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June 11, 2006 6:01 PM   Subscribe

Music Competition 1 week left!!!
"Gizmodo Idol" competition to win some serious headphones (reviewed here )
Not too many entries yet,you have a chance still but look out for serious competition.
posted by wuakeen (27 comments total)

 
Hmm.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:14 PM on June 11, 2006


Nothing interesting about this. Some ad-driven site is running a contest. Thank you for taking the bait and going viral with it.
posted by scarabic at 6:22 PM on June 11, 2006


Bitch, bitch, bitch.
posted by smackfu at 6:32 PM on June 11, 2006


in fairness, gizmodo isn't just "some ad-driven site." it's a pretty interesting tech blog, where Jason Rojas got his start before leaving to found engadget.

that said, i'm also not sure how I feel about this post.
posted by shmegegge at 6:32 PM on June 11, 2006


That's a weak fucking "review". Really nothing more than an advertisement. (Then again, most "reviews" these days are just that.)
posted by Mikey-San at 6:35 PM on June 11, 2006


Hmm, a contest to cram more salty treats into the internet's already bloated snack hole.
posted by parallax7d at 6:48 PM on June 11, 2006


where Jason Rojas got his start before leaving to found engadget.

It was Peter Rojas, and Peter was courted there by Jason Calacanis to head up Engadget which quickly became a clone of Gizmodo and started a small pissing match between Nick Denton and Jason Calacanis. Eventually Engadget sold to AOL along with the rest of the Weblogs Inc. blogs and now has a dozen authors or so.
posted by mathowie at 7:08 PM on June 11, 2006


Are headphones like that really worth the price? I mean, it's hard for me to imagine more then $50 worth hardware in those things, although the isolation would be nice.
posted by delmoi at 7:23 PM on June 11, 2006


It's like everything else with audio. There is always a high end version available for people with money and / or a desire for 10% improvement in sound for a 100% increase in price. Sony makes something similar for $30.
posted by smackfu at 7:30 PM on June 11, 2006


That's an understatement, smackfu.

I have had the ue10's for a year now and I will assure you that beyond any shadow of a doubt they are the finest piece of audio hardware I have ever owned, not excluding my old Shure e2c's (the previous champeen, a fine piece of work in their own right, and a whalefucker of a bargain at $99). The reproduction is crisp, deep, resonant and (as far as I can tell) flawless.

If you LOVE music the way I do and can even remotely afford them, there is no equal that I am aware of. Consider this the strongest nontechnical recommendation it's possible to make.
posted by adamgreenfield at 7:47 PM on June 11, 2006


(However, I've never so much glanced at either Gizgadget or Endmodo and could give a brewer's fart for either one of them.)
posted by adamgreenfield at 7:48 PM on June 11, 2006


I'll qualify your comment, adamgreenfield, by noting that not everyone gets the same benefit out of high-end audio hardware. I've had my eardrums perforated a few times, and as a consequence I can't tell the difference between the Grados and Sennheisers I've test driven and the $35 Sony phones I now use. If your ears are in perfect working condition, your results may vary.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 8:01 PM on June 11, 2006


Not sure what to say about that.

I'd *never* describe my ears as being in "perfect working order" (having had my hearing damaged by middle-ear infections, Minor Threat and M-16s at intimate range), and I got such an asswhumping high out of the ue10's the first time I worked 'em in that I had to rethink my dogma about lossy compression.

But you're right in that this is assuredly one of those YMMV situations, and nine-hundred-odd dollars was a stomach-churning risk to take on something that might well have sucked. What can I say, but that I'm delighted?
posted by adamgreenfield at 8:15 PM on June 11, 2006


How good is the isolation though? Do they really give you -25db? That alone would make music sound much better, IMO. And what about comfort? Are they really ten times better then the $99 sure e2cs?
posted by delmoi at 8:31 PM on June 11, 2006


well, that's embarassing. either way, I still think gizmodo is more than just "some tech blog." ymmv, of course.
posted by shmegegge at 9:18 PM on June 11, 2006


No offense whatesoever, seriously, but your ears must have sustained some serious damage over the years. $30 Sony headphones don't come close to a set of Grados. Ditto Sennheiser.

I'll put my Grado SR60s up against anything from the Sony rack in Best Buy any day of the week.
posted by Mikey-San at 9:19 PM on June 11, 2006


The isolation should be damn good on any canal phones. They're basically earplugs with a speaker. You're paying for different quality speakers, but the basic principles are the same.

