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(Time)   How Dr. Dre convinced the world that you need $300 headphones to listen to your highly compressed MP3s   (business.time.com) divider line 260
    More: Interesting, Dr Dre, Jimmy Iovine, market dominance, NPD Group, LL Cool J  
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9819 clicks; posted to Geek » on 16 Jan 2013 at 10:00 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-16 10:58:35 PM
I abx tested mp3s just to see how much of a difference compression actually makes. Turns out I get really bad at telling the difference at about 192kbit average bitrate. After that I stopped caring about buying my music in compressed formats.

Beats are overpriced headphones, regardless of what you listen to. There are simply better headphones to buy if you want flat response or if you want their bass heavy signature.
 
2013-01-16 11:00:53 PM

cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.


I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.
 
2013-01-16 11:03:18 PM

Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.


558's here..
 
2013-01-16 11:06:44 PM

Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.


for the hell of it i looked at their website, you can purchase replacement ear cushions for $50
 
2013-01-16 11:10:54 PM
Before he sold headphones, what was he a doctor of? Who is this guy?
 
2013-01-16 11:11:11 PM
$5 Koss headphones from Walmart, 3.5mm plug fits into my ipod, music come out. I can spend the rest of my $95 on something more useful like a few bottles of Johnnie Walker
 
2013-01-16 11:12:23 PM

loonatic112358: Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.

for the hell of it i looked at their website, you can purchase replacement ear cushions for $50


The headband foam is gone too. The cushions are in slightly better shape and didn't get too bad until the kids sat on them. I've had them since about '98 so I'm happy with the longevity.

I'll look into the replacement foams vs a new set.

In other news, I recently picked up a Bang & Olefsen Beomaster 2400 when I helped my friend with a house cleanout. Forgot the DIN speaker cables so I'll have to go with him on the next trip.
 
2013-01-16 11:13:25 PM
If you don't already know:

i1.ezinemark.com

But these are the new need to know:

songlongmedia.com
 
2013-01-16 11:13:46 PM
Sorry. Until the "Beats" came out, I almost... Forgot about Dre.
 
2013-01-16 11:15:15 PM

Hagbardr: In other news, I recently picked up a Bang & Olefsen Beomaster 2400 when I helped my friend with a house cleanout. Forgot the DIN speaker cables so I'll have to go with him on the next trip.


try ordering those from monoprice
 
2013-01-16 11:16:41 PM
And it's all a sham.

These will blow the hell out of any of the Dre abortions, but more power to him for finding fools to get richer:
(click on the image for more details)

ecx.images-amazon.com
 
2013-01-16 11:16:41 PM

FlashHarry: it's sad; there's an entire generation that has never heard an uncompressed piece of music.


I'm from this generation, I've listened to vinyl. I've heard symphonies.

/has heard uncompressed music
 
2013-01-16 11:18:33 PM
For the price, I'm quite pleased with my Audio Technica M30, they're good enough for mp3/compressed audio in web videos. I think I paid about $40 on Amazon.
 
2013-01-16 11:19:05 PM

Quantum Apostrophe: Sony makes ear sofas that deliver nearly as much bass for a lot less.

[www.ybsales.net image 300x300]

They do break up before I reach the volume I like though, but it seems people enjoy listening to noise these days.


And it's Dr. Dre. It IS noise.

I don't care what fidelity it's recorded at, stuff like this will never not be noise.

This is marketed towards the same people who put "Puddle O Bass Thousand Watt SUBSUBSUBSUBWoofers" in their cars.
 
2013-01-16 11:19:59 PM
No USB and no mic means no sale.
 
2013-01-16 11:20:02 PM

FlashHarry: it's sad; there's an entire generation that has never heard an uncompressed piece of music.


But it might take a few more seconds to download A FLAC.
i.imgur.com
 
2013-01-16 11:20:35 PM
FTFA: Beats by Dre headphones have generally been praised for their audio quality and design (even if some consumers are turned off by the notoriously bass-heavy sound). But the company's greatest innovation may have been its success at making headphones as much fashion accessories as they are listening devices. "If you're wearing a pair of Beats, it says, 'Music's really important in my life,' says Wood. "I've seen people wearing them at parties with hundreds of people, and they've got their Beats around their neck.

