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Sennheiser PX200-II Review (vs RX700)

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hey guys, thought I'd share my thoughts on the Senn PX200-II that I bought a coupe of days ago, compare them to the RX700s I love, and i suppose I'll throw in a bit of the ATH-FC700A. They're not fully burned in yet, I'd say they're approaching 40 or 50 hours now, but they don't sound like they're going to change much. I'll update with a more detailed review after full burn-in, more track testing, and more A/B-ing. I apologize for the probably annoying amounts of RX700 fanboyism.

I had been looking for sub 60 buck cans originally, but fortunately my budget increased to 100. Since I was just moving back to school and seriously didn't want to wait for shipping, I took the subway down to J&R to check out their cans. Was going to buy the D1001, but it was sold out. Then I was looking for the PX200II but couldn't find them. I was about to buy the HD448, but their build quality really turned me off. They were comfy, and look pretty from afar but they felt much too light and like they could have broken any second now. I didn't get how my RX700s felt about 80 thousand times sturdier. I didn't get to hear their sound though, as whatever source they were connected to wasn't on. But Sennheiser's choice of plastic made them feel really "cheap" to me. The RX700s, although they creak a bit and are totally plastic, feel very sturdy.

Anyways, fortunately, i found the PX200-IIs just as I was about to then choose the ES7s(I had been weary about their comforts. Ok, enough storytime. To the review!

Build Quality/Looks: Although the plastics seem to be the same as in the HD4X8 series, the steel reinforced headband and smaller size makes them feel very durable. They look really nice off your head. On your head, they look slightly silly from the front because of the shape the headband kind of takes, but nothing bad. They look quite nice from a profile view, I'd say. The folding mechanism is totally awesome. Took me a couple of minutes to figure out, then I had it. It also brings a little bag thingy, which i prefer to the plastic casing in the original version of these headphones.

Comfort: Surprisingly, very comfortable. They don't clamp too hard(I have an average size head), and I can wear them for hours on end with maybe only a little bit of dull pain afterwards. They feel nice on my head, and often just sort of dissapear. The cups swivel in the spot to fit.

Leakage: Very little I find, by testing it having the headphones over a pillow. Leak less than the RX700s or FC700s. If it's leaking a lot, then you're probably killing your hearing XD

Isolation: Surprisingly good without music, and awesome with music. With music at moderate volumes, it gets very hard to hear to outside noise, I find. Haven't tried them on the subway yet, or in super-duper loud environments, but it drowns out my fan nicely. I shall test it on the subway when I get the chance! Definitely feel in my own little world when I'm listening to these, and the isolation is definitely better than that of my RX700s.

Sound: Now of course the most important part. In one word: Impressive. They exceeded my expectations, even if they aren't quite what I had hoped for(which was to be better than my RX700s). Their sound signature I find is actually quite similar to the RX700s. The main differences are a more neutral sound as opposed to the warmer JVCs, and less present/articulate bass. They sound more naturally colored, voices sound more as if I were hearing a real person speak, in terms of color. it's slight, but notable. The bass isn't bad by any means from my testing though, just not as "alive" as the RX700s.

They don't have quite the same speed and attack on notes as the RX700s, but it's not bad by any means. By attack on the notes, I mean the "edge" certain instruments have in their notes. For example, on the RX700s I feel more as if I can hear each individually strummed string in an acoustic guitar chord, whereas it feels more "mushed" together on the PX200s. This edge is still good, just not quite as good as the RX700s. One thing I noticed as soon as I listened to them was that they compress dynamics less than the RX700s and FC700s, which I hadn't even realized compressed dynamics! I was surprised at the changes in volume within songs compared to those headphones.

They don't have quite the same detail as the RX700s, where i feel like I can hear any little thing; I suppose that related to the edge mentioned above.

The PX200-IIs are easy to drive, and sound great out of my mytouch 3g celphone(which has no EQs or anything lol). I quite enjoy using these in lower quality files or through online services like pandora or slacker, perhaps because they are not as detailed as the JVCs.

As for the soundstage, more surprises! They aren't the widest sounding cans I've ever heard, but they're surprisingly airy and have nice depth. Slightly wider soundstage than the RX700s I'd say. It might just be because they are smaller and less noticeable while I'm wearing them, but either way, it feels more airy.

They work nicely for pretty much every genre I find; I only feel some added longing for my JVCs when listening to more bass heavy stuff.