(As an aside, the only problem with my set is that I can't eat with them in. The noise from chewing is horrible.)
posted by smackfu at 9:23 PM on June 11, 2006


Addendum: This is actually one of my biggest fears, having something damage my hearing to such a point. Hearing erodes over time without Bad Things™ happening in the first place, of course, but I try not to think about that too much because OH GOD I CAN FEEL THE HAIRS IN MY INNER EAR BREAKING OFF OH SHIT OH SHIT OH SHIT and then I need Prozac.
posted by Mikey-San at 9:24 PM on June 11, 2006


I have a pair of the superfi 5 EBs which I use at work, but only because they are less isolating than my etymotics which I prefer soundwise when I don't ever have to hear anyone around me.

Anyone who doesn't think good headphones make much difference either has dead hearing or listens to shitty music where it doesn't matter or actually makes the reality of the music worse.
posted by HTuttle at 10:25 PM on June 11, 2006


Past a certain point, all headphones are of similar quality... they'll choose different areas to emphasize, but they don't really get any 'better' after the $300-$500 range.

If a large, open (meaning the sound leaks out) set of cans will work for you, the Sennheiser 580s and 600s are marvelous choices. They don't really reach their full potential unless they have a dedicated headphone amp (you can get good portable ones for about $200 from www.headphone.com), but they still sound good driven by most consumer equipment.

They're well-built and durable, but if you break something, you can order individual parts from the Sennheiser website. With a little care (and assuming your needs don't change), they can literally be the last headphones you ever buy. They will scale with you to very, very serious levels, if you get into music in a big way. People with $20K stereo stacks are often very happy with them.

580s are usually $180ish, and 600s are usually $220ish, if you shop carefully. The 600s are only a little better sounding, but they also look nicer and seem a bit more robust. so the extra $40 may be worth it.

I doubt very much that the headphones in the contest, at $900, are very much better than 580s... maybe a little, but no WAY are they four and a half times better.

I am also, FWIW, rather uncomfortable with this FPP, and tend to think it should probably be pulled.
posted by Malor at 11:03 PM on June 11, 2006


I wouldn't mind getting a pair of those headphones, but something tells me $99-$199 is a bargain compared to the embarrassment of competing with those tools.

I've got some Sony MDR-V6 studio monitors on my head right now, which I use for everything from tracking in Reason to plugging into my guitar amp to video games and movies on the computer. I even plug them into my iPod, which produces surprisingly good sound. For about $80, they are the best I've ever used so far. I can't imagine how a set of headphones could sound better than this, but that doesn't mean I'm not interested in finding out.
posted by Clamwacker at 2:42 AM on June 12, 2006


It's funny that people are complaining about this post but it reads exactly like an AskMe thread.
posted by Peter H at 6:37 AM on June 12, 2006


The comments, I mean.
posted by Peter H at 6:37 AM on June 12, 2006


The discussion must out.
posted by smackfu at 6:45 AM on June 12, 2006


No offense whatesoever, seriously, but your ears must have sustained some serious damage over the years.

Oh, absolutely. Seven surgeries, including a mastoidectomy and tympanoplasty.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 10:29 AM on June 12, 2006


If a large, open (meaning the sound leaks out) set of cans will work for you, the Sennheiser 580s and 600s are marvelous choices. They don't really reach their full potential unless they have a dedicated headphone amp (you can get good portable ones for about $200 from www.headphone.com), but they still sound good driven by most consumer equipment.

I am not an audiophile, but what about the CMOY amp ?
posted by craniac at 10:55 AM on June 12, 2006


Craniac, it may be just fine, although I haven't talked with anyone who's made one.

Note that the $200 Total Bitheads also include a USB connection, and give you a very good-quality DACs for your computer as well... they're sort of an all-in-one computer sound solution. The CMOY is just an amp.

Oh, the Airheads/Bitheads also offer a circuit with a bit of crosstalk between the channels... that is, a bit of the left channel goes into the right, and vice versa. It helps avoid the 'voice in the middle of my head' effect. If you don't like it, there's a switch to turn it off.

If you like the quality of your existing audio source, though, and don't have the money for a commercial amp, the CMOY thing looks like a good possibility.
posted by Malor at 4:08 AM on June 13, 2006


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