Need Help Choosing Headset

I have been doing research through Z Reviews and other youtubers and also on this website but I still can’t seem to find exactly what I need. I have a V Moda Boom Pro and was looking for headphones to pair with it. I recently had the Status CB-1s and absolutely hated them. They sounded fantastic but too much bass in my opinion. I hated them mostly because they were extremely uncomfortable and gave me the worst headache in a matter of minutes. I tried them for about a week and the pain never went away so I am looking for something new. I was going to order the SHP9500s but they wont be here for another month so I was looking for other options. I am fine with either open or closed and have used both before. I had the AKG q701s for a while and got rid of those also because they are so painful to wear. My current headset is the Sennheiser Game Zeros but I have had them for so long they are very worn down. My budget is $250 for the headphones and microphone. MAYBE $300. I really have no idea what sound I like when it comes to gaming but I know the bass on the CB-1s was too much. I think I prefer what is called the V shaped sound.

At this point I am leaning towards grabbing a pair of Tygr 300Rs and a desk mic of some sort. Most of the headphones I am really interested in are Beyerdynamic and I cant use the Boom Pro with those. Any recommendations for that would also be greatly appreciated.

I haven’t used the Tygr’s before but, I’ve been using the DT880’s with a Blue Snowball. They don’t a substantial amout of bass and make footsteps very easily audible because of the bright sound signature. Soundstage and imaging are a substantial upgrade over normal “gaming” headphones. Games I played (if you care) that headphones shined with were Escape from Tarkov and CSGO.

Which DT880s do you have? The 600 ohm?

I’ve been using the 600 ohm version

I’ve also used a buddy’s SHP9500 and imo the Beyers are well worth the price increase.

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I’ve heard alot of good tthings about the beyer tygr. both dms and zeos raved about them. dms said that they have a speaker like presentation. i ordered a pair myself just the headphones from the beyer website. but i hear you can get them in a bundle with a pretty good desktop mic for a good price.

Yeah i’m sure those will work just as well as the 880’s. Especially for gaming

I see the Tygrs are now up to $200. I am still fine with that and a good desk mic but I am still trying to weigh options. I don’t have an amp which is also making my options smaller. I have also heard great things on this forum and from reddit about the ATH AD500x/700x. They are much cheaper and are definitely on my list. So far it is really between them, the Tygr 300r, the m40x, or some other sennheisers. Still really no clue what to go for.

EDIT: With shipping these Tygr 300Rs are really getting out of my price range as I also need a mic. Need more suggestions.

Theres always the 58x jubilees for $170. They have really good imaging but maybe not the best soundstage. If i’m being honest though, I used them for competitive gaming and I never had an issue with not hearing an enemy before I saw him. The thing that i’ve found is that for competitive gaming, you don’t need a huge soundstage. The game audio is going to play the sound of footsteps when you’re in range of the person regardless of the headphone you have. Because of this, having a smaller soundstage causes footsteps to be louder sooner and thus, saving you a potential death. Soundstage is good for games that aren’t competitive because they can create a larger than life experience. It really all depends on what you want and the types of games you play.

Alright, so I am going to have to chime in here. You posted in competitive so I assume you want things like FPS? If this is the case it will boil down to how serious you are in competitive gaming. Let me explain. So to competitive gamers, bass will get in your way big time. You mentioned V signature but with a V signature this means the bass is raised mids are recessed and highs are raised. The reason for this is rumbling bass can block out sounds like footsteps, breathing, and other fps sound cue cards. You typically want a headphone with recessed or neutral-ish bass with highs being pushed forward and mids being somewhere around neutral or also pushed forward to really bring out the FPS sound. However, you haven’t mentioned on whether you also wanted this for casual as well. For casual gaming its a bit of the opposite people tend to prefer that bass a little more which if you wanted both you would want a sort of All rounder Headphone. I can help out here but theres quite the amount of headphones so for the time being I will go ahead and post two guides that may help you out instead. To cover on the Tygr 300 R it was designed with Casual Gamers in mind meaning it is a warm headphone with quite the bass presence it is not ideal for competitive. Your SHP9500 you mentioned is a Bright headphone with more neutral tones for bass and mids which makes it very nice for an all rounder. Like Mentioned above the 58x jubilee is also another All Rounder headphone if you wanted more soundstage though you would want a HD 598 or HD 599. To cover on the DT 880s these are a Neutral Bright headphone they are great in competitives but the Beyer DT series requires an amp and dac which will most definitely raise your budget. They just don’t sound good in 32 ohms imo. Another note it would help us to know if you were looking for a closed back or open back and if this was console gaming or pc gaming. Anyway here are the guides.

