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Thread: The Definitive Home/Mobile/Car audio equipment thread!!!

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    The Definitive Home/Mobile/Car audio equipment thread!!!

    So I noticed that ETS doesn't have a proper audio equipment thread and figured I would start one in hopes of keeping some of the other threads clean.

    Feel free to talk about your home/mobile/car equipment here. Share your opinions and help others when they're making a purchase! (This is why I'm starting this thread, haha)


    With that being said; what is everyone using when it comes to headphones for use with their home stereo? I'm currently in the market for a nice pair (around $100 or so) and my head is spinning after reading the various "best headphone lists" that are posted around the web. Can someone help me and point me in the right direction as to what I should get and what I should stay away from?

    I found a site that sells the Beats Studio headphones for $105 (refurb) and then I found the Audio-Technica ATH-M50's for $119.99. I know most people hate the beats and say they're overpriced, but I enjoyed my solos before they got stolen. The sound quality was great, the build quality was solid, and I never had any issues with them breaking. Other than that though, I have no other experience with big headphones. Can someone help me out here before I make my purchase? Thanks!!
    @DVYDRNS
    Last edited by NotoriousTIMP; 05-31-2014 at 09:42 PM.

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    They're my only real experience with good headphones, but the Sony MDR V6's have been absolutely wonderful for me. I know there's a slight alternate version specifically for studio monitoring and since getting my pair I've recognized them in so many things, even in the Still performances, they're what Trent's wearing. Not that that means they're great, but nevertheless, it definitely made me feel like I'd made a good purchase.

    That said the next pair I plan on upgrading to is a Beyer Dynamic DT 770's, which I know are going to be a big change because the Sony's I use are more neutral in sound. Personally I love a neutral sound, it doesn't let anything overpower anything else, but at the same time I look forward to playing around with some different pairs and brands and seeing if there's something different I'd prefer.

    Hope that helps a bit! I know I got my MDR V6's for around 80 dollars on Amazon with free shipping, and so far I've not regretted them whatsoever.

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    Thank you! This is what I've been looking for.....after reading the reviews I went ahead and pulled the trigger on the V6's.

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    Is the Audio-Technica AT-LP120 a good choice for a turntable? I'm looking to upgrade from my cheap one, but don't want to spend a ton of money.

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    What's you're price range for a new deck? I'm currently running on a *EDIT* Pioneer (stupid iPhone autocorrect) PL-990 and I've been very happy with it.

    Last edited by NotoriousTIMP; 06-02-2014 at 02:50 AM.

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    Well the AT-LP120 is $235 on Amazon. I'd rather not spend much more than that, unless someone can convince me that it's really worth doing.

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    I can only speak about headphones here. I have used Sennheisers for about a decade, but I recently got a pair of entry level Grados and they're pretty goddamn great. The previous ones were the Sennheiser HD 218 and I finally got myself the Grado SR60i that I had my eye on for a while. There's really no comparison. The best part is that the Grados are under $100 and sound like something costing twice as much, probably. This is not a knock on Sennheisers, I was just surprised to find that the model of Grados that I bought were so much better than my most recent model of Sennheisers, because they both had the same list price.

    EDIT: I see you already bought the Sonys. I'll just leave this here anyway in case someone else is looking for ideas.
    Last edited by piggy; 06-03-2014 at 10:18 PM.

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    I thought the receiver/needle were the more important pieces to a good sound system, am I wrong? I need to get my hands on a new receiver since my TEAC is starting to show signs of a short in the left channel and I have to turn the volume up/down really quickly in order to get it to come back on. What is everyone using for a receiver?

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    Quote Originally Posted by NotoriousTIMP View Post
    I thought the receiver/needle were the more important pieces to a good sound system, am I wrong? I need to get my hands on a new receiver since my TEAC is starting to show signs of a short in the left channel and I have to turn the volume up/down really quickly in order to get it to come back on. What is everyone using for a receiver?
    Firstly, I'm pretty sure it's the MDR-7506's Trent is wearing in that video.. Which makes sense, since those cans are fucking superb! Clean, clear, and amazingly well balanced.. True, they take some time to "burn in" but it's soo soo worth it. Not sure what difference between the v6's and the 7506's are, but who cares.. probably not much, really.

