Review: Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro

Sharp analyst

The studio qualities are the strengths and weaknesses of Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro, must be tested before purchase.

Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro

Our verdict

Super resolved and analytical. Steel control in the bass, very open and detailed sound, and excellent wearing comfort.
The analytical grade gives sharper, and less listening-friendly sound.
  • Type: Open, over the ear
  • Principle: Dynamic
  • Collapsible: No.
  • Microphone / remote control: No / no
  • Cable: 3m XLR to 6.35mm incl. 3.5mm adapter
  • Elements: 45 mm Tesla DT
  • Impedance / sensitivity: 250 ohms / 102 dB
  • Frequency response: 5-40,000 Hz
  • Weight: 370 grams (without cable)
  • Color: black
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Price: £ 499

The black pro headphones use the same element as Amiron Home, Beyerdynamics’ home edition in gray, but they do not sound the same for that reason. Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro is the yard for studio use and musicians who need a more analytical sound image to hear as much of the mix as possible.

The technical data is identical on the pro and home model, but here you get a spiral and a regular cable, both with a mini XLR connector that plugs into the left earpiece. Like the home version, the pro model is best when connected to an amplifier or a separate headphone amplifier.

Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro in practice

Impedance and sensitivity are in the middle of the tree, and with a good headphone amplifier, they can play more than loud enough. They can not be folded, but they are not intended for portable use either. Even with Audioquest Cobalt connected to an iPhone, I did not get a proper impact on the sound, at least not in the same way as in the Audeze LCD-1, which is far easier to operate. It became something quite different if I connected the headphones to the output of a Hegel H190, or the headphone amplifier Shiit Magni 3+.

The wearing comfort is impeccable. The large, soft fabric-covered pillows do not put much pressure on the head, and the headphones feel lighter than you might think. They leak a lot of sound, of course, and like most open headphones, they are not suitable for rooms with others present.
They have minimal adjustments besides adjusting the length of the height bracket, which like the open earbuds is made of solid light metal.

Trustworthy construction as expected of a pair of headphones, which are primarily made for professional users. DT 1990 Pro comes with an extra set of ear pads. They can replace those that are already on the earbuds, and provide an even more analytical sound image with a slightly tighter bass.

I preferred the original ear pads, because if there’s one thing these headphones do not need, it’s an even more analytical soundscape. It’s basically weird that the DT 1990 Pro uses the same dynamic Tesla element as the Amrion Home, because here the sound is obviously adapted for studio use. It gives the pro model a clearly more analytical character, with drier and tighter bass, a midrange so sharp that you can cut yourself, and even more insight and details than in the Amiron Home. At first it is captivating, but after a while you get sweaty in the ears from the occasionally pointed treble. Which emphasizes the upper part of the midrange and the treble so that e.g. female vocals may sound pointed.

There is not much to complain about the focus, transient response and level of detail here, but the analytical nature of the headphones does not suit everyone’s taste, and for long-term listening in the easy chair, we rather recommend Amiron Home.

Conclusion

Beyerdynamics pro model DT 1990 Pro is a very good choice for musicians and others who want to have all the details on the various tracks in the recording. The analytical character, with a marked increase in treble, is not as easy to listen to over time. Then you should rather choose than other Beyerdynamic with the dynamic Tesla element. But if you like headphones with distinct analytical capabilities, the DT 1990 Pro is very well suited, and rated as a headphone for studio use, there are five rather than four stars here.

DT 1990 Pro frequency
Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro measured with miniDSP EARS and REW. Compensated for what miniDSP thinks is subjectively linear.
The affordable EARS microphone is not very accurate around 4 kHz, where it often shows a dip that is not always there. Subjectively, there is at least nothing to indicate that these sounds receding in the upper midrange. On the other hand, we can sign off on the steep tip that peaks at 8 kHz in the treble. Otherwise a dry and distinct bass.

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