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Help - Underwhelmed by Sennheiser CX500

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi all, this is my first time posting here. I need some help after my latest earphones purchase.

 

I just received a pair of Sennheiser CX500's from a third party seller on Amazon.com. I checked multiple sites to determine if the ones I purchased are in fact genuine. As far as I can tell, there is nothing in the packaging or the design of the earphones themselves that would suggest that they are fake.

 

The only thing I am concerned about is the actual sound of the earphones. I have a pair of Sennheiser CX 250's that provides an exceptionally bass-y and mellow but also very clean sound. The new CX 500's I have sound "crispy" and greatly lacks that encompassing bass sound that my CX 250's give off. Also, they don't keep sound in as well as my CX 250's (meaning I can hear more sound coming from the CX 500's when they're not in my ears than I can with my CX 250's).

 

The CX500's I have definitely do not bring out the bass and drums as well as my CX 250's. Can anyone confirm that genuine CX500's are supposed to sound like this? I really purchased the CX500's with the expectation that they would sound similar to my CX 250's (which I can no longer find online). Thanks!

post #2 of 10

Welcome to Head Fi Andvekur!

 

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by, "They don't keep sound in as well as my CX250's", but it sounds like you might have a seal problem. Have you tried different tips, or different insertion methods - for instance, pulling your ear up while you put them in. If there is no seal, then you would end up with no bass like your situation at the moment.

 

Also, keep in mind that your new earphones need a little bit of time to burn in. 

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks a_recording. What I meant by "not keeping the sound in" is that suppose I was just holding the earbuds in my hand and had music playing through them at a normal listening level. In the case of my CX 250's, I would not be able to hear any sound coming from the earbuds. In my CX500's, I can still hear some sound. Basically, my CX 250's allowed me to be courteous to other people since it was harder for others to hear what I was listening to. But I don't find that the CX500 earbuds do this quite as well (I used medium-sized gels and same volume on both pairs to test this).

 

My main concern though is still with the lack of a rich bass in the CX 500's. I really liked how encompassing the bass was in my CX 250's. The CX 250's I have now make the bass and drums on the new CX 500's I have sound like...a midi file? That's an exaggeration--it's just bothersome.


Are CX500's supposed to be less bass-y than the other CX's or did I just get an extremely well-duplicated fake in terms of aesthetics?

 

I would give it time to burn in...but right now, the bass on the CX500's just seems utterly incomparable with my CX 250's, almost like it were made by a completely different brand.

post #4 of 10

Well, it might be that the CX500's might be more neutral and less bassy than the CX250's (I'm not sure, as I haven't heard either.) You may just need time to get used to them.

 

As for your testing to say that the CX500's leak more sound than the CX250's, this shouldn't matter when they are not in your ears - especially since at the same volume setting at the same tips, the CX500 might still be louder. The CX500 may be an easier to drive and more sensitive IEM.

 

If you have the IEM's in your ear, with a good seal, and people can *still* hear your music, then I would think you have them way too loud haha. The idea is that once they are in your ears and sealed, there should be virtually no sound coming out. You can't really test this by holding them in your hands - you'd have to ask someone else what they heard while you had them in.

 

It's possible that they are fake - someone else started a similar thread about this recently actually. Unless they sound terrible, I'd hesitate to put it at that though.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

I've spent some more time listening to the new CX500's. I'm still unable to tell if they are genuine. My only reference for the quality of sound it is supposed to have is my CX 250's. They do not sound anywhere as lush the CX 250's and are far too crisp and edgy for me. On the other hand, they sound slightly better than generic headphones that usually sell for $15.

 

Should fake pairs sound like generic headphones or are they also designed, like the packaging itself, to be "passable?" If I knew this, maybe it would help me determine whether or not I have a real pair.

post #6 of 10

i had the cx500s before, i found the soundstage to be quite warm (intense mids), but no emphasis really on the upper end or lower end. your's are real. oh and these were the only pair of headphones that i owned that completely changed after burn-in.

 

also i highly doubt you can find any headphone below $30 that has any sort of clarity.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andvekur View Post

I've spent some more time listening to the new CX500's. I'm still unable to tell if they are genuine. My only reference for the quality of sound it is supposed to have is my CX 250's. They do not sound anywhere as lush the CX 250's and are far too crisp and edgy for me. On the other hand, they sound slightly better than generic headphones that usually sell for $15.

 

Should fake pairs sound like generic headphones or are they also designed, like the packaging itself, to be "passable?" If I knew this, maybe it would help me determine whether or not I have a real pair.


Edited by jaqueh - 10/16/10 at 12:35pm
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

I've read in reviews that the CX500's delivers noticeably on the bass. The mids in the pair I have are indeed intense, but the lows are nowhere near as prominent as they are in my CX 250's, and CX500's are supposed to be the higher end products in the CX series. This leads me to suspect that they are fake. It's just hard to tell because the sound overall is not bad--but where is the bass?

 

What should I do if I suspect a fake? Can one typically expect to get a direct answer from the reseller? I purchased this on Amazon.com through, as I later found out after ordering, an unauthorized dealer.

post #8 of 10

If you brought them from a third party seller on Amazon, they might be fakes. I use to own the Sennheiser CX500 for a little over a year and loved the sound and deep bass they provided. However, their in-line volume adjuster ultimately ruined it for me. At times it made the volume unexpectedly cut in and out, and also made a staticky sound whenever moved. It wasn't until I upgraded to the Ultimate Ears 700 that I discovered how muddy and veiled the CX500 sounded, but they did have great bass. Now if my UE700's had that much deep and dynamic bass (minus the slight muddiness), it would be perfect!

 

To answer your question, if you ordered by credit card, you might be able to contact your card company and dispute the charge, but try to get a refund from the seller first.


Edited by Chivbrguy - 10/16/10 at 8:01pm
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

Chivbrguy, the way you described how your CX500's sounded is how I expected it to sound based on reading reviews and also my experience with other earphones in the CX line. My CX 250's are also a little muddy but I can't pass up on the powerful bass. The CX500's I just received sound nothing like this.

 

By the way, I found one part of the design of the earphones which might be suspect. It's the model number display on the cord. I have heard that this text should be sharp and fine. On the pair I have, is it just me or do they look more "bold" than they should be? Could someone with a genuine pair of CX500's verify? I would appreciate it.

 

5178991.jpg

post #10 of 10

i think your headphones are fine, but try taking photos at a greater distance away and take a photo of the L-shaped plug, as that is usually the dead giveaway. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andvekur View Post

Chivbrguy, the way you described how your CX500's sounded is how I expected it to sound based on reading reviews and also my experience with other earphones in the CX line. My CX 250's are also a little muddy but I can't pass up on the powerful bass. The CX500's I just received sound nothing like this.

 

By the way, I found one part of the design of the earphones which might be suspect. It's the model number display on the cord. I have heard that this text should be sharp and fine. On the pair I have, is it just me or do they look more "bold" than they should be? Could someone with a genuine pair of CX500's verify? I would appreciate it.

 

5178991.jpg

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