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Beyerdynamic T5p

93% Positive Reviews
Rated #96 in Over-Ear

Posted

Pros: Supremely comfortable, good isolation, exceptional bass

Cons: Expensive, too bulky/fragile to use on-the-go

I bought these after someone described them as his "desert island headphones" in the annual Head-Fi Gift Guide about 2 years ago. I was looking for something to wear at my desk in an open office environment, which meant that I needed something closed-back to block out external noise (and to keep my music to myself!). Every other closed-back headphone I'd tried suffered from either mediocre audio quality (e.g. Bose QC15) or a poor fit that made it uncomfortable for extended wear (e.g. AKG K550). I hadn't set out to get a $1000 pair of headphones, but I figured they were worth a try.

 

And I've been delighted ever since. For my needs, it's hard to imagine a better headphone. I plug them into a Burson Conductor amp, which is a beautiful piece of solid-state equipment, and the result is a clear, neutral sound that I can crank up as much as I like with no audible distortion. The bass stands out as exceptional, and by that I don't mean that it's loud. I mean that it's at exactly the right level, and has a richness that I haven't heard in any other headphone. There's the visceral "thump," but there's also timbre. As far as the physical design, the large earpads distribute the weight of the headphones evenly around my ears, with just enough clamping force to provide good isolation. As a result, I can wear the T5p comfortably for hours on end.

 

In short, I can't praise the T5p highly enough. I tried the Audeze LCD-XC when it came out (to the excitement of Head-Fiers everywhere), but I couldn't stand the weight of them, and I didn't find the audio quality to be substantially better. So for my money, the T5p is the king of closed-back headphones.

 

I'd also like to put in a good word for the Beyerdynamic T70 (or T70p, the low-impedance version). I've recommended it to several colleagues who balked at the T5p's price tag, and they've all been very happy with it. It features a very similar design at half the price. It doesn't quite have the T5p's clarity, but I believe it's the best-sounding closed-back at its price point (around $500).

Posted

Pros: Sharp Craftsmanship.

Cons: Restomod-esque Engineering Implementation.

 

Never thought this day would come but I guess blunders are inevitable. There is no denying the Beyerdynamic T5p is one attractive looking Headphone, I think it's among the most beautiful and understated looking Headphones ever created. Beyer outdid themselves with the Tesla 1 and Tesla T5p Mesh designs. I personally love the design elements of the T1 and T5p but this is the place where it's resemblance with the T1 ends. 



Comfort and Isolation - 

In the ever growing trend of "Closed-Backs" sounding "Semi-Open" the T5p manages to be fully sealed. It reminds me a lot of the DT770M, albeit not as good at isolation as the DT770M, nevertheless the isolation is very impressive. 
Earpads of the T5p have always had polarizing opinions, some people love it, some hate it. I happen to love it, mainly because I'm always in an Air-Conditioned Environment. 
The Headband of the T1 and T5p has always been perfect, very thick and soft. I doubt anyone would ever complain about the Headband of the T5p especially with the ideal clamp they exert. 

 

Sound -
 

Before I come to the numbers, I'd like to preface this section by saying that the T5p is horrendous, it offers one of the worst fidelity for it's price and is outperformed by it's elder and cheaper sibling, the DT770.
 

The T5p struggles with Sub-Bass like the DT150 due to its obsolete Chamber design and lack of proper treatment inside it. The Transducers can't reproduce anything below 70 to 60Hz due to the lack of excursion space. Any correction results in unnecessary accentuation of maximum reproducible excursion Frequency, same observation can be observed in the previously assessed DT150.
The T5p manages to impress with even poorer transition towards the Lower Mid-Range.

The T5p measures poorly which is fine but subjective listening suggested there is more going on that what we are able to objectively see. 
There is severe coloration between 300 Cycles to 1000 Cycles. There is unnecessary energy in that region which would have been easy to fix but the Chamber has more factors than the Frequency Domain preventing me to get a good corrected response, due to the joint resonance between correcting here and correcting in the upcoming frequencies results in the same resonant frequency issue I noticed while correcting the DT150, it's about X10 times severe here though. 
The T5p suffers very badly in imaging due to such coloration in the Lower Mid-Range. I'll get back to the imaging later. 
As we climb up, the 2KHz coloration isn't hard to ignore and with even more non-sense above, the Mid-Range of the T5p is among the worst I have ever heard, regardless of cost or system type. I have $20 IEMs that offer a better Mid-Range presentation than the T5p, I'm not exaggerating. 

The Treble isn't elevated or over inflated like some Beyers, I find the T5p to be rolled-off up top with spikes here and there. 
I wanted to fix 8-10Khz but any correction resulted in added thinness to the response, correcting here is necessary but not possible without disturbing everything else. I gave up at that point as I new this Headphone was hopeless and even ideal 1:1 deletion correction couldn't solve the Chamber shortcomings. 

 

 

 

 

 

So, the response is atrocious and because of this, the Soundstage takes a major hit. The T5p is a classic case of the thing everybody has done where you take your hands on the back of your Open-Back Headphone and notice the change in Imaging due to the shift of Response and Acoustic Impedance of the system, severity of which will of course depend on the front design and airflow. Response of the System is directly proportional to the Imaging hence the T5p has very little to non-existent imaging to offer, which can't be fixed even with source correction due to the simple fact that the System is compromised by the Chamber and it's Resonant Frequencies and constricted Airflow because of the angled Baffle-Plate.


 





 

 

I think you can get away with better fidelity for less than $200, let's see what we have here - 

1) DT770 

DT770 is almost 35 years old and it still outperforms the best of the best (corrected). The T5p is not even close to the DT770 Dynamics, the DT770 offers real extension in the Sub-Bass, you can get the system to extract good enough information without accentuation but real extension. The DT770 for almost $150 is the best value in Headphones. 

 

2) SRH440

I never thought I'd put a generic Chinese Driver alongside a sophisticated Electrodynamic Transducer but I guess the SRH440 got the last laugh. The SRH440 offers a more treatable response albeit the Grain and overall fidelity isn't as good as the T5p would be in a treated or an ideal Chamber. Regardless, the SRH440 is a better value and a better Headphone for around 10% the cost of the T5p. The major weakness of the SRH440 is that it suffers from the classic PET Syndrome. 

