass presence here is very lacking and have more of a mid and high forward sound. Fantastic for competitive not so great for casual. Very analytical headphones. Go with a k702 for the most competitive or k7xx otherwise k712 or k612 for a bit more fun. either way for a balanced I don’t really recommend these.

Can’t speak personally on monoprice I usually steer clear of them. personal preference.

Sennheiser lineup: just in generally these usually have a flat or balanced signature… you can’t really go wrong here like I said earlier with the 598 this will have a larger soundstage than the 58x and in some cases I preferred it… I wouldnt necessary recommend the 419 429 or 518 but thats not the say they are bad by any means and are usually a cheaper option. Very solid choice for those who just want a really great balanced headphone.

M40x: alright well, I won’t say anything bad particularly about this headphone it’s just definitely not for everyone it is indeed a more balanced type headphone at the same time expect to absolutely need to pad swap this to another pad out the box cause those pads are tiny and designed for on-ear and not over ear. It’s solid for a choice after the pad swap.

Beyer custom one pro plus: skip this grab either the game or the studio instead. Compression in the sound for this version and game in some cases throws these two off… studio has the best sound of the 3 but usually needs an amp. You would be better off with an mmx300 or tygr 300 r from beyer.

I will throw a copy in here myself now. For your first tier theres to many to list… I personally prefer ksc-75 for the dirt cheap ear phones or the Koss Porta Pros cause seriously after I got these I was kinda hard pressed to find a better one outside of maybe a sony or some other cheapo over ear.

Tier 2: a bit more technical while you can buy a headphone here any will work fine I would still point more towards just a gamers headset like a hyperx alpha or a Sennheiser gsp500,gsp600,gsp670, Game One, Game Zero, or pc37x. The link provided by ant over there will cover a lot of the really good headphones for tier 1 and tier 2

Tier 3: this is kind of a good spot and typically the maximum I go for headphones on gaming. You have a ton of options here. You already listed quite a few but heres a few more.

Hifiman Sundara, $250 on headphones.com open box may need an amp will find a cheapo further down very strong all rounder and a wide soundstage to boot definitely open backed and a big favorite of mine on the all rounder lineup. Decent cheaper alternative may be the HE4xx but I found this more forward sounding and a tad more intimate and aggressive. Keep in mind though that Hifiman as a company has very poor quality control on their products lots of broken headphones.

Beyerdynamic 1990 or 177x go: These can be found at certain times of the year ranging at minimum $300 and you may get lucky on them. My personal favorites and I prefer them over the previously mentioned DT series due to being more towards a neutral signature despite still maintaining that bright sound.

Gaming Headset Audeze Mobius and its brother Hyperx Orbit: These are one in the same outside of wired vs wireless. Orbit is cheaper here but these are some of the absolute best in the gaming headset lineup you can’t go wrong here very balanced and come with their own amplifier built into the ear cups along with an equalizer built in to allow you to change to things like surround sound, hi res audiophile audio, footsteps, movie, music, etc very well rounded.

Gaming Headset Steel Series Arctis Pro + Gamedac: This is the other of the 3 and much like the two above this recommendation this also comes with its own Dac that allows you to have an equalizer but in this case its much more customizable and not just presets. Bass equalizer can get heavy to the point of straight up vibrating the headphone though still doesn’t bleed through the microphone.

Phillips Shp9500 and Fidelio X2 HR: Shp9500 is not as bass heavy from my experience here and is more the budget option but experience varies. Fidelio x2 hr is a very warm smooth headphone with a very nice bass alongside a very wide soundstage this is definitely one of my favorites for casual gaming. Just keep in mind bassy headphones aren’t the greatest in competitive since the rumble gets in the way of things such as footsteps

Vokyl Erupt: This has been around time and again and is a brand new headphone. I haven’t gotten to try this myself but its been reviewed fairly high. Supports a very wide and accurate soundstage great comfort and is either a v signature or a balanced signature. No return policy as its still in a prototype stage. Buy at own risk.

Note: If possible try to buy used for your discounts… sites like ebay, amazon, head-fi, among others are very useful for audio equipment. You can also use hifishark and type in the name of the item your looking for and it will scour the web real quick to find postings and sales of that item. A new posting here for a buy/sell forum has been created as well for those looking for particular things or wanting to post an ad and give people a headsup. You will save a lot of money going this route. just something to consider.