    Secondly, there's a few variables in what makes a good sound system. Needle's and receivers DO make a difference, but as far as turntables are concerned, pretty much every component, right down to the belt make a difference. And depending on the turntable, sometimes you'll need an independent amp to run it.

    I have an old Pioneer receiver that could probably used a deep cleaning, and I'm running a AT-LP60, which is Audio-Technica's entry level table. It honestly doesn't sound or function like one though. Out of the box, it sounded better than any TT I had up until that point, which makes sense since they were all total piles of crap.. BUT, if your budget is less than 150, you can't do better than the LP-60 afaic.

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    @NotoriousTIMP you mentioned finding a pair of refurbished headphones, would you mind sending a link to the site? And anyone else for that matter - I've been lusting after Bowers & Wilkins P7s, and before that P5s, for a hell of a long time now. But they'd need to be heavily discounted.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pigpen View Post
    Firstly, I'm pretty sure it's the MDR-7506's Trent is wearing in that video.. Which makes sense, since those cans are fucking superb! Clean, clear, and amazingly well balanced.. True, they take some time to "burn in" but it's soo soo worth it. Not sure what difference between the v6's and the 7506's are, but who cares.. probably not much, really.
    There have been some excellent threads on this on sites like gearslutz and head-fi and the general consensus is that aside from something super basic (I want to say padding or something) they're basically identical internally, and are more or less the same pair. There are actually a lot of people who argue the V6's are more balanced than the 706's but it's really, really a small difference, to such an extent that a lot of other people say they're the same headphones.

    Personally I didn't even notice a burn-in period, they really impressed me from the first listen.

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    I wasn't completely satisfied with mine until after having used them for a while. They really started filling out and becoming more responsive after a couple days.
    I love them now, though.
    The one downside to them. They fuckin' ruin all other headphones for you. By comparison, the skullcandy earbuds I use with my ipod sound like I had stuffed cotton balls into my ears.. Total and complete difference in clarity and over quality of sound.

    highly recommended

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    I have a Dual record player, forget the model number, that my Dad found in a junk shop. He also gave me my amp, also forgotten the model. I bought an Autofon cartridge about 10 years ago to fit to the set. I recently swapped my tall 3' speakers for some Eltax bookshelf monitors from a bass player friend of mine. All visible in this setup pic. None of the setup has had much of an airing over the last 5 years whilst I've been in my small flat. I hope to be moving to a 4-bed semi a week Friday. (edit: having both speakers in that little unit in my living room alcove really sucked. I have the left over in the other alcove next to my TV now. A WORLD apart.)

    For headphones, I have some ex-demo Sennheiser HD438s which I love to bits. I've rarely used them with the record player though, mostly with my portables. I mostly use a Sansa Clip Zip 8G with 64G MicroSD for portable listening (the majority of my listening). I used to use Sansa Fuzes but they're hard to find now and don't last that long. (edit: all running rockbox which is a god send. The new sans clip sport is a totally different SoC under the plastic and it's unlikely rockbox will ever be ported to it, which sucks. Also, I generally listen to lossy at 128k AAC, which is transparent to me in triangle tests I've tried with my equipment/listening conditions. I'll have to repeat them when I've moved.)

    At work, I have a donated Philips 5.1 surround system, with a missing surround speaker, so I use it as a 3.1 setup with line-in from my laptop. It's a huge improvement on any of the desktop PC speakers I've tried in the past.

    Edit: oh yeah. I have a Numark PT-01 which is fun but the sound quality just isn't good enough for me, either through my amp setup or for ripping. It's good for demoing and I've used it recently to try out some of my newer acquisitions whilst my real gear is packed. I've been meaning to sell it though.
    Last edited by jmtd; 06-03-2014 at 04:08 AM.

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    Sennheiser headphones are excellent. Trent can be seen wearing a pair in the Ghosts photos. I now use Sony's MDR-V55 headphones and they're just as good; sturdy, very balanced in the bass/treble regions and they look pretty, too. The only slight problem is that the cable is too short (the Sennheisers usually have long-ass cables).