 

3) DT250 

The DT250 is one of my favorite Beyers ever made, the things it does in such a limited and untreated design is marvelous (Corrected, of course). The DT250 offers superior response, extension and even Soundstage compared to the T5p for only $200. 

 

Overall, the T5p is a disrespect to Beyerdynamic's legacy and Engineering History, this Headphone should be eliminated completely and forgotten as a bad mistake. 
What I have done above should not have happened, it's nothing but embarrassing to compare the T5p to the above Headphones when it costs over a $1000. Sure, it's petty but there is no fidelity to be found here but...if you are really keen on a Tesla Beyerdynamic then I suggest looking at the DT1770 or the Tesla 1. 

Video Review - 




  

Posted

Pros: great sound (details!!!), luxurious design (real leather earpads and headband), driven straight from your smartphone

Cons: non-detachable cables, lack of bass quantity

Deal or No Deal - that's the first thing that went through my mind when I took out the aluminum case T5p came in. Apparently at $1,399 its a BIG DEAL. This is a high class Audiophile Quality headphones designed FOR use with mobile devices! I had a very rare opportunity to test drive these for a short time period, and would like to share with you my experience.

I already mentioned about aluminum case these were stored in, though the case itself arrived inside of a rather large packaging box. With high definition pictures and detailed list of features, you get right away a heads up about something special that awaits you inside. Opening the aluminum box/case was exciting as well, and really adds to the value for those who invested into purchasing of T5p. Inside of the case, lined with form fitting foam cutout, you will find T5p headphones with 1.2m double sided attached non-removable cable, 1/4" adapter, in-flight adapter, 3m high quality heavy duty extension cable, and felt carrying drawstring bag for headphones, and another smaller bag for extension cable. The design of these over-ear headphones is common with other Beyerdynamic headphones, but this particular T5p model stepped it up with details to underline the luxury of this design. A rather large earcups have a neatly designed aluminum cover plate on outside with a soft touch hard plastic material around it. Each earcup has a nice strain relief for a non-removable cable which is thin enough for a portable mobile use, but still strong enough to take some abuse. And since I'm on a subject of the cable, both sides come together in minimalistic y-splitter and continue attached together into a straight gold plated 3.5mm connector.

Now, back to earcups, I was very pleased to find a real genuine leather earpads. These are not fake pleather or leatherettes, these are pure high quality soft as a butter earpads. To my surprise after using these headphones for extended period of time my ears never got hot or sweaty considering I was dealing with a real leather. Inside of earcups, you have a rather interesting design with angled placement of the drivers and a large opening space for a sound to travel/bounce. Also, Beyer engineers used a very unique material to line the Tesla driver and the rest of the interior. The steel y-fork holds earcup secure and allows a decent room for a tilt and even some degree of rotation to adjust earcups around your ears/head. The headband adjustment/extension has a great degree of control and indicator to know exactly how far you are out. Headband itself has a very soft inner padding wrapped in the same high quality genuine leather material. The clamping force of the headband, which is a solid steel band inside of that leather luxury, was very comfortable and contributed to a great passive noise isolation. The ergonomics of the design is very balanced to the point where even at 355g (measured together with an attached cabled), they felt featherlight and very comfortable sitting on my head.

As you can see, the quality of the design and the selection of the material takes it to the high level, but to claim audiophile status you need to justify it with an adequate sound quality. That is where I'm heading next. T5p, where "p" obviously stands for portable, is a close sibling of T1 model which has 600 ohm impedance drivers. That is great for home use, but will be impossible to drive with smart devices and even with a number of portable DACs/Amps. That is why Beyer introduced T5p model with 32 ohm impedance to be able to drive it straight from any smartphone or tablet. I can confirm that I had absolutely no problem driving it from my Note 2 or Nexus 7 or even straight out of the laptop. It worked equally great being driven from X5 DAP or Beyerdynamic A200p connected to the phone. I know it sounds bizarre, but I actually found these headphones to produce a deeper lows being driven directly without amp or dedicated DAP. I don't know how to explain it, but considering I typically crave more bass - I actually enjoyed T5p directly from Note 2 rather than from X5 or through A200p. So, let's talk more about the sound.

To describe overall sound signature, I would say these are balanced warm, more on mid-centric side, but not too bright. The level of details is simply amazing, and the separation of instruments is phenomenal. Unlike other over-ear headphones I tested, I felt this closed design had a lot of width and air and gave the sound more depth, far more than a typical headphones sitting on your ears. If you look closer into sound details, starting with lows, I found bass to be there in quality but not in quantity. I have been spoiled with T51i mini-Tesla drivers tuned to a more bass dominant sound. T5p have a very detailed and accurate bass, fast and high resolution, great separation without spilling into mids, but I was left feeling a little hungry for a sub-bass while listening to my test tracks where T51i or other headphones used to give me more low end rumble satisfaction. That is why I was happy when I switched directly to my smartphone as an audio source where I got back a little more sub-bass but at the expense of loosing some upper frequency details. From either source, mids are still very detailed and smooth, definitely more upfront. Treble is extended, crisp, but still easy on your ears for extended period of listening. To my ears, mids and treble sounded relatively natural with a great tonality. Beyer did a good job of tuning the upper frequency content to be bright and detailed without actually sounding too harsh. Though for my personal taste I would prefer a little more bass, overall I think a lot of people will find these to be satisfying and adequate for a wide range of music genres.

Overall, I think it was a great experience for me to get a taste of fine headphone luxury. Obviously, these headphones are not for everyone. But those who appreciate high quality of the sound and want to continue their audiophile experience on the go - you no longer have to compromise with your headphones. Ironically, T5p is not exactly a "portable" design since it has a rather large earcups, and can't be folded into a more compact footprint. What makes them portable is that you can take these headphones outside of your house and connect directly to any mobile device without a need for any external DAC or amplifier. Also, though as an owner you will know a true value of these cans, they don't scream out loud "look at me, I'm $1,400 headphones". T5p has a rather modest bulky look with a German engineered bell'n'whistles under the hood, where you can wrap your ears in a luxury of high quality genuine leather and audiophile performance on the go!

 

Here are the pictures.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted

Pros: Clarity; comfort; detailed sound; build quality; looks; versatility; fun factor of sound; etc.

