Good headphones to monitor audio

Recording audio content: microphones, on-camera audio vs. stand-alone recorders, recommendations on techniques and audio-recording hardware.
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Stephan
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Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby Stephan » 10 Jan 2013 00:14

Hi, I'm splitting this question from that other topic: Sony HXR-MC2000 Hands-On Review.

Are there any headphones you would recommend to monitor audio on the spot, based on your experience? Requirements are: usual 3.5mm jack, lightweight and compact enough for travel transport. I might be using them with my consumer cam HDR-CX740.

I hardly ever have occasions to use headphones in life, other than those that I got with my old iPhone or some newer cellphone. So I tried those to monitor audio on my camcorder once when I was on travel. But the trouble was, they let so much noise come through from outside the headphones (ambient sound), that I could hardly hear what the camcorder really was specifically recording - or make any difference from what my ears were hearing directly.

I've investigated the extreme other end of the spectrum, like noise-cancelling headphones from Bose, but they're very expensive (300+ EUR), moderately bulky, and they seem to do selective cancelling of various kinds of noise - so what you're hearing isn't necessarily what you should be hearing, and I'm not sure noise-cancelling headphones would be a wise fit for audio monitoring.

Thanks for any tips -

Stephan

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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby steve » 10 Jan 2013 11:15

Stephan,

About 2-3 years ago, I bought a pair of Sony 7506 headphones and have never regretted it. Their sound seems to be fine with the ability to detect things via camera mics that cannot be heard with my ears alone. They also pick up camera noises, i.e. zoom motors, case creaks etc. which I need to hear before they are burnt into the final take. I originally got them for the FX1E, but they are quite sensitive and work fine on both my Zoom H1 and CX730 so your 740 would be the same. The spec says that they can handle 1W of audio input, (even though my ears probably couldn't for long), so they are unlikely to be damaged by overloads.
Probably the most important thing is that they are very comfortable for extended periods even though the ear surrounds provide good isolation. I took them to use on holiday in NYC last year and it was a pleasure to use them on the flight to actually get engrossed in a movie. The leather pads are replaceable and they collapse into the headband for a fairly compact package when travelling.

Steve

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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby acgold7 » 13 Jan 2013 07:34

I've got the 7506es as well and they are fantastic. But any lightweight headphones that form a nice seal over your ears will do -- anything to isolate the sound. Sony makes several models and at least where we are, they always have some great bargains at their online and brick & mortar outlet stores. I've picked up several sets for under $10, from heavy studio models to very lightweight types suitable for using when you're out in the yard. One very lightweight set I like are called the MDR-V150 and they sound great. I imagine they are discontinued by now but there should be a newer equivalent model. Google says they're still available but also points to newer versions, and they're quite affordable.
Adam

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Stephan
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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby Stephan » 15 Jan 2013 01:32

Thanks a lot Steve and Adam for the tips :-)

I've checked the 7506 and user reviews, they seem to appreciate it a lot too, as a studio monitoring headset that has a flat response and lets you pick out any flaws in the audio. This makes me think that I could also use them to check the audio after editing? I've never had anything proper for that purpose either - time to get serious with audio. Mmmm, I'm tempted! They do cost, but are reasonably affordable compared to the fanciest ones.

Thanks again.

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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby acgold7 » 15 Jan 2013 06:37

Also in the same price range an industry standard are the Sennheiser HD 280s. I have a set of those as well and they are magnificent.
Adam

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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby Doughie » 18 Jan 2013 17:32

I also have the Sony 7506 headphones. Had them for around 7 years. They are now a little beaten up but stil work great. they are fairly industry-standard, certainly when i bought them in 2005 they were globally very widely used.
very lightweight and comfortable. You will here all kinds of things ! i used them last night in fact, to monitor sound whilst filming a play. With my Rode Videomic on-camera you can hear a huge amount of stuff that your ears just dont pick up.

Also consider the Sony 7509 and the Sennheiser 280s that Adam recommended.

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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby Doughie » 24 Jan 2013 20:42

Doughie wrote:Also consider the Sony 7509 and the Sennheiser 280s that Adam recommended.
Seems like Sony discontinued the 7509 model, so yes i would say either the Sony 7506 or the Sennheiser HD280 Pro are the two best models at the US$100 price point.


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Re: Good headphones to monitor audio

Postby Stephan » 24 Jan 2013 22:46

Thanks!


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