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Thread: Headphones/Amp for mixing and mastering, help !

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    Headphones/Amp for mixing and mastering, help !

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    Hello there
    i am new in here, hope i am starting this thread in the right place.

    I am a music producer, I've been making Trip-Hop / electronica for a few years now. I am also working abroad (PE teacher), always traveling so i can't have a proper treated home studio.

    I am currently using :

    MONITORS : Presonus Eris E5
    AUDIO INTERFACE : Focusrite 2i4 2nd gen
    HEADPHONES : Audio Technica ATH-M50X
    MSI laptop

    I am having a very VERY hard time mixing and mastering songs in my actual untreated room, so I am thinking about buying an openback Headphones. After a long googling session, I felt In love with the Beyerdynamic DT1990 Pro (250uhm) . quiet expensive headphones (600 usd) and yet they need an AMP to run perfectly... (starting from 100 usd)

    I know that most of the producers do not advise using headphones for mixing but I have not choice.

    My questions are :

    1- what do you think about mixing with an openback headphones? please share your experiences
    2- as I mentioned above, I am using a Focusrite 2i4, do I need to buy a amp to run the dt1990 ? if yes, which price friendly AMP do you guys propose ?
    3- anyone using those beyerdynamic ? are they worth the 600usd ?
    4- is there any lower price but yet similar quality headphones you know ?


    thank you !

    Best
    Youssef

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    I have the 250ohm DT-770s and while they are closed back, I never had a problem with the level I could get from my older Saffire interface. However, some folks Iíve had over to record did find the level low for tracking so I do use a headphone amp with them now.

    I would think you could get by without an amp for mixing. Iíd certainly try it.

    If you must mix with phones, then having a few different kinds is good to check against each other. For that an amp with 4x outputs and independent level controls can be useful.

    Iíd also try some of the higher end Sennheisers. Theyíve been in the open-back business forever and they have more models with lower impedance.
    Last edited by keith.rogers; 01-29-2019 at 07:23.

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    Thank you for your answer !
    I thought deeply about the Sennheiser HD660s and HD700. what do you think ? is there any noticeable difference ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by modeobsqure View Post
    Thank you for your answer !
    I thought deeply about the Sennheiser HD660s and HD700. what do you think ? is there any noticeable difference ?
    i havenít tried those - I rely on monitors so the 770s and a pair of 500 series Sennheisers are as spendy as I got. I have the Senn 280s as well that I use for tracking along with the 770s and an ancient set of Sonyís I take on the road that need replacement. They all get their turns on my pumpkin

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    Your M-50 headphones are not doing you any favors. They’re terrible to mix on.....for many reasons........despite what some say. I own a pair. I have MANY headphones........mostly high end. None are perfect for mixing to be sure. I think the Sennheiser HD-600 set is the best overall for mixing. They’re extremely accurate across most of the spectrum but do lack some sub-bass punch. I’ve too have tried the DT770 cans and for a closed headphone they’re good to work with as well. The 250 ohm set is very good. Just my 2 cents worth.
    Just A Song Writer..........

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    Most decent "studio" headphones deliver around 100dB SPL* for a one volt signal input (the HD660s give 104dB for 1Vrms).

    The 2i4 does not even get to a volt at 0dBfs! So yes, you will need a headphone amplifier because most of the time your tracks are going to be well below 0dBfs. Headphone amps in AIs are in any case pretty poor things, in addition to buggerall headroom they are made with very cheap chips and produce more distortion than say the line outputs. In fact it will be far better to drive any cans amp you get from the line outs. Some of the better HP amps cater for two mono jacks, otherwise you will need a TRS to 2X TS cable.

    *100dB is of course very loud and you must be very careful not to expeose yourself to such SPLs for more than a very few minutes per day. Not only is there a risk of long term hearing damage but only a couple of minutes at 100dB will kill your capability to make fine acoustic judgements.

    You are going for open back phones for the better fidelity? Fine except they do not reduce ambient noise and so the temptation is to jack up the level to beat it...Think on.

    Dave.

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