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Philips vs Pioneer - which is the best Dolby Headphone system?

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by NicolasB, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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    Subject says it all, really: Pioneer SE-DIR800C or Philips SBC-HD1500?

    And are there any genuinely stand-alone Dolby Headphone setups available yet? By that I mean a system which doesn't force you to buy a set of in-built (typically cordless) headphones with the system that won't be as good as my existing 'phones.
     
  2. Suave

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    Hi Nicholas!

    Suave here! I have the Pioneer SE-DIR800C's and am very happy with them. if you search the web for user opinions you will find mostly very positive comments about them. I have not heard the Philips but have heard good things about them too. Both sets can be bought for around £220 - £230. If there is any way (I dont know how!) you can hear them both before hand that would be best. My Pioneers sounded better the more they were run in - after about 80 hours and I guess that would be the pretty much the same for any other set. I noticed from your equipment list that you have some pretty high end gear so if you want the very best (and yes, YOU can afford them!) I would reccommend the Audio Technica ATH-DCL3000 Dolby/DTS Digital Wireless Headphone System and the AKG Audiosphere II System - these two are the very pinnacle of the Surround Sound Headphones out there. I am not a big fan of mass produced Japanese headphones but their high end stuff is sublime and these two fall into that category. I previously heard the AKG K1000's with an amp (not surround sound) and they blew my socks off - incredible detail, transparency, soundstage and depth. Go to the AKG website for details on the Audiosphere II's and to www.audiocubes.com for details on the Audio Technica ATH-DCL3000. I dont know about the Philips, but with the base unit on the Pioneer, you can connect your choice of corded headphone and still get the benefit of Dolby/DTS surround sound. Hope that helps - good luck!

    Suave!
     
  3. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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    Headphone-wise I currently use a pair of Sennheiser HD650 'phones with a Graham Slee "Solo" headphone amp: this is a pretty nice combination which I would prefer not to have to give up if possible. If I'm lucky then the forthcoming DSP upgrade for the Bryston SP1.7 will include Dolby Headphone processing. That'll be expensive, of course, but should sound fairly good.

    What makes you think I can even afford the system I've already got? :)
     
  4. honglong

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    Hi,

    I have both headphones. I have the Pioneer headphones which i use upstairs with my xbox and the Philips headphones which i use with my DVD player downstairs.

    Heres a quick review for each one (both are run in):

    Philips
    Build/Features: The philips build quaility is very good for the dolby headphone amp/transmitter and for the headphones. There is only one Coax (digital) input and a Coax output. There is also analogue in. You charge the 2 AA batteries (2 sets are provided) by lifting up a flap on the transmitter. There are also 2 headphone sockets provided to connect normal wired headphones. They take the 1/4 inch connection, so high end headphones can be used.

    Sound: Wow! these headphones sound awesome. Its like you are listening to a very expensive home cinema system. The sound does come from in front of you and sounds really do come from behind. Thats just with TV, when you use a DVD with DTS or DD, Fast and the furious - Superbit for example, the sounds just superb. They go loud, sound great, bass and treble are awesome, and the bass especially reminds me of my Rel sub, very tuneful and it goes low.

    Also, there is no hiss or pops or crackles. I also forgot to mention they sound fantastic with stereo material.

    Highly recommended. 10/10

    Pioneer

    Build/Features: The quality of the headphones and infrared transmitter are very good. You lift up a plastic flap in the transmitter and insert the batteries to charge. Only 1 set of batteries are included.

    On the plus side, you get coax (digital) in and also optical in, along with analogue inputs. The headphones are also quite comfortable

    Sound: The sound is very good and the infrared works great. No hiss or pops, and hiss only appears if the volume is on full (like most digital wireless headphones).

    The treble is detailed and the bass is quite thumpy. Initial is sounds good, especially for films and games, but the philips are much better for music.

    The dolby headphone system works great, but it just doesn't appear to sound as 'out of your head' as the philips headphones.

    Way way better than any computer using dolby headphone, and if these were the first ones i tried, i would be like wow! But because i have the philips, i will always compare them, and compared to the philips they are great, but not excellent.

    Great surround headphones 8/10
     
  5. honglong

    honglong
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    Has anyone else tried the philips dolby headphones yet?
     
  6. Nik1967

    Nik1967
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    Thanks for the comparison. I have read the huge thread on Pioneer SE-DIR800C which was very positive , but went for the Philips HD1500 mainly for price reasons and the fact that it is RF rather than IR. Just bought it today for EUR 270. The pricing amazes me. The pioneer costs EUR 320 in Germany but USD 259 in the US. The philips costs EUR 270 in Germany but USD 420 in the US!!
     
  7. lenny

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    Hi Nik1967,

    could you :lease: tell me where did you buy your SBC - HD1500 for 270€, I'm very interested into these headphones at that level of price. I have friends in Trier, Koln, Munich and Frankfurt so I can arrange the purchase from there. For your information, in France the lowerest price I can get is 320€.

    In advance thank for your tip :smashin:

    Lenny
     
  8. Nik1967

    Nik1967
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    Any Philips HD1500 users can help. I got my headphones yesterday and set the new pair of batteries to charge. After nearly 22 hrs the red charge display is still on. It is supposed to turn green when fully loaded. I read that new batteries take approx 16 hrs...but 22!!
    Any comments please....
    Nik
     
  9. honglong

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    Hi,

    i have the philips headphones.

    to charge up initially the batteries took about 2 days. After that they take about half a day.

