Welcome! This is the first product shootout that we’ve done here at Record Together – hope you enjoy it!
I’ve heard some great things about the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro and jumped at the chance when I saw a great deal on eBay. All of these tests are using the headphone output of the Steinberg MR816 CSX audio interface.
First up – Sennheiser HD 650
The HD 650 sounded very smooth to me. Nothing is exaggerated, and it probably had the most flat response out of the three – almost like a nice pair of studio monitors for your ears. The stereo spread is noticeably more broad that the others, however it’s almost to the point of being distracting. The HD 650 sounds fantastic, but it is also the most expensive of the three that I’m testing. Something to keep in mind.
Overall: Fantastic headphones, but I’m not sure if it’s worth the hefty price.
Second – Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro
These are the only pair of the bunch that are closed back, so the first thing I noticed putting them on is how quiet the ambient noise got. It’s a great feature for drummers or people working in noisy environments, as it allows you to listen to the music at a lower volume than open back headphones. These headphones had more punch to my ears than the HD-650. The kick drum and snare really cut through while the vocal and instruments are a little further back – this sounds really balanced to my ears. I can see why drummers say that they love these.
Overall: Nice and punchy – would be great for bass players and drummers.
Last – Audio Technica ATH-M50
I should preface by saying the ATH-M50 are about half the price of the DT 770, and a third of the price of the HD 650. I hear a noticeable difference in quality in these. The cymbals sound more harsh and the guitar and snare more shrill. On the other hand, I enjoy vocals through the ATH-M50 more than the other two. It has a nice compressed and “up-front” sound to my ears. Not quite as balanced as the other two, but there is a certain character that makes music fun to listen to through them. More of a gritty sound, but not in a bad way necessarily – more like the kind of gritty sound you get from an old stereo you may have listened to your favorite music through in your bedroom when you were a teenager. Alright, that might be a specific case of nostalgia here. But I wouldn’t discount the ATH-M50, especially for the price they’re asking.
Overall – Noticeably lower quality sound than the others, but it has a certain character that I really like. Terrific headphones for the money.
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