Cons: Less-than-ample bass; price; non-detachable cable; isolation could be better.

 

Introduction

 
I have been researching closed-back portable headphones for a couple of years, off and on. I sometimes have to drive a few hours to see family or travel to events, and I've found that the better the music I listen to, the more likely I am to remain awake at the wheel. Also, I recently gained a part-time roommate, as one of my very good friends is having marital difficulties and stays at my place about 50% of the time. We very rarely work the same shifts (we both work retail), and sometimes need to do our own thing in the same room. I have a pair of LCD-2s that I absolutely adore (one of my absolute favorite things I own), but if he is talking on the phone (or doing whatever), I can obviously hear him. Also, I tend to listen to music (or watch TV shows on my tablet) as I lay down to go to sleep, and I prefer to use headphones in deference to both audio quality and the poor SOB trying to sleep upstairs. 
 
I find myself using my HD25 pretty frequently for different things in different settings (even sometimes at work, if I'm trying to box everybody out and really gear down into a project or something), so the utility of a pair of portable, closed headphones is pretty apparent to me. And being an audio nutjob gear whore, I naturally had a strong interest in the top-of-the-line offerings from a number of different companies. While the Fostex TH900 sounds like it would be absolutely amazing, that's simply a significant amount more than I'm willing to spend at the moment, so my search really came down to the T5p and Signature Pros. Each seems to have a lot of conflicting feedback from users, and both seem to incite both strong affection and strong distaste, so it was a bit difficult to figure out which way to go. Ultimately, I leaned towards the T5p, particularly after reading NZTechFreak's notes on how they sounded on metal in direct comparison to the Sig Pros. But I resolved to keep my mind open to whichever came up as a good deal first, and lo and behold, last week I saw a pair of T5p in the classifieds at a reasonable price, and pulled the trigger. 
 
These thoughts were captured at various times throughout the day in different situations with different combinations of gear. This should hopefully explain the somewhat haphazard and disjointed nature of some of the comments below. To be clear: I am not a professional reviewer; I do not claim to have an absolute understanding of what these or any headphones sound like to anyone else; and my impressions do not undermine or invalidate the impressions of anyone else. I'm just a guy who loves music, headphones, and being a bit verbose at times. Anyway, I hope this helps point somebody in the right direction!
 
 
Background Info and Gear Used
 
I have plugged these into: 
  • Samsung Galaxy S3 straight (no external amplification)
  • iBasso D6 as amplifier w/ JDS Labs ODAC from S3
  • Yulong D100 (both low and high outputs)
  • Schitt Lyr w/ Mullard E88C tubes
  • JDS Labs O2 amplifier (from D100)

 

When listening to the T5p on the Schitt Lyr, I enjoy the sound quite a bit, but there is a very noticeable amount of hiss even at low volumes. Probably predictable given the 6 watts of power going to a 32 ohm set of cans. 
 
These work well out of my S3 without additional amplification, but they improve noticeably when plugged into an external DAC and amp. Things get clearer, more involved, and the upper or midbass (not sure which is technically accurate) gets significantly less congested. 
 
I tend to listen at pretty low volumes, and the volume control on the D100 was not nearly granular enough to suit my needs here. I've got them plugged into the D100 as I type this, and I've got it literally three notches up from the absolute bottom, and both of the two notches below this one have severe channel imbalance. On the O2 I ended up listening a bit louder than I really wanted to due to the channel imbalance at low volumes. I would also add that the O2 sounded a touch more brash and less clear than the low output jack on the D100, so if you're listening to busy music (massed strings, or Thomas Giles' 'Pulse' in my case), the O2 might not be the best match. Not a huge difference, but enough to notice when paying attention. 
 
My source for all my desktop amps is my computer, a frankenbox running Windows 8 Pro. I use JRiver MC18 (currently 18.0.106) for all my listening. I have a several terabytes of music that I've purchased, ripped, and downloaded through the years. Most of it is CD quality, as usual. All my rips were done to WM Lossless using EAC. I have some 24/96 and 24/192 stuff, but I tend to listen to the music I'm in the mood for, not the bitrate and whatnot. When I do listen to MP3s, they are typically 320kbps. 
 
My S3 is running stock 4.1 (Jelly Bean), but it's rooted. I use Neutron for all the music I have stored on the device and MOG for most of my streaming music. (As an aside, I was really quite surprised by how much poorer the music quality was when running AOKP on my phone than stock... Apparently Samsung did spend some time on audio quality, even though they did end up leaving us Yanks out in the cold when it came to the Wolfson DAC they used in Europe). 
 
I listen to a lot of music, and while my tastes in a single day can run from light vocal jazz to small string ensembles to grindcore to triphop to god-knows-what-else, I listen to more metal than anything. I tend to prefer music that uses nonstandard (= not 4/4) time signatures, complex rhythms, and often a lot of dissonance. (Arguably my favorite 5 bands are Opeth, Dillinger Escape Plan, Radiohead, Pink Floyd, and Nine Inch Nails, if that provides any insight). I do tend to listen to entire albums, and almost never just listen to one song. (I've only done the one-song thing today once, and I'm auditioning a new headphone). 
 
I tend to value tonality and texture pretty highly. I don't care a lot about soundstage (I think my many years of wrestling and subsequent surgery on my ears has probably diminished my ability to pick up on spatial cues somewhat). I gravitate towards more driving, engaging sound (most of the time). I (apparently) like bass more than I realized before I got this headphone, although I have never been a guy to crank up the bass on anything, and actually am typically the guy who hates it when people crank up bass for no reason other than to irritate everyone for a quarter mile in every direction. 
 
 
Build Quality
 
Very good. These look and feel like a quality, high-end product, and I love the understated modernist aesthetic. They are quite comfortable (with some caveats below), and are surprisingly lightweight. 
 
I frankly find these to be borderline gorgeous in their understatement. These are the hot librarians of the headphone world for sure.
 
It does drive me crazy that these headphones don't have removable cables. The cable that comes with it is about 6 inches too short, and as I often use my phone as a source when I'm on the go, having the ability to use a cable with a phone mic is fantastically useful, but nonremovable cables make this a pricey and time-consuming affair. Manufacturers: there is just no reason to do this. Ever. [/tirade.]
 
