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Sony MDR-ZX-700 initial impressions

A Review On: Sony MDR-ZX-700

Sony MDR-ZX-700

Rated # 77 in Over-Ear
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Review Details:
Audio Quality
Comfort
Design
Value
Purchased on:
bravo4588
Posted · 6560 Views · 8 Comments

Pros: build, sound, isolation

Cons: comfort, non-removable cord, retail package

I bought this headphone at the sony store in Paris for the msrp of 100euros and been using it for the past 3 days with my iPod shuffle 4g(ALAC), aony nwz-a829(mp3 320kb/s) and FiiO E11. Haven't done any burn-in yet.

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The package included the headphones and only an extension cable(1.8m). NO case/pouch, NO extra ear pads and NO 3.5mm-6.35mm adaptor. I felt they could've atleast included extra pads(stock pads are removable) for the asking price.

 

The build quality is really good. They are mostly made of robust plastic. The headband is covered with fake leather and the spines are plastic aswell. The cups are made of the same plastic and the pads are also fake leather but are very soft and comfortable. Only the silver swively thing(?confused.gif) is made of magnesium alloy. The cable is thick enough so you don't have to worry about damaging it. It is 1.2m long but unfortunately it is unremovable but the right length for jeans/jacket pocket. In hand it does feel(only the feel) a little(very little initial feeling) bit cheap but it does looks awesome!! You can't fold the cups inwards or turn them flat but the phones are very portable. But when you hang them on your neck they will feel kind of tight(atleast for me personallyblink.gif).

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Out of the box they sounded great with my walkman without amp. The mids and highs are really visible. I could hear every single detail which I never heard with my shure se115. The bass is there smooth but not earth rumbling. Bass lovers may want to look elsewhere. But i can assure you the bass is there. And when you pair it up with an amp it opens up great. The treble rolls out with no distortion nor hiss. You actually don't have to use an amp to enjoy it but my E11 boosts the sq and bass to a new level. The sonicstage is not very wide but I don't care much about it.

 

The isolation is really great and there is very little or no sound leakage at all.2011-12-09-062.jpg2011-12-09-063.jpg

 

Comfortable is a mixed bag for me personally. If you don't use glasses then you will immensely enjoy itL3000.gif. But for me as I can't see w/o my glasses(and I hate contacts) after an hour of use they tend to hurt. So if you are a spectacled user I would say try it before you buy it. If you have 20/20 vision then comfort is not a problem for you and I highly recommend itdt880smile.pngbeerchug.gif.

 

UPDATE: After almost two weeks of use, these became much more comfortable to use than before even with glasses! But mind you after 3-4 hours of continuous use it will become a little fatiguing(as with most other headphones I guess). I am really enjoying these headphones!

8 Comments:

Its very comfortable but I prefer the MDR V6 for the sound.
Sorry I never had the pleasure of listening to the V6. But for the price ZX700 is actually decent. Much better with an amp.
Why do you prefer the V6? Have you ever tried the Sony 7509? How does the ZX700 differ from the Sony 7510?
I have not tried 7509. I am still a relatively new and don't know the exact flavor of sound that I like but V6 are more neutral sounding than ZX700.
I've had these for around a week now. Whilst these are great cans for the price they have issues which may mean I will have to upgrade to the Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro's. At least for home use that is. These are comfortable to wear for a reasonable amount of time. However my right ear touched the inside speaker sometimes and the right hinge squeaks a bit when moving my head sometimes. Also there is a definite lack of bass response. This can be corrected with EQ but it takes a little messing with to get right. Generally I found that they also need a little midrange boost too to make them more dynamic and to open up the soundstage a little. Using the 'Acoustic' EQ preset in iTunes appears to giev the right balance to have a nice 'fun sound. This warms the bass end and opens up to soundstage in the mids and highs just enough to be less tiring on the ears.
The single biggest issue however I have is the harmonic distortion in the bass frequencies. Playing back some test tones there is an uneven granularity that presents itself and is different for each ear. The left speaker seems to have a fuzzyness more in the midrange bass frequecies that gives a slight buzz. The right speaker generally seems to be buzzy right across the bottom end for some reason (It's like the bass has more treble than the left speaker does). If you are sensitive to harmonic distortion this will drive you to distraction.
Other than these issues these make a great set of cans for portable and possibly studio work if you can live with the harmonic distortion in the bass frequencies. They also isolate sound very well. If you cannot live with the distortion then I think the Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro's or Sennheiser HD598's will suit better for precision and far less distortion (Going by reviews I have read that is).
This or the CAL?
Have a question. Some people said the silver swivel part is actually plastic. So is it really plastic or metal?
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