Overclock.net › Forums › Components › Sound Cards and Computer Audio › Recommendation for an entry-level headset
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Recommendation for an entry-level headset

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Need your guys' expertise on headphones and stuff, cuz I really don't know the first thing. I've never had a decent pair of headphones, so anything you could recommend would be an improvement. Because I'm getting a headset, I'm expecting a lot of the choices to be directed toward "gaming" or whatever. I don't want something specifically for gaming if it means the audio is terrible for music and everything else. I don't really care about any sort of special features or anything either, because I don't know any better. I just want a good-sounding pair of headphones with a mic (that hopefully isn't terrible).

My budget is around $100. What's the best bang-for-your-buck set I could get that's decent all-around? If such a thing exists lol..

I have this sound card btw. That's it for my audio gear lol.
Edited by Avalar - 4/23/17 at 1:10am
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 16
Thread Starter 
Bump. Anything guys?
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 16
Hey @Avalar

Sorry for the slow reply on this.

At $100 your options get pretty wide-open.

On the one hand you have the integrated headsets that are decent, and I'd go with HyperX Clouds.

On the otherhand you can start getting into the much 'better' world of separating your mic from your headset (and for clarity, I work for Antlion Audio and we make the ModMic - so think of this as a disclaimer)

The advantage of uncoupling your headset is you end up with better components, the same price, and if one fails you dont need to trash the whole thing.


However, at the most basic level you need to know if you want open or closed headphones. Open tend to get better "feeling" sound, especially for giving a wide sound stage (which is good for gaming) but at the price of being able to hear everything going on around you. Horrible for bringing out into public, since people will be able to hear your headphones too and you'll be able to hear them... though I guess that is good if you're planning on crossing streets biggrin.gif.

I'll give some examples of each.

At the "entry" level of headphones here's a couple recommendations:

(~$40)Superlux 668 or EVO - These are 'semi open' headphones that give amazing quality per dollar. The earpads are not great and should be replaced with something like Brainwavz, which will add 4-15 USD.

(~$70) Philips SHP9500 - A simply great open back, comfortable pair right out of the box.

(~$80) ATH AD500X - A very open sounding headphone, excellent for gaming, solid for music.

(~$80) Sony MDR-V6 - A V signature sound (heavy bass/treble) and closed back, very comfy too.

(~$60) Creative Aurvana Live! - An excellent closed back headphone and a bit cheaper than the Sony.


Then you pair them with the mic you want. Basically mics come in two form factors, desktop or attachable. Desktop has the advantage of... well, being on your desk. You can mount it to an arm usually with a nice pop filter (sold separately) and start your path towards professional audio. Attachable mics, like the ModMic and Boompro attach to existing headphones, turning them into headsets. They're out of your way, but not everyone wants that "I work in a call center" feel smile.gif.

We make the ModMic as I said above, so I will start there biggrin.gif

(~$45-$70) ModMic 4 or 5. The ModMic attaches to ANY headphone, turning it into a headset. The 5 costs a bit more but has a detachable cable for variable cord length and longer life, it also has two mic modes. Combined with a Superlux or Philips you'll hit your $100 target price and never go back to "integrated" headsets again! Or you can pay a little more and still land very close to $100.

(~$35) Boompro - The ModMic competitor of sorts. The Boompro is an attachable mic that is a bit cheaper and has only uni-directional mode. It has the advantage of combining the cables together, but the disadvantage is it can't be used with fixed cable headsets like the Superlux and others. Basically, check compatibility before purchase!

(~$50) Blue Snowball - A decent entry level desktop mic. Extremely sensitive so best suited for a very quiet environment and quieter keyboards.

(~$70) Samson Meteor - I've never used one, but people seem to love it as a middle ground or replacement to the more expensive Blue Yeti. It's also a desktop mic.

You can also go super cheap with something like a Zalman (~$10) until you can afford a "better" mic like the ModMic 5, Blue Yeti, or AT2020. I frankly hate that thing, but people recommend it a lot so... what can I say. Its worth considering if you want to get the nicer headphones first (something like a Sennheiser HD558 is my recommendation, at $100 for open back).

Good luck. Feel free to ask more questions and I'll do my best to answer... though I am traveling to Dreamhack Austin tomorrow so it may be a bit.
post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avalar View Post

Need your guys' expertise on headphones and stuff, cuz I really don't know the first thing. I've never had a decent pair of headphones, so anything you could recommend would be an improvement. Because I'm getting a headset, I'm expecting a lot of the choices to be directed toward "gaming" or whatever. I don't want something specifically for gaming if it means the audio is terrible for music and everything else. I don't really care about any sort of special features or anything either, because I don't know any better. I just want a good-sounding pair of headphones with a mic (that hopefully isn't terrible).

My budget is around $100. What's the best bang-for-your-buck set I could get that's decent all-around? If such a thing exists lol..

I have this sound card btw. That's it for my audio gear lol.