Amps. This gets a bit technical due to your budget. Generally speaking Syba Sonic, Soundblaster x3, soundlblaster g6, Fiio e10k, Schiit Fulla 3, and Fiio k5 pro all work fine… theres a lot of other recommendations but syba sonic is probably the cheapest here however it’s the weakest in power… You will stand to have the best sound from a seperate amp and a seperate dac but this is expensive. Amps are required for higher ohm headphones. External amps though I can recommend Liquid Spark especially if you are going with a beyer or the Schiit Magni 3+. Pair with a Topping D10 Dac or an E30 for a slightly cleaner more expensive option.

Mics: Lavalier, Antlion Modmic, V-moda Boom pro for those with a 3.5mm aux(theres a 2.5mm mic too for things like hd 598 forgot the name of it Zeos reviews had it on one of his videos though), and external xlr mics with an audio interface or usb mics are the recommendation here… if going the xlr or usb route try to get a dynamic mic as it doesn’t grab as much background noise.

Going to add something here: due to the nature of you wanting to be more competitive than casual I would be more likely to point towards the 58x jubilee, 598, 599, Sundara, DT 880, Tygr 300 r and Any of the gaming headsets. This is due to a more balanced not as heavy bass and in these comparisons I would say the DT 880 or Tygr 300 r would probably perform the best due to the naturally higher treble frequency which is very useful in competitive fps. In an fps you want ideally a recessed bass with mid and high being forward. the ones listed in this last note are balanced among frequencies with Sundara having better highs, dt 880 having a neutral V signature which means its lows are slightly raised mid are a bit neutral but slightly recessed but it has raised highs, tygr 300 r which is like the dt 990 but acceptable levels of higher treble and still maintaining a large soundstage which is ideal in fps situations. Since you are inbetween casual and competitive is why I say these may be the better options. The others listed are either less bass and more analytical or more bass which may not be ideal for someone who wants a general focus on something like footsteps and the like. In your case this would come completely down to preference. Headphones will only bring you so far as a competitive edge. they won’t make you the best gamer but they can help by a small margin when it comes to sound placement.

Gaming amp I would say the Heresy is better here thank the Magni 3+.

Should have probably mentioned that as well but goodness that was a lot to type up hahaha. Definitely other good amps I didn’t mention JDS labs atom either.

If you can’t buy them all to test, you gotta pick one and start somewhere. I vote DT880, as I recall it being the most balanced of DT770/880/990, and the one that didn’t destroy my ears with brightness. Otherwise, if you want to try something special, AD900X(or 700X). If you haven’t heard an AD before, it might blow your mind. And they’re cheap, so there’s that.

Want to go higher? Sundara, but I dislike how thin they sound.

I wouldn’t say this headphone would blow someones mind as in general this series is considered “boring” by quite a few. AD2000x would be the higher one that would have that potential but this is a much higher tier of headphone and a lot higher price bracket. The ad series lacks bass presence with mids and highs pushed forward but despite how good it may sound it has a lot of coloration in the sound which is by no means very natural It also suffers from a heavy lack of seperation until you go with the AD1000x and higher and sounds tend to sound melded and blended sometimes this can be pretty bad. For competitive its good due to its sound signature and only for that reason k702 or k712 is also just as good but this suffers from having too wide of a soundstage to the point its pretty inaccurate on its sound meanwhile dt 880 despite being a brighter headphone doesn’t have a whole ton of bright the treble is still raised and its very accurate with an extreme comfort. If I were to choose been the AD series the K7 series and DT series I would definitely bar none go with the DT series in competitive gaming.

After substantial testing, I wouldn’t recommend this ever for someone who is gaming due to the issue with microphones this headphone has plus the issue with quality countrol the company has. Theres a ton of issues out of the box with this company across the board of their products so its a tough recommendation. Sundara does sound phenomenal and for sure it has what you would want in gaming but for the microphone this headphone is SO open to the point of a fault it will cause an attached mic to bleed through quite a bit you would need an external mic for this headphone and even then its open enough to where condensors will normally pick it up. Kind of a hassle so I definitely wouldn’t recommend this in competitive. Casual though? sure, great headphone just not that bassy

To the contrary - quite exciting in the treble, soundstage and vocals. I’d describe Sundara as boring. AD just has barely any bass.

