Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › Ultrasone Pro 900 Impressions Thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Ultrasone Pro 900 Impressions Thread

post #1 of 5819
Thread Starter 

Let me preface this review by stating that I used to own the AKG K701.  I loved its huge soundstage, detail, and resolution.  As an avid Electronica listener, however, I found the bass lacking a bit, so I decided to audition a few headphones that provided the bass response I was craving.  I tried out the Denon D2000 and the Beyerdynamic DT990/600ohm.  Both were great cans, however, I wanted even more bass (am I a basshead or what?).  In blind faith, I sold my AKG K701 and purchased the Ultrasone Pro 900, a decision I am currently recognizing as the finest decision I’ve made so far as a budding audiophile. 

 

The Pro 900s are plugged into a Matrix M-Stage headphone amplifier with an Ibasso D4 being used as a dedicated DAC.  I run Foobar2000 with the WASAPI plugin, and most of my music is either encoded in FLAC or 320kbs MP3.  90% of my music is Electronic Dance Music (Trance, Drum & Bass, House, etc) and the other 10% is Metal (bands like Disturbed, Killswitch Engage, Sonic Syndicate, etc).  Burn in is far from over, but I’ve run some pink noise through them for a few nights in a row.  Having said all that, lets get this review rolling.

 

 

Ultrasone Pro 900 on a Woo Audio silver headphone stand.

 

 

Build Quality:  The Pro 900 is a tank.  Built from very durable plastic, these cans are made for a work environment.  While I usually take extreme care for my electronics, voicing my distaste when someone sets my headphones down with even a hint of force, its nice to know that the Pro 900s would be completely fine if I were to drop them.  I also really like the looks of these headphones.  They're very sleek and modern, and the black and silver color scheme goes well with the rest of my setup (my Matrix M-Stage is black with a silver front-plate).  

 

Comfort:  These headphones, while not quite as comfortable as the DT990/600 (what headphone is?), are still pleasant to wear.  Their velvet ear cushions are a nice medium between the Beyerdynamc’s pillow-cushions and the K701’s firm, carpet-textured ones.  The Pro 900s do have a tendency to place a lot of their weight in a small spot at the top of my head, but I’ve always been sensitive to headphones in that region, with both the K701 and the D2000 causing slight discomfort after long listening sessions.  The clamp force is strong enough to keep them in place, but never have I felt that its too tight.  My roommate has the M50s, and I find those have much more clamping force than the Pro 900s.  These headphones won’t “disappear” on your head, but they’re far from uncomfortable.

 

The Sound:  I will start by saying the bass the Pro 900s provide is phenomenal.  It reaches deep, has great texture and definition, and always maintains solid impact.  The D2000s and DT990s, while both bass oriented cans, cannot touch the bass the Pro 900s produce.  The bass lines in Trance and Drum & Bass have never sounded so amazing.  The best part about the bass in these cans is that, despite its exaggeration, I’ve never found it to encroach upon the mids or affect the rest of the spectrum.  It always remains well separated and defined, a trait that is hard to find in headphones.  The mids, while maybe a little bit recessed, are very detailed and resolving.  Female vocals from the likes of Oceanlab’s Justine Suissa sound magical and intimate, while male vocals from singers such as Howard Jones (Killswitch Engage) feel commanding and powerful.  The highs extend very far and provide music with a great sparkle without showing off too much sibilance.  These cans have amazing detail retrieval and their transient response is incredibly fast.  Notes start and end with little decay.  Soundstage, while not as vast as the K701, is bigger than the D2000’s and very close to the DT990s, which for a closed can, is quite a feat.  Is it the S-Logic Plus? I can’t be sure, but it doesn’t sound like music is being presented in any more of a “3D” sort of way than other headphones.  If S-Logic is what makes the soundstage so good for a closed can, then maybe it does work.  Regardless of the cause, the Pro 900 has great soundstage and imaging. 

 

All of this makes Electronica an immense pleasure to listen to.  The bass hits hard, and goes deep and makes me want to close my eyes and get lost in its vibrations.  Vocals hypnotize me, and synths dance through my ears better than they ever had.  Metal also sounds very good.  The impact provided by the Pro 900 makes each song feel "heavier" and more "in your face."  Out of the box, guitars sounded a bit weird and unnatural which really put me off.  This has been slowly disappearing as burn in progresses.

