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Great Design, OK Overall

A Review On: Philips Fidelio L1

Philips Fidelio L1

Rated # 252 in Over-Ear
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Price paid: $215.00
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Pros: Excellent SQ, beautiful design, very affordable (for some)

Cons: Bass can at times creep up on the mids, Isolation

Here Goes My First Head-Fi Review!


  • Just to let you know what your getting into, these don’t NEED an amp, but they do like em’.  Don’t worry about amping because you don’t need it, it’ll be a little quiet though. 
  • They are semi-open.
  • 26ohms
  • Emphasize the bass (don’t all portable cans do that?)



Build- 7/7- Absolutely fantastic build.  The headband is real leather (or at least the top that is pressed with Philips on top of it), and the build is conposed mostly of metal.  The wire is covered in fabric.  I actually pulled the earcups to a 180° angle to both test the build and improve clamping pressure.


Comfort- 9/12- The first time you put them on, you’ll notice the brutal clamping pressure, and im someone who thinks the dt770s are a little light at times with the clamp.  Now all you have to do is stretch the hell out of the headband and you’ll get very favoring results, but right now they do clamp quite a bit.


Looks-1.75/2-  Theres no reason to have this section but I’ll throw it in there anyway.  They look great, its just the cord that sticks fron the top of the cans can look a little goofy, but I still like em’.  I still think the black momentum(don’t have) looks the best, followed by the MDR 1R(do have).


Isolation-4/6-Compared to the 1rs, these do have a little less isolation, since they are semi-open.  The isolation is just enough for me to use on the train and bus, but i do loose the bass.  These isolate just enough for me to hear people talk to me, when the music is played low, which i love!  The isolation will not be a turn off if you know what your getting into.







Bass- 9/10-The bass is pumping!  I like it for dance/electronic and rap, r&b, and pop music. The bass is emphasized, but I don’t think it’s crazy bass.  It’s very tight and quick, and it goes down deep.  Its tighter aand deeper than the 1r’s bass, and just tighter than the dt770’s (80 ohm).


Mids- 7.5/10- I’m not gojng to say they’re crystal clear mids because their not.  They are pushed back a tiny bit, but move up as you burn them in.  The sound is very smooth and warm, and the upper bass does interfere with the lower mids.  Eq fixes the hell out of it though!


Highs-8.5/10- You know, iI’ve never been able to succefully attampt talikg about the highs.  All I know is that they’re not emphasized, or recessed.  I do boost them because i’m a bit of a treble head, and i just like the air  and space it can give some headphones.  They’re very even sounding, but I don’t even know how high they extend or anything.  I just like them more than the MA900s and 1r’s highs.


With eq, these can become just a different set of cans.  The soundstage expands, and they no longer sound congested.


The MA900s have better, clearer mids and a wider and deeper soundstage, the the l1s have better highs and bass extension (and quantity).


The 1r’s… The 1rs are just more upfront…  More up close and personal.  The bass I think at least isn’t as solid or deep  as the l1s, and the highs are around the same level.  The L1s are a little clearer though and have a deeper doundstage, at least with eq. It does depend on what you looking for.


I just flat out am not a fan of the dt770s.


The ma900s trash all cans in comfort, and the 1rs are a little behind it.


This is all just coming out a a sansa clip zip, ipod touch 4g, galaxy player 5, or ipad 2, plus a fiio e6.  No super huge power requirements.


I overall enjoy these cans and they work well with my 1rs and ma900s.


They get 46.75/57  which is about 82%.


Update:  The comfort didn't increase, and as time goes on, I've started to dislike these.  The bass simply isn't tight enough.


Update 2:  These don't really compete well with other portables.


How does this compare to the PSB M4U 1?
Not very well at all.
What about in terms of sound quality?
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