Guess I'm blind, can't see any sound card listed anywhere?
Until I put your words in the quote, guess you have the Asus Xonar DGX sound card, decent card for the price.

Check out the website Head-Fi?

HyperX cloud headphones, version 1.0, version 2 comes with a USB adapter you have no need for.
ENIAC
(15 items)
 
  
Reply
ENIAC
(15 items)
 
  
Reply
post #5 of 16
Kingston Hyper X Clouds I and II are pretty nice for the price...like the poster noted above...version 1 uses 3.5mm version 2 uses usb. They also have lower end models the stinger and rover and a higher end one the revolver, but idk anything about those.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AAJoe View Post

Hey @Avalar

Sorry for the slow reply on this.

At $100 your options get pretty wide-open.

On the one hand you have the integrated headsets that are decent, and I'd go with HyperX Clouds.

On the otherhand you can start getting into the much 'better' world of separating your mic from your headset (and for clarity, I work for Antlion Audio and we make the ModMic - so think of this as a disclaimer)

The advantage of uncoupling your headset is you end up with better components, the same price, and if one fails you dont need to trash the whole thing.


However, at the most basic level you need to know if you want open or closed headphones. Open tend to get better "feeling" sound, especially for giving a wide sound stage (which is good for gaming) but at the price of being able to hear everything going on around you. Horrible for bringing out into public, since people will be able to hear your headphones too and you'll be able to hear them... though I guess that is good if you're planning on crossing streets biggrin.gif.

I'll give some examples of each.

At the "entry" level of headphones here's a couple recommendations:

(~$40)Superlux 668 or EVO - These are 'semi open' headphones that give amazing quality per dollar. The earpads are not great and should be replaced with something like Brainwavz, which will add 4-15 USD.

(~$70) Philips SHP9500 - A simply great open back, comfortable pair right out of the box.

(~$80) ATH AD500X - A very open sounding headphone, excellent for gaming, solid for music.

(~$80) Sony MDR-V6 - A V signature sound (heavy bass/treble) and closed back, very comfy too.

(~$60) Creative Aurvana Live! - An excellent closed back headphone and a bit cheaper than the Sony.


Then you pair them with the mic you want. Basically mics come in two form factors, desktop or attachable. Desktop has the advantage of... well, being on your desk. You can mount it to an arm usually with a nice pop filter (sold separately) and start your path towards professional audio. Attachable mics, like the ModMic and Boompro attach to existing headphones, turning them into headsets. They're out of your way, but not everyone wants that "I work in a call center" feel smile.gif.

We make the ModMic as I said above, so I will start there biggrin.gif

(~$45-$70) ModMic 4 or 5. The ModMic attaches to ANY headphone, turning it into a headset. The 5 costs a bit more but has a detachable cable for variable cord length and longer life, it also has two mic modes. Combined with a Superlux or Philips you'll hit your $100 target price and never go back to "integrated" headsets again! Or you can pay a little more and still land very close to $100.

(~$35) Boompro - The ModMic competitor of sorts. The Boompro is an attachable mic that is a bit cheaper and has only uni-directional mode. It has the advantage of combining the cables together, but the disadvantage is it can't be used with fixed cable headsets like the Superlux and others. Basically, check compatibility before purchase!

(~$50) Blue Snowball - A decent entry level desktop mic. Extremely sensitive so best suited for a very quiet environment and quieter keyboards.

(~$70) Samson Meteor - I've never used one, but people seem to love it as a middle ground or replacement to the more expensive Blue Yeti. It's also a desktop mic.

You can also go super cheap with something like a Zalman (~$10) until you can afford a "better" mic like the ModMic 5, Blue Yeti, or AT2020. I frankly hate that thing, but people recommend it a lot so... what can I say. Its worth considering if you want to get the nicer headphones first (something like a Sennheiser HD558 is my recommendation, at $100 for open back).

Good luck. Feel free to ask more questions and I'll do my best to answer... though I am traveling to Dreamhack Austin tomorrow so it may be a bit.

Firstly, thanks a lot for your post. Really glad you're willing to help me. ;3

I swear, the audio market has got to be the absolute most confusing one of them all. I've seen in the past, what I assume to be experts and experienced listeners, still debate over what the best equipment would be for a specific circumstance. Right now, I'm just going off the fact that I've never owned a decent pair of headphones, so I'm just looking at options that really are worth the price tag. At $100, I thought my options would be super limited, but apparently not..? biggrin.gif

As for open or closed, I'd rather go for open ones if it means the sound is better/more immersive. I don't really have the chance to listen to music when I'm at school or out in public, anyway.

Anyway, I don't think anything but one or two combinations of the headphones and mics you suggested would land in the $100 zone. I've gotta be firm on the budget now because it's all I have atm, and my last pair died on me, so my ears have been neglected in the meantime. D; I plan on going all-out with the whole audio setup in the future when I can afford it lol. But yeah, I'd be willing to get the headphones and mic separately, if one of them doesn't have to be completely terrible for me to be able to afford the other one. Do mics that sound clear around $20 exist? Otherwise, I think I'd just go with the HyperX Cloud II, because it's been suggested to me by people on Overclock three times now. That, or these that I've been looking at on Amazon that have no negative reviews, so I suppose they must be good, unless you have something to say about them on the contrary.