The cable looks a little bit skimpy for a high-end headphone. Not a big deal, but I would have liked something a little nicer on a can this expensive. It is very pliable though, and microphonics aren't an issue at all (as you'd expect from a circumaural). I didn't know how well the dual-entry cables would work out when out and about, but I had zero problems with them. 
 
The tactile element of these are just great-- they feel great in the hands and on the head. 
 
These are sharp-looking enough that I would feel perfectly comfortable displaying them on a nice stand in my home. 
 
My unit came with the zippered carrying bag, but no metal box. The bag seems like it would be useful for avoiding scratches, but as it isn't reinforced, it doesn't seem like it would be much good defending my cans against the rest of the stuff in my backpack. Something like the V-Moda carrying case here would be perfect and a substantial upgrade. I'm thinking of looking into a Pelican case or something to carry them in, but it would have been nice to have one included. I personally imagine I'd find the metal case to be impractical for daily use, so again, a molded V-Moda style case would be a slam-dunk here. (Anybody wanna make one?)
 
 
Comfort
 
My ears got fatigued a couple of times in places where they were touching the earpads, but a simple position adjustment easily fixed this. It seemed to happen either almost always our always outright with my left ear... But again, this probably has more to do with my biology than anything with the Beyers. 
 
I would have liked slightly bigger space for my ears, as I do find myself readjusting every so often to try to keep the sides from wearing my ears out. But the more I wear them, the less this is an issue, so it probably is simply a matter of getting used to how to best situate them on my noggin.
 
I picked up these cans from the post office this morning at approx 9:15am. As I type this, it is 5:30pm, and the only time these have been off my head was for about 45 mins as I tried out a local Indian restaurant for a late lunch. (Worst Indian I've ever had btw... Who would have thought Cookeville, TN wouldn't excel in foreign cuisine?) I can say that although I've had to make a few adjustments throughout the day, these are exceptionally comfortable cans. I could never wear my HD25 this long without my ears really starting to hurt from the pressure. (Update: I had to take them off for roughly an hour for a phone call later, but it's now 9:00pm, and I'm still wearing them without physical or aural discomfort. Pretty damned impressive.)
 
 
Isolation
 
Noise isolation on this definitely leaves something to be desired. While it's not reasonable to expect the T5p to do as well as custom IEMs, it still reduces outside sounds significantly less than the HD25. 
 
I rode around town running a few errands today, and due to the inexplicable decision of my vehicle's previous owner to drill a screw into the door near the window, the wind noise is noticeably higher in my car than most. While the sound was obviously diminished, I could still hear the wind noise while riding around town. Not enough to be a major irritation, but definitely enough to keep one from critically listening. (As if anybody does that while driving, but I digress). 
 
 
Sound Quality
 
Certain parts of songs sound absolutely AMAZING, and other parts are very underwhelming. Listening to Opeth's 'Heritage', some of the 70s-sounding electric guitar parts sound just fantastic. Mikel's vocals, however, seem somewhat pushed back at times. I found this occasionally on different vocals (Melody Gardot is another). Also, this is one of those cans that makes reverb pretty obvious on a song-- not so obtrusive that you can't ignore it, but the clarity of the sound makes it fully apparent when present. 
 
These manage to be very detailed without being bright or fatiguing. I disagree with the comments that I've read that call the T5p a bright can. It sounds smooth in a very pleasant, non-veiling way. The more I listen to it, the more I think this is (along with the suitability to both portable and high-end sources) one of the more impressive engineering marvels I've encountered recently. I'm not as well versed as many on Head-Fi, but I'm not sure there is anything else out there that matches the T5p on the portability and listenability fronts while presenting such impressive sound. 
 
These have GREAT tone and texture to them!! Guitars have an awesome crunch to them (just not much weight in the bass). As a metalhead, this is hugely important to me, and well-recorded metal sounds GREAT. An overwhelming amount of metal, however, sounds like it was recorded in a shoebox on a cassette player (I'm looking at you, Norwegian black metal). Fortunately, these manage to be revealing without becoming ruthlessly so, and they don't make poorly recorded music miserable. Again, this strikes me as some kind of engineering miracle. 
 
At one point, the sound got really fatiguing while listening on my desktop station. I then realized that I had the music up WAY too loud. Turning it down a good bit solved that, and the sound hasn't been even remotely fatiguing since. But do heed the warnings elsewhere on HF of the danger of volume creep with these bad boys.
 
Melody Gardot's vocals on 'Worrisome Heart' seem somewhat recessed. They don't sound bad, but she isn't crooning right to me like she does on my LCD-2 and iE8. Note the use of the qualifier "somewhat" here-- it isn't a major thing by any means. 
 
These things capture the energy and technicality of Protest The Hero's 'Scurrilous' extremely well. They ROCK!!! (These moments of exuberance seemed to come mostly during well-recorded fast-tempo metal music... which is just great for me. I was literally belting out every line of almost every song on the album-- which is a good sign IMO.)
 
 
The Bass Controversy
 
Perhaps my expectations were off (my other headphones tend to be a touch bassier than the norm: Sennheiser iE8, Sennheiser HD25i-II, Audeze LCD-2 (rev 1), Klipsch X10), but I don't see how anyone could listen to what I'm listening to and try to say the bass is not very seriously lacking. While the bass that's there is clear and well textured, there's just shockingly little of it. I know this has been said before, but it's worth repeating, because this is by far (IMO) the Achilles heel of this design. UPDATE: as I continue listening, I realize I'm acclimating to the sound more, and find the lack of impact and bass less objectionable. I'm sure that if I were to put on my LCD-2 for a moment and switch back, the lack of heft to the bottom end would become painfully obvious again, but for now... it's not so bad. 
 
EQing the bass up a bit helps out, but while it increases quantity, it seems that nothing actually gives the bass that punchier quality on aggressive drums and the like. With the bass turned up in Neutron as much as I can without causing distortion, I can hear the bass line at the beginning of Massive Attack's 'Angel,' but it doesn't really have any impact. As it stands, it doesn't look like the T5p would be great for listening to trip-hop, which I do on occasion. (I later found at least a moderate improvement in the visceral punch of the bass by going bananas on the EQ in JRiver, as noted elsewhere).
 