The first one is Zeo’s guide. Not the greatest take guides as subjective. The Second guide there is more indepth and goes through quite the amount of information.

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What amp are you using? I’m quite new to audio and I’ve been wondering if the DT880’s are worth buying with an amp over my current Cloud II’s.

I’ve been using the 880’s primarily on an atom amp. They power them on high gain at around 11-12 o clock(they reach around 4-5 o clock maxed out). If you’re only looking to play games then it might not make sense to have an amp or budget an amp in. That being said, if you are listening to music with these than you might want to look into an amp or saving up for one.

You can use a fairly wide variety of amps depending on which OHM you purchase the dt 880s in. Recommended 250 ohms for those on a budget, 32 ohms for those on consoles but you would be better off buying a different headphone in this regard as it doesn’t sound good imo, and 600 for those with a higher tier setup as this headphone becomes pretty demanding for the best sound at this point however it sounds it’s best. You can use an atom amp, Schiit Magni 3+, Schiit Heresy, Liquid Spark among a few others in the $100 range and it will power the 880s in any ohm just fine. If you need an amp dac just for gaming purposes. Soundblaster X3, Soundblaster G6, Schiit Fulla, Micca Origen G2 should power this headphone fine with Syba Sonic being the budget option here for a 250 ohm but no higher Please do also note that different amps and dacs will make headphones sound differently the same is said for changing the pads. The Cloud II is based off another headphone from the Takstar lineup. It is a very good sounding headphone but not the greatest in any retrospect. The dt 880s can walk all over this headset. However dt 880s are going to run you more budget wise cause you lose the mic. If you want a budget gamer option pick up the shp9500 with a V-moda boom Pro or a HD 598/599 if you can find them in a good budget with a 2.5mm like the one here I would recommend the 58x as a budget option but due to the nature of it using duel sided 3.5mm jacks it is not capable of using a v-moda or this other microphone and would need to use a Modmic. Do keep in mind though that gaming headsets are typically more of a balanced style of sound and in some cases will have recessed bass and somewhat brighter treble to make them more applicable to competitive and casual alike. However, they suffer in quality by a very large margin to actual headphones due to mass production and cheap parts leading to things such as poor mic quality compression of sound or very terrible sound placement and seperation.

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I have a Blue Yeti, so microphones are not a problem. I live in the Netherlands, and stuff from schiit, liquid sparks all that glorious stuff is unavailable without playing like $60 shipping. So I was looking around and found some creative sound blaster stuff, and a SMSL M3 for a decent price. Do you think the Sound blaster AE-5 or the X3 will cut it? It says it has support for 600ohms for a low price and I’m only 15 working at minimum wage :p. Or would you recommend the SMSL M3 over those? And is there a big difference in audio on the 250ohm’s vs the 600ohm’s? Thanks a lot!
Edit: I want the DT880/DT990 250/600ohm’s

First, I would say if you are at all sensitive to treble skip the dt 990s since you are unable to pick up something like the Liquid Spark. This is due to the extreme treble that comes from that headphone it becomes very sibilant without a proper setup and is very picky. It sounds fantastic when powered right with an amp that can reign that treble in but without that it’s a big mess. If you can manage the treble then decide whether you want a Neutral Bright headphone or a V signature. V signature will have more treble and bass but the mid frequencies, where vocals and other sound are, will be dialed back this is the dt 990. meanwhile, the dt 880 are a neutral bright meaning they aren’t as bassy yet still have some bass to them the mids aren’t very recessed if at all and the treble is still raised but nowhere near as much making them better for all round use. Keep in mind bass gets in the way of competitive gaming too.

For starters this will power up to 600 ohms, it won’t sound the best but heres something to keep in mind for both headphones. In their 600 ohm variation their sound changes based on how good the equipment is and how well it powers it. To quote myself from one of my other posts, The issue isn’t so much with it being loud as much as control and sensitivity. It needs a certain setup to really be driven to make it sound right.

These will also do the job and power them. Just keep in mind the 880 600 ohm is a little more demanding but will still be powered by these two.

Yes and no, and this is where I was mentioning earlier. The 250 ohms doesn’t sound as good as the 600 ohm. 250 ohms will have more treble not as much detail, clarity, it just doesn’t sound as good imo meanwhile the 600 ohm while more demanding sounds better the better the equipment you use, up to around the $400 margin on equipment fees, so it’s a bit of a long-term keeper if you like the headphone.

AE-5, X3, and SMSL M3 all sound a bit different but nothing to a large degree. Due to your budget concerns go with whatever would be cheapest in this regard. FX Audio DAC-X6 and
Micca Origen G2, if you can actually find it for cheap, should also work. Something to also keep in mind that while a dedicated “stack” amp and dac will sound better and perform better you can make use of an amp/dac combo and buy a better amp later using the amp/dac as just a dac. Recommended looking up reviews on these units to find out how they sound just so your sure you find what you are looking for.