So it just became an idiotic status symbol rather than actual good product? Color me shocked...
 
2013-01-16 11:20:53 PM
Watching ESPN one day, and the one black guy who wears glasses to look smart and professional, you know that one. Well, he was filing in for mike and mike and was wearing these headphones. And even if these are quality headphones, I gotta imagine the ones that are standard in a state of the art studio are gonna be better than junk you buy at Walmart. They're like a big flashing idiot sign people pay $300 to wear.
 
2013-01-16 11:22:03 PM

styckx: Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.

558's here..


I've had a pair of 280pro's for pretty much forever, and I have no complaints.
 
2013-01-16 11:23:20 PM
Oh yeah-not safe for work or audiophiles.

/lots of weed references, profanity, racial slurs, shaking tits, and autotune.
 
2013-01-16 11:24:06 PM
Link

/have rough-mixed my last three sessions on a pair of Audio Technica ATM-50's
//even a $300-per-hour mastering engineer asked me what my secret was
///I like bass
 
2013-01-16 11:24:39 PM

GAT_00: Gwendolyn: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

i have some JVC ones I paid like $20 for.

I can't stand earbuds, they hurt like a son of a biatch


I used to think the same. I have small ears and the old round, hard plastic earbuds (iPod 1-style) hurt like hell and didn't stay in anyway. The newer ones are primarily silicone and are pretty comfortable (even for someone like myself who is mocked for their tiny baby ears). I bought some sub-$20 earbuds and was surprised by both the comfort and the sound quality.
 
2013-01-16 11:24:45 PM
i.imgur.com
/Doh
 
2013-01-16 11:24:50 PM
SUCKERS!

/7506 exclusive for 20 years now but hey, I'm a FOH engineer so...
 
2013-01-16 11:24:51 PM

Champion of the Sun: They're like a big flashing idiot sign people pay $300 to wear.


Like I just said...marketed to the same people who...
 
2013-01-16 11:26:08 PM

FlashHarry: GAT_00: There's far more damage done by the process of mastering by reducing the range of sound than there could ever be in your choice of compression media.

the best human ears can only hear from 20 hz to 20k. a decent mastering engineer should be able to reproduce this range. but when you listen to a 256kbps MP3, you're losing a lot more of the information than if you listened to the original, even if it were recorded and not live.


At around 320kbps, the amount of information lost for the average track -- unless you're listening to something with tremendous intermixing of various frequencies -- is negligible. For most of modern music, I'd say 256kbps is near lossless. And if you can really pick up on that kind of loss of fidelity, vinyl should've driven you insane as the frequency replication was terrible near the 20KHz range.
 
2013-01-16 11:33:24 PM
If your entire article can be summed up in one word ("marketing"), don't write it.

/crappy listening devices have killed dynamic range in music
/headphones, earbuds, and shiatty laptop speakers are no way to go through life replacement for a good home stereo, son
 
2013-01-16 11:33:48 PM
www.productwiki.com

Best $300 I ever spent. Mine are about 16 years old. And Sennheiser still repairs/replaces any piece under repair service for about $60(flat fee for service, regardless of work), but I haven't had to do that because the drivers are still good and the frame isn't weak(like some of the Beats headphones that break on the ear swivel joints).
 
2013-01-16 11:33:53 PM
How Dr. Dre convinced the world a small group of easily-led chuckleheads that you need $300 headphones to listen to your highly compressed MP3s

FTFY

Also, "the world" has been convinced to buy everything from $2,000 HDMI cables to Crocs, for Christ's sake. Why would headphones be any different?
 
2013-01-16 11:39:37 PM

Hagbardr: loonatic112358: Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.

for the hell of it i looked at their website, you can purchase replacement ear cushions for $50

The headband foam is gone too. The cushions are in slightly better shape and didn't get too bad until the kids sat on them. I've had them since about '98 so I'm happy with the longevity.

I'll look into the replacement foams vs a new set.

