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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant and wireless !
I've had these for about a month and have only had one set of wireless headphones before - a phillips set from about 10 years ago. The Philllips headphones were actually quite good but these are superb. I didn't like the idea of a wired set ... so wireless phones were the way forward. These reproduce musc very much as I like - not too heavy on the ear. Lots of detail...
Published on 1 Jun. 2012 by SO8

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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Premium imperfection
For years I've used a Sennheiser RS 130 wireless headphone system and loved it. I assumed that the RS 220 would be a dramatic digital step up, but it turns out that, for me, it isn't.

The good things first. I find the headphones to be quite comfortable. Unlike the earcups of many headphones on the market, these earcups are actually an appropriate shape for the...
Published 18 months ago by Alien937


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Premium imperfection, 3 Nov. 2013
By 
Alien937 (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
For years I've used a Sennheiser RS 130 wireless headphone system and loved it. I assumed that the RS 220 would be a dramatic digital step up, but it turns out that, for me, it isn't.

The good things first. I find the headphones to be quite comfortable. Unlike the earcups of many headphones on the market, these earcups are actually an appropriate shape for the purpose of covering a pair of human ears. The headphones feel luxurious and well-made, infused with Sennheiser's trademark quality. In use, the clarity of them is amazing. Yes, they "bleed" sound, but that's the style of them: they're open-backed, which helps to improve the audio quality. The buttons are easy enough to use, though I prefer the volume dial on my RS 130's headphones.

The transmitter unit is impressive mainly due to the range of connections it offers. Here you find analogue, digital coaxial and digital optical in and out, allowing you route up to three devices through the transmitter. This is more than any other Sennheiser wireless headphone system, and is a godsend if you want to connect multiple devices. The transmitter doubles as a charging base, and the headphones aren't particularly easy to place on it. I've seen Sony headphones where the metal charging contact connects to a contact at the apex of headphones' headband, and that type of design would appear to be superior. I also feel that the connectors should have been placed vertically, allowing the base of the transmitter to be narrower. Even so, the transmitter does its job and looks good.

Now for the not-so-good things. Dropouts. These last for only a split second, but they're enough to be distracting and highly irritating. My RS 130 system never drops out. Ever. I can even walk between floors and the audio remains rock-solid. This is probably because the system operates on the 864MHz band, whereas the RS 220 uses the overcrowded 2.4GHz band. To compound this, the RS 220 is capable of using different channels, but these are not user-selectable (unlike the RS 130). For a system with this kind of price tag dropouts are inexcusable, especially when an earlier, cheaper model doesn't suffer from them. Sennheiser really needs to invest in a proprietary, less congested waveband for this product; anything less just doesn't cut the mustard. (It's possible you won't experience these dropouts if you're lucky enough not to live in a "noisy" Wi-Fi environment, and don't have neighbours' wireless networks encroaching onto your property.)

My second major gripe is the headphones' lack of bass response. Sennheiser headphones are usually excellent when it comes to bass, but with these it has gone completely AWOL. Once again, this omission is compounded, this time by the fact that there's no bass control or bass boost button; like the non-selectable wireless channel, options that should be there have been denied to the end user. Minor gripes include the fact that the transmitter is too easily scratched, and that no digital optical cable is included in the package (analogue and digital coaxial cables are supplied).

I really wanted to love the RS 220 system, but I find that my ageing RS 130 trumps it. While the RS 220 boasts incredible clarity, it suffers from intermittent dropouts, and I would only recommend it if you're desperate for the triple in/out connectors.

UPDATE: The RS 220 uses DSSS (Direct-Sequence Spread Spectrum) modulation rather than the Kleer of previous models. DSSS modulation takes up more bandwidth than Kleer in order to produce a better sound. While the RS 220 sounds great, the increased bandwidth requirement means its wireless connection is less robust, to the point of suffering from dropouts and even knocking other wireless devices off of the network. It would seem that improved audio quality has come at the cost of basic usability (in the average Wi-Fi-dense environment), making the RS 220 a kind of pyrrhic victory of a headphone system. Moreover, the problem cannot be addressed by altering the system itself; there's literally no way to update its firmware. The manufacturer's only solution appears to be: change your listening environment to make it less Wi-Fi-dense - a woeful response considering the product's premium price tag.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant and wireless !, 1 Jun. 2012
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
I've had these for about a month and have only had one set of wireless headphones before - a phillips set from about 10 years ago. The Philllips headphones were actually quite good but these are superb. I didn't like the idea of a wired set ... so wireless phones were the way forward. These reproduce musc very much as I like - not too heavy on the ear. Lots of detail without being too warm. They do qualify as warm - but anything less may not suit headphones IMO ... I guess it depends what you want from them. They fulfill what I needed and some ... clear, detailed but not bright. Enough base without it being too much.

