Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro vs 880 Pro Vs 990 Pro: Key Differences Explained

When it comes to designing budget headphones with uncompromising build and sound quality, I don’t find any other name brand coming anywhere near Beyerdynamic. Since you have landed on this page, I can assume that you either fully or partially agree with me. 

I’m also guessing that you have narrowed down your options to DT 770 Pro, DT 880 Pro, and DT 990 Pro. You have already done your share of research, yet you are struggling to zero in on one of these three models. I get it, been there, done that. 

To nudge you in the right direction, I have drafted in-depth individual reviews of these 3 headphones, followed by a feature-by-feature comparison and my final verdict, of course.

I’ll start with the reviews to give you important insights into the unique aspects and audio quality of each headphone.

Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro: Is It Worth the Hype?

beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO 250 Ohm Over-Ear Studio Headphones...

These over-ear studio headphones are one hell of a looker. I mean, not that you’d care for aesthetics while looking for a mixing headphone but it’s still nice to have a cool pair of Instagrammable headphones on, isn’t it? It sports a closed-back design to minimize sound bleeding while enhancing the quality of bass. 

To make studio mixing and mastering a breeze, these headphones are designed to deliver beautifully-balanced neutral sound. In other words, the speaker of this headphone reproduces every single sound frequency of the music piece across the entire soundstage, with very little gap of decibels in between them.

This is an incredibly tough feat to achieve, which is why Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro 250 Ohm is a holy-grail audio gear for audiophiles, audio engineers, DJs or professional freelancers like us who earn a few extra bucks through audio mixing. However, being a budget mixing headphone, it has some obvious limitations such as no control options for channel mixing or feedback.

If you want your headphones to have these advanced features, you will have to stretch your wallet a lot more. I also loved the fact that Beyerdynamics makes lower impedance versions of the same model for those who don’t have an amp and want to enjoy music on their portable music devices such as smartphones and computers

Moving on to ergonomics and comfort, the headphones are sturdy enough to survive a drop or two. The ear cups are generously lined with soft microfiber padding. In all honesty, the clamping pressure will fatigue your ears if you keep the headphone on for too long. 

Having said that, they do fit well, irrespective of the head size and don’t cause any discomfort while listening to music for a few hours. However, they are a bit too bulky for workout or running purposes. 

Key audio profile aspects include remarkable bass range, mid-range, and above-average treble performance. However, high-bass pieces tend to thin out the vocals a little. It’s very subtle and won’t even be noticeable to most listeners. If you own Xbox one, it will do double duty as a solid gaming headphone as well. 

Beyerdynamic DT 880 Pro: What Makes It Stand out?

beyerdynamic DT 880 Pro Over-Ear Studio Headphone

I became a fan of these headphones from the moment I put them on. Unlike DT 770 which made me all uncomfortable after two hours, I didn’t even notice the presence of 880 Pro after keeping them on for nearly 2.5 hours. The full credit for this goes to the deep velour and comfy leather padding. 

It sits tight and doesn’t make my ears hot as even in my studio environment. The 9.8 ft cable allows me plenty of flexibility to move around while jamming to Gary Moore and AC/DC masterpieces.  

So paying a few extra bucks for this model will pay off if you are planning to wear your headphones for hours. The chassis of the headphones including the ear cups are tough as Captain America (well, almost). To help you connect to high-end audio output systems such as a quality DAC and amplifier, this model is equipped with a jack of ¼ inch threaded adaptors.

I highly recommend connecting this 250 Ohm headphone to a 1W+ rated amplifier to unleash its true charisma. It boasts a sound sensitivity of 96 dB/mW, making these bad boys a steal deal for studio mixing, recording, mastering, and critical listening.

On the downside, properly driving the 250 Ohm DT 880 Pro with low amplification portable audio devices such as smartphones, laptops or music players won’t be possible. To sum up, you need to invest in an amplifier that perfectly complements the high impedance and sound sensitivity of DT 880 Pro. 

As long as your audio interface matches the headphone impedance, giving final touches after mastering and sound designing will be an incredible experience with DT 880 Pro.

Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro: Best Entry-level Mixing Headphones for a Reason

beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro 250 ohm Over-Ear Studio Headphones...

As I said before, nobody makes budget-friendly audiophile headphones like Beyerdynamics does. With DT 990 Pro, they have once more proved their caliber. I am reviewing the 250 Ohm version which absolutely needs an amplifier to reach its full potential. 

