Pros: Portable, outstanding sound quality, user-replaceable parts, rugged construction, great isolation and comfort
Cons: Slightly sibilant, closed-in soundstage
I have previously owned a lot of headphones, but I felt the need of an all-in-one solution that I could use at home or on-the-go. So I scoured and found that the Sennheiser HD25-1 II is the perfect headphone for my needs. It is a small, supra-aural pair of headphones with superb sound quality in its price range and category.
The HD25-1 is a very rugged set of cans. Although lightweight and looks flimsy, it actually holds well against constant abuse and wear. The split-headband design allows for both a secure and comfortable fit, perfect for lengthy listening sessions. The earcups themselves are made of hardened plastic, and do not easily scratch or dent when hit by an impact force. Lastly, the provided stock steel cable has great tensile strength to maximize longevity. All of these parts are easily replaceable, so the headphone can last for years and years of usage.
It may not be the best when it comes to isolation, but it does its job well in blocking out external noise like the bustling city, airplane engines, and so on. Although the clamp is fairly tight, it's not as bad as the one from the AKG K518 DJ. The pleather and velour pads also add to the HD25's comfortable fit.
As I write this review, I have already clocked in about 200 or so hours with this pair of cans. Overall impression, the HD25-1's sound quality is excellent for a closed headphone. Although there is some slight sibilance in the high treble frequencies and soundstage is a bit closed-in, it still sounds great straight out of a DAP or from a headphone amp.
It retains the classic Sennheiser laid-back house sound, but adds a generous bit of Grado's upfront, edgy kick to it. The result is a pleasing mix of smooth-yet-aggressive sound signature that's hard to come by in other headphones; it reproduces lush vocals, deep, controlled bass, and detailed highs for a can of this size and type. Suitable for almost all genres of music, the Sennheiser HD25-1 is a very flexible can that's sure to please a lot of people.
Although a bit pricey at $199.99 in most stores available online, in my opinion the Sennheiser HD25-1 is a great buy in this price category. If you are looking for a portable headphone with sound quality rivaling full-sized cans, I strongly recommend getting the HD25-1's.
PS: I have included pictures of my HD25-1 II as seen in the product photos, to better judge its design and construction.