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Sony PFR-V1 impressions/ mini review

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Well, I picked up Sony's PFR-V1 from amazon after getting a gift certificate for xmas and some rebate checks. First though some background you're free to skip over.

 

About 2 years ago I signed up on this forum before a trip to Japan, looking for suggestions of cans to pick up over there that might be more expensive or unavailable in the states. I was originally going to get A/AD700s, but saw they were cheaper in the US. I ultimately ended up with the JVC-Victor HP-M1000s. They've been wonderful at keeping a smile on my face. Good enough to the point where i haven't wanted to upgrade them in those two years (which speaks to their quality in my opinion haha). However I recently decided i wanted to try some open cans, and get some soundstage. I was looking at the AD700s again, but hearing about their lacking bass kept me away (as I listen to a lot of dubstep, dance, and some trance). Anyways, I remembered the v1s when I was in vacation in japan and searched amazon to see if any were available used. I was amazed to see they were under $200 (when they were about 55,000yen when I saw them at BIC camera two years ago) I didn't remember caring for how they sounded, but I was in a busy, loud department store and figured i was wearing them wrong, so i pulled the trigger and got them. (turns out I was wearing them backwards, when i first got them I put them on, thought they were still uncomfortable, then looked at the labeling on the headband lol)

 

[end background]

 

anyways, onto impressions.

 

-First, these were packaged very nicely in the box. The box had that nice matte printing that nicer electronics seem to come in. inside the leatherette case is wrapped in a foam sheet. the cans are nicely tucked into this pouch. in the center is a felt pocket that holds the tiny portable booster amp (2 AAA powered), and extension cable, and a 3.5 to 1/4" adapter

 

-adjustment is a bit of a pain, as it's a lot more picky than your typical pair of headphones. I also had some difficulty in getting the ear tubes to seat in my ears well, but they're fine now what i've finally got both height points set. The coldness of the tubes in your ears is a bit strange at first, but you nearly forget they're on once they warm up.

 

-I first tried them out of the headphone out on my laptop, using the booster. The first thing you notice is the airiness, how the music seems to surround you rather than play from within your head.

 

-I later plugged them into my little dot I+ amp. These aren't really portable headphones, so they've been mostly plugged into this amp. I'm sure a solid state amp would be better, but this hybrid unit has sufficed.

 

sound:

  -every level is very detailed and controlled in my opinion.

  -highs: the highs are accentuated by the openness and the lack of bass. It can get a little shrill and irritating on some songs, maybe a little too forward.

  -mids: a good strength with this set. instruments are detailed and well separated. upper mids though can get grating with the highs.

  -bass: accurate, and it extends pretty far, but very recessed and dominated by the mids. It could be that i'm used to my JVC-Victors, but they lack any sort of punch or boom. This isn't entirely surprising given the design.

  -soundstage: The real strength of these headphones. The open-ness and instrument separation really makes you forget you're wearing headphones. It's not quite like having bookshelf speakers going, but it's much closer than any other headphones i've tried.

 

 

Now, after listening to the PFR-V1s for a couple hours i decided to throw my M1000s back on. A completely different animal. Instruments aren't as well separated, the highs are on the recessed side, and the bass is supreme. The bass is less detailed and controlled, but it doesn't overpower the rest of the spectrum. Much warmer and a little more fun in a way. This is what I wanted though, I wanted a set of headphones completely different from my M1000s to complement them.

 

I wasn't sure if i'd be keeping these Sonys when i first purchased them, but I'm very happy with them. Their sound is very unique, exact, and airy (to me, I haven't had experience with many high end open cans, so i can't make any comparisons there). At the current prices they're a solid buy in my humble, unexperienced opinion.

post #2 of 14
Some good pictures please.
post #3 of 14

 

I have these and I love them. I used a pair of rubber grommets from Lowe's and boom mic covers from Radio Shack to increase the bass. I'll take pics and put up part numbers if I can find the receipts. You can approximate the feeling by holding down the bass tube with your finger. Let me know if you're interested.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 

jesusio: yeah i'd be interested in seeing the mod, i'd be willing to try it as long as it's reversible haha

 

and here's some pictures.

