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Ultrasone Signature Pro review: YES

post #1 of 93
Thread Starter 

 

I just received my SigPros, and now have several hours with them.  They are great headphones.  Agree with most of what everyone's saying about them.  These are the best sounding headphones I have heard.

 

They don't have the look of the higher priced headphones.  In fact, they look like they'd cost $60-150... which is a selling point for me.  I listen exclusively at work and leave them at work, so having them look like everyone else's headphones should help keep them from getting stolen.  You don't get the "I just paid $1k" wow factor when you look at them, but depending on where you listen, that's for the best.  They are a wolf in sheeps clothing and you'd need to be a headphone-centric audiophile to have an idea what they are.

 

It's when you put them on that you realize where the money went.  Compared to my memory of the D7000's, they sound a bit crisper throughout the spectrum, but otherwise comparable sound signature.  Solid, thumping bass in songs that call for it, beautiful male and female voices, at times edging towards too much on the highs, but never crossing over to sibilant or screechy.  Wonderful but natural separation of instruments.  Great isolation in and out, so you can listen at ambitious volumes and not worry yourself over annoying your co-workers (or embarrassing yourself with your Lady Gaga and NSYNC anthologies).

 

My only very minor complaints so far, are comfort-related: I could do with the headband cushioning being a bit softer.  Most people probably won't have a problem with this, but my hair is thinning a bit on top, so my hair doesn't provide any built-in cushioning to speak of and the headband gets to feeling hard on top of my head after awhile.  Also, the earcup cushioning isn't deep enough.  My ears don't stick out particularly, but they still press lightly against the fabric-covered, metal inner wall, and this too begins to irritate over time.  I'll grow ear callouses if I need to.  Like these headphones enough.

 

They are nice and light, so their on-head weight is never an issue.  Clamping is firm but not uncomfortable even with prolonged listening.  The detachable, locking cable goes into the left earcup, which I greatly like as it doesn't end up constantly catching on the zipper of your hoodie/jacket/sweater/etc.  Ends up being more out of the way.  Materials aren't showy, but seem solid and capable.  Time will tell about durability and cosmetic longevity, but I have some confidence.  The leather on the earcups is gloriously smooth and supple.

 

Comes with a nice (but again, not flashy) leather-wrapped hard case, a large and a small terminated straight cable, and that's about it.  "Simple, high quality, and to the point" seems to be the motif for this headphone and package.

 

I'm looking forward to getting back to listening to my music again, and not continually analysing what's not quite up to par.  These fit perfectly into my lifestyle needs, and into my desired sound signature preferences.

 

They are listing at $1299.00 but can be had much cheaper by finding them used (like I did) here in the For Sale forum, or by calling RMC Audio (e.g., not by ordering over the internet with them).

 

Let me know if you have any questions.  I can only A/B them with my Westone 4 IEMs at the moment, but can give you general comparisons from memory of my previous cans.  Oh yeah, I listen to most everything that's not sung in German, although The Magic Flute is an exception there.  So: metal, rap, folk, top 40, classical, opera, country, indie, etc.  I keep my playlist on shuffle.

post #2 of 93

How would you describe the sound compared to the PRO900 or HD580? (If you can still remember their sound). I currently have the PRO900 and was seriously considering pulling the trigger on the ones you got from the FS forum, but other recent purchases really put a dent in my wallet. 

 

I'm also in Vancouver, hopefully there's a local meet soon and you can bring the Signatures along!

post #3 of 93
Thread Starter 

Haha, I just finished posting in a "disappointments" thread about how the Pro900's were one of the headphones I never liked (unless I just wanted to listen to Daft Punk, which they did a nice job with).  So I consider the SigPro's a vast improvement in all areas over the 900's.  I thought the 900's were creaky (the actual framework, not the sound signature), and the sound succeeded in being both screechy and boomy.  Not a fan.

