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NAD Electronics VISO HP50 Noise-Isolating Over-Ear Headphones

Posted

Pros: Incredible Sound - BANG FOR BUCK - Comfortable - Well built - Looks very nice - Wealthy amount of accessories that is included

Cons: It may make you realize that you have spent too much on your more expensive headphones.

 

I have heard a wide array of headphones and IEM's. I find this to be a very fun hobby to fuel my love my music. Generally, there is the mindset that the more you spend, the better it is. Well, that is true to an extent. The reason I'm saying this is because I honestly think the HP50 is one of the best headphones that my ears have had the pleasure of listening to. I've heard the Sennheiser HD 800, HD 650, JH13 Pro, Westone ES5 and a few other top tier headphones or IEM's and though they all sounded draw droppingly amazing; they don't incorporate all of the traits and characteristics that the HP50 possesses.

 

The Sennheiser HD 800 and HD 650 are both power hungry beasts that require a beefy amplifier. Also, they're not ideal for portable use because of their open back nature and required power output. The JH13 Pro and Westone ES5 are both highly portable and block out a ton of noise but their sound is not as coherent and spacious as the HP50 which is also a portable headphone. The HP50 to my ears are just as strikingly clear and accurate as the top headphones that I have heard. Unless you need a super expansive soundstage, then there isn't much more those headphones have to offer other than costing more money to maintain.

 

Comfort wise, these are great. Zero comfort issues for me. My ears are small anyways and actually found them able to fit inside the Sennheiser Momentum without any comfort issues. The V-Moda Crossfade M-100 with stock pads however was highly uncomfortable for me until I threw on the XL pads. The HP50 is a very light headphone with a premium finish and look. I am very happy with the physical construction of this headphone.

 

To dive further into the sound characteristics of the HP50 I'll start it off with the bass. When I first heard these headphones coming from the Momentum and M-100, my expectations were severely skewed. I thought the HP50 were bass light. However as I continued to listen and analyze how the sound proportion in relation to the surrounding instruments of any bass instrument was conveyed through the HP50, I began to realize the HP50 was just accurately presenting the bass. There was no added boom or rumble that would please the general and naive population. The HP50's bass extends deep and it's incredibly controlled and textured.

 

Midrange is the most important frequency in my opinion and if that isn't rendered well I don't want anything to do with the headphone. Here, the HP 50's offers this in spades giving a well-proportioned, exceptionally balanced and crystal clear presentation. Also, it takes it further because of its spatial presentation being so expansive, the vocalists sound as if they are actually in front of you, personally singing to you. It's a sort of like euphoric 3D experience that you have to hear in order to understand. The RoomFeel tech is no gimmick.

 

I hate treble that is too prominent resulting in a harsh experience or treble that has packed its bags and left on a vacation resulting in a dull and boring experience. Transitioning its excellent performance from the bass and mids, the HP50 continues to deliver grade A performance in this frequency. The treble is well articulate with a hint of roll off to give a natural presentation and reduce listening fatigue. This is the treble that I personally lust for. It's there and present when needed and doesn't induce vocal sibilance or harsh transients. I can't fault anything here, honestly.

 

Soundstage and detail is what transforms the experience into almost being there. If the headphone doesn't render those two attributes well; it just sounds like a pair of headphones. The HP50 handles them excellently. The soundstage size as well as the instrument separation of the HP50 is not something that is normally associated with a closed back headphone. It really sounds like a open back headphone with a presentation that is completely out of my head and very coherent; sort of 3D like. Detail rendition is also exceptional capturing the subtle textures and cues to really make the instruments and musical environment sound as if it is actually in front of you.

 

For $300, these headphones are a steal.

Posted

Pros: "Room Feel" is for real. They come across as rather airy for a closed can. An enveloping sound that is very pleasurable.

Cons: Not really a con but these are not for those who prefer heaphones that are artificially "bright". Somewhat funky design.

Don't know what to say that has not already been said. They sound amazing. I'm now a believer in "Room Feel". Hard to explain. It's not like your actually sitting in a room with high end speakers but at the same time the "sound" is very similar to sitting in a room with high end speakers. No harsh treble.....but the highs are still there like they would be if you where sitting in a quality listening room. It's just a very "comfortable" sound........something you could listen to all day without ever feeling fatigued by it.

 

The usual adjectives - warm, neutral (without lacking anything). Solid bass, mids, highs. They come across as rather airy for a closed can....sort of an enveloping sound that is very pleasurable. Comfort has been just fine so far. If you put them on "snug" then the top band will probably bother you. But these are very light for their size and you can wear them "loose" where the top is just barely touching your head. The fit over your ears keep them in place (although it's not tight).

 

If you like "bright" headphones then these will not be for you. Sibilance will never be an issue with these. It will be interesting to see how I feel about my Beyerdynamic DT 990's after listening to these for a while. They make the 990's sound quite bright.

 

Build quality seems good but not outstanding. These are really not about the look.....they are all about the sound.

Posted

Pros: Incredibly well balanced, textured sound, great price.

Cons: Looks a little goofy on the head, earpads are a bit stuffy, cable a little thin.

This is my video review of the NAD VISO HP50 with some short notes to follow. Please note that I received this headphone as a loaner unit from NAD!

 

 

Build

 

The VISO HP50 is a well built headphone that is a surprisingly mature design for a first effort from NAD. Since the design is so simple and the materials used are good quality, it feels like a well built premium product. I am not a big fan of the black glossy plastic because it gets fingerprint smudges very easily, and I am not so sure about look of the lettering and branding on the headphone. This is just aesthetic preference though.