And just a side note; I care more about how the headphones sound than how the mic sounds. But of course, if my friends on Skype can't bear to talk to me because of my microphone, then yeah, that's a problem lol.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tacoboy View Post

Guess I'm blind, can't see any sound card listed anywhere?
Until I put your words in the quote, guess you have the Asus Xonar DGX sound card, decent card for the price.

Check out the website Head-Fi?

HyperX cloud headphones, version 1.0, version 2 comes with a USB adapter you have no need for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maltamonk View Post

Kingston Hyper X Clouds I and II are pretty nice for the price...like the poster noted above...version 1 uses 3.5mm version 2 uses usb. They also have lower end models the stinger and rover and a higher end one the revolver, but idk anything about those.

Thanks for your input you guys. ^_^ Fourth and fifth time the HyperX Clouds have been suggested to me. They must be good.

Just curious, though. Would any of you happen to know about the Sound BlasterX H5? I did a lot of Google searching the other day, and they seemed like a serious competitor. High up in a lot of top 5/10 lists of headphones under $100, but of course all of those are subjective.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz ASRock H97 Anniversary ATX LGA1150 Motherboard EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB SSC ACX 2.0 Video Card Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM In... SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical ... Stock arctic arctic f12 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
arctic arctic f12 Windows 7 Professional - 64 Bit Asus VS239H-P 23.0" Monitor Cooler Master Storm QuickFire Rapid Wired Gamin... 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
EVGA 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum Frostpad 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Logitech Z506 155W 5.1ch Speakers SADES SA-708 Stereo Gaming Headphone Headset wi... Logitech G Pro Logitech G403 
Other
Razer DeathAdder Chroma 
  hide details  
Reply
post #8 of 16
ENIAC
(15 items)
 
  
Reply
ENIAC
(15 items)
 
  
Reply
post #9 of 16
If I were you, I'd get the Superlux 668 and a ModMic 4. I suggested that to a friend of mine a while back and he's quite happy with it.

I use a ATH-AD900 with a ModMic 4, and while that's out of your price range, I can attest to the quality of the ModMic. I was using a Zalman at first and the sound out of it was terrible. I did comparison tests using Audacity so I could hear what others would hear when I'm on Teamspeak or Skype. It's a night and day difference. No I'm not paid by them, but incentives are welcome. wink.gif

The reason I suggested the above combination was simply that its in your price range, and good enough quality to be using for prolonged periods. If in the future you're not satisfied with the headphones, budget permitting, get a much better set and use the same mic with them.

Since you've spent money on a dedicated sound card, DO NOT BUY A USB HEADSET. USB headphones use their own sound processing and bypass onboard and dedicated sound cards. So that's just money wasted.
My System
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Xeon X5670 Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 Gaming Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 Gaming 
RAMRAMHard DriveHard Drive
OCZ Gold 1600, 3x2GB Kingston HyperX 1600, 3x4GB OCZ Vertex 2 240GB WD Black 1TB 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD Black 1TB Windows 7 Pro x64 Viewsonic VP2770-LED Thermaltake Poseidon MX Brown 
PowerCaseAudio
Seasonic 1000 W Platinum Case Labs M10 Creative X-Fi Titanium HD 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Xeon X5670 Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 Gaming Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 Gaming 
RAMRAMHard DriveHard Drive
OCZ Gold 1600, 3x2GB Kingston HyperX 1600, 3x4GB OCZ Vertex 2 240GB WD Black 1TB 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD Black 1TB Windows 7 Pro x64 Viewsonic VP2770-LED Thermaltake Poseidon MX Brown 
PowerCaseAudio
Seasonic 1000 W Platinum Case Labs M10 Creative X-Fi Titanium HD 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 16
Yeah nothing to see here

*slips Firehawk a fiver*

biggrin.gif

Seriously at the "exactly" 100 rangeand not a penny more, I'd say superlux + ModMic or SHP 9500 and either the boompro or ModMic (boompro is not compatible with the 668).

Or keep it simple and go for the clouds. They're good enough for what you are after.

Now as to why "experts" don't agree on audio is because its not like a graphics card.

Oh you can benchmark audio, don't get me wrong, but there are 2 extra factors at work that screw it all up.

1) we all hear differently. Like, there are sounds I may hear more acutely than you, or even sounds you can hear that I literally can not.

2) On top of that there are sounds I may not like, even though I can hear them better. For instance some people hate sound signatures that are heavy on treble. No matter how well the treble benchmarks they'll hate headphones that are treble heavy.

I always compare it to wine. What's the best wine? The one you like of course!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Sound Cards and Computer Audio
Overclock.net › Forums › Components › Sound Cards and Computer Audio › Recommendation for an entry-level headset