Additional messing around with the EQ has made things better, but there still doesn't seem to be the impact that some songs should have. I've read some reviewers and posters talk about the lack of impact being somehow more true to life-- but I cannot recall a single metal concert I've been to where there wasn't a kick to the drums and a deep-in-your-guts mandate to move when the bassist digs into an awesome groove. Perhaps the T5p sounds exactly as a solo violinist would, and that's great-- I'm sure my Masada String Trio and Kronos Quartet stuff will sound great as a result. But the bass does, in my opinion, lack the quantity necessary to really engage  you on a bass-driven groove sometimes. In the long term, this will probably be the thing that determines whether I keep these or not. I LOVE the guitar tone, the detail, the clarity, the amazingly versatile nature of the cans, their impeccably clean looks, etc etc ad nauseum. But the bass is simply less present than I'm used to, for better or worse.
 
Update: I've dramatically increased the bass in the DSP Studio in JRiver, and the bass does sound much better, and starts to sound like it has a bit of impact to it when listening to Puscifer. The problem is that I could still use a touch more bass presence, and this is with it damn near maxxed out on a very powerful EQ application, which I won't really have when I'm on the go. So I'm not sure this is going to be the saving grace of the T5p bass.
 
 
Miscellaneous
 
These are SO CLOSE to being the perfect high-end portable headphones for rockers and metalheads... the bass problem is a real killer though. And better isolation would help out a good bit too. 
 
Considering bass quantity and isolation are two of my issues, I wondered if changing out the pads would make any difference. After reading the stellar review given to the earpads Jaben uses in their mods (from NZtechfreak here), I sent them a message inquiring about the cost of the full suite of modifications and of the pads by themselves. I'm hoping I can get the pads at a reasonable cost, as they sound like they might be right up my alley... I should also note that when I press in on the cans slightly, isolation gets noticeably better. Bass does too, as long as I don't press in too hard. So maybe some new pads could help!
 
I have had my T5p for less than 24 hours, so some New Toy Syndrome is to be expected. I've tried to temper it somewhat, but as an unabashed gear whore, I have to admit that I want to love these babies. 
 
 
Conclusion
 
I have had the T5p in my position for a very short period of time thus far, so my opinions are going to be thusly colored. But I can say that in a LOT of ways, beyerdynamic really nailed it with these. While no headphone can be all things to all people, this one come damn close. Ultimately, the (to my ears) de-emphasized bass is a shortcoming that keeps these from being the mind-blowing slam-dunk they would otherwise be. I have a few other minor niggles (no replaceable cable, insufficient carrying solutions available, isolation could be a good bit better, cable is too short, it's too expensive at retail price, and a few others), but they would all be washed away if the bass was simply more enjoyable by being more there. But that doesn't keep me from lauding these cans for their many successes (listed at great length above), and as it stands right now, I intend to keep these. I am still interested in hearing the Sig Pros, but I'm not sure the assumed improvement in bass would offset all the strengths the T5p possesses. 
 
Anyway, thanks for reading, and I hope this helps somebody out!!
 

Posted

Pros: Accurate. Not Grainy. Very good dynamic range

Cons: Case. No removeable cable. Presentation. Very electronic sound

EDIT: After trying more TOTL headphones and electrostats, I bumped the rating down.

Preface:
Please keep in mind I'm reviewing them for the purpose they were created. Beyerdynamic targeted them at mobile users who are looking for high end portable cans. I spend 2-3 hours on the go every day and the transit here is very loud so I need something that isolates. I also can't really be using semi-open or open backed cans in the library where I'll be distracting people.

Build Quality:
The build quality is VERY high in my opinion. Everything feels very sturdy. The cups swivel a bit so you can move one side behind your ear if someone is talking to you. The hinges feel very sturdy which was a big concern for me when I bought them but the materials used are very strong.
The padding is fantastic. As long as I put them on correctly (will talk about that more later) they were very comfortable. It's all natural leather (or so I have been told).
I really would have liked for the cables to be removable.
There's one design flaw which I will discuss later on.

Presentation:
Presentation was very poor for a $1300 pair of cans. It came in a small white cardboard box. The headphones themselves were tucked into their felt case which was really disappointing since they originally came in a nice aluminum case.
When I received them I thought they were the wrong model, it just looked so underwhelming when compared to the presentations of headphones like the D7000 and LCD2.

Comfort:
the comfort is superb. the only headphones I've tried that were more comfortable were the HD800. The padding is nice and thick so your ears don't touch the driver/the inside of the cups.
The padding for the headband is very plush and just forms around your skull to perfectly distribute the weight.
Placing them correctly: It took me a while to get these on correctly at first. The pads are very large and you have to place your ears right in the middle so that the top of the pads don't rest on your ears. If they do, you'll probably notice discomfort very quickly. The headband has to be positioned perfectly as to not affect the sound or comfort. Since the drivers are angled, any change in the angle of the headband can affect the sound.

Isolation:
They isolate very well, which is not surprising considering they're marketed at high end portable use.
I use these in public on transit such as buses and trains. They don't isolate as well as the Bowers and Wilkins P5 or the Bose QC 15 but they do a good job for most situations.

Sound:
Even though they're meant for portable use, I find they need to be driven by an amp. This led me to buy the Fiio e17 amp which I find pairs decently well with it. I leave it on low gain with some bass boost and a tad bit of treble boost.
Bass: The bass is VERY weak on these and if you're switching from bassier cans like the D7000 it can be a bit of a shock. There's also a dip in the mid-bass which made me think that they were defective at first since I couldn't hear the opening notes of a particular song.

On the upside, the bass is nice, tight and impactful. Sometimes too tight. Some songs have a very fast bass beat that gets smoothed out with slower cans but with these, you won't get that and sometimes might ruin the song, though, these headphones are not targeted for people who listen to that music anyway. The bass does not bleed into the mids like it did with my Bowers and Wilkins P5 headphones. They respond well to bass EQing with my E17 to give even more punch but they won't match up to basshead cans.

Mids: I found the mids VERY forward and I'm not someone who is mid-centric. I thought these headphones were quite warm.

