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A Gift From Heaven - The Budget All-Rounder King of Kings

A Review On: Panasonic RP-HTF600-S Step Monitor

Panasonic RP-HTF600-S Step Monitor

Rated # 55 in Over-Ear
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Price paid: $55.00
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Pros: Lush, clear, rich, musical, comfortable, versatile, perfect bass, price, effeciency & power

Cons: Ear Warmth, Quick Fit buttons (what do these things even do?)

There isn't too much to say about these phones beyond what MalVeauX has so eloquently stated. His review played a strong part in my decision to get these cans, and he was quite simply correct on all fronts.

The Panasonic RP-HT600-S is an incredible headphone, and IMO an all-rounder fit for a king. Reviewing a headphone can be a little like reviewing food at times; everyone enjoys different flavours. All I can say is that for me, personally, this headphone nails my preference in sound to a tee and should hold at least some level of appeal to most listeners.

If you tick at least 3 of the following boxes you should go buy a pair immediately:

∆ Varied music tastes
∆ You would like a headphone that is kind to its source when required (Local bands / artists, YouTube videos, etc), yet clear and detailed on higher quality sources
∆ You enjoy Bass, yet don't want it to come at the expense of Mids and Treble
∆ You find excessive treble fatiguing to listen to
∆ You enjoy lush, rich and open midrange reproduction
∆ You are in some way curious about the level of sound and comfort that can be had for very little money
∆ You want a headphone that's efficient, ie sounds good straight out of your Macbook, iPod, Mp3 player, etc
∆ You enjoy the things you like, and are particularly partial to the feeling of happiness

Some thoughts on the phones as general package:

Comfort & QC:
These are light with a low clamp force on my somewhat smallish head. Very comfy yet prone to ear warming. They don't feel like they would survive a lot of abuse, which is as much a function of their lightness as anything.

Not their strong point, although I like the fact I can hear the world around me to some extent.

Was nice. Functional but nothing flashy.

Sound Signature:
It's all been said perfectly by MalVeauX so I'll keep it brief.

The bass is strong and reverberating but not overwhelming. To my ears it is a perfect balance that requires no EQ'ing. As Goldilocks would say: "It's just right".

Mids are a real strength. Open and spacious. Rich and lush. I normally listen to music while I'm doing stuff. These phone reproduce music so sweetly they will simply command your full attention. I've been spending plenty of time lately simply lying in my bed enjoying my music with closed eyes. Too much time perhaps. I think my friends and family are starting to wonder if I'm OK wink.gif

Highs are just perfect for me. I find bright headphones to be a) fatiguing for long listening sessions and b) unkind to certain sources (the Smith Street Band's first album is a masterpiece recorded on a shoe string budget - I don't want a treble focused headphone shining a 1000W spotlight on all it's frailties). The Panny's are rolled off up high, but the effect is not over done. They are smooth, not fatiguing, yet detailed enough for my tastes. I never feel like the treble is missing. Perfect judgement from the Panasonic engineers.

Soundstage is great. With the Pannies on my head there is a feeling of openness, spaciousness. The sound is lively and deep. Engaging and natural. These things rock!!

Final Impression: I paid $55 AUD to get a pair shipped to Australia. I would consider this money extremely well spent. I frankly couldn't be happier with my purchase. If Panasonic doubled the price and released an updated version with Velour pads I'd buy one immediately. I've listened to a fair few of the more expensive phones in stores - mostly from the Sennheiser range and the Monster Beats. Listening in store to music I'm not familiar with is an imperfect scenario - yet every time I heard one of those cans I could easily identify an aspect of the sound I didn't like. Some of the Senn's were overly dark, some lacked bass, some had a small soundstage, etc. The Beats were muddy and bloated - horrible voicing IMO. Nothing sounded "just right". All of them were priced from $100 through to $300+. Yet this budget pair of headphones from Panasonic offers up a sound I would describe as approaching perfection for my array of laptop listening needs. It is kind to YouTube videos, outstanding for a wide array of music, great for movies and best of all - extremely efficient!! No amp needed - so my lovely old Rotel doesn't have to follow me out to balcony for study sessions. I'm a happy man! If these cost $100 dollars I would deduct half a point from a perfect score to account for the ear warmth being a minor annoyance. Yet the RRP of these phones is almost the same as the cost of buying Beyer Velour pads to replace the stocks. Incredible! Let nothing stand in the way of me handing out my ultimate seal of approval: 5 Stars.

Thanks to MalVeauX for his review of these phones which initially caught my attention.

Happy listening to you all! biggrin.gif



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