Maybe he’s like me, and never uses a mic? (or perhaps you mean something else) Or has a ModMic or Desk mic to use. I agree about the QC issue; they don’t feel very well-built and reliable, though many people seem to think the QC is mostly fine.

Going from AD700X/900X to 1000X, I basically just found the treble to be even brighter. A little better detail and smoothness, maybe. No real gaming benefit, IIRC, thus why I sold them.

Well, thats why I said quite a few. I don’t particularly mind them, I own 1000x myself. however, I can see where some might not like them all too much. I wouldn’t describe Sundara as “boring” as more as it’s just very laid back in comparison very relaxed its not that aggressive in your face kind of headphone. Regardless, still fantastic.

Could be the case of course, it’s just I just can’t in good faith recommend it due to that bit of an issue with it between QC and it just being too open ya know? I wouldn’t say not to buy a Sundara as I firmly believe it is an absolutely fantastic headphone it’s just that I don’t find it the greatest for a competitive headphone. In competitives, you would want to use a microphone to communicate and make call outs but if your sound is blaring through the microphone it kind leads to issues. That isn’t to say there isn’t a solution to this it’s just that it’s a bit of a hassle.

I personally found this almost the sound except the fact it just was more enjoyable to listen to while gaming with them. The brightness make things feel a little more alive and detail was a very nice addition. The seperation of sounds does indeed help for placement to the ears from my experience but thats probably the only real benefit

Audio technica has lower sound quality in general when compared to AKG. As falk said, i experienced this congestion of sounds with my AD900x, whereas the AKG k702 was cleaner and had better separation of the different sounds. Plus i get the same large airy soundstage and good imaging, so the AD900x has nothing special to offer that the AKG does not already offer. Also the build quality is tacky, squeaky and relies on cheap plastic.

I can definitely agree to this as far as k702 goes… I personally found it far superior to the AD series at the very least till you get to AD 2000x… the ad1000x and msr7 are still passable though. AKG just has the slight imaging issues being a concern but i think it will depend on the prices as things like akg have some weird prices depending on where your from.

I just can’t help myself with the alleged imaging issue on the k702 :D.

Honestly for me its not noticeable compared to the sundara, maybe as i said before imaging slightly diffuse in the front, man its so slight you really have to pay close attention. I am more concerned about the wiring in the akg to be honest, right earcup.
Also managed to get my hands on ad700x, very comfy possibly due to being a friends and if you can call it a headband was stretched, imho good but less bass than k702, also a lot easier to drive.
Didnt spend a lot of time with the 700x but i can definitely tell you the worst flaw in my eyes for the k702 and probably the rest of the series is sound signature/quality changes based on how well you position them on your head.

not really alleged… pretty commonly known by many the k7 series headphones have some issues still usable regardless.

heavily will depend on the game, some are more demanding in that regard

I would be more concerned with an AD series or hifiman in that regard than an akg… with the AD series being so damn cheaply made and hifiman can break just by looking at them the wrong way least with my luck using them

lol I don’t

I prefer the bass tones more on the K7’s that much recession on the AD does bother me quite a lot

I spent quite a lot of time with them… Personally 700x is only worth it if you can get them actually cheap… some countries they are unreasonably pricey and just not worth while… I can get them for like $60 makes them one hell of a budget option… but I would still easily take a k702 over them… AD1000x is a bit more debateable but comfort and build will win for me in that regard… so still k702. Now, granted… I would still take my beyers over them despite losing soundstage because the imaging is much tighter but in this case it will depend in the person and what they are looking for…

Do keep in mind that the AKG are manufactured in different areas… I have heard different results from people based on what factory they have come from(with the one from china apparently being a hell of a lot worse) so food for thought there… I have no actual experience in this particular case but quite a few have remarked on that issue which is unfortunate.

At the same time, there doesn’t appear to be a true successor to the K7 series to my knowledge unless you jump way the hell up in price bracket… atleast the AD series has the AD2000x which has some ludicrous imaging. If I really wanted an AKG k7 series though… it damn sure wouldn’t be k702… I would definitely go with k712 or k7xx over k702… far too damn analytical I can’t really sit and relax with them as they aren’t the most comfortable listening cans