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Headphones: High-end Audio Technica or low-end Grado Labs?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by 144dB View Post
    Hey all,

    My wonderful wife allowed me to open my new KRKs a week early, so that I could burn them in and be ready to go on day one. I have them connected to an FM receiver on a station that plays a broad range of material, and I'm going to let them play for a week straight.

    I did try them on and I tried them in the studio for a few minutes. In terms of comfort, they seem fantastic. I'll know more after a long session, but they are very light, and in contrast to my AT's, the narrow memory foam pads go completely around the helix of the outer ear. My ATH-M40's rest on the helix, the lobule, and the outer ear in general, which leads to fatigue. After an hour or two, you have to take them off and massage your ears. I don't see that happening with the KRK's, and that's a huge bonus already.

    Though they aren't burned in yet, I did pull up a few problematic mixes, and I could detect more easily the frequencies that I'm struggling with. They reveal mud in the 200-500 Hz range more than my AT's do. If I had these cans while mixing my last project, I would have made a few different EQ decisions that would have made a much better mix.

    What better endorsement can you say about a piece of gear?

    I'll let you know how they fare once they are burned in. So far, I'm impressed.

    Glad to hear it. I always keep coming back to the 8400s. In fact I got a second pair so that one is by the computer, and the other by the mic where I do overdubs.
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    • #17
      It's funny... I used to knock AKG headphones because I thought they had unnatural lower mids (i.e. a bump in their response). Based on what I know now, they might have been closer to the truth than my AT's. If my mixes suffer from one common theme, it's a build up of energy in the 200-600 Hz range. I think these KRKs will help me address that.

      I try to mix on nearfields as much as possible, but with my living situation, the reality is I use cans a lot more than speakers. I use speakers to help get the bottom end right, to judge the amount of reverb, and to gauge panning. Headphones work better for hearing glitches and fine details.
      Last edited by 144dB; 02-27-2017, 10:00 PM.
      144 dB
      Just Finished: Two Button Press
      Working on: Condensation, The Jupiter Bluff
      Main Axes: Kawai MP11 and Kurzweil PC361

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      • #18
        Hey all,

        ...just a quick note to report back and to say that I love my new KRK KNS 8400's... Special thanks to Phil and Craig for recommending them, as I would have never given KRK a look without the recommendation. I've always been familiar with the company, but I was never much interested in their NFMs, and I would have completely missed these headphones.

        They are light, comfortable, well-constructed, and best of all, they have helped me judge the critical 250-400 Hz range that has plagued so many of my recordings and mixes. They also give me a more accurate high-end (e.g. 5 KHz and above). In addition to the great sound, I don't get neck aches like I did with my A/Ts, and I've worn them for 2-3 hours non-stop without issue. They have been a fabulous buy and I wholeheartedly recommend them.

        I still mix and master with multiple references, as every speaker has a vulnerability. These cans don't highlight resonances very well in the 1-2 Khz range, but my Event NFMs easily compensate. I always do my panning and reverb/delay with NFMs anyway, so if I miss something with the KRKs, I'll catch it on the speakers.

        I'm stunned how bad some synth sounds are, and I never knew it. No wonder certain mixes of mine fell short. There were nasty 300-800 Hz resonances that my old headphones weren't catching, and I couldn't hear it on my NFMs either.

        I burned them in non-stop for a week by plugging them into an iPod with a very diverse playlist, and I'm still running them 24 hours a day. I'll continue to do so for a week or so.

        Thanks again for the recommendation!
        144 dB
        Just Finished: Two Button Press
        Working on: Condensation, The Jupiter Bluff
        Main Axes: Kawai MP11 and Kurzweil PC361

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        • #19
          Thanks for the detailed review - I'm glad to hear they're working out well for you!
          **********

          "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

          - George Carlin

          "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

          - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

          "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

          - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

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          • #20
            Anybody try the new Blue Powered Headphones yet? I heard about them on NPR, so I guess they are released to the market. I haven't seen any reviews yet.... (Not that I'm shopping or anything)

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            • #21
              Originally posted by philboking View Post
              Anybody try the new Blue Powered Headphones yet? I heard about them on NPR, so I guess they are released to the market. I haven't seen any reviews yet.... (Not that I'm shopping or anything)

              Blue makes several different headphone models now. I've reviewed the original ones - the Blue Mofi - which have an onboard amplifier.

              http://www.harmonycentral.com/expert...-fi-headphones

              I've also reviewed the Blue Lola, which features a similar design, but is passive.

              http://www.harmonycentral.com/expert...ola-headphones

              They're very nice headphones. Their main drawback is the weight... but it's well-distributed and the innovative headband helps to keep it from being too annoying.

              **********

              "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

              - George Carlin

              "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

              - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

              "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

              - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

              Comment

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