Pros: Comfortable, do electronic and synthesized music very well
Just got my V-Moda LP2's less than half an hour ago, writing this as I'm testing them.
Some things to keep in mind while reading the review:
- These are my first set of closed over ear cans
- This might be a bit unfair, but I'm A/Bing these with a set of Grado sr80i's with more than 100 hours on them. They're the only other thing I own that aren't IEM's
- These have no burn in, but I will add onto this later once they're burned in.
- I bought these knowing they're full sized cans, with the intent of portable use. They are light and small enough to be reasonably portable.
Right off, I have to say that the build quality of everything from the box to the case to the cans themselves feels remarkably solid and well done. The matte finish is really enjoyable to touch and everything is very smooth. Even the box is fun to touch...
The LP2's come with two V-Moda stickers, one clear with the logo and one black with the logo. They also include two male-male cables, one with a three button in-line remote and one longer, plain cable. They're the same cables that come with the m80's, which are made of Kevlar and terminate in a straight plug and 45 degree plug. They also came with a set of gunmetal-chrome side plates which are interchangeable with the matte black stock plates (V-Moda also offers the option to customize plates for a fee.) Also comes with a cleaning cloth with the V-Moda logo on it.
Lots of pictures (Click to show)
Also comes with a cleaning cloth with the vmoda logo on it, forgot to take a picture of it.
V-Moda says on the product page for the LP2 that these are minimally branded, and true to their claim, there is almost no branding on these. I noticed only three instances of branding.
- There's the word V-Moda in red on the insides of the headband, above the L/R signs
- A barely visible V-Moda on the top of the headband, which blends in really well
- And lastly the -V- logo on the metal connectors holding the ear cups.
Aside from that, you can't tell who made these, and to anyone who doesn't know the V-Moda logo, they probably won't notice anything.
The cushions are amazingly soft and conform to your head. They're really comfortable and I can see these being able to almost disappear with time. There are a ton of size possibilities on these, so unless your head is gargantuan, you should be fine. The cushions use V-Moda's BLISS technology with memory foam. Not quite sure how cushions have technology in them, but it works.
I'm going to go ahead and say right now that these sound pretty good out of the box.
These are said to have extended bass, and that is true to every letter of the word extended. When the track calls for bass, it gets BASS. Not like a punch to the side of the face bass, but like a long almost rumble bass that's not quite low enough to rumble. This could be a good or a bad thing, but I happen to like it. The bass feels controlled and doesn't bleed at all. Remember that I am using grado's as the a/b, which lack a good quantity of bass. So far, even without burn in, I feel like these cans have a good quantity of bass without losing quality.
These handled Pendulum's song Crush without any problems. Enough bass without overpowering the vocals or other instruments. I do have to say that when driving these from my Acer Aspire 5552 laptop, the electronic instruments sounded like they were broken and all I heard in place of them were weak sounding 'clicks'. I decided to play the same track through my iPod classic, and everything went fine. No clicks, the electronic instruments were back and everything sounded perfect. I wiped the sweat from my brow and decided that my laptop simply cannot drive these properly.
EDIT: I swapped from the remote cable to the standard audio cable and plugged that into my laptop. Lo and behold, they work fine. No sound problems, all the music sounds as it did when played from the iPod. Must be some sort of remote incompatability with my computer.
Heading to Chiodos's song Caves, I was immediately impressed at the opening. My grado plays the opening bass as if someone was hitting a soup can with a teaspoon. Now I can actually hear the screams of a drum being beaten. Entering into the middle of the song, vocals are nicely handled, even the screams. I do feel like the bass mixes with the vocals on the bottom end a bit, hoping that'll fix up with a little burn in. The highs in this track are quite high for a male voice, but the LP2 handles them without a problem. No sibilance, no screeching pain, just lots of smiles.
Moving to A Skylit Drive's cover of the 1983 single Separate Ways (Worlds Apart) by Journey. The electronically synthed sounds came off perfectly, resulting in another opening that left me smiling. However, that smile vanished as the vocals began to play and I again felt like the bass messed with the bottom end of the vocals a bit. It isn't a huge problem that renders anything unlistenable, but it's not how the track sounded on my Grado. I will bring up the EQ later on my iPod and see if any settings fix this, or if it is going to be a problem.
Going to a genre I'm sure a few of you were waiting for; dubstep. Beginning with Skrillex's All I Ask Of You, the bass is plentiful and has a thumpy but controlled impact. In this song, everything went in perfect harmony. The bass didn't mess with the vocals or electronic sounds, and they didn't struggle in the least to keep up with the song. I have nothing but love for these cans when it comes to dubstep.
Moving to the final song I'll test these on; Lights and her song Ice. As previous, the opening just made me smile. I've got to admit that these sound really good. As with the dubstep, the bass didn't interfere with the vocals or other instruments. When it came time for that speedy section of the song, I smiled broadly. It's my favorite portion of the song, and these handled it like a racing car handling the curves of a racetrack.
I also watched a movie, Black Hawk Down (2002) with these on. I've watched that movie at least a dozen times, and none of them were like this one. When those bullets whizzed by, you almost felt them. When those RPG's hit the buildings or a grenade exploded, the bass hit you. It was like being there in the raid with those soldiers. If I had any doubts about keeping these cans before I watched that movie, they're gone now.
EDIT: After a few hours of constant use, I feel like the bass doesn't interfere with the lower end of the vocals as much. Whether its due to burn in or I'm simply not hearing it anymore is a mystery, but I just wanted to put that out there.
The LP2 doesn't have a cavernous feel at all, but at the same time, doesn't provide that trapped in your head feeling you'd receive from other closed cans. I'd say that these (obviously) lack the open and airy sound if a Grado. It's hard to describe since I've heard very few over ear closed cans, but the stage feels wide enough to have everything fit together nicely. I don't feel any sort of cramping at all. These are big and somewhat boomy, but in a controlled way. Sound is very subjective and in my opinion, they do the job nicely.
Even without burn in, they're amazing headphones. While I do have a bit of complaint that the bass interferes with the vocals in some of the post hardcore and heavy rock, I love them already. They do dubstep, electronic and other synthesized sounds wonderfully. I haven't noticed a preference in male or female vocals, as they do both quite capably.
These are very comfortable, but it did take me a little while to adjust to the weight of these as compared to my Grado (which weigh almost nothing).
I'd say that even as a broke college student, these are well worth their price. I love these already and I simply don't want to take them off.
I've got to admit, I bought these cans skeptical that I'd like them seeing how there were literally no reviews and they'd be my first pair of this kind. But they sure do everything in their power to make me happy.