DT1350

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NO SMOOTHING is applied to the shown plots. Most measurement sites have some smoothing applied which ‘irons flat’ sharp peaks and ‘wiggles’. I do not use smoothing because some info about sound quality is lost when plots are smoothed.

Aside from a small correction of the microphone itself also some correction in the lowest frequencies is applied to the plots to compensate for the perceived loss of bass when using headphones. This is described HERE in more detail.
A ‘horizontal‘ frequency response curve on the shown frequency response plots on this website thus indicates a perceived ‘flat’ tonal signature.

ALL measurements are made with a good SEAL on a flatbed measurement rig.
The
shape of your head, bone structure, pad size, pad ‘softness,  (compliance), hair or no hair and or wearing glasses may (drastically) change the frequency response of some headphones, so… your personal experience may differ substantially from these plots.

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Beyerdynamic DT-1350

DSCN2433

Another interesting headphone for me is the Beyerdynamic DT-1350. It is a true ‘love it or hate it’ headphone for many with specific traits that may not be everyone’s cup of tea. This headphone is not marketed as a hi-fi headphone but is intended for monitoring. It’s Beyerdynamic’s answer to the Sennheiser HD25 (see Sennheiser brand measurements). Like the HD25 it is also an on-ear headphone with a split-able headband. Add to that the fact that Changstar has shown there is quite some variability in sound quality and measurements AND the price is anything but cheap, this is a headphone that may be hard to recommend to just anyone.

The DT1350 with stock pads… Frequency Range.  The small increase in amplitude from 200Hz to 600Hz is responsible for a ‘honky’ or ‘cuppy’ sound. It gives this headphone a distinct sonic signature I am NOT quite fond of. An easy solution is to use an equalizer and pull down the 300-400Hz slider about 5dB. This will make it more of a Hi-Fi phone. The extension to both sides of the frequency spectrum is phenomenal for such a small headphone, 10Hz to >20kHz. left, right

DT1350 stock L + R
The CSD below doesn’t show any problematic behaviour from 500Hz and up, it could almost be called exemplary. When you compare this CSD with that of the competitor (HD25 shown in the Se section) this waterfall plot looks very good without any nasty resonances. The headphone sounds quick and dry because of it. This may not be anybody’s cup of tea though.

dt1350 l csd

The stock pads aren’t very comfortable to my ears but do create a good seal for my ears, which is obligated for these headphones to sound good in the bass area. As these headphones are on-ear headphones the shape of the ear (Pinnae) AND clamping force are important.  Below the DT1350 with on the right side Sennheiser HD25 pads on top of the original pads.

DT1350withHD25pads

Beyerdynamic now also sells Nubuk Leather and Soft Leather pads for this headphone and claims it doesn’t affect the sound.

Below the DT1350 with stock pads versus DT1350 Nubuck Leather EDT1350-NL pads. The mids and highs are indeed unchanged but alas the bass levels drop -5dB which is MORE than just barely audible.  It makes the DT1350 ‘tinny’ and even more ‘cuppy’ sounding.

stock vs EDT1350-NL (bl)

Below the DT1350 with stock pads versus DT1350 with velour Sennheiser HD25 pads on TOP of the original pads. The lows aren’t compromised as much as with the NL pads. There is some loss in bass between 40Hz and 250Hz which means the bass is lowered audibly. Above 10kHz the behaviour differs.

stock vs stock+HD25 pads

Below the DT1350 with stock pads versus DT1350 with the older T50P pads. The ‘cuppy’ sound is decreased but so has the comfort. The peak between 2kHz and 4kHz makes the sound a bit artificial and coarser/sharper so not recommended.

stock vs T50P pads (gr)

Below the DT1350 with stock pads versus DT1350 with the EDT1350-SL (Soft Leather)pads as supplied on the DT1350-facelift/DT1350-CC.
As can be seen below the original pads differ considerably with the 67mm wide SL pads, most of all in the lows. The ‘cuppy’ sound is changed somewhat but the bass is lowered even more.

stock vs 67

Below the DT1350 with the 67mm EDT1350-SL pads Left and Right.