 

The majority of the headband is aluminum, with plastic used for the temple rest, the length adjustment, and an elastic fabric for the headband covering. The speaker case seems to be aluminum as well, it's very smooth and cool to the touch.

pfr-v1

 

a shot from the back. you'd pick them up and place them on your head straight like this.

pfr v1 back

 

note the lack of cover on the driver. I guess it give a nice, unimpeded sound that attributes to the clarity (and probably the shrillness too). I'm afraid of accidentally pushing it with my finger though, so some caution needed. long hair could also touch the drivers while listening and cause crackle or whatever.

driver

shots on my head were kind of hard, no tripod so i did my best with a mirror lol

front

sorry, this one's out of focus

side of head

 

if there's any other pictures that could help let me know what to shoot

post #5 of 14

x2 on the mod.

post #6 of 14

Ok, sorry it took awhile to get back with you, busy day.

 

Boom mic cover (probably $3, lost receipt)

Radio Shack SKU:  33-4006

 

IMG00202-20110120-1950.jpg

 

 

Lowe's Rubber Grommet 5/8 (outer diameter) x 5/16 (interior diameter)

SKU:  139355

Price:  $1.04

IMG00204-20110120-1956.jpg

 

 

So, I took the grommet and placed it in between the bass tube (portion that is inserted in the ear).

IMG00199-20110120-1941.jpg

 

Boom mic cover over grommet

IMG00200-20110120-1941.jpg

 

Bass slam for 5 bucks, completely removable.  Try it out and let me know what you think. It works well for me.

 

jamie

 

post #7 of 14

thanks for the pics! nice review.

post #8 of 14

Thanks for the pics Jesusio!

 

I bought a pair for myself ($149/Amazon) over Xmas. Same impressions as OP. And as for the mod, I also noticed that with the fingers placed right on top of the bass tube increased the bass dramatically. I was in the planning process to accomplish a version of Jesusio's mod when I stumbled on this thread. I knew it paid to pour over the daily threads!

 

Dogwan

post #9 of 14

Check the case pockets for the foam socks. They make a huge difference in sound and comfort. I'd like to see a sock for the whole dang driver -- they're way too tinny for music.

post #10 of 14

In which department of Lowe's would I find the rubber grommet? I picture a stoned mouth breather's expression when I think about asking one of their employees.

post #11 of 14

 

Actually, I asked one of the employees and she took me right to them.
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KlausGut View Post

In which department of Lowe's would I find the rubber grommet? I picture a stoned mouth breather's expression when I think about asking one of their employees.


I didn't bother with them before because i didn't think they'd make much of a difference.

 

not the case, the foam socks make a big difference. i don't think it enhances bass so much as it tames the harshness. I noticed the design makes it so the sock is like a screen between your ear and the driver, so it has the effect of a mesh over the driver (maybe i'll see if I can get a picture of it

 

gonna have to try the grommet, maybe with the full sock so that way it still screens the highs out a bit and adds to the bass

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by KlausGut View Post

Check the case pockets for the foam socks. They make a huge difference in sound and comfort. I'd like to see a sock for the whole dang driver -- they're way too tinny for music.

post #13 of 14

      Quote:

Originally Posted by jesusio View Post

 

Actually, I asked one of the employees and she took me right to them.


Thanks.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by oogens View Post


I didn't bother with them before because i didn't think they'd make much of a difference.

 

not the case, the foam socks make a big difference. i don't think it enhances bass so much as it tames the harshness. I noticed the design makes it so the sock is like a screen between your ear and the driver, so it has the effect of a mesh over the driver (maybe i'll see if I can get a picture of it

 

gonna have to try the grommet, maybe with the full sock so that way it still screens the highs out a bit and adds to the bass

  

 

 

I'm gonna grab the grommets this weekend and then search around for some cloth to use for a full driver sock. Figuring out an aesthetically pleasing method of securing the cloth will be the hard part. I'm thinking just a few wraps of threads around the base of the driver bulb.

post #14 of 14

 

Man Zepplin IV sounds GOOD on these. The sound stage is just doing it for me. Sound is rolled off a bit at the top and the upper mids are a bit pronounced. Aka it is kind of bright without being screechy bright. Detail could be improved. Only when compared to headphones like the Ultrasone 900, AKG 5,6,700 models. 
 
They have great separation of sounds but lack a bit of the characteristic details of them.
 
When the Levee Breaks is giving me ******* goosebumps! Always a good sign.
 
I really think they could be considered the poor mans K1000 in many respects. Just like the sound when you have the k1000 in full batman mode. Anyone who understands what I just said is certainly applauded.
 
They kick ass for the money.
 
Snoogins
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