Sennheiser PXC 250 Headphones

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Epinions Product Rating: Excellent
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Sound great with power on, very good.

Jan 21, 2006
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Lightweight, great sounding, compact, decent price.

Cons:Always needs batteries to sound good, not too bad.

The Bottom Line: Buy these. Good phones, good price.


I've been listening to budget headphones (<$20) forever, and I recently got a pair of Sennheiser HD-497's. Completely blown away! I never noticed how dull my old headphones were. So when I started traveling a lot more recently, I had a new standard for sound quality.

I tried a pair of Sony MDR-NC50's on the same flight. They're junk. So pretty, lots of marketing, solid headphones, but the sound quality is what I'd expect from $20-40 phones. I bought the PXC-250's after reading reviews, and had high expectations.

Some impressions:
-Very lightweight, you can barely feel them (good).
-Slightly loose earcups, since they revolve 90 degrees to fold. Feels a little steady while putting them on, then natural once they're there.
-Battery holder is not too far from the headphones, maybe 2-3 feet; it's gotta be close by. Kinda awkward to place it somewhere (belt, shirt, neck?).
-Looks cool.
-Folds up very nicely into a little case. Very important for longevity (ie. not breaking once I shove them in a bag).

Sound quality:
With the power off, it sound slightly dull. Definitely not worth listening to this way, which disappointed me. I think this is typical of active noise canceling phones, since they're higher ohms than normal. With the sound quality on, however, they sound good. It adds bass presence, and helps a little with the overall clarity. I'd say they'd be a decent replacement for my HD-497's (not as good, but close) with the power on.

On the plane, they don't cancel out as much noise as I'd like but still do an ok job. They only get certain frequencies (lower ones), so there's still some howls that get through. When listening to music they're decent, don't have to turn it up as much. When listening to DVD's, you can actually hear the dialog without straining. Same thing with normal headphones is much harder, I end up repeating a lot of moments to catch what they said. So for listening to DVD's and music on the plane these phones are definitely worth it.

My only reservation is that they're only worth it with the power on. I was hoping for phones that I could use on the plane, and still sound good everywhere else (I listen to music probably 4 hours a day at work). However, I don't like the ideas of always needing batteries to enjoy these, and having that bulky battery pod. On second thought, I may buy these again (returned the $150 circuit city originals, too much money) at a more reasonable price and then mod them for USB power.


Recommend this product? Yes

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