 

On the head the VISO HP50 feels very stable and quite comfortable. Clamping force is a little above average and combined with the slightly small / shallow earpads this means they can feel a bit stuffy on the ears. Noise isolation is very good though. For a portable headphone, the HP50 looks very large and unwieldy on the head, especially because of the unusual headband design. Wearing it on the street did get me a few looks.

 

The flat cables on the VISO HP50 are a little on the thinner side. On the plug end of the headphone the strain relief does not seem particularly well reinforced. I would have liked to see a better quality cable.

 

Sound

 

The VISO HP50 is an extremely well balanced and tuned headphone. While it's always a cliche to say this, the VISO HP50 has a signature where nothing is particularly prominent in the mix. The bass is well extended but not particularly emphasised, while the treble is smooth but textured and detailed. There is some gentle emphasis on the upper midrange / lower treble that gives everything a slightly dry, crunchy and textured sound, but not so much that it sounds nasal or has a blare to the sound. The headphone also sounds very fast, delicate and sprightly.

 

My one criticism of the sound is that it lacks a little in terms of treble extension, and as a result the soundstage can sound a little more intimate or closed in than I would personally prefer.

 

This headphone is a terrific all rounder, but some might find the signature a bit boring for more aggressive genres of music because of the relative lack of bass or treble emphasis. I think the Audio Technica M50X is surprisingly comparable if you wanted a punchier, less natural signature. 

 

Conclusion

 

A fantastically balanced all rounder that I would be happy to recommend to anyone provided they were okay with looking a bit goofy on the street.

Posted

Pros: Great mids, crisp highs, deep lows, very comfortable, well built

Cons: short cable, after 2 or 3 hours

When I first fired these babies off (the song was Bohemian Rhapsody) I couldn't believe it. These cans provide such a clean and open sound its like the artist is in the room with you. The amount of musical easter eggs you will pick up is insane, you can hear the drummer's metronome on Revolution by The Beatles. The highs are nice and crisp, the mids are great, and the lows are nice and clean with a little punch. While the earcups are made with a nice soft memory foam, they will make your ears a little bit uncomfortable after a long time of listening, i'm sure they will be more comfortable after I get used to them, but its still irritating. Both of the cables they provide you with are very short, they are approximately 4 feet long, so you might want to consider buying a longer cable. The ambidextrous cable jacks in the headphones are nice and allow you to daisy chain other headphones off of the left over jack. The build quality is very god as well, the ear pads are covered in a soft leather or pleather (I can't tell) the cans are made of a very nice plastic, and the headband is covered in leather, with a metal band inside. I don't imagine these things are going to break on me any time soon. I tried these next to the sennheiser momentums and the  momentums don't even compare to the sound or comfort of the NADs. If you are in the market for a pair of amazing 300$ headphones, don't hesitate on buying these, you won't regret it.

Posted

Pros: Price, soundstage, efficiency

Cons: headband, earpads

I've completed my review on this headphone and it is currently waiting to go live elsewhere first.  After a few days, it will be posted here.  This headphone is a real winner.  I am truly amazed by it.  This could be one of the best mid fi headphones ever made...

NAD Electronics VISO HP50 Noise-Isolating Over-Ear Headphones
Description:

Audiophile-grade for Over 40 YearsNAD VISO is the culmination of more than 40 years of dedicated audio innovation. Designed and driven by audiophiles, the NAD VISO HP50 Over-Ear Headphones are made specifically for digital natives who understand the difference that clean, crisp sound makes to music lovers. Because we don't care about your lifestyle. We care about your ears.RoomFeelTMCreated to translate the warm, open sound of live performance directly into your private headphone experience. Countless hours were spent in one of North America's most sophisticated audio labs in the research and development of RoomFeelTM technology, discovering a way to add back to the recording without altering the audio signal. The result is true headphone innovation that lets you sense the music around you, feel every beat, and hear a more open soundstage.Apple ControlTake full control of your music with a simple touch of the 3-button multi-click remote. Compatible with all devices' headphone output, iTunes music and full-featured call functionality is also right at your fingertips; play/pause, skip track, previous track, fast-forward, pause, skip, make and answer calls. It also includes a high quality inline mic for crystal-clear voice-calling and device control with Siri-compatible devices.Science-Driven SoundFine-tuned with precision inside one of the quietest places on earth, with an expert team of sound scientists, the HP50s deliver the most advanced headphone technology for today's detai

Details:
DetailValue
BindingElectronics
BrandNad
EAN5703120290324
FeatureOver-Ear noise isolating headphones RoomFeel technology for superior sound Durable yet lightweight construction offers excellent comfort Detachable cord with left and right inputs Apple three-button multi-click remote with microphone
LabelNAD Electronics
ManufacturerNAD Electronics
ModelNAD-HP50B
MPNNAD VISO HP50 Schwarz
PublisherNAD Electronics
StudioNAD Electronics
TitleNAD Electronics VISO HP50 Noise-Isolating Over-Ear Headphones (Black)
Item Weight2.2 pounds
Package Height4.2 inches
Package Length9.5 inches
Package Weight2.5 pounds
Package Width8 inches
PackageQuantity1
PartNumberNAD VISO HP50 Schwarz
ProductGroupCE
ProductTypeNameHEADPHONES
Models:
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC
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