PANASONIC RP HTX7 HEADPHONES
Recommend this product?
There are so many different types of headphones on the market today, that one can easily get confused as to what to look for in making a buying decision. Of course price is always a consideration when making a purchasing decision, but there are a lot of other factors to consider as well. For instance, it is important to consider the purpose that one will be using the headphones for. Will these headphones be used for general casual listening purposes, or will they be used for professional purposes, such as for use in a recording studio. Prices can also vary from under $10 Dollars to surprisingly expensive models selling for upwards of a $1000 Dollars or more. Of course as a general rule, when you pay more, you will tend to get more. It is not hard to find a good sounding set of headphones if you are willing to pay a few hundred dollars or more. However it is a great challenge to find a great pair of headphones that is selling for under $50 Dollars. It takes a lot of shopping and comparison listening before you may find a pair of headphones in that lower price range that sounds good to you, feels comfortable to wear, and is built to last. Today I shall be reviewing the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones. Read on and see if these headphones have some of the features and sonic characteristics that you might be interesting in looking for in a pair of headphones.
One of the wildest things that sets the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones apart from some other comparable brands is that they come in some pretty wild colors. There store that I first saw them in had them in White, Black, Red, Pink, and a light Olive Green. These headphones also had a 1960's or retro look to them. The fashion conscious might more easily find a pair of Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones that can match the color and style they need to complete their fashion statement.
The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones have a list price of $59.99, but they can be easily found selling at a discount for $39.99, and I even found one Internet dealer who was running a special and selling them for a mere $29.49. Clearly it pays to do a little comparison shopping. The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones are closed back dynamic headphones. Basically, most headphones employ either a dynamic or an electrostatic driver to convert electrical impulses into audible sound. In general, less expensive headphones employ dynamic drivers, which are basically little cone shaped speakers with a voice coil and a diaphragm. Unless you have very deep pockets, it doesn't make sense to even entertain the thought of purchasing headphones with electrostatic drivers, as they can start at about $1000 Dollars for a pair.
The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones are closed back, encapsulated circumaural headphones. Closed back headphones have the advantage of being able to keep out the sound of the surrounding environment you are in. As such, they are good for listening to music in noisy environments. Closed back headphones are also desirable in a recording studio environment because they keep the sound of the background music in the headphones from leaking out and potentially corrupting the sound being recorded into the microphone that a singer or musician might be using. The terms encapsulated circumaural headphones are terms that are applied to headphones that have ear pads that encircle the ears and form a seal. Once again, this helps to isolate the listener from distracting sounds from the environment, and also helps to keep the sound in.
The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones have a frequency response of 7 Hz. to 22,000 Hz. The listed frequency response of a set of headphones describes the range of sound that can be reproduced without distortion under normal listening conditions. O.K., but if a normal healthy young person usually can only hear sounds that range from 20 Hz. to 20,000 Hz., then why is there any need for a larger frequency range? Obviously headphones with a frequency range beyond the range of normal human hearing can not make you hear sounds that are outside of normal hearing. However, headphones with a wider frequency response will be less likely to distort when they are reproducing sounds within their frequency range, and obviously that is a very good thing.
The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones come with a cable that is approximately 4 feet long (1.2 meters). That means that when you are wearing these headphones, you will have to be in fairly close proximity to the device that you are plugging them into. Fortunately, these headphones come with an extension cord that is approximately 6.5 feet long (2 meters). The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones come equipped with a gold plated stereo mini plug, and a quarter inch stereo plug adaptor. Thus, it is easy to go from using these phones with a portable device such as an MP3 Player, to switch to using them with your home audio receiver. These phones also come with a soft carrying pouch for easy storage.
The Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones have a sensitivity rating of 99dB/mW and an impedance of 40 Ohms. O.K., these are nice looking numbers, but what do they actually mean to the user. Actually these are fairly good numbers for an inexpensive set of headphones. Allow me to explain what they mean, and why this is so. In general headphone sensitivity is measured by supplying 1 milliwatt of power to a set of phones and then measuring the number of dB in sound pressure level (SPL) that is delivered at the ear piece. The higher the sensitivity rating a set of headphones has, the better they will perform at different power levels, and the louder they are apt to be. All else being equal, the lower the impedance, the louder the sound will be in the headphones, because they are able to draw more power. In general, I must confess, I am not one for obsessing over the impedance or sensitivity of a set of headphones, as I am much more concerned with the quality of the sound, as compared to the loudness of the sound. After all, one can always turn up the volume, but one can not turn up the quality of the sound.
Now that I have described some of the basic aspects of the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones, I would also like to discuss some of their other strengths and weaknesses as well. These headphones have an adjustable head band that basically can fit just about anyone's head. However, I did not care for the feel of them on my head. It was not the weight, as these phones weigh in at a mere 5.8 ounces. The ear cups themselves seemed to fit nicely and securely and were reasonably cushy, and as such they were not the problem. The problem, or the thing that disturbed me was that I felt like these Headphones were putting too much pressure on the area just under my ear, and this became annoying after about 10 minutes. Another problem with the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones is that I was expecting more sound isolation with these headphones, and that is not what I found to be the case here. I was able to hear a good deal of outside noise when I put these headphones on, which means that the sound in the headphones was also leaking out. This would make them a poor choice for recording use if someone were considering using them for their home studio. The wires were also somewhat flimsy in my opinion, which means that unless one were very careful, it would just be a matter of time before there would be a break in the cable or an electrical short somewhere.
As far as the sound quality goes, these headphones were good for casual listening purposes, and that is about all. The sound was clearly "sweetened." This means that some of the frequencies were accentuated to make the music sound richer. In the case of the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones, the low end was accentuated, which made the bass more pronounced, and the high end was also accentuated. To my ear, this was problematic for several reasons. One is that the high frequencies appeared to be harsh to my ears. The low frequencies were muddy at times, specifically when low end instruments were playing in similar registers, such some of the notes on a bass guitar and the low end on a piano. Thirdly, when you accentuate the highs and the lows, the midrange suffers, as sounds in this register or range are consequently poorly represented. The sweetening issues that I just described make these phones unacceptable for studio use in my opinion.
The bottom line for me is that I like the Panasonic RP HTX7 Headphones for what they are, and that is that they are a reasonably good set of Headphones for casual listening purposes. For a pair of headphones that are in the $30 to $40 Dollar range, they are a certainly acceptable, and deliver a relatively good sound quality, and they represent a reasonably good value for the money. I could feel comfortable in recommending them to someone for casual music listening purposes or gaming. They did not distort under normal listening conditions and sounded fairly good. My biggest reservations with the headphones are that they did not feel comfortable to me, and I felt that they were over sweetened, specifically somewhat on the high, and most especially the low end. However, these are just my impressions and my opinion of these headphones. I recently read a description of these headphones that discussed the rich full bass response and the crystal clear highs that these phones produced, as well as their great sound isolation. I disagree with those specific issues, but that is only my opinion. Everyone's ears have a different sensitivity and acuity. In the end, it is how you feel about these headphones that is important.
Well I would like to thank you for taking the time to read my review, but now if you will excuse me, I must get back to practicing my guitar.
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