Treble: The treble is bright which is good for me. Others may not like it as much. It's very crisp and clear with no noticeable graininess as long as your source files are good. These headphones hit all the highs and lows with precision.

Tonality: Something about beyers always sounds a bit off to me, unnatural, regardless of source and amping. This includes the T1, T5p, T90, etc.
----

Problems:
The new carrying case for these is horribly flawed. The case crushes the connection cables to the cups and caused the connection in the left cup to break after a measly 2 months. I don't think this would have happened if they stuck with the aluminum case and it's very disappointing to have to send in a $1300 pair of headphones in for repairs after 2 months. Save yourself the trouble and get a good case that suits your needs without breaking them like the case for the lower models or maybe the Hippo Case L.

EDIT: Apparently Beyer is now offering the aluminum case again with these


Please leave feedback on my review in areas where I can improve! This is my first review so any constructive criticism is welcome

Posted

Pros: Incredibly clinical sound, very strong detail retrieval, hand made, out of this world gaming headphones

Cons: Sound may be too clinical for some, construction isn't what's expected of a product of this price, very bass light.

    

 

 

Beyerdynamic has been a tried and true brand for me over the years. In fact, their T70p was my first ever headphone I purchased over $200 (how the times have changed). Their quality and craftsmanship has always impressed me and this continues to the T5p model that lays here before me. I’ve some prior experience with this headphone, but it’s thanks to a subscriber of mine who reached out to me and asked if I would review a few products for my take on them, that I’m now comfortable enough to write a full review of them. So without further adue, allow me to introduce, the Beyerdynamic T5p.

 
 
 
A little about me (Click to show)

    I'm a 25 year old firefighter, currently for the U.S. Army North Carolina National Guard and starting January 2017, the beautiful city of Concord, North Carolina. The cliché of wanting to do this since I was born couldn't be more present with me. I've worked hard over the last several years to earn this position and now it's time for me to work even harder to keep it.

    My interests/hobbies are power lifting, fishing and relaxing to audio products and reviewing them to help other decide on what products would work for them. Few things make me as an audio enthusiast/review feel more accomplished than when someone tells me that I helped them find the type of sound they've always been looking for.

    Now, the sound signature I personally favor is a relaxing, warm and sensual sound that just drifts me away in the emotional experience of the music being performed. Yes, accuracy is still important but I will happily sacrifice some of that if I'm presented with a clean, warm sound that can wisp me away into an experience that makes me yearn for more.

    My ideal signature are that of respectably forward mids and upper bass range with the bass being controlled but with some slight decay. I like my treble to have nice extension and detail reveal with a smooth roll off up top as to not become harsh in the least. Examples of products that have given me chills and keep giving me the yearning for more feels are the (in no particular order) Bowers & Wilkins P7, Oppo PM-1/2, Empire Ears Hermes VI, Audeze LCD-XC, Meze Headphones 99 Classics.

Equipment used at least some point during the review (Click to show)

-Amp.

    -Schiit Lyr 2 w/ matched '68 Amperex Orange Globe 6DJ8 tubes

-D.A.C.

    -Schiit Bifrost 4490

-Source

    -LG V20

    -Luxury & Precision L3

    -HP 15634 Laptop

-Misc. Equipment

    -Source cleaner

        -iFi Nano iUSB3.0

Disclaimer (Click to show)

    I am by no means sponsored by this company or any of its affiliates. A subscriber of mine was kind enough to send me one of his personal products for an arranged amount of time in exchange for my honest opinion. I am making no monetary compensation for this review.

    The following is my take on the product being reviewed. It is to be taken “with a grain of salt” per say and as I always tell people, it is YOUR opinion that matters. So regardless of my take or view on said product, I highly recommend you listen to it yourself and gauge your own opinion.

 
 

The Opening Experience

 

 

      

 

Why I feel so strongly about the initial unboxing experience (Click to show)

    Please allow me to explain why I feel so strongly about the initial unboxing experience with a product. Maybe it’s due to my southern roots in the hills of eastern Kentucky, but I’ve always been raised under the pretense of when you introduce yourself to someone for the first time you present yourself with confidence, class, character, pride, and competence. You greet the other person with a true warm smile, eye contact and a firm handshake. Anything less or short implies to other person that you either don’t care about them, are too full of yourself, too busy to be bothered by the likes of them, or worse, just generally disrespectful.

    As a consumer, I take this same belief to when I open a new product. Why? Because think about it this way. How else can a company introduce themselves to their customers? How do they present their products? Are they packaged with pride and presented in such a way that makes the listener eager to listen to them? Or maybe they’re just wrapped up and placed in an available space. How about the box itself? Is it bogged down with jargon that says look at this, look what I can do. I’m better than anything on the market and here’s why read this and check out that. Or, is the package clean, simplistic and classy? As if saying to the customer ‘Good day, pleasure to meet your acquaintance. Please give me a listen and allow me to show you what I can do and allow my actions to speak louder than my words.’

    This is why I feel so strongly about the initial presentation of a product, and I feel it’s truly a shame more people don’t. But with all that aside, let’s discuss how this products introduced itself shall we?

 
 

    Yet again I find myself overly impressed with how Beyerdynamic presents both themselves and their products. Starting with the box. The T5p’s are beautifully simplified. On the front you’ve only a picture of the product in Beyers traditional white and gray background with a introductory details. The side introductions of the their Tesla technology. Then the back gives the technical details and some pictures of what’s inside. Or in other words, the box is saying ‘I’ll let my abilities speak for themselves.’

    Now, opening the box, you’re presented with a super high grade aluminum box that is the true headphone case. Not only is this highly protective, but it’s also quite stylish as well. Other elite class products provide something like pelican cases which are super protective sure, but they’re hideous, imho. Lastly you’re also given the warranty and product information booklet that’s also in full color and or premium quality paper. A very small touch but one I personally appreciate, especially since this product costs more than $1k.

    Lastly, as you open the aluminum container the Beyerdynamic T5p’s are laid out inside a universal headphone cut out with a cloth pouch holding a 10ft. extended cable that’s terminated in a 3.5mm jack but it equipped with a 6.5mm adaptor.

    Beyerdynamic may be shooting themselves in the foot by continuously providing me with firm “handshakes,” but it’s also a reason I keep finding myself returning to their brand. They always go above and beyond to present themselves with the competence they have displayed over the years.

