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I think the most important aspect in buying headphones is comfort. I've tried the AKG's and the Grado's with the "bowl style" earcups and they drove me nuts. They pushed on something just a little forward and below my ear and I couldn't stand it in about 20 seconds. I had bought a pair of Grado SR200's used with the "flat" earpads. They were somewhat comfortable for about 30 minutes. My dog got hold of them and ripped one earpad so I had to replace them with Radio Shack replacement pads. I can't believe the dog is still around. I can now wear the 'phones for an hour easily. So I suggest making sure you try them on before you buy if possible. I've read that the Sennheisers(580,600, and 650's) are smooth but not as detailed as the Grado's. I didn't get to listen to the AKG's. Good luck.
Yeah, Headfi is a good site. They are a fun and helpful group although they are stuck on hifi questions that are mostly taken for granted by me and standard hifi circles. There you can get a notion of the relative tonal balances between headphones in your price range.
I blindly purchased beyer dt880s for $300 at headroom (good cust service) and have really enjoyed them. Very comfortable. Its true they are a touch quiet with drums and beats, but bass guitar is quite tuneful. They have some high end emphasis, but they are not fatiguing to me. Better for me than dark sounding gear, which is why i bought them instead of Senn 650s.
Good luck, 'phones are phun.
My being an experienced participating member over on Head-Fi for a few years now, have come to appreciate the finer points of recommending headphones which are nearly all dependent upon the proformance and tone of the jack they're plugged into. Ergo, my first post in this thread refering the OP there, due to needing his feedback as to the system he'g going to be using etc, which on this time delay board here simply would be relatively quicker over there.
I have the AKG-701s, great balanced sound with extended and energetic high frequency response and likewise to the Beyer DT-880s are studio monitor lite in their lower end frequency responce, both highly sensitive in terms of needing above average power[current], to preform to their potential,as well as warmer sources, or else they would be a poor choice.
Although with my Meier Corda Opera Headphone Amplifier/intergral DAC the K-701s shine as well do my Beyer DT-9909'(05e), having better bass response than the DT-880s...
Each of the above are extreamly comfortable, relative to my now sold Grado RS-2s which are the most easy to find to drive phones to their near full preformance potential, with a unique on stage presentation as opposed to 10 rows back and a wider soundstage presentation of the previously mentioned phones, when properly driven...
Hope this helps OP~
This may be a bit late, but don't overlook the AKG K501 or K601 if you can find a deal on them. I bought a new pair of closeout K501s on eBay for $120--they're outstanding and non-fatiguing, though the bass, tuneful as it is, doesn't go super deep. The K601, though I haven't heard it, is supposed to have great bass but ever-so-slightly rolled-off highs--might be just what you're looking for, and a lot cheaper than the K701. I'm aiming to buy a pair soon. Grados have too much treble emphasis for comfortable listening, to my taste. You can't go wrong with the Sennheisers, either, if you find a good used pair.