Top critical review
8 people found this helpful
Good headphones, with some major flaws
on 18 January 2013
Buying a pair of headphones without trying them first is always a risk, that's why I read a lot (and I mean a lot) of online reviews before pulling the trigger on those ones. Al the reviews were very good, and since the overall feedback was so positive I thought that this was a safe buy. it turned out that reviews can't be trusted, at least not completely.
After a month of intensive use I can say that this Philips are average headphones, nothing special really under any aspect, but with an honest price tag and very good looks.
Talking about sound, it is true that they are "neutral" and not bass heavy, with a somewhat hi-fi feel. Sadly, the bass are actually too underpowered. While listening to music in a silent enviroment this is not a big problem, but using them on the go it becomes clear that they could really use a stronger bass presence. All considered, I think that they sound in line with their price, with the plus of a more balanced sound than the vast majority of the other headphones in the same price range. A note of warning: they really really need some time to break in, for the first ten hours they sounded absolutely awful and with a strong tendency to distort. After around 20 hours of use they started to improve and to sound the way they are meant to.
The build quality is indeed good, they feel durable and the materials are of very good quality. Also the cable, which indeed looks and feels fragile, it's actually very strong. The real, BIG problem is the in line remote: I cannot think of any reason why the Philips engineers chose to use such a useless, noisy and low quality volume gain slider. It's absolutely pointless, it creates channels unbalance and cable noise the moment you touch it, it doesn't really lower or increase the volume and really ruins an otherwise good product. Sure, you can live with it, but it will always be there reminding you that something went very wrong while designing these headphones. Also, the Music Seal features it's not as great as you may have read online. Sure, the headphones provide a reasonable amount of insulation against ambiental noise, but this has more to do with the fact that they over-ear and closed back. That, combined with the lack of bass presence, makes the headphones not that great for on the go usage. They are fine in the office though, where they are very efficient in blocking out open space office noise.
I had great expectations about these headphones and I came out a bit disappointed. The sound is not as great as I expected and the in line volume slider is really a pain, but overally I think that, for the price, these Philips are a good choice. They look good, the materials are good and sound wise they are way more balanced and hi-fi than the crappy Beats headphones you find everywhere. They are definitely not the definitive on the go headphones, but a good buy anyway.