In other news, I recently picked up a Bang & Olefsen Beomaster 2400 when I helped my friend with a house cleanout. Forgot the DIN speaker cables so I'll have to go with him on the next trip.


They do not list 535 in their repair section, but 555 are flat rate $55 and everything below is flat rate $40 for repair/service. When you send it in for service, they replace all your foam and padding along with whatever service you need(such as a blown driver)
 
2013-01-16 11:40:56 PM

puffy999: I'm curious, what's the point of these head phones? Do they reduce the distortion of modern music that's recorded at such a volume that modern remasters are often useless EXCEPT as lower-quality MP3s? Do they just up the bass?

Or do they make ANYTHING sound better? It sounds like they don't do that...


BUMP

/all my music is in 256 or better
//will anyone (besides professionals) hear a damn bit of difference?
///people wearing headphones in public deserve to be run over.
 
2013-01-16 11:40:57 PM
obama need to gib me gubment helf care cause I can't afford to go to da doctor cause I dun bought dees head phones.
 
2013-01-16 11:43:06 PM

Smackledorfer:
/I don't even listen to music, you lose so much by listening instead of reading the notes in their originally written format.


Lord Vetinari, is that you?
 
2013-01-16 11:46:48 PM

FormlessOne: How Dr. Dre convinced the world a small group of easily-led chuckleheads that you need $300 headphones to listen to your highly compressed MP3s

FTFY

Also, "the world" has been convinced to buy everything from $2,000 HDMI cables to Crocs, for Christ's sake. Why would headphones be any different?


MONSTER CABLES!!!!
 
2013-01-16 11:50:41 PM

In response to Dre's Bass Bombs, Lemmy is giving us highs and mids too!

BEHOLD!
d2l176bkk6cjnx.cloudfront.net
MOTORHEADPHONES!!!
 
2013-01-16 11:52:05 PM

rocky_howard: FTFA: Beats by Dre headphones have generally been praised for their audio quality and design (even if some consumers are turned off by the notoriously bass-heavy sound). But the company's greatest innovation may have been its success at making headphones as much fashion accessories as they are listening devices. "If you're wearing a pair of Beats, it says, 'Music's really important in my life,' says Wood. "I've seen people wearing them at parties with hundreds of people, and they've got their Beats around their neck.

So it just became an idiotic status symbol rather than actual good product? Color me shocked...


Fits right in with the hip-hop crowd.

/along with gold chains and 22" rims
 
2013-01-16 11:52:40 PM

bhcompy: Hagbardr: loonatic112358: Hagbardr: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I love my old Sennheiser HD535s. Too bad the foam is falling apart.

for the hell of it i looked at their website, you can purchase replacement ear cushions for $50

The headband foam is gone too. The cushions are in slightly better shape and didn't get too bad until the kids sat on them. I've had them since about '98 so I'm happy with the longevity.

I'll look into the replacement foams vs a new set.

In other news, I recently picked up a Bang & Olefsen Beomaster 2400 when I helped my friend with a house cleanout. Forgot the DIN speaker cables so I'll have to go with him on the next trip.

They do not list 535 in their repair section, but 555 are flat rate $55 and everything below is flat rate $40 for repair/service. When you send it in for service, they replace all your foam and padding along with whatever service you need(such as a blown driver)


That would be well worth it. I'll have to email them and see if they will do it.
 
2013-01-16 11:53:55 PM

meatofmystery: Beyerdynamic + USB sound card= still less than the cost of sh*t Beats cans


Oh man, so much THIS. Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro + FiiO E9k + FiiO E17 + .flac = Deargodyoutotallyunderstandwhyyouwouldpay$500forheadphonesandaccessori es.

Not cheap, not for everybody, but holy flying fark, I have never enjoyed music this much. Can't say I have much experience with $40,000 stereo setups in acoustically calibrated rooms, but I have never, ever heard anything that sounds better, or even close.

For those of you that have headphones that can truly benefit from it, I highly suggest getting an amplifier.
 
2013-01-16 11:56:20 PM
europe.beyerdynamic.com

Plus, they're sexy.

