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Old 09-22-2010, 09:32 AM
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Satellite_6 Satellite_6 is offline
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Default Panasonic HJE900 Review (a different take)

INTRO: What always happens did happen: I hated these at first, and now I quite like them. I do find them to be very flawed headphones though, and with dfkt’s glowing review I was expecting something better. I will elaborate:

First I will focus on what is good. I find these headphones to reproduce sound clearly for the most part, their soundstage and bass impact is pretty impressive, and they are built well. I agree with dfkt that they are musical sounding and laid back. Someone on head-fi announced they were analytical yet “fun” sounding. I guess I can see why someone might find them “fun” because of the bass impact, but on the whole I find them to be very laid back. I don’t think they are analytical. I find the isolation to be good enough, but I would like to try to improve it. UPDATE: If you stuff the outer part of the tips with foam, the isolation is pretty good. It should be good enough for most situations.

Now for the bad. My first and primary complaint is that the mids are very subtle and boring. At first they sounded veiled and distant and I was appalled, but that changed. After days of listening I found them to be clear and pleasant sounding mids, but they are very relaxed: They aren’t as engaging/forward as the mids on either of my Sennheisers are, or my (dead) NE-7Ms used to be. This might be a bummer for some people. My second complaint is about the frequency response: it doesn’t seem “natural” to me in any way. The bass, esp. the deep bass sounds great when turned down a heck of a lot, but with a flat EQ it’s just too loud esp. because of the relaxed mids. The highs sound even louder to my ears and are messy.The HJE900's sound can be fatiguing because of this. While I think the quality of the bass and the mids is quite good, I can’t say the same for the highs. My third complaint is the sibilance. It usually isn’t noticeable, but when it’s there, it’s annoying. I might try the foam mod to help out with this and the loud highs. I also need different tips for a better fit, but I’m in no rush. The cable is rather short.

CONC: Although these are nice sounding IEMs on the whole, I’m not totally impressed or amazed by their SQ for $90. If dfkt says they rival the best IEMs out there, I have no choice but to believe him because I haven’t tried many. I don’t find them to be much better, if at all, than my cheap HD 485s, but maybe that’s just because I find their sound to be odd, others may not. I say buy them if you can get them for under $100, and nothing I have said has scared you away, but walk, don’t run. . .

Some more info about them: they are a shiny dark blue color, not grey. They have a coupler that works to adjust the length of the split in the cable if you twist it. I think I can hear. . . no, feel freqs below 20 Hz believe it or not, and I can hear at least as high as 17.5 kHz on them as well. You cannot sing or eat while listening to these because you can hear yourself.

dfkt's review:

Last edited by Satellite_6; 11-11-2010 at 01:59 PM.
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