I personally prefer no headphones ... for a bigger soundstage - but these are very good. I listen to my music through Arcam A32 and CD23 via PMC OB1 speakers ... so not cheap but not too dear ... and for me these headphones are a good addition to my kit when the wife wants quiet !!

I would definitely recommend them but as most people know ... sound quality is so subjective - try them !!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One step forward, one step back, 19 Nov. 2013
By 
M. D. Harris (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I really wanted to love these, but it wasn't to be. As an owner of a pair of Sennheiser RS170 wireless headphones, which although not perfect I rate very highly, I had expected the RS220's to be real a step up, but it's been more one step forward, one step back.

Once the hardware has been wrestled out of Sennhesier's typically tight packing, first impressions are very good. Everything looks and feels very high quality. Some cables are included - an analogue RCA, and a digital coaxial - but no optical cable, which of course is the one I needed...

Set up is pretty straight forward, but unlike most headphones where you plug them (or their base-station) into the usual headphone jack, these are designed to sit in the chain. So in my case: PS3 (optical out) > RS220 base > AV Amp.

In use the audio quality is excellent, a real improvement over the RS170's for music. You can really pick out all detail in a song with these things on. Movies and games are equally impressive - but the lack of any surround sound emulation is disappointing. Comfort is good, but bettered by the plush 170's, however I never found them uncomfortable.

So far, so good. However...

The pass-through system involves a couple of button presses, which I often forgot, resulting in no audio (and some confusion to start with) - why can't it just work by default until the phones are activated? When not in use the headphones perch on the chunky looking dock, grab the headphones and pull them towards you and the base comes too as the headphones 'close-up' - you need one hand on the base, one on the 'phones. The range is poor, nowhere near what's claimed - if you're in the same room as the dock you're ok, but go into another room, or upstairs and severe drop-outs become a common occurrence (this does not happen with the RS170's).

You may be able to overlook these irritations, but given their substantial price I'd expect perfection. Yes the audio quality is good, but there are too many caveats to recommend them unreservedly. 7/10.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as I hoped, 24 Oct. 2013
By 
Darren Simons (Middlesex, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Having been a fan of Sennheiser for many years and an owner of several mid-range wired headphones from Sennheiser, my expectations were high when I opened the box. First impressions are very good - the breadth of connections available is superb: digital audio, RCA stereo connectors (with a 3.5mm converter if required) and a digital coax connector. Cables are included which makes a welcome change and they are a reasonable length. The connectors plug into the back of the stand and you can therefore have three sources connected. For my test, I used the Tape Monitor output on my Denon amplifier as I found the sound far superior to using the headphone socket (as I would have expected).

The headphones then sit on the stand to charge and you simply remove them to use as required. There are two sets of controls on the headphones: volume and source. One thing that I immediately noticed is the headphones are nice and large. I have a rather large head and generally find (with Sennheiser being better than most) that the headphones don't quite fit - this time, not an issue.. I don't even have it at the maximum size and it fits perfectly.

First things first... the sound - it's excellent picking up depth and tone I have not experienced from a pair of headphones. I tend to like slightly higher levels at the higher frequencies so I found it at times a bit soft but that's a personal view. You simply cannot compare the sound to any other headphones (wired or wireless), and with the volume turned up you can really immerse yourself in the music.

However, for the price there is a bit not to like:
- The range is quoted as 100 metres with line of sight. I can confirm my lounge is miles less than a tenth of that size and I was getting dropout when I moved around, possibly due to interference from other products transmitting in the same frequency range (wireless keyboard, Internet router for example). When I walked through a doorway, it cut out completely for maybe quarter of a second before recovering.
- I don't particularly like how the speakers sit to charge... given the ear pads are soft they are going to get very dusty over time, and I would have preferred them to sit on the charger in some type of covered unit.
- After about 90 minutes, I found the ear pads quite uncomfortable and hot. They are massive ear pads but they are not as comfortable to wear as I had hoped

There is also one key design feature to be aware of: they are open circumaural. This means the outer side of the headphones are open. The benefit of this is the sound is more natural, but the price is that anyone within 10 feet of you will hear everything you are listening to. If you are wanting to sit on your own and use headphones as a way of being more immersed in the audio (key if the main speakers are not correctly located relative to where you are sitting) then this is not an issue. If you want to listen to your music whilst sitting next to your partner on the sofa... no, forget it!

