Got them in the mail last night - quite a bit after the quoted 3-5 day shipping time, but whatever.
So far, my initial impression is mixed. I don't think these would ever be my go-to for casual listening (and I REALLY don't understand people who buy studio 'phones to listen to their iPods on, but that's a separate rant). They're quite comfy for an over-ear closed headphone, but a few reviewers had mentioned some sort of a reverb-y quality to the high end, and it does seem a little "wash"-y and, well, odd. Ditto with the bass, it's deep but not terribly focused at a first listen. To be fair, this is right out of the box and a number of reviewers mentioned that after they begin to "burn in" a little things tighten up, and even a couple hours of mixing and listening to other recordings did seem to, if not help, then hjelp my ears get used to them.
That said, I didn't buy these for listening pleasure, I bought them for tracking and mixing. And, right out of the box, they impressed me here quite a bit. I pulled up one of my mixes and started engaging and disengaging EQ tweaks I'd previously made, and changes that were quite subtle/barely noticable on my Yamaha HS80s in my (untreated - this is probably the major problem) room were suddenly night-and-day pronounced on these headphones. Like, SHOCKINGLY obvious.
Mixing on headphones isn't ideal for a number of reasons, but given the limitations of a home studio environment I've always liked them for EQ tweaks, and I think that as I move from the tracking to the mixing phase of my album, my go-to process for EQ will be making surgical tweaks on these and then sanity-checking on my monitors. For studio use, I'm pretty impressed so far, but I'll post further thoughts as I get used to them and as they break in.
Awesome, man. I agree with a lot of points you made here. Ironically, I liked the high end more on these than other sets I tried, but maybe it's just because I like reverb!
I think you'll get to know the dynamics of their response a little better with a break-in period. I'd say I only have a few hours on mine, but they seem to be "tighter" as well.
Pretty impressive that they made that much of a difference over your HS80's! That's pretty cool!