Pros: Great Bass Response; Low Distortion; Improved Clarity for its class; comfortable fit; light weight; Long Cable; Reduced Microphoning from cable;
Cons: Needs a slight tweak in frequency response to fit my personal preferences.
I was very eager to see a neckband version of In-Ear headphones from Sennheiser. Its not a common combination. It satisfies two of my needs.
1 - During exercise the band keeps the buds in place comfortably. I have tried units with ear hooks, or longer silicone ends like triple inserts for swimming... The neck band keeps a slight pressure on the ear buds so that they stay in place and maintain a good seal. As an experiment I tried my Etymotic silicone inserts, which improved the air seal, but became uncomfortable over time. But the neckband is so light, that with the Etymotic inserts, the band stayed in place and off my neck! With the provided inserts, the band sits comfortably on the back of my neck / hair.
2 - The audio quality is great! The improved clarity of the top half of the frequency response was smooth and well balanced. I was very pleased, right out of the box! I am not a big fan of over done bass, but the PCX95 has more than enough and didn't over power the vocals and upper range of music.
Once I became comfortable and more familiar with the out of box performance, I used my on board equalizer on my MP3 player to tweak things a little. First I reduced the bass output a smidge, then I increased output above 6kHz about 1dB. I also added about 1dB centered on 2kHz. These adjustments were more to my personal liking and less about the headphones themselves. But once adjusted, the clarity and clean output was glorious!!! As I said, not a big fan of bass, but glad that if I need to rock out, I know that these headphones have plenty of deep bass. I also appreciate that these have very little distortion, even at elevated levels. You can't EQ out distortion!
Neckbands are notorious for "microphone-ing" your movements into your ears. Happy to say this is not the case with the PCX95's. Outside noise isolation is very good, and turning my head does not result in a bunch of noise disturbing my music. The cable provided is equally isolated and well damped. As I am typing this review, the cable is on top of my arm, getting moved around as I type. Nothing is being transferred into the headphones!! Nice!!!
I cant wait to try them on a good DAC, to see if 24bit/192kHz will sound as good as I expect these to be....
I am very happy with my purchase. It was on sale for $35, which was a great value for what I paid. I recommend these to satisfy the active listener and also for anyone looking for a step up in their listening experience. Nothing beats low distortion!