Big Bass for the Buck
Sep 9, 2012
Review by Wesley Deng
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Comfort, Performance, Price, Sound isolation
Cons:A bit uncomfortable at first, but none
The Bottom Line: These are the best headphones I have owned and for the price, there is no way you can go wrong with these.
V-MODA Crossfade LP (Nero) Review
Recommend this product?
I bought these over-ear headphones for $105 from Amazon a few months ago and there are so many things to love about these headphones. This review is divided into 4 sections: What's in the box, Design, Performance, and Comparisons. Feel free to skip around.
What's in the box:
These headphones came in a very elaborate, smooth, and neat box. All the gear that you will need is pre-packed in a smooth, black exoskeleton case. This includes the headphones, 52 inch and 80 inch headphone cables, a 1/4" adapter, and a cleaning cloth. The headphone cables are made out of Kevlar and are very hard to break. The 52" cord has a built in 3-button remote for Apple products (play, next, previous) while the 80" doesn't. The plug end on both these cables are a 45 degree angle, making it hard to be accidentally pulled out.
The headphones come with an interesting warranty. After the usual 1- year warranty, if your headphones get crushed by a truck or chucked into a swimming pool, contact v-moda and send in what's left of the headphones. You will get 50% off your next purchase of any headphone from V-moda direct. It's a good marketing technique to keep customers (and me) with V-moda.
I ordered the Nero color design of these headphones. It is mainly glossy or matte black with a solid purple color on the inside of the headband (but nobody can see it when you're wearing them). They look very nice without being too flashy like beats. These headphones are not collapsible, so to compensate for that, the case does bulge out to compensate for that. These headphones weigh at 260 grams, about the same weight as Beats Studios so not too heavy. Before I say anything else, these headphones are VERY durable, unlike anything else I have seen. Most of the material used is solid metal and comfortable leather. There are very few plastic parts. You can flex the headphones in very distorting ways without damaging because the headband is very flexible, yet strong. According to their site, these headphones are also military-grade, meaning that they went under severe, unlikely scenarios to test durability. The other headphones like beats or bose are just made out of cheap plastic that break either on the headband or the slide mechanism (used for head size).
The headphone padding, which has a unique hexagon shape (compared to the usual circle with other companies) has some very comfortable memory foam. The headphones were a bit uncomfortable at first but after wearing them for a few hours, they were much more comfortable. You still have to take them off for a few minutes after about two hours of wearing them because your ears get hot, like all other over-ear headphones.
What stands out about these headphones are the 50mm drivers. These are huge drivers for such a medium sized headset. These are the biggest out in the market that I have seen. Most headphones have 40mm drivers. The difference is that these headphones are very effective at delivering great, rich bass compared to 40mm drivers. These headphones are built for the bass-intensive genres (dubstep, rap, techno). However, they still do a great job at delivering the high trebles and especially the warm mid-ranges. The treble doesn't seem to be as strong as crappy iPod headphones but are still very clear. I hear so much more detail in my music than before when I used my Logitech speakers and Bose headset. The soundstage is also great because it's as if you can identify every instrument's location, but obviously not as distinct with a true surround speaker set. By the way, I listen to a lot of genres, like rap, dubstep, contemporary, classical, pop, etc. I give it a 5/5 stars on performance.
Noise isolation is a big pointer with these headphones. Unlike noise CANCELLATION, these do not require batteries. Noise cancellation blocks out constant noise like airplane noise but not other noises, like birds chirping or phones ringing. When I wear these headphones and start listening to music, the outside world goes black. My mom apparently yells at me only 20 feet away and I don't hear her at all. My phone has to be literally 5 feet from me to be able to hear it ringing. I have yet to take these on a plane and test them out, but so far, they are very good at blocking noise.
I have previously owned the Bose QuietComfort 3, which costs a huge $300, but doesn't even come close to the V-moda's. The only better thing with the Bose QC3's is noise cancellation (but not noise isolation). In terms of sound quality, the Bose QC3's are inferior to the V-moda's. They are very muddy on the bass, overpowering the trebles. It's hard to make out what the people are saying without turning it up and having the bass deafen you. The Bose is also made out of cheap, light plastic and lots of memory foam. They do however feel a tad bit more comfortable with the foam but I feel is a minor detail in determining which is better.
I do not own but have tried out the Beats Studios after getting these V-moda's. Like many people say, they cost a fortune ($300) and break easily. I can see that because of all the cheap plastic parts and I have heard many stories of it breaking in the middle of the headband. In terms of comfort, the V-moda's and Beats are almost identical. However, I find the Beats a bit too strong and emphasized on the bass but the mid-ranges and trebles are almost identical with the V-modas. Bass-freaks would like this, but it seems a bit strange because the Beats are only equipped with 40mm drivers rather than V-moda's 50mm drivers. So if you want natural bass, I would suggest the V-modas.
Both the Bose and Beats also require batteries to operate, which I find is a big con compared to the V-modas.
For the low price of $105, this headset is a great value and outperforms any headphone set I have tried out. Although they may not be as comfortable at first, wear them for a few hours and you will love them. I also broke these headphones in for a good 50 hours and it does make a big difference in sound quality (google "break in headphones" if you don't know it). I hope these headphones last a lifetime and I hope you will decide to buy them too.
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