 

In summary, I’m in love.  I’ve finally found the right headphones, and will stick with these for quite some time.  I whole heartedly recommend them to anyone who listens to Electronica, Hip Hop, or Metal, and wants some amazing bass without sacrificing the rest of the spectrum.  A warning though:  I’ve read on these forums that many people think the Pro 900s have a strange tonality and really dislike their sound signature.  For certain genres, I agree.  I DO NOT recommend these if you listen to jazz, classical, or anything were a very natural presentation is needed.  Make no mistake, these headphones have huge bass and are made for the Electronic Dance Music genres (or any other genre which requires bass, such as Hip Hop).  If you want to unleash your inner basshead and start listening to Electronica the way it’s meant to be listened to, give the Ultrasone Pro 900s a try.  I think you'll find them the perfect fit. wink_face.gif

 

 

Edit: Since I wrote this review, the Pro 900s have been becoming more and more refined.  The bass still hits hard, but they sound good with every genre I throw at them.  Metal, Electronic, Acoustic, Classical, etc all sound just great on these headphones.  I've come to recognize the Ultrasones as some of the finest gaming and movie cans I've ever heard.  They really need to be heard to be believed, as its so rare to find headphones that provide great bass while maintaining some of the best positional cues I've experienced.  If I had to throw out one negative about these headphones, it is that their left/right channel separation can be a bit pronounced sometimes.  Some notes can sound like they are coming from quite an extreme left or right position.  This makes the soundstage feel a little less cohesive at times.  This rarely happens however, and it is such a small gripe that it almost isn't worth mentioning.

post #2 of 5819

Nice review Jibbie!

I got ultrasones pro 900 and iBasso D12 for myself now it's waiting time!

 

I also got same wooaudio headphone stand after I saw it on your picture! :)

post #3 of 5819
Thread Starter 

Thanks!  That should be a great pairing.  The headphone stand is also great.  Silver goes really well with the chrome plates on the earcups of the Pro 900.  

post #4 of 5819

       Having just received my Ultrasone Pro 900s earlier this week ($320 shipped from buyauthorized on ebay), I was planning on posting some very similar impressions.  As a (recently) former owner of the Denon D2000s, and a current owner of the AKG K702s, I think we're coming from pretty similar aural perspectives.  I was initially quite impressed with the Denons.  They're great closed all-rounders, but after acquiring the K702s a while back, I realized the Denons weren't phenomenal in any particular area (personal opinion, of course).  The D2000s do indeed have great bass extension, but comparing the bass impact to the Pro 900s is a night and day difference in my opinion.  The Pro 900s have an unbelievable low end slam that the D2000s just can't match.  I also find the Ultrasone's highs to be quite detailed and not overly bright (as some have complained); but then again, I don't find my HE-5s overly bright either, so my opinion should be taken with a grain of salt.  While I find the mids to be detailed as well, I think the bombastic bass tends to intrude a bit, leading to the recessed or slightly disconnected mids that many people take issue with.  FWIR, this should resolve itself a bit with some additional burn-in (I'm only at 50 hours or so, feeding it through my Nuforce HDP).  After 300-400 hours, if there's little improvement, I might consider the Kee's mod that others have raved about.  I'm worried though that the Kee's mod may dampen what makes the Pro 900 such a great can for bass heavy genres.  Being part of a multi-can household, I don't need the Ultrasones to be an all-rounder.  They seem to fill their niche perfectly, and, hopefully, will only get better over the next couple weeks/months. 

        I'm a casual FPS gamer, and I must say, though I was fairly dubious about the S-Logic hype, I've had excellent results thus far.  Running the set through straight 2-channel mode, the Ultrasones handle in-game positioning extremely well -- better than all my past and present cans.  I even find it to have better positioning (running straight stereo) than I had using Dolby Headphone (inputting 7.1 signals), with the added benefit of having a more natural presentation.  The same goes for movies, which I'd occasionally experimented with Dolby Headphone in the past.  These cans resolve the LFE track magnificently, and have become my can of choice for movies and games. 