    Its just the initial charge. I just used some normal rechargable AA batteries while i got both sets of batteries charged.
     
  10. Nik1967

    Nik1967
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    Phew!! Thanks Honglong...
    I hope it turns green today, it's nearly two days now!!
    I even spoke to the dealer to replace this set.....will wait for a while now.
    cheers mate
     
  11. raulito

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    I bought the HD1500 via eBay and when i received it, the right earshelve was allready broken in the box. I tried to fix it with glue, but that didn't work. I'm affraid that my money is gone...but: the unit itself is still ok, so:

    I saw that there are two outputs for other headphones. I don't know what to do with those...

    does this mean that I can put any other headphone unit in those? Also wireless? Or do they have to be with wire?? Do they need to be expensive digital headphones???

    I really don't know, can anyone please help me with this???

    THANKS!
     
  12. sfxjames

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    Thanks for the input guys I'm spreading the word.

    There are a lot of 800c users on other forums, that are waisting there money on wired headphones to use with base station
     
  13. honglong

    honglong
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    no contest, the philips win hands down.

    don't believe me? Have a listen
     
  14. uczmeg

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    I haven't heard both, but based on opinions on here I imported a pair of Philips HD1500 from Germany.

    They are most excellent and I haven't been dissapointed at all.

    Cheers
    Marc
     
  15. sfxjames

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    Actually I'm keeping to myself, they have dissapearing off the shelf.
     
  16. sfxjames

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    Anyone want to post any sound impressions with the HD1500.

    Has anyone heard Revenge Of The Sith on them?
     
  17. honglong

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    revenge of the sith sounds amazing with the philips.

    If you have empire strikes back, you should try that film, also HellBoy is very good via the philips.

    Seriously, you will not even notice you have headphones on.
     
  18. sfxjames

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    Well I ordered it from Tech-On-Web.com too late. It was in stock for less than 5 hours on the shelf and than gone before I could get to it.

    If anyone knows anywhere else I can buy it please tell me, I live in the US.

    Hopfully it shouldn't take too long.

    So far I have underlined some of the differences in my system as opposed to DH using a specific classic movie the fog.

    Inback definition in seperation is what improves, but on my system the inback seperation isn't as detail, with DH it's the inback imaging is very detailed.

    Has anyone noticed this using dolby headphone?

    That DH has a better detail and seperation with inback imaging.

    Could be the acoustics of my room are bad.
     
  19. honglong

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    sfxjames, when you finally get some philips headphones, let me know how you get on.

    I love the philips headphones. I watched Initial D and Sahara through them and they do in deed rock!!

    I also think dolby headphone has better imaging, but thats because everything is set up perfect and in the perfect acoustic enviroment. Unlike you speakers which are usually not set up correctly (especially the sub, why always too loud?) and room corolation is another factor. When using headphones you get none of this (Unless you use the DH2 or DH3 position of course).

    If i had a choice between using the philips and a few blown home cinema system, i would choose the philips!

    I hope Dolby brings out a Dolby EX and DTS-ES version of Dolby Headphone and someone releases a good set of dolby headphones which include a stand to hold the headphones. (i know pioneer have a new model which does). :clap:
     
  20. sfxjames

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    HD1500 has just been shipped, yes!

    Looks like I'm joining the Philips dolby headphone team afterall

    I do have a 5.1 surround system myself.

    However since the effect of dolby headphone is much stronger on the philips I will be posted a home theater vs DH comparison in January.
     
  21. sfxjames

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    Honglong do you have a 5.1 system like me?

    How well does it do inback imaging, mine is a little tight.
     
  22. MULLY@110

    MULLY@110
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    can someone recommend somewhere for me to pick up a set of philips hd1500 headphones as these sound just what l'm looking for
     
  23. socrates1

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    Can be gotten from here for €311 + €22 for delivery. It's showing out of stock at the moment. I ordered the wired version about two weeks ago. It showed out of stock, they sent an e-mail (in German)saying it was on order and they sent me an e-mail a week later to say they were on the way with a tracking number. Received last Friday but haven't had a chance to play around with them yet.
    Wireless version
    http://www.technikdirekt.de/main/au...icle.html?focuslayout=full5&focuslayout=full5
    Wired version (€175 including delivery and currently in stock)
    http://www.technikdirekt.de/main/au...ayout=full5&focuslayout=full5&viewmode=search
     
  24. mikeaitch

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  25. MULLY@110

    MULLY@110
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    These seem to be £279.99 now mike did yu have a special code for these ?
     
  26. mikeaitch

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    Sorry Mully, the sale has now closed, out of stock. seller was big_badger, it's still listed but says now not available.Guess I was just lucky
     
  27. MULLY@110

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  28. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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  29. honglong

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    SFXjames:

    I do have a 5.1 system. Its an all in one pioneer (DVD55? or something like that) thing. Its highly reviewed in What Hi Fi about 1 year ago.

    The reason i got the philips was because the pioneer system is so poor.

    Why? I am used to having a high end system and the philips are the nearest to using this. I had to sell because of moving house.

    I used to have a Pioneer THX Amp, Pioneer DVD player, Kef Q series speakers and a Rel Q100? Subwoofer.

    I am very impressed with the philips headphones and would recommend them to anyone.
     
  30. MULLY@110

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    How close are these to the surround setups we most have ? as really looking to get a pair what specs do's my amp need to carry to use these ?
     

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