 
 

Construction

 

                                                                                       

 

 

    As stated earlier I’ve always been incredibly fond of the craftsmanship displayed by Beyer. However, craftsmanship is not the same as durability. The T5p’s, though are built using premium materials, don’t feel like they’re super sturdy. The frame holding the Tesla drive units don’t feel very firmly placed and to occasionally slip out of their indention when not on my head. This is a quick fix by simply sliding them back (usually) up, but not an issue I’d expect to have in a product breaking the thousand dollar USD threshold. Moving down we’ve the ear pads which don’t feel premium by any stretch of the word, in fact they feel like they came off a $30 throw away. The driver housings are very well built and sturdy aluminum they both feels and looks exquisite. I will still stress the importance of taking care of these because I believe that would be rather susceptible to scratches, dents, and so on.

    This last thing however has always been my biggest complaint with early generation Beyerdynamic products and THANKFULLY this has been corrected with the new generation 2 line. But firstly the cable that Beyer has chosen feels inexcusably cheap and flimsy. Now rather or not they are cheap is out of my knowledge but they do feel this way. Also, and by far my biggest complaint, they’re not detachable. This opens, no, this blows open the door of potential issues that may arise. From shorts appearing in the cable or even more common, a house animal uses it as a play toy or you snag it on something and it tears. Any of which have potential to impose very high repair charges to the individual that could be have been easily avoided if only the cables would’ve been detachable.

    So unfortunately, though the Beyerdynamic’s are beautifully hand crafted, to very pride filled employees, they’re just not built so a degree that I personally believe a product in this price point should be. A product being made out of premium materials doesn’t go far if their weakest links aren’t built to the same standard.

 

EDIT: And go figure. As I was completing the final edits on my YouTube video of these, Phoenix, my dog, somehow found his way into my office and munched end of the cable. Luckily everything else above 2 inches from the end was untouched but now I’m stuck with the fact of paying a very high premium so fix this. I couldn’t be living my own arguments for detachable cables anymore if I tried to right now.

 

Comfort

 

 

 

 

    This I will say is something I’ve very little complaints for, and even the one I do is more of a personal issue vs. a product one. And it’s simply that where I have above average ear size I have to wiggle my ears inside the housing to get an ideal fit. Anyone with regular or smaller ears will have no issues whatsoever.

    The clamping force, getting back into the positive aspects, is terrific. It hugs my head with just enough pressure to stay put; nothing more. Though the pads look and feel cheap, they’re honestly rather comfortable on the head; course then again, so are a lot of $30 headphones.

    All in all I believe Beyerdynamic did a great job on making these very comfortable to wear for long extended listening sessions, that even I will vouch for when I use these for gaming.

 

Sound

 

    Here we are. The section the vast majority of you scrolled right down to BUT FRET NOT. I’m not mad so long as you take away something from my review in some form or another. Anywho’s. The T5p’s sound, though not one I personally seek out, is super impressive and definitely deserves on the top tier shelf among portable products.

    As to not leave you on a cliff hanger. The soundstage of the T5p’s, though rather small for a semi open headphone, is still quite impressive and respectably distant. Combine this with the spatial awareness of the positional ques and imaging abilities and you’ve the recipe for an immersive experience that’ll probably make even the most veteran of audio enthusiasts grin. Keep those notes in mind for I’ll come back to them later. But as of right now I’d like to discuss the individual aspects so that you can hopefully get an idea for what these generally sound like.

 

Treble

 

    The highs are most certainly the area that I believe Beyer focuses most strongly on. The treble in the T5p’s are grimacingly high (if the given songs extend out that far because these most certainly can/will match it) but yet still complete with control. I really hate using the word control in the treble range for it describes bass much better but I really can’t think of a more befitting word.

    What more, is that the detail retrieval present in the T5p’s are also that of great competence. I can very easily make out ever scratch that goes across a symbol and even things going on in the background of videos I’ve watched dozens of times over.

    The only negative I have to say about the treble, and it because I believe they have such long extension, is that they do get sibilant on songs with very strong, bright treble presence.  A great video to hear  what I’m referencing is my AK T8ie mk2 review. Yes, this could potentially the mic in my phone picking up interference, but it’s something I’ve experienced nonetheless.

 

Mids

 

    My favorite subsection of the sound. So how are the mids produced by the T5p’s? Overall they’re incredibly clean, accurate and full bodied. While listening to a well recorded track the Beyer’s to a truly hat tipping presentation with the liveliness and realism presented to me in the mids. They do however bleed into the treble biased by slightly increasing the tone/pitch of whichever artist you were to be listening to. Other than the slight tone increase, when I close my eyes and fully delve myself into what I’m listening to I can very easily and vividly see the artists perform and my goodness the reverb of the strings of acoustic instruments, especially the higher pitched ones.

    Now, unfortunately I couldn’t fully enjoy any and all musicians I listened to. Particularly male performers with very low sounding voices such a Trace Adkins & Chris Jones. They still sounded great sure but they lost the accuracy of their voices. So I guess that these are a headphone that really show off female voices and are alright with male.

 

Bass

 

    This is definitely going to be a make or break area for a many of users. The bass on the Beyerdynamic T5p is beautiful. It’s tighter than most any other dynamic headphone I can think of and has stupid good control. The potential break it for people is that I foresee is that these don’t have much of an impact to them which makes them quite bass light. In fact, so much so I would actually call them a bright headphone. This is rather unfortunate because these overall are a great sounding piece of equipment. But a very strong reason why I cannot call these a reference class headphone is because even on songs that I KNOW were specifically designed to be a heavy bass song, the T5p did little more that portray a giant spotlight on all the minor details present in the song. This is fine and good to an extent but, at least for me personally, I like to enjoy music for it being music and not dissecting it for every nook and cranny.