/And hot.
//And yeah, that's velour on the ear cups. Mmmmmm.
 
2013-01-17 12:01:22 AM

Luminiferous Aether: For those of you that have headphones that can truly benefit from it, I highly suggest getting an amplifier.


The hippy that writes for CNET's audio column is always going on about headphone amplifiers.  Of course, he's also always going on about turntables, too.  He gives the distinct impression that if reel to reel tapes were still manufactured, he'd review those, too.  He repeatedly uses words like: warmth, lively, responsive, subtle, lows, highs, and natural.
 
2013-01-17 12:03:54 AM

TexanBoy: Every time I see someone with a pair of Beats on, I think instantly know to not take them seriously. Every time. someone around the corner is going to knock their block off for them

FTFY
 
2013-01-17 12:06:05 AM

bhcompy: [www.productwiki.com image 425x555]

Best $300 I ever spent. Mine are about 16 years old. And Sennheiser still repairs/replaces any piece under repair service for about $60(flat fee for service, regardless of work), but I haven't had to do that because the drivers are still good and the frame isn't weak(like some of the Beats headphones that break on the ear swivel joints).


I didn't realize repair work could be so cheap. Both my pairs of 600s have gone bad at the low end (one actually crackles, the other is just muddy and weak), but I didn't think they'd be economical to repair. Considering how much more expensive new ones are now compared to 10 years ago, I think I'll ship them in.
 
2013-01-17 12:06:31 AM
I take my music rectally.

The bass is friggin' phenomenal.
 
2013-01-17 12:09:51 AM
Dr dre beats are out classed in performance by headphones that are much cheaper. Hell the range the guys who made beats went on to release independently are better, cheaper and more stylish. Style is subjective though I know. Personally I'm very happy with my Phillips Fidelio L1's for home and senheizer buds for travel. Wish decent blue tooth buds without a connecting cord would be developed.
 
2013-01-17 12:11:12 AM

Bisu: bhcompy: [www.productwiki.com image 425x555]

Best $300 I ever spent. Mine are about 16 years old. And Sennheiser still repairs/replaces any piece under repair service for about $60(flat fee for service, regardless of work), but I haven't had to do that because the drivers are still good and the frame isn't weak(like some of the Beats headphones that break on the ear swivel joints).

I didn't realize repair work could be so cheap. Both my pairs of 600s have gone bad at the low end (one actually crackles, the other is just muddy and weak), but I didn't think they'd be economical to repair. Considering how much more expensive new ones are now compared to 10 years ago, I think I'll ship them in.


Yep. For the same quality headphone today you're paying way more new. If they no longer make/have the parts in stock for your specific model, they use the next model in line(ie: they don't make 580 drivers anymore, so they use 600 drivers since 600s are the heir to the 580 and fit the same pieces)
 
2013-01-17 12:12:48 AM
I replaced my Beats headphones cables with Monster cables. As an added bonus, I no longer need to carry 5 pound dumbbells when I jog.
 
2013-01-17 12:14:17 AM

Flumple: Hell the range the guys who made beats went on to release independently are better, cheaper and more stylish.


Monster made Beats, I thought?
 
2013-01-17 12:15:58 AM
I got tired of the Damn cord, went and picked up logitech h800s. Never been happier. Good sound, no cord.

And only $80

Now, I've heard the beats phones, and they are nice... But that's a lot of money.
 
2013-01-17 12:18:06 AM

TheBeastOfYuccaFlats: cannotsuggestaname: I have listened to music through some Beats headphones... and I'll take my Sennheiser 598's, for $100 less, any day of the week.

I've got some Sennheiser HD280Pros.  They're flat response and have some caveats, but for ~$100 they're keen.


I used to have to 280's and they were decent, but the 598's are way better. Reference quality.


for ear buds I have some Shure SE425s that were given to me for Christmas. yay.
 
2013-01-17 12:20:14 AM

cannotsuggestaname: I used to have to 280's and they were decent, but the 598's are way better. Reference quality.


They're also twice the price.  I don't need $250 headphones.

As I said, for $100 they're keen.
 
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