        The overall fit and finish of the Ultrasones is quite nice as well (not to mention the excellent carrying case and included accessories), if a bit plasticy.  They're quite robust, as the OP had mentioned, and certainly would stand up to the studio use for which they were intended.  All that being said, if I had to have just one can, I would probably not choose the Pro 900.  The Denons would probably make a better all-rounder, as would the HD600 (which I also just recently sold), which also tends to be more agreeable for most listeners.  I think the K702s would represent a better value for listeners of other genres, as well.  However, if you're like the OP, and you tend to like throbbing bass and generally bass driven genres, or need a set of primarily gaming/movie cans (or have/plan on having a multi-can collection), I don't think any other can in its price range can touch the Pro 900s.   

post #5 of 5819
Quote:
Originally Posted by misformatt View Post

 The Denons would probably make a better all-rounder, as would the HD600 (which I also just recently sold), which also tends to be more agreeable for most listeners.  I think the K702s would represent a better value for listeners of other genres, as well.  However, if you're like the OP, and you tend to like throbbing bass and generally bass driven genres, or need a set of primarily gaming/movie cans (or have/plan on having a multi-can collection), I don't think any other can in its price range can touch the Pro 900s.   


Kees mod them and they will still have the impactful bass and be a better all round performer.  You can vary the amount of cotton dampening you use, and a little goes a long way.  Felt pieces on the metal driver plate can easily be altered by adding or subtracting. I am not normally one for modding, but the Pro900 Kees mods are easy and effective.  Just be careful with the screw heads of the screws holding the driver plate in place.  Make sure your screw driver is appropriately sized.  Small cotton round makeup removing pads are a good place to start.

 

And good reveiw Jibbie, I'm glad you like them.


Edited by Kernmac - 12/10/10 at 5:54pm
post #6 of 5819
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the feedback guys!  I'm still enjoying these cans immensely.  I agree that, in terms of bass presentation, no other similarly priced cans can touch them (maybe the Denon D7000s, but I havent heard them and even if you find them at a great deal, they're still twice the cost of the Pro 900s).  

 

I also agree that the K701 were just much more resolving than the D2000s, and felt disappointed in the Denons after coming from the AKGs.  The Pro 900s, on the other hand, are just as resolving and detailed, but with an incredible bass response.

 

As for the Kees Mod, it definitely seems like a mod to try one of these days, but burn in is far from over and I actually love the bass quantity stock.  The mids aren't recessed enough to risk losing the bass, but if you can indeed bring them out more while maintaining the bass I might have to try it.

 

The Pro 900s carry a sound signature that lends themselves to electronica, hip hop, and other dance genres.  Many people might be disappointed in them if they get them as all arounders (I've read that the Kees mod helps this though), but if you listen to a lot of trance, drum & bass, and house music like I do, then I  don't think you could choose a better can.

post #7 of 5819

Thanks for the review, Jibbie! Disturbed, Above and Beyond, electronic and metal rock!

 

I have looked at these cans for quite a while and the one thing that I keep seeing are people's impressions of the fantastic bass and technical prowess with metal and electronic. I think I am going to have to get a pair of them.

post #8 of 5819
Thread Starter 

You won't regret it wink_face.gif
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeGoodman View Post

Thanks for the review, Jibbie! Disturbed, Above and Beyond, electronic and metal rock!

 

I have looked at these cans for quite a while and the one thing that I keep seeing are people's impressions of the fantastic bass and technical prowess with metal and electronic. I think I am going to have to get a pair of them.

post #9 of 5819

Cool. I am trying to get them for Christmas.

post #10 of 5819

Agree. I love these. If you're a Grado fan looking for a closed version with the same warmth, precision, & emotionality the Usone 900's are the ticket.

post #11 of 5819
Thread Starter 

To anyone who wants to see what bass in a headphone can sound like, get the Pro 900s and the album "New Blood" by Hospital Records.  Its a Drum & Bass album that has some of the most amazing bass I've ever heard in an electronica album.  The Pro 900s are shaking my face as I type biggrin.gif

post #12 of 5819

Enjoy the Pro900's because until you move up to the LCD-2 level you are not going to find a pair that are definitively better. Thanks for the recommendation on that album after listening to a preview of a few of the songs I decided to order myself a copy. I'm usually not a big fan of electronica but I am in the process of expanding my tastes. 

post #13 of 5819
Thread Starter 

I definitely look forward to hearing the LCD-2 or HE-6 someday.  I hope you enjoy the album, I sure do

post #14 of 5819

Will be getting this for x-mas.

but is curious what amp is best suited for this headphone. I use a nano by the way

and price well it 50-100$ since this cans going to cost me over 300$ i believe

post #15 of 5819

Be careful the guy you requested info from was banned and probably for ripping off by the look of it.   I just got my daughter a pair of Pro-750s and they sound so good i am very curious about the 900s.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › Ultrasone Pro 900 Impressions Thread