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Check Out the Best Budget HiFi Guide for Products in the $200-$1200 Price Range

Sennheiser HD 555 ~ $100
Headphone

Sennheiser HD 555 made it onto our Editor’s Choice Best Headphone Guide for good reason. They are constantly sought after by audiophiles on a budget. Their open constuction and cicumaural fit (around the ears) makes them comfortable, big sounding, and doesn’t cause listening fautigue. The HD 555 are good straight into a source but really shine with a headphone amp. Sennheiser, a headphone company with one of the best reputations, has made one of the best budget hi-fi headphones out there.

Specifications

  • Type – Circumaural, Open-Back Dynamic Stereo Headphones
  • Frequency Range – 15 Hz – 28 kHz
  • Impedance – 50 Ohms
  • Connectors – 1 x Detachable 1/4″ Stereo Phone Adapter | 1 x 1/8″ Stereo Miniplug
  • Cable Length – 10′ (3 m)
  • Weight – 9.2 oz (260 g)
Other Recommend Headphones – Sony MDR-V6, Koss PortaPro, Grado SR60, Sennheiser PX 100, Sony MDR 7506, Sennheiser HD650, AKG K701

Also see our Editor’s Choice Best Headphones Guide

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Audeze LCD2 ~ $945
audeze-lcd-2

Headphones

Audeze LCD2 headphones are simply the best headphones I’ve ever heard. Seems Steve Guttenburg from CNet thinks so, Srajan Ebaen from 6moons thinks so, and the forums at Headfi are in love with them too. If money is no object, these are it. Paired with a good S.E.T. amplifier and solid source, you just beat the guy with the $40k stereo system.

Specifications

  • Impedance: 50 Ohms, nominal
  • Sensitivity: 91 dB/1mW
  • Maximum power handling: 15W
  • Frequency Response: 5 Hz – 20 KHz, usable high frequency extension 50 KHz.
  • Distortion: Less than 1% even at full output.
Other Recommend Headphones – Sony MDR-V6, Koss PortaPro, Grado SR60, Sennheiser PX 100, Sony MDR 7506, Sennheiser HD650, AKG K701
Also see our Editor’s Choice Best Headphones Guide

Sound Magic PL30 ~ $30
soundmagic-pl30

Headphones

Sound Magic PL30 are hard to beat, especially at this price point. They come with a huge variety of fitting options and each ear has a bass setting adjustment switch. After a few hours of burn in the frequencies are very well balanced and clear. They isolate fairly well and are small and there isn’t much cord feedback.

Specifications

  • 9mm Neodymium Magnet Drivers
  • Impedance: 12 ohm
  • Sensitivity: 100+/-3dB/mW at 1kHz
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz to 22kHz
  • Connector: 3.5mm stereo plug
Other Recommend Headphones – Sony MDR-V6, Koss PortaPro, Grado SR60, Sennheiser PX 100, Sony MDR 7506, Sennheiser HD650, AKG K701
Also see our Editor’s Choice Best Headphones Guide

Beyer Dynamic DT 770 Pro ~ $199
Beyer-Dynamic-DT-770-Pro

Headphones

Beyer Dynamic DT 770 Pro headphones are the most viewed headphone product on AudioReview over the past year. I’ve not heard these personally, I must admit, but 20,000+ viewers might be onto something.

Specifications

  • Frequency Range 5 Hz – 35 kHz
  • Impedance 250 ohms
  • Sensitivity 96dB SPL/mW
  • Maximum Input Power 100 mW
  • Connectors Gold plated 1/8″ stereo mini-jack, with 1/8″ to 1/4″ TRS phono adapter
Other Recommend Headphones – Sony MDR-V6, Koss PortaPro, Grado SR60, Sennheiser PX 100, Sony MDR 7506, Sennheiser HD650, AKG K701
Also see our Editor’s Choice Best Headphones Guide
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  • derek says:

    Monitor Audio speakers have always been a favorite choice for me. Smooth roll-off the highs, very tight sounding bass response without being overpowering, and mids that make your favorite vocalist sound even sweeter.

    Nice job of picking components that won’t break the bank.

  • adam says:

    Derek -

    Really – you found Monitor Audio speakers rolled off at the high end – not what I normally hear about them. What amplifier or rest of the system, source for instance, did you pair them with, or heard them paired with? Not saying they are harsh, but the RS6 I’ve heard had a slightly thin airy high end. Good if you were looking to hear the room in a recording, but definitely didn’t help with a black whole for a stage.

  • DBoy says:

    There is lot of PMP that sound better than iPod
    for less than 800

  • Jack says:

    For those of you who have trouble justifying big speakers to your significant other (like me), try the Silverline Minuets. They are small enough that they can sit on a desk and they absolutely rock. They go low enough that they don’t demand a sub but I recommend one.

  • Rubén says:

    Hi all,
    Iam newbie in this forum.
    Is the new Magnepan similar in soun dto the olds models?

    Best Regards
    Rubén

  • Rubén says:

    I currenlty have Apogee and for my they are not surpassed even today in the planar range.

  • Rubén says:

    I miss said that full planars like Apogee is very demanding on room space and position

  • Rubén says:

    But when they are paired with a good power amp is IMHO one of the more realistics speakers

  • Rubén says:

    A few years ago change the olds ribbons with new ones (manufactured in Australia) and sound even betters than the originals.
    More extended, transparency, air

  • Rubén says:

    For full potential the Divas must be actively biamped

  • Lorenqo says:

    planar speakers all sound wimpy and apogees require a amp you could use for arc welding to drive them properly. maybe there ar PMP that sound better than Ipod but they’re not tha good either. the Hifiman is a real audio product and with it’s versatility is a bargain reelly

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