Some readers may regard some of the objections above irrelevant. If so, I heartily recommend these headphones. However, if enough of my critique puts you off then I would have to recommend looking elsewhere.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful wireless listening experience... with caveat..., 24 Oct. 2013
By 
bomble "bomble" (Cambridge, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I am a self-confessed Sennheiser fan having been using headphones from all across their range for nearly 20 years, as well as buying them as gifts for others. I recently acquired, and gave a hard-earned 5* review to, some Momentum On-Ear. My `hi-fi' merits the name and I love collecting high quality recordings in lossless formats to take advantage of it. Suffice to say I love listening to detailed music on revealing and unbiased equipment. I am not a fan of `bass boost', `noise cancellation' (in most of its guises anyway) or other manipulation of my sound. If I want to keep out the noise or keep my listening to myself, I use my trusty Sennheiser HD280pros (another set I'd give 5* to) and these now live at my office driven by a Meridian Explorer USB DAC (5* too!) on my laptop.

But I've not had particularly favourable experiences of wireless phones in the past. The analogue wireless ones (even from Senn) often suffer from hiss/crackle from interference and, as the units warm up on your head, they can also lose their frequency stability and drop out.

These headphones are by far the best wireless phones I've ever listened to. They sound absolutely fantastic to my ears. Rich, detailed and spacious. I've thrown my usual suspects for sound testing at them and was delighted on all counts. This included some of my favourite audiophile classical recordings (such as Tedi Papavrami performing on Aeon, [[ASIN:B003AYPMR4 Saint-Saens: Intro & Rondo, Violin Concerto 3; Chausson, Ysaye: Poemes ]], and the Hyperion recording Schubert: Death & the Maiden), through to seriously bass-driven and dirty dubstep from Hecq on his Avenger album and Liquid Stranger's Arcane Terrain and a lot in between. And as these phones still haven't had that much time to bed in yet, I expect even better in time.

Perhaps if talking about music is like dancing about architecture... then writing about headphones suffers the same comparison. Anyone who doesn't know the difference between the sound of open-backed and closed-backed headphones should definitely try a pair of each on from the same manufacturer. Assuming that you do know what you are getting into buying an open backed set, and assuming that at this price point you're probably looking for something high quality, I'll focus not on the sound quality (excellent) but on the practicalities of these phones.

The transmitter has a wide array of inputs and outputs to keep most users happy and included in the box you get a digital coax cable (nice touch! I'm sick of always having to buy extra connectors) and some phono cable with a standard mini-jack splitter. I don't think there's an optical cable included so if that's how you wish to source these then you'll need one. There's also audio output if you want this unit to sit between other components. Being a digital-only kinda listener, I connected the transmitter directly to a digital coax output of my source which also receives inputs from my AV equipment so I can now listen to any of my hifi or AV outputs through these phones. From a connection and setup point of view these are faultless.

The phones come partially charged so you can make sure you've got them rigged up before charging for the first time - but it couldn't be easier to pop them in the base station and charge between uses. There's nothing particularly beautiful about the base station or the phones themselves but they aren't ugly either. The build quality doesn't feel as good as the Momentum line but then they are also not designed to be used `on the go' so should hold up fine to home-listening use.

After all these positives there is a major limitation. Their transmission is surprisingly fragile. The Sennheiser website states line-of-sight up to 100m and indoors up to 30m. (though this isn't in the 34 page pdf manual included on disc) I haven't tried testing their line-of-sight range - doubt I'll be wandering off down the road to get the paper with these on! - but even 10m could be a push from my experience especially if you have solid walls between you and the source. That's not so troubling. I just accept that they are intended for same-room or nearby listening. What is more of a problem is that they seem to suffer if you move about too quickly from one place to another. I suspect that transmitting the audio uncompressed means that their RF link budget doesn't have so much margin or error correction. This has never been a problem moving about near the transmitter but at the edge of its coverage it can be quite annoying when the sound drops out for a second or two before re-connecting.

So how to rate them? From a sound, comfort and listening experience they are first class. The transmission range (i.e. base station power) could have been better but I have quickly learned what to do to keep them in their comfort zone (stay within about 5-10m of the base station and don't speed about!). What for analogue signal would have resulted in a drop in power or some slight noising results in total loss of signal in the digital domain. All (and a wonderful all) or nothing.