Edit: Some extra notes here. A great idea for audio equipment on a budget I cannot stress this enough is equipment depreciation value. Upon use equipment for audio loses quite the amount of value. What this means is that if you go search around for say the dt 880 or dt 990 you could pick one up for quite a bit cheaper than brand new even if that product is still in mint condition. Amps and dacs hold their value pretty well but do drop in price however the headphones lose quite a bit on their value overtime. Over here in the USA I can buy a dt 770 for like $60 if I shop smart despite them being priced $140 or so. A even bigger example is the ever popular headphone DT 1990, this headphone is usually $600+ but if your lucky you can find one for $300-$400

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Thank you so much, this is exactly the answer I was looking for!
edit: I play rainbow six: siege, where vertical spound is really important, and people above me will give off bassy sounds, do you think that’d justify a V signature?

This becomes relatively complex, for this I would bring up the SHP9500, DT 880, and DT 990. All are bright and thats according to budget and how sharp they are, least to greatest. The bass does indeed play a role there in the more prominent deep footsteps including across things like very deep wood thumps however I have not had the issues for cue cards on the dt 880 like I have the dt 990. If you are on pc however, you can utilize an equalizer program to dial back the bass just enough to be acceptable but the same can be said about increasing the bass of a dt 880. I don’t particularly think that it would justify going with a V signature it really boils completely down to preference. Not everyone likes a bright signature much like not everyone likes a V signature. Bright, U, and V signatures are all bright styles but they sound different with V being the sharpest of the 3. If you have any way of auditioning them or a return policy on them I would definitely recommend this first and foremost due to the nature of the dt990 just being too sharp for a lot of people. I personally love them though your experience will vary. Most people here will point you to the 880 due to it being a better all rounder. The DT series can handle Vertical sounds just fine which is another reason I say it just kinda boils down to a personal preference and what you can tolerate in treble. To me a very high treble is very enjoyable

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Hey again, thanks for these in depth replies. I wonder if you’ve ever heard of the HyperX Orbit’s, theyre planar magnetic headphones for about €250 here, would that be a better option for around that budget? or do I buy the SMSL M3 with the DT880’s for about €260? I really appreciate the help!

ah the orbits, this was my last gaming headset I purchased outside of just regular auditioners and remains still in my collection next to my steel series arctis pro + gamedac. For the gaming headset lineup, this is literally in my top 3 best of the line. Build in amplifier, built in equalizer presets, sturdy build quality, great mic quality and compatible with the even better v moda boom pro, is a collaboration redesign of the audeze mobius just a wired variation. If you are trying to save money this headset is fantastic and considered a balanced sound signature able to incorporate a heavier bass or treble with its equalizer setups actually named as an example “footsteps” it also has Hi Res for those who are audiophiles that enjoy lossless files. For this though I highly recommend the Audeze Cryo Pads due to the fact they are much softer as out of the box the orbit and mobius both are a tad bit uncomfortable to my taste and build up some heat… the cryo pads however are much softer add better sound across the board imo but its marginal and have cryo gel which tones down the temp by a few degrees.

Downsides? Gaming headsets just dont stand anywhere near an actual headphone due to multitude of reasons. The orbit and audeze suffer from quality control issues such as the left ear cup dying or fizzing out as well as cabling issues. The sound doesn’t seem as clean or clear as you would get from a headphone either it sounds like a high end gamers headset. However, it is in my list one of the best of the gamers headset options for competitive gaming. The only other to stand up to this actual gaming headset is the Steel series arctis pro + Gamedac due to a naturally built in equalizer and dac allowing full customization of the sound and also being balanced both play incredibly well and boil again to preference but more in line with comfort and mic design. I had zero issues with either as far as solely gaming concerns. HOWEVER, this would be an closed back gaming headset vs a semi open back headphone. The soundstage difference is very noticeable and the dt 880 will come out on top with long range pin point sound accuracy. If large open field fps isn’t a concern orbit should be okay

due to the fact you already have a blue yeti this is debateable… if you were looking for a Planar I would point you towards a few others as well like the Monolith M560, Monolith M1060 or M1060C for closed backs, or Sundara if you can score it for $250(warning about this headphone though the company suffers from quality control issues and this headphone is EXTREMELY open to the point it may be picked up on microphones however it sounds amazing) For super high budgets You would be looking at the Fostex T50RP or T60RP or the modded variation which is superb and those are called the ARGONS which are very high grade, those I personally prefer my Aeon open x however thats a whole other tier of sound.

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