BTW these also benefit greatly from Graphicisms Dolby Headphone setup.

All in all, I think they are definitely worth the moeny if you don't mind not having a humongous soundstage and need the isolation and portability. Sturdy, comfortable, and great sounding! They don't sound as good as my RX700s, but my goodness am I happy to be able to actually fit them in my pocket.

P.S. This also makes me happier about my RX700 purchase, since I still Haven't heard anything at the 100 range that explicitly beats the JVCs XD.

Pictures:

Left: headphones in expanded form.

Right: Headphones in compact form. Yea, the RX700s don't change much. XD.
LL
LL
post #2 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Napilopez View Post
Leakage: Very little I find, by testing it having the headphones over a pillow
iirc arent the px200s closed so that's expected

Quote:
Originally Posted by Napilopez View Post
If it's leaking a lot, then you're probably killing your hearing XD
how loud you're listening to your music is the thing that kills your hearing not leakage (unless you're referring to leakage from the px200s)
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjinh View Post
iirc arent the px200s closed so that's expected
Yes, but not all closed headphones are the same at leaking. My RX700s leak a good deal more than these do, and my sisters FX700s like twice as much.



Quote:
how loud you're listening to your music is the thing that kills your hearing not leakage (unless you're referring to leakage from the px200s)
XD I think you missed my point. I was saying that if they are leaking it's because you are listening too loud =P
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Bump, in case anyone is interested :P
post #5 of 16
Nice review. RX700 compacted lol.

Have you fully modded your RX700?
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iHelp View Post
Nice review. RX700 compacted lol.

Have you fully modded your RX700?
Only the partial felt mod (where the I remove most of the felt, but leave that thin layer). I need to try the foam mod, but I've got to get some foam first =P Not sure I'd want to line the cups as I like the bass as is.
post #7 of 16
From what I've read the Senn PX200-II seems to be a good pair of cans - also nice to hear that they are easy to drive.

I always thought the old PX100 weren't easy to get decent volume on, especially with DAPs will weaker outputs; I found the Creative Zen Vision M couldn't give me good levels of volume with the PX100.

Will definitely consider the PX200-II if I need a more compact pair of closed cans.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Yea, and the volume control I find convenient too. Forgot to mention that the volume control knob thingy functions as a cord clip too.

My RX700s, somewhat ironically, are actually easier to drive though XD. However the increased isolation of the PX200-IIs makes this difference less noticeable, especially in noisy environments.

One note, they seem to improve a lot through an amp or decent powered source. Well, I don't know if it's really "a lot", as I've never had an amp, but the difference was definitely palpable. Since I'm back on campus and internet doesn't work in my dorm room, I've had to use the computer lab computers pretty often. What a pleasant surprise then that the headphones sounded a lot better out the lab computers than my laptop or celphone. My bass complaints were virtually gone, soundstage widened very noticeably, and there was more detail everywhere. I doubt the lab computers have any special sound card or anything, they're generically configured dells, but they certainly can pump out TONS more volume, (making my closed headphones sound more like speakers). I seriously thought I had killed my eardrums when I accidentally had everything near max volume. I guess that would technically make them an amp relative to my laptop, right? XD It wasn't burn in or psychoacoustics. I A/Bd it with my laptop right there. Not to mention I was listening to slacker/pandora (I find slacker has better SQ, maybe it was just the songs that came up though), so I was surprised that the PX200IIs sounded better on those LQ sound files compared to my laptops 320kbps MP3s.

I didn't get to try the RX700s on the lab computers to see how those improve with the extra power; maybe I will late at night when there no one around XD. I've gotten so used to the portability of the PX200-IIs

If you have an amp, I think you'd benefit a lot from it for these headphones. They get good volume out of my laptop or cel phone, and the isolation is good enough to let me hear comfortably on a crowded subway, but the increased power output of the desktop lab comps really brought out the bass, soundstage, and detail. Not so much that I absolutely have to go buy an amp now(or maybe it's just because I can't afford it XD), but definitely quite noticeable.
post #9 of 16
nice keep up bro

how d sound staging??
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jubei View Post
From what I've read the Senn PX200-II seems to be a good pair of cans - also nice to hear that they are easy to drive.

I always thought the old PX100 weren't easy to get decent volume on, especially with DAPs will weaker outputs; I found the Creative Zen Vision M couldn't give me good levels of volume with the PX100.