Accepting this, I still want to give them 5* because its such a joy to have sound quality like this without a cable to get in the way. If you need them to transmit faultlessly while you move around a large range then you might have been warned!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your money on these!, 13 May 2014
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
I'm really disappointed with these RS220. Being a long time Sennheiser satisfied customer, owning the RS65, RS110 and the RS120 (RS 126 II), as far as it comes to wireless headphones, I was recently given, for my birthday, the RS220. I’m very grateful indeed to the wonderful (and extremely generous) person whom has given it to me, but very disappointed with Sennheiser. The RS220 are very comfortable, very luxurious, with very good sound quality (by eliminating most of the background noise interference), you can plug it up to 3 different devices by using the 3 available plugs: coaxial; optical (not included); analog. On the other hand, the RS220 are heavy, the buttons aren't intuitive (although balance R/L is very much welcome), optical cable's missing, annoying blue on light (people on my left find it annoying), but the worst is the absolute lack of range: if you leave the room it'll just go mute. UNBELIEVABLE. No range at all. Even with my old RS65 I can walk everywhere through my apartment and still listen to whatever is on. Also, when you are recharging batteries, any of my other RS don't work with this RS220 emitter. As far as it goes to wireless sound quality, I’ll have to admit that it’s better than the ones I previously own. The range issue is the RS220 killer. It just won’t do.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Premium wireless entertainment headset, 21 Nov. 2013
By 
roses (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is high-end wireless headset designed to fully integrate with your home entertainment system. Both the headphones and wireless transmitter which also works as a charging and docking station looks smart and modern. With inputs and outputs including RCA analogue, coaxial, and digital inputs (pink) / output (green), the transmitter can be used with TV, Hi Fi, MP3 players/phones (anything with a headphone socket) and PCs/computers, making this a very versatile piece of entertainment kit. With all these inputs and outputs, the set comes with all the cables and adapters you need, all of which feels like good quality, this is important as it can have an imperative impact on the reproduction of sound. The transmitter has touch sensitive buttons which are smart looking and responsive, they include options for selecting the sound source, charging and battery indicator, volume and power. All options are also conveniently available on the headset with raised buttons for easy recognition via touch, in addition to this you can also adjust the balance control. I couldn't really figure out the impact of balance control, but what I did find was that the volume is ultimately controlled by the headphones and not the sources. This means you won't be unexpectedly blasted in the ear, which is a really good safety feature. The headphones will also bleep if you have reached the max volume so you don't end up overcompensating by pressing `volume up'.

Having the ability to select the source is a really good feature, because it means you can find a permanent home for the transmitter and have everything plugged in at the same time. There are LED lights on both the transmitter unit and headphones to indicate power and charge, and both can be powered down independently.

The important question is sound quality, the unique selling point of these headphones is the fact it can deliver uncompressed stereo sound wirelessly. I believe it has really lived up to expectations, and even playing on analogue I can walk to the furthest point in my small house without a hint of crackle. It does say that it can support ranges of 50m to 100m outdoors and 30m indoors. I thought there was minimal lag and and the wireless controls were responsive. The headphones are also not too heavy and feels like they were built with quality in mind. I like how the velvet covered ear cups can swivel for comfortable wearing but spring back into place for the best fit. The headband can be adjusted in length and is generously padded with a leather covering, making it comfortable to wear. I watched a bit of Football with these, and was surprised how it picked up the depth and echo which makes you feel more immersed. The plus sides is that these are easy to use, easy to recharge, looks smart, comfortable to wear, good sound quality with large range tolerance, and easy pairing (for me it worked out of the box). And if money was no object you can even connect up to four pairs of headphones to the same transmitter. The only real downside if I had to find one is that it takes 16 hours to charge, which gives 8 hours listening time at the most. It did live up to this, but then it takes a day to charge for about two films worth.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sound excellent but comfort not quite so, 4 Oct. 2013
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
These headphones are very very good, and it's great being wireless, and not having to take them off every time you get up and move about. They work fine throughout my flat.
I've only had these one day so they're not run in yet, but what I hear so far is very good and will only get better as time goes on.
I would have given these 5 stars, but, after having them on for a couple of hours I find that where the pads are in contact with my head it becomes rather itchy and very warm and I feel like taking them off for a while, maybe they are a bit on the tight side, but hopefully they might loosen up a bit.
So all in all I'm very pleased with the sound of them but comfort wise not so, especially as they where so expensive!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Questionable value for money ?, 25 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
Disappointing in terms of value for money - at £367 you would expect no flaws.
Pros : Good sound quality, sturdy build, strong radio signal around the house.
Cons : Open back design emits considerable sound leakage to other people around. Built-in cradle battery re-charging is ridiculous at 16 hours, and It took 3 days to complete initial charge !
VERDICT : Weaknesses render it not really worth the cost at RRP £399 / Amazon price £367 - whilst I haven't tried the next lower RS180 model, if it suffers the same defects then the lesser price RRP £230 / Amazon price £176 is probably better value for money.
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6 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Open Design so be sure before ordering, 21 Sept. 2013
By 
PC_Freak (West Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sennheiser RS220 Wireless Open Circumaural Over-Ear Headphone (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
I have to say the sound quality from these cans is fantastic, my problem with them is everyone within 10 feet of you can hear what you are listing to, even with the volume down, this is due to the open design of them, therefore they were no use to me, and have been returned.
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