 

Addendum:

 

    Remember earlier when I told you to keep my mention of the soundstage and it’s positional accuracy in mind? Well here’s why. For those of you like myself who love to play online, these headphones are unbelievable. Never (and I really dislike using that word), have I felt so inside a game before and I don’t even have an optimized setup just yet. For those who don’t know, I am a huge fan of the game Destiny (PS4, gamertag is same as on here). The creators did a wonderful job when they created not just the soundtrack for the game but environmental ques. While wearing the T5p’s, I have discovered so many new sounds and aspects to the game I’ve never realised before. To add even more to this, when I’m delving into PVP (player vs. player [multiplayer]) activities, the T5p gives me almost an unfair advantage. They are incredible in portraying not just quick accurate movement within the soundstage, but these headphones also portray height better than almost any headphone I’ve tried in a very long time. So for those looking for an absolutely top tier gaming headphone, I’d strongly encourage you to at least give these a try.

    A downside to using these with gaming is that they do require the use of an external microphone is you wish to communicate with other people. From my personal experience this isn’t difficult to do minus, again with my personal setup, the fact that horrible static came into the audio that made the people I play with often mute me which completely defeated the point.

 

Conclusion

 

    To conclude my review of the Beyerdynamic T5p, they are a beautifully designed product that shows it’s built with pride. Unfortunately the construction could be a bit better. The driver housings don’t stay secure with the fit setting I’ve placed and often have to readjust them when take them off my head. Also the cable is not only very cheaply made (from my assumption of its feel and appearance), but they’re also non detachable.

    The sound is strictly clinical and goes out of its way it seems to showcase every minute detail that can be presented out of the track you’re listening to. To some this is exactly the sound they enjoy but to others who enjoy a more musical presentation like myself, they likely won’t be able to listen to these for super long duration.

    Comfort is top notch, I don’t have any complaints about these being anything less than a light hug to my head.

    Finally, these are a tremendously dangerous gaming headphone. I wish I had these to play with a Final Fantasy game or some similar solo player game so that I may fully see what these can bring.

 
 
                                                                        

 

 
 

Also, make sure to check out my unboxing and review videos. They’re pretty awesome AND you getta put a face to the Army-Firedawg name. If this review helped you out at all please hit that thumbs up button for it really helps me out a lot. Till next time my friends, stay safe.

 

Posted

Pros: Natural, Clear details, better sound stage than any closed headphone I have heard

Cons: Bulky and a bit heavy, Non-detachable cord

I bought these used along with a Schiit Lyr & Bifrost. Going from my Audio-Technica M50's, they were amazing. Excitedly I went to my home music set up (Paradigm Studio 20s,  HSU Research VTF-3, Pioneer Elite VSX-84TXSi) Of course the headphones were no match for the home set up. This set up was amazing and I did not get tired of it. Listening to Leonard Cohen's "Famous Blue Raincoat" and heard him smacking his lips before he started singing. Details like this excite me. Down side was forget about MP3s or a lot of badly recorded albums, but hey the M50's will suffice if if I just have to listen to something like that. The Schiit set up was not practical for work, so I sold it. Then I traded the Beyerdynamics for Ultrasone Signature Pros. Big, but necessary, mistake. I did not realize what I had. 

 

If I were to change one thing, (and they did on Gen 2) I would add a detachable cord.  

Posted

Pros: Sound quality, bass level, isolation

Cons: Cost, perhaps..? Well worth the price, however.

I'm writing this comment long after the T5p was released, and have owned them since 2011. I leave them at work and use them almost every day, running through a Schiit DAC and amp, with an iPod nano (digital out through a dock) playing everything between 256kbps AAC and 24/48 Apple Lossless files.

Sadly, I work in an environment where we can't have anything with a camera or radio (bluetooth, wifi, etc..), so I'm limited to what players I can use at work. The 6th Gen iPod nano, the Classic, and various hifi players like the Fiio's are pretty-much all we can use. While I owned a Fiio X-5 for awhile, the interface was so annoying that I switched back to the nano.

I've got to say, I have zero complaints about the amount of bass these 'phones produce, unlike some reviewers. Matter of fact, I was pleasantly surprised at the quality and quantity of bass! I like a fair amount of bass in my music, and hated the AKG 702 'phones I bought on the basis of multiple reviews. The T5p's sound good even when driven directly by the iPod nano, though the amplification & DAC certainly make a difference.

I may eventually test the Audeze LCD-XC cans, simply because I've never heard planar-magnetic speakers or 'phones before, but for now, these are perfect! I'm sure my coworker will agree, as he doesn't have to listen to my music, even at the admittedly stupid levels I listen.

Posted

Pros: details, build quality, dynamic

Cons: heavy

I've been looking for a over ear closed back headphones that I could wear anywhere for a while. My Bose QC15 is great when I take a plane or train (good noise cancellation, very comfortable), but the sound quality is rubbish. My Grado SR325 sounds amazing at home, but I couldn't even wear it on my bed because my girlfriend would complain about the sound leak. My Bowers & Wilkins p5 looks cool but sounds rubbish and uncomfortable because I wear glasses. My Shure SE530 sounds very good but doesn't have the slam and the airiness the full size headphones does. The Beyerdynamic T5P is just simply like having all of those headphones combined. The details is just amazing. I couldn't even believe a closed back headphone could sound this good. The price is pretty high, but it is still cheaper than buying 4 "one trick" headphones I mentioned above. 

Beyerdynamic T5p
Description:

Features: • Audiophile Portable Headphone • Newest Tesla Driver Technology with the highest efficiency • Perfect transient and phase fidelity (32 Ohm voice coil) • Outstanding neutral and very natural sound • Very high wearing comfort due to leather ear and headband padding • Symmetrical double sided headphone cable with extension cable • Including protective felt carrying bag • Sound coupling to the ear: circumaural • Headband pressure approx. 2.8 N Transducer type: dynamic Operating principle: Closed Frequency response: 5Hz - 50,000kHz Normal impedance: 32 ohms SPL 1mV: 102 db (1mW / 500 Hz) Nominal THD: < 0,05% (1mW / 500 Hz) Power Handling Cap.: 300mW Max. SPL: 126 dB (300mW / 500 Hz) Power Handling Cap.: 300mW Max. SPL: 126 dB (300mW / 500 Hz) Sound Coupling to Ear: circumaural Cable: 1.2m (4ft.) double sided, extension cable 3m (10ft) Gold Plated Neutrik Rt. Angled 3.5mm Plug, Adapter 6.35mm, in flight adapter 2 x 3.5mm Weight without cable: 350 grams (12.3 oz.)

Details:
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