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Review: Philips Fidelio L1 [Updated 5/14] - Page 7

post #91 of 749
Originally Posted by nonsupremous View Post

I went to the apple store yesterday to see if they carried them in store or online and the lady that helped me had a disgusted look on her face and said "we don't carry philips headphones."  LOL.  I said "You will"....and walked out! 



Your experience kind of reminds me when I was looking for some Etymotic ear buds.  One person said they didn't carry them, so I still headed over to the Apple store during lunch and they had a few pair on the shelf.  Also, Best Buy was just as out of alignment with the products they carried and they also claimed they didn't carry them.  So, I had them pull up their Web page so I could point them out.


It would be ideal if they could just fire half of the staff members (the useless ones) from these places and cut their prices a bit since they're not paying for the useless labor.


post #92 of 749
Thread Starter 

* updated first post with better pictures and updated impressions

post #93 of 749

In looks, this headphone is up there with the Ed. 8 and wood ATH's. The sound signature appears to be what I like too. At this price, I'll probably pick one up in the near future.

post #94 of 749

Just got mine today, and thought I'd share my impressions.  Notes:  I'm running these from a uDAC-2, and my other good pair of headphones is the KRK KNS-8400.  As with everything, YMMV.




Game's over, everyone else.  These are the most beautiful pair of headphones I've ever had the pleasure of holding/using/seeing.  I think this is the first time I've said "Wow" upon opening a box of headphones:).  Finally, a $300 pair of headphones that justify the cost in terms of aesthetics.  Just look at 'em!  They've got a good weight to them, and cup rotation is smooth (they can lie flat).  No shakiness or creaking.



On a comfort level of 1-10 (1:  SR225s/V6s, 10:  K601s), I'd probably put them at 7.5 or 8.  The earcushions are plenty deep, and not huge, but fit my ears fine.  They're a little stiff, and have a bit of clamp, but it's not too bad.  The headband is probably the least comfortable part.  It's not terrible, but you definitely feel it.  There's not much padding, and I've done some small adjustments to how they sit on my head in the hour+ I've worn them.



Fantastic, in a word.  When compared to my 8400s, they're definitely bass heavier, in terms of both warmth an impact.  I wouldn't consider them to be neutral.  But while the 8400s are probably slightly more accurate, they can sound a bit lean at times, and the treble can get a bit hot.  Not so with the L1s.  They are the epitome of listening enjoyment.  If you want to monitor or mix or listen critically, you can get the 8400s.  If you want to enjoy the crap out of your music, get the L1s.  They are warmer than neutral, but it doesn't detract from the rest of the spectrum; it merely enhances the enjoyability factor.  I always kind of wanted a bit more impact with my 8400s, and these deliver.  But again, the bass is well controlled and tight, and doesn't crash the midrange and treble party.  They are quite smooth and non-fatiguing; very nice, but I probably wouldn't want any more smoothness.  High frequencies are well extended, and everything is presented well. 

One interesting thing I've found is the way the music is presented.  They have an excellent soundstage, and everything is blended together. Not in the sense of being muddy or undetailed, but rather, you're enveloped in sound, and it's just very pleasurable.  From what I can remember from all the headphones I've tried, their signature is unique.  They sound as though you've got a bunch of speakers around your room, not two drivers right on your ears.  Again, very nice.



I've tried a lot of headphones in the past four or five years, and I didn't consider some of them to be worth MSRP.  My equipment may not have been appropriate for all of them, but I have not been as thoroughly impressed with any as I have been with these.  The whole package (aesthetics, comfort to an extent, and sound quality) makes me think that this is one of the few, if any, headphones with which I'd be perfectly fine paying MSRP.  I only hope that they get some more attention with the Beats and Bose crowd on the Apple Store's website, because they're definitely worth it.  It would take me less than a heartbeat to prefer spending $300 for these over spending $300 for Beats.

If you can find these, buy them.  They're excellent all-rounders, as Ultrazino said.  If you have the means, I highly recommend them. 

post #95 of 749
Thread Starter 

Glad to hear you like them! I also linked your impressions in the first post. Do say if you mind. 