However, if you want to carry around or invest in a dedicated audio interface, you will be better off with the 80 Ohm version. Coming back to the 250 Ohm headphones, they are just as incredibly comfortable as DT 880 Pro. The open-back design allows more air to pass through the speaker elements to minimize distortion and make the music sound very natural and crisp. 

While I will rate them 10 on 10 for comfort, sadly, I can’t say the same about durability. Except for the metal band, the rest of the headphone’s body is made of plastic which makes for questionable durability. These are not one of the most good-looking pairs of cans you can get your hands on but I am okay to trade aesthetics for great comfort and audio performance. The model is threaded for a ¼” adaptor to connect to high-end audio interfaces. 

As far as the nitty-gritty of the sound profile is concerned, the bass has just the right amount of punch but lacks clarity to some extent. While listening to bass-heavy tracks, I noticed how overemphasis on bass doesn’t outshine the vocals. Brownie points for how the vocals shine through and the sound doesn’t distort even a single bit at peak volume levels.

Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro vs 880 Pro Vs 990 Pro: Head-to-Head Comparison

I’m confident that the reviews alone gave you the perspective you needed to make the right decision. But if by any chance, you’re still on the fence about which headphones to choose, this section should help you make up your mind: 

1. DT 770 Pro vs 880 Pro

Apart from the price gap, there’s also a notable difference between the comfort offered and audio performance offered by these two models. DT 770 Pro is comfortable to wear for a short duration but if you need to keep the cans on for hours, DT 880 Pro is your safest bet.

880 Pro also has a more natural, crisp sound providing an immersive listening experience, thanks to its wider soundstage.

To bottomline, if you’re on a budget, DT 770 Pro would give you your money’s full worth. However, if budget isn’t a concern, don’t think twice and choose DT 880 Pro. 

2. DT 880 vs 990

Both headphones are ridiculously comfortable to wear and require an appropriate amp and DAC to reach their full potential. The depth, balance, and neutrality of sound of 990 Pro is phenomenal for the price but won’t blow you away. This is the area where DT 880 Pro is marginally better than 990. 

I’d say both are amazing digs for their respective price ranges. If you are just learning audio editing, mixing, or need a backup pair to add finishing touches to the edited, DT 990 won’t let you down. 

3. DT 770 vs 990

DT 770 is available in four impedance options, ranging from 16-250 Ohms compared to DT 990 Pro which is only available in 80-250 Ohm versions. If you want a decent audiophile-grade headphone without the additional hassle of amp setup, DT 770 will serve you just right. 

The high impedance version produces incredibly clear frequency response. What makes them even better for sound mixing is that the speakers don’t color the sound. 

When it comes to producing immaculate, distortion-free highs, I don’t know if any other headphone at this price range comes close to 990. Another major point of consideration would be comfort. That’s an area where 990 beats DT 770 Pro hands down. 

It’s really tough to choose one over the other, considering both models have their fair shares of advantages and limitations. Having said that, if I really have to choose between 770 and 990, I would choose 990 for its massive value for money. 

Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro vs 880 Pro Vs 990 Pro: Final Verdict

So who emerges as the ultimate winner in the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro vs. 880 Pro Vs. 990 Pro face-off? From a cold objective point of view, it would be unfair to rank one product above the other two. All three of them are very capable headphones and have everything you’d expect from a Beyerdynamic product. 

Now, if you are a true audiophile who is ready to pay the premium for dead-on sound quality and comfort, DT880 Pro won’t let you down. DT 990 Pro is a holy grail product for folks who want to experience audiophile-grade, superior sound quality and don’t mind some minor limitations. 

DT 770 Pro is more of a professional user-oriented gear, ideal for studio mixing, mastering, and recording. It’s way cheaper than most mainstream mixing headphones and the best part is, its affordability doesn’t come at the cost of quality. That’s pretty much it. Hope this clears up every last ounce of confusion you had in your mind.

Last update on 2024-04-15 at 21:21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Vitaly Fedorov

Vitaly Fedorov is a seasoned audio technician and writer. After spending ten years in a studio team, I have decided to spread my knowledge to people in this domain. On this site, I work for headphone fixing or repair issues, that you’re thinking about fixing. Click on any article on my site and read the complete answer about that issue. I am excited to read your feedback.

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