Upgrade from Beyerdynamic DT 990 600 ohm

Hello guys.
I am considering an upgrade from my DT990 which were my gate into the world of audio. Though they sound fantastic I am sure there are headphones that sound even more fantastic. To be honest I don’t know if anything can sound better than DT990 as I have never had anything better.
Reading forums about headphones comparison at least 2 times I saw an expression “it’s only DT990”.
From what I have searched Sennheiser HD800s offers the best sound for the price of 1600$.
Main questions are:

  1. is HD800s worth the upgrade and will it deliver the better sound?
  2. are there any better open back HiFi headphones for that price?

I mean you have a ton of options here. I guess I would ask what you like about the 990 and what you would want to change about it. Personally regarding the 800s, it’s fairly hit or miss, I do think that it would be an upgrade from the 990 for sure, but it also wouldn’t be super similar either. You also have to consider amp pairing a ton with the 800s imo. I recall you made a thread about that, what did you end up going with?

Speaking of DT990 like in the description those are my first serious headphones so I really have nothing to compare them with.
About AMP I still haven’t ordered anything but I definitely thrown away the idea of THX AAA 789.
Wouldn’t the new Magnius be a bit better than Asgard 3? 90% that I will choose Schiit over Geshelli Labs AMP for the treble taming.
Do you know any comparable options to HD800s for the price of 1600-2000?
I mean there are even more expensive headphones for 3000$ or more and to be honest very and very beautiful. But not sure if they offer any better sound than 1600$ ones.

From my experience no, I have some more thoughts on it in the magnius thread, but I generally preferred the Asgard 3

The hifiman Arya if you want something very large sounding but still neutral bright. The adx5000 if you want something more intimate but neutral bright, the zmf auteur if you wanted something more organic sounding and neutral, the focal clear if you wanted something neutral with an interesting presentation. All of these are going for a similar signature (something neutral bright that’s revealing) as the 800s for the most part and have their positives and negatives compared to the 800s. It all depends on preference

Also personally, I wouldn’t suggest you take such a large jump, I would recommend you consider something moreso in the 500-600 range first for a really solid upgrade, and go from there

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Is there anything you like specifically that the 990 does? Or anything bother you and want more or less of? The 990 is super unique and not much is really like it, and is somewhat devisive

Yeah, like M0N said, don’t go all-in on the price so fast if you haven’t experimented much until now, maybe keep it within 2x the price of the 990 for the first upgrade. And if you find the 990 fantastic and can’t think of anything you would fix about them, I suggest trying a different technology and going for a planar magnetic like the HiFiMan Sundara.

Reading this was about to say the exact same. It’s a journey don’t concern yourself with rushing to the very end. Pricepoint does not = better in this hobby in a lot of cases.

Only ones I can think of that I sat with remotely similar was of course the 1990 and potentially T1 but even than you lose that more ethereal like sound the 990s have… It’s quite a unique one.

I would ask the same of what do you like so much on the 990s and what would you change. If it’s a straight upgrade than you’d still probably want a V signature like the 990s right? In that case I definitely wouldn’t recommend the HD800S as its more neutral bright and not a V signature. Can’t really recommend anything for certain without knowing your sound preferences here.

There is no, “best” sound in this hobby anyone who claims this is speaking purely from their opinion and making an extremely subjective statement. Take it in steps. 990 is only around the $150 - $200 range… take it a step up around like M0N mentioned in the $500 - $600 or so range no need to jump immediately to the almost 2k regions.

I love everything about DT 990 (except harsh treble) as much as I would love to improve everything. I listen to instrumental music a lot and enjoying every little detail I hear.
In games DT990 deliver a very balanced bass, though for me clean detailed sound is more important than bass.
There are bad opinions about Hifiman quality so I probably wouldn’t choose one of them.
People here are probably right, I should consider 600$ option before I go for 2k $. And again, no idea what to choose as DT990 were my entrance to the world of audio

Hmm, so you mentioned the 990 was relatively harsh for you but you want a step up from 990s and yet love the signature… If you want a bit less bass, relaxed approach, and smoother highs why not grab a T1? Otherwise I would say go grab a DT 1990 and put the balanced pads on them (or dekoni suede cause those are pretty nice too granted they dial back that treble alot though) as they gain a V signature. They won’t be as ethereal in sound as the 990s but they are damn nice headphones and may suit what your looking for here.

Pretty sure there was another headphone I recall hearing had similar treble though… I think it was an electrostatic actually but for the life of me I cannot remember. Maybe M0N can help in that regard with this signature…

Uhhhhh for what signature now?

Bright like the 990s are.

It might have been a stax since those tend to be upper midrange to treble focused, but I can’t quite think of an estat that is really that close to the 990

That mightve been it but iirc thats yeah more mid and high focused not a V signature… Trying to think of something other than like 1990 balanced pads that has a sharp V signature

Th900 mk2?

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oh yeah those are a really strong V arent they. yeah that might be a good one lol. Thats the one with the wood cup mods for the sound change

hmm expensive though. Emu Teak maybe? Its a v signature… maybe Dekoni blue?

The x00 pH would do well for a v shape, same with the ebony or emu teak

That thing is a damn bass cannon thats if you can even find one same with the other two of its variant. Aeons just wont work here not bright enough. Yeah I think either tr-x00’s like you mentioned… emu teak… maybe a dekoni blue… and 1990 balanced pads… if he wants smoother more relaxed then my vote goes towards the T1 haven’t found another headphone with that much brightness sounding that smooth outside of an hd800s

The 800s was smooth lol? Going to guess it was a smoother ss or tube amp, since those things can just sound raw depending on the amp

Liquid Platinum so smooth relatively speaking. Could have been better granted lol. Least it’s not incredibly grainy sounds good in my opinion.

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