DT1350 67mm pads

The CSD with these pads is exemplary and shows the accuracy and speed/damping of the driver. No ringing…. left, right

CSD DT1350 67mm pads

The newer EDT1350-SL pads sound (and measure) very similar to the Nubuck Leather EDT-1350NL pads (shown below).
So the choice of pads doesn’t have to be made on sonic qualities but on comfort/fit/seal.
The fake Nubuck Leather pads are less sweaty and comfortable and create a good seal on my ears. The pressure on the inner side of the pinnae is a bit stronger because the pressure is spread over a smaller area (about the same as the T50P pads).
The EDT1350-SL version is feeling a bit softer, but also sweatier. Because the clamping force is spread somewhat better over the pinnae it feels somewhat more pleasant and secure. It is very easy to get a good seal/sound with these pads.
It should be noted that for those that find it hard to get a decent seal (and thus loose bass and hear a cuppy hollow sound) the 67mm pads are highly recommended even though you loose some of the deep bass when you were already getting a good seal with the older pads.On the other hand if you weren’t getting a good seal with the old pads (unless you pressed the cups against your ears) the 67mm wide pads will sound much bassier than the original pads because of the better seal.

67mm(bl) vs NL(pu)

Below 4 different pads together in one plot:

all DT1350 pads compared

Below the tested pads, from left to right:
HD25 pads (70mm), EDT1350-SL (67mm) pads, EDT1350-NL pads (62 mm), original DT1350 pads (61mm), T50P pads(58mm).

DT1350 padsThe HD25, EDT1350-NL and EDT1350-SL measure and sound closely the same and all differ from the original pads.
Choosing between the HD25, EDT1350-NL, EDT1350-SL is a comfort / fit / seal decision.
The original DT1350 pads will give you more bass IF you are able to get a good seal.

Below the frequency response plot of the DT1350 with EDT1350NL pads. Left, Right
DT1350 NL pads FR 30kHz

Good bass extension down to 10Hz, albeit too low in level. The raise from 200Hz to 2kHz makes it very ‘midrangy’ and hollow sounding which is actually desirable for monitoring voices. Remember, Beyer puts this in the market as a professional monitoring headphone to compete with the HD25.

Below the distortion plot of the same headphone.

DIST DT1350 NL

And the CSD of this headphone with the EDT1350NL pads:

CSD DT1350 NL

Nothing much to complain about and no deal breaking resonances.

When driven from the Kameleon the ‘midrangy’ character is removed and a reasonably ‘flat’ response is possible. It sounds a lot more ‘hifi’ and the ‘cuppy’ midrange is gone. The ‘speed’ and ‘open’ as well as detailed sound for which this headphone is known is still there.

DT1350 NL redamp 30kHz

Below the distortion plot of this headphone driven from the Kameleon amplifier.

DIST DT1350 NL KAM

Bass distortion is quite impressive for such a small on-ear headphone.

Below the CSD of the same combo (DT1350-NL + Kameleon)

CSD DT1350 NL KAM

Then there is also the squarewave and impulse response plots.
On the left stock DT1350 with NL pads, on the right DT1350 with NL pads playing from the Kameleon.

DT1350 SQR

Needles to say the response has improved when driven from the Kameleon.

All in all a very enjoyable headphone to me in an acoustical sense. It does have a couple of drawbacks as well. The clamping force needs to be quite high to get a good seal (= good bass) and the metal height adjust sliders poke in my head.
Nothing a little ‘bending’ here and there won’t cure when the headband is ‘opened’ a little.

The headphone cord is also microphonic. To be able to use it straight out of a portable player some EQ or the Kameleon amplifier is needed to make it sound as a very capable hi-fi phone. Stock it is not the most enjoyable headphone but this is true for a lot of other headphones. For me personally (with the Kameleon) it is the ultimate portable headphone and one of the few that comes close to orthodynamics in impulse response and frequency range. Just like with ortho’s, the DT1350 it is quite important to play well made recordings on it, crappy ones that may still sound ‘nice’ on forgiving headphones are ruthlessly revealed as crappy recordings on the DT1350.

An aspect that isn’t shown in measurements (because measurements were made with proper positioning  and seal) is that these headphones are VERY position sensitive and Pinna shape sensitive.
You have to position the headphone exactly right (left and right ear) to get optimal sound quality, stereo image (left/right being equal in tonality and loudness) and overall tonal balance. When not positioned correctly this is immediatly punished by bass not being positioned in the middle or treble roll-off being different between left and right or even absent (sub) bass, cuppy (hollow) sound etc.
This may also be why so many don’t like this headphone by being unable to get proper seal/positioning or apply proper EQ.

When EQ’ed properly and with proper positioning the sound quality is excellent though.

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