I'm a little ashamed to tell, though, but I have no idea what headphones the 8400 are, hehe. Never read much about them.

post #96 of 749

Don't mind at all.  I recommend the 8400s as neutral, accurate cans, and great all-rounders for sub-$150 budgets.  I prefer the L1s now, though, in terms of absolute enjoyment of music.  I wrote a review here:



Edit:  posted my review on Apple's website.  Hopefully we can get some people to make the right choice:).

post #97 of 749
BTW, I have Edition 01715.
post #98 of 749

Nice write-up there Marximus. Hopefully Apple will start pushing these heavily. I really wish I hadn't opened this thread and read through it now, as I debate buying these now or later. People need to hide their children from these headphones. Those photos aren't innocent technology, they're pornography. I don't think I've ever seen any that beautiful.

post #99 of 749

Thanks for the impressions Marximus.  I have a feeling I'm going to be picking up a pair of these very soon.  Does anyone who owns these have any insight as to how amping these headphones effects their performance?  I'm kinda curious how they scale.


Edit: "I plug in the extension and run it from a DAC/amp which adds a warmer feel and tiny bit more control." Went back to the original post and found this.  Oops. rolleyes.gif Still interested in if anyone else shares this opinion on amping.

Edited by GPWags - 2/13/12 at 6:15pm
post #100 of 749

Marximus, thanks for getting your thoughts out to us so quickly!


AxelCloris, I live north of Cinci and will be getting my L1s tomorrow afternoon if you want to stop by sometime and check them out. You can see what I will be using them with by looking at my profile.

Edited by Geared4me - 2/13/12 at 6:19pm
post #101 of 749
Originally Posted by Geared4me View Post

Marximus, thanks for getting your thoughts out to us so quickly!

x2 thanks for the impressions!

post #102 of 749

That is one gorgeous pair of cans, now I want some.... Haha, but really, from your description, they sound nearly perfect. I'm gonna do some further research and maybe look into getting a pair of these! Thanks for the wonderful review

post #103 of 749

I've been nothing but impressed with these.  Listening to these again right now, and they're so clear...listening to a Josh Groban song (don't judge) and the L1s make the sound well, sound so effortless.  Again, like speakers.  Obviously, I can feel the headphones, and the effect of the drivers hitting the low notes, but for being semi-open, they seem very open, not congested or closed in the slightest.  They sound...big, I guess. The only person I can think who wouldn't like these is the one who is very sensitive to excessive bass (Etymotic lovers??).  They're not super bassy, but bassier than neutral (which is nice, according to me). Again, if I want neutrality, I can go to my KRKs.  But I don't want to analyze my music; I want to enjoy it.  The L1s allow precisely that.  Feel free to ask other questions, and I'll try to answer them.  I'm pretty sure they sound a bit different on different setups, and I'm pretty sure a uDAC-2 is not the pinnacle of headphone performance, so they might even be able to sing more on a better setup.  But they're only 26 Ohms, and I have no problem powering them, which is good for you minimalist/low-budget setup guys out there.  You don't need a lot to make them sound good.  They do plenty of the work on their own:).

post #104 of 749

Arrgghh... I hate this thread, now you're just making me wanna buy a pair. :P I'm glad that they have a bit boosted bass as I don't like bass "neutral" headphones, those always lack a bit bass for my liking.

post #105 of 749

I've also got 'em. (S/N 013xx)


I've roughly listened an hour with the L1.


For comparison I've got HD800 (07xxx), HD650, HD600, HD590, HD565, D2000, K701 (43xxx), AD700, DT880/600, DT880 (2003), DT231, T50p (213xx), MS1i, RX900 here with me.


My short impression is, that the L1 is a good can. About its qualities I'll write something more at the end of this week.


What I don't like:


- too much bass for me (slightly less than the HFI-580)

- possibly some resonance in the bass (can't figure out it for sure by now)

- a kind of veil (not as much as the HD650 has got, but also not far away from it)

- relatively narrow sound stage


What I like:


- the bass really kicks ass (Ultrasone or Audio-Technica [closed] like)

- with some music its sound signature is very enjoyable

- good amount of details

- good comfort wearing it


Other things, I've noticed:


There is some sibilance on some tracks, but not as much as it is with the HFI-580 or "not modded" HD800 the case.

But the L1 has a little bit more sibilance than my K701 "bass heavy".

The sound of the D2000 is overall lusher and more three dimensional.


By now I can't make a final judgment.

The L1 seems to be a good can, better than -for example- the DT990 (someone else briefly compared both on German hifi-forum.de).


I think it's definitely worth the 189 EUR I've paid for it.

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