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    I bought a pair of Sennheiser HD500s in 2001 or so, because they had a detachable headphone cable - I had previously only been spending $50, $60 max on headphones, and these were the first to break the $100 barrier, and it was like I was hearing music for the first time again. About two years ago, one of the speakers had a buzzing sound, and I figured, a decade's a pretty good run. I went with HD595s, and they had removed yet another layer of mud compared to my HD500s. Consequently, I took apart my HD500s and found a cat whisker was what was making the speaker buzz, so they're back to working order.

    I also have a pair of HD280 pros at work. They're closed back, so they're a bit bassier, and they keep the music in & the ambiance out. This was my second pair of HD280 pros, the first I picked up off the grass at Lollapalooza 2008 after Rage Against the Machine had played. Took 'em home, they still worked.

    The common denominator across all of these is that I can wear them all day and not even notice. I'd received Bose QuietComfort 3 headphones as a gift from work about six years ago, and while the noise cancelling is neat, they rest on my ears, and that gets hot and irritating after an hour or so. I get home, sit at my desk, put on my HD595s (which, I should point out, I got used for a little over $150) even when I'm not listening to music yet. Just so they're there when I do listen to something.

    I'm not saying that's normal behavior, but yeah, there you go.

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    I use the Shure SRH440's and I also have a pair of Audio Technica ATH-M40ƒs and Sony MDR 7506's for tracking in the studio and from back when I used to DJ. They are all around 100 bucks and give a clear accurate portrayal of whats going on. However I rarely ever just listen to music on headphones. I just use these for recording. and they do the job nicely. The Shure's are awesome with vinyl tho. I couldn't help but test them out in my listening environment. Out of all of them I prefer Shure the most.

    For my monitors I have a set of Yamaha HS8's in the studio for mixing along with a set of M-Audio BX5a's for another reference, But I intend to pick up a set of Avantone Mix Cubes to replace the BX5's

    In my living room I have PolK Audio LS8's which sound fantastic. hooked up to a Denon AVR 791 receiver with some vintage Bose surrounds (Back in the 70's Bose didn't suck, DO NOT EVEN THINK OF BUYING A MODERN BOSE SYSTEM NOW) and A Yamaha Subwoofer and a Klipsch center channel. Don't recall the models of either at this moment.

    In the back yard I am pushing an older yamaha receiver hooked up to an airport express and I have some Yamaha NS-AW350 around the backyard and pool. They are super affordable and they kick a lot of ass. for indoor outdoor speakers i didn't really want to pay a boat load. but these things seriously impressed me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leviathant View Post
    I went with HD595s, and they had removed yet another layer of mud compared to my HD500s.


    that's good to know, thanks. I have wondered whether i'd hear a difference from my 438's up to a 5xx series - this makes me think, no doubt I would. of course not sure open backed would fit into my life at the moment. but your experience also makes me think I'd hear an improvement going from 438 to (say) 449's (I think the 439's are probably pretty much the same as the 438's. My theory is XYZ = X: class, 4 = high-end closed, 5 high-end open, 6 very-high-end-closed; Y = in-class spec, (larger better), Z = iteration, as in refreshes in style etc.)

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    The Definitive Home/Mobile/Car audio equipment thread!!!

    Look what came in the mail just now.....man I love Amazon Prime!! I could have sworn I ordered the V6's but I guess I didn't....



    Quote Originally Posted by Leviathant View Post
    I had previously only been spending $50, $60 max on headphones, and these were the first to break the $100 barrier, and it was like I was hearing music for the first time again.


    Holy shit, I know what you're talking about here. I decided to play A-Ha's "Hunting High and Low" as my first record with the Sony's and its amazing what a good pair of headphones will do!!! Man, I finally see why people hate Beats so much.....they really are over priced for what you're getting.....
    Last edited by NotoriousTIMP; 06-03-2014 at 06:21 PM.

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    Hope they sound good!

    Honestly they're basically identical pairs in terms of what's inside of them, I want to say something to do with the plug/cord is the only real measurable difference and it has no real impact on quality. Let me know how they sound to your ears, I personally think they're perfect for more electronic sounding music, they have a lot of pop/kick for me.
    Last edited by kleiner; 06-03-2014 at 08:43 PM.

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    Yeah, played a bunch of 80's pop today and they all sounded amazing....