Will definitely consider the PX200-II if I need a more compact pair of closed cans.
lol wasn't px100 also easy to drive I can get quite a good decent level of volume out from my ipod video 5.5g with my px100
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jubei View Post
From what I've read the Senn PX200-II seems to be a good pair of cans - also nice to hear that they are easy to drive.

I always thought the old PX100 weren't easy to get decent volume on, especially with DAPs will weaker outputs; I found the Creative Zen Vision M couldn't give me good levels of volume with the PX100.

Will definitely consider the PX200-II if I need a more compact pair of closed cans.
Quote:
Originally Posted by yugiyao View Post
lol wasn't px100 also easy to drive I can get quite a good decent level of volume out from my ipod video 5.5g with my px100
Also keep in mind the PX200-II is closed, so that may contribute a good deal to their impression of being easy to drive, especially if there is any noise in your environment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yugiyao View Post
nice keep up bro

how d sound staging??
I found the soundstaging quite impressive! They don't exactly have the widest soundstage in existence, but they have nice depth, and more importantly they sound "airy". You don't feel boxed in to their smallsize. Their soundstage is actually wider than the RX700s and almost as good as the FC700s(haven't A/B'd those two together though). I also tend to listen with Graphicisms 5.1 Surround foobar setup at home though, which is ridiculously good for bettering soundstage.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by yugiyao View Post
lol wasn't px100 also easy to drive I can get quite a good decent level of volume out from my ipod video 5.5g with my px100
Yeah ... I know alot of people say PX100 are easy to drive. Think alot depends on the source. I got OK volume with iRiver IFP-795, iRiver H320 and iPod Classics, but the Creative definitely had problems giving me enough volume. Bare in mind that I use it in Hong Kong (in buses, subway, on the street) and it is very noisy, often above 85 decibels. It is the reason why I eventually gave them up for IEMs; and now that I have a slight outer ear infection, closed cans.

When I used it at home via a bland-ish Creek amp, the PX100 sounded much more controlled than with the Creative. It was an improvement even via the crap phone jack from the PC speakers. That's why I have believe the PX100 are not the most easy to drive portables.

Having said all this, I really like the PX100 and used to be my mainstay back then. Very comfy.
post #13 of 16

 

I just bought the Sennheiser PX200-II, and I am AMAZED!

 

From their size and price I think they are incredible, better than my more expensive bass heavy, colored Denons 1001. Hard to believe, but yes they are ;-)

 

Now I just wonder if there is a lot to gain if I step up in the Senn family of closed cans ?.... (I use them for travelling and wants isolation, therefore closed) Some mention that the HD 25-1 II should be real good .... ;-)

post #14 of 16

Quote:

Originally Posted by love2listen View Post

I just bought the Sennheiser PX200-II, and I am AMAZED!

 

From their size and price I think they are incredible, better than my more expensive bass heavy, colored Denons 1001. Hard to believe, but yes they are ;-)

 

Now I just wonder if there is a lot to gain if I step up in the Senn family of closed cans ?.... (I use them for travelling and wants isolation, therefore closed) Some mention that the HD 25-1 II should be real good .... ;-)

Sure, if the sound is to your liking. Just enjoy the PX200 II for a while, it is seriously good for its portable function and the isolation is not bad either. 

 

If you do want to upgrade it is wise to audition the headphone first.
 

post #15 of 16


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deep Funk View Post

Quote:

Originally Posted by love2listen View Post

I just bought the Sennheiser PX200-II, and I am AMAZED!

 

From their size and price I think they are incredible, better than my more expensive bass heavy, colored Denons 1001. Hard to believe, but yes they are ;-)

 

Now I just wonder if there is a lot to gain if I step up in the Senn family of closed cans ?.... (I use them for travelling and wants isolation, therefore closed) Some mention that the HD 25-1 II should be real good .... ;-)

Sure, if the sound is to your liking. Just enjoy the PX200 II for a while, it is seriously good for its portable function and the isolation is not bad either. 

 

If you do want to upgrade it is wise to audition the headphone first.
 

 

Thanks for guiding me ;-) 

 

I read between the lines, that there is not *a lot* to gain upgrading....

 

Regarding your condition, what do you hear as their weaker spots? I am curious, because I hear them as very neutral, yet not boring/dull. I really appreciate your input, thanks! ;-)


 

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