    But once I popped a more guitar oriented LP it kinda went flat

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    OK guys, my receiver took a dump today and now I'm in need a replacement! What is everyone using right now and what would you recommend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by piggy View Post
    I can only speak about headphones here. I have used Sennheisers for about a decade, but I recently got a pair of entry level Grados and they're pretty goddamn great. The previous ones were the Sennheiser HD 218 and I finally got myself the Grado SR60i that I had my eye on for a while. There's really no comparison. The best part is that the Grados are under $100 and sound like something costing twice as much, probably. This is not a knock on Sennheisers, I was just surprised to find that the model of Grados that I bought were so much better than my most recent model of Sennheisers, because they both had the same list price.

    EDIT: I see you already bought the Sonys. I'll just leave this here anyway in case someone else is looking for ideas.
    +1 for Grado if you don't mind open headphones.

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    You know, I wasn't so sure about the open thing at first, but the way they explained them on the dealer site (4ourears.net) sold me. And they allow me to hear ambient noise well enough that I can be aware of stuff going on in the background but not so well that the music isn't my focus, which is a plus for me since I startle easily! For folks who want something that really blocks it, that would of course be a deal-breaker.
    Last edited by piggy; 06-08-2014 at 04:36 AM.

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    I'm not sure if this is the thread for this, but I've been bootlegging concerts for years and just updated my rig. As such, my Sony MZ-M200 hi-md recorder is now unnecessary to me. If anyone is interested, let me know. I am aware it is worth a good deal of money, and eBay is probably my best shot, but if anyone happens to be in the market for one, I'd rather sell it directly and avoid giving eBay a 10% cut of the sale.

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    I am in the market for some new subs for my acura rsx because my old o2 subs blew. I'm kinda short on funds but I'm pretty much set on alpine. I'm thinking of the type s or type r's. I know the type r's are better but my question is, how much better? Like i said, i'm pretty short on funds so the extra $150 is kind of iffy (I'm looking for either 2 10's or 2 12's). Thanks for any help. if anybody has any kind of subs for sale here let me know

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    Goodbye Teac and hello Marantz!

    Last edited by NotoriousTIMP; 06-13-2014 at 12:57 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by qotsa_1992 View Post
    I am in the market for some new subs for my acura rsx because my old o2 subs blew. I'm kinda short on funds but I'm pretty much set on alpine. I'm thinking of the type s or type r's. I know the type r's are better but my question is, how much better? Like i said, i'm pretty short on funds so the extra $150 is kind of iffy (I'm looking for either 2 10's or 2 12's). Thanks for any help. if anybody has any kind of subs for sale here let me know
    The size of the subs you're going to purchase depends on the music you tend to listen to while in the car. If you listen to more rock oriented music then I recommend a pair of 10's which pack more of a punch for the bass and bass drums (and overall its best for an all around soundstage). If you listen to bass heavy music like rap/hip hop then 12's should do fine (I don't see the point of going past 12's). Remember that you need an amp for the bass that has ample wattage and the type of enclosure makes it sound completely different -open or closed enclosures. From what I know Alpine's are fine I haven't used any of those products but you could check out Crutchfield for reviews. I personally would go with Memphis if possible since I know what I'm paying for is top quality(I'm saving up for 2 10's and a new amp). Also don't forget that you may need a capacitor depending on how much power your system is pulling.

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    what sort or driving warrants Investing in car sound systems? Just wondering. I don't drive much but I feel that even if I spent some money on car audio it would still sound pretty crappy.

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    Well if you're doing a long drive, you need music or radio to prevent yourself being bored. Bored = tired = crash.

    Car audio can sound great, as speakers are speakers regardless of where you put them, but you can only really pick out the full depth of a song in a car with little road/engine noise. Standard stereo in a Honda Jazz is going to sound dire; premium audio in a Jaguar or Bentley can be cinema-quality.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmtd View Post
    what sort or driving warrants Investing in car sound systems? Just wondering. I don't drive much but I feel that even if I spent some money on car audio it would still sound pretty crappy.
    Just changing factory speakers can make a big difference in terms of sound quality, and it can be a small investment. Say 80 bucks for a pair of front speakers and 100 for installation -you can do this yourself and save some money and its pretty easy once you look on how to do this on the internet.

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