 

I loved the 580's.  Loved the build, the comfort, the sound.  It was a long time ago (4 years ago perhaps), so I can't really compare the sound well, but at the time, I went from the 580's to Denon D2000's because I needed something closed for not annoying people at work, and felt the D2000's were a letdown coming from the 580's.  Bear in mind, my 580's had 600 grills and 650 cable, and I have no idea whether those made any difference.  Just bought 'em that way.  Also, you didn't ask, but I loved the Denon D7000's.  So I'm not adverse to the Denon sound, just didn't like the D2000's.

 

EDIT: Listen to me blather on about the D2000's.... haha, oops.  The answer to your 580 question: hearty thumbs up from a 4 years ago me, if you don't need to worry about bothering those around you.  They were a little light on the low end (esp if you are coming from a Pro900), but nothing troublesome, and great with the rest.


Edited by baglunch - 3/31/12 at 11:31pm
post #4 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by baglunch View Post

So I consider the SigPro's a vast improvement in all areas over the 900's.

 

Dang. I don't know if I should be sad that I'm missing out or happy that I have something to look forward to.

 

I had the 580, then the 600, then back to the 580. I realized I was always a closet basshead and so I got the Pro900. I really miss the mids on the 580/600 though. I was dead set on the ED8 as my next upgrade until I read all the positive impressions for the Sig Pro.

 

How's the comfort compared to the Pro900? I'd imagine they're somewhat the same. Do you foresee potential problems with sweat/heat with the leather earpads in the summer?

 

EDIT: How are they straight out of a portable source?


Edited by steven_1026 - 3/31/12 at 11:47pm
post #5 of 93
Thread Starter 

Keep in mind, I'm just one guy on the internet with an opinion.

 

I don't remember the comfort of the Pro900's, which probably means they were good.  I remember the 580's to be the most comfortable of the headphones I've had (but never liked how the marshmallow headband padding pinched my hair up into little peaks, heh).  So, yeah the SigPro's are comfy, excepting the two issues I noted in the review.

 

Regarding hot weather problems, I'll be wearing them in the office, so hopefully sweat, etc. won't be as much of an issue as if I were wearing them around outside.  But I'd expect leather to breathe better than pleather earpads, and be easier to clean than fabric earpads.  You could always apply a bit of leather conditioner to them to protect them from headsweat... although I'm thinking shoes, and I don't really know if it's suitable for prolonged skin contact.  Works fine for leather seats in cars.  Anyone know about this?

post #6 of 93
Thread Starter 

Just saw your "edit" about portable source driving.  I haven't tried it out yet, but by all accounts in the SigPro appreciation thread (http://www.head-fi.org/t/570388/ultrasone-new-announced-headphone-signature-pro), they sound great right out of portable player.  I've tried them straight out of my computer, and from my stereo receiver at home, and they still sound nice, but scale very nicely with a DAC and amp.

post #7 of 93

If the Signature Pro is built anywhere near the Pro series, you can expect good durability. Obviously this takes in account average gear handling, not throwing it around or stepping on them, as for that you need specifically rugged gear.

post #8 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by baglunch View Post

Haha, I just finished posting in a "disappointments" thread about how the Pro900's were one of the headphones I never liked (unless I just wanted to listen to Daft Punk, which they did a nice job with).  So I consider the SigPro's a vast improvement in all areas over the 900's.  I thought the 900's were creaky (the actual framework, not the sound signature), and the sound succeeded in being both screechy and boomy.  Not a fan.

 

I loved the 580's.  Loved the build, the comfort, the sound.  It was a long time ago (4 years ago perhaps), so I can't really compare the sound well, but at the time, I went from the 580's to Denon D2000's because I needed something closed for not annoying people at work, and felt the D2000's were a letdown coming from the 580's.  Bear in mind, my 580's had 600 grills and 650 cable, and I have no idea whether those made any difference.  Just bought 'em that way.  Also, you didn't ask, but I loved the Denon D7000's.  So I'm not adverse to the Denon sound, just didn't like the D2000's.

 

EDIT: Listen to me blather on about the D2000's.... haha, oops.  The answer to your 580 question: hearty thumbs up from a 4 years ago me, if you don't need to worry about bothering those around you.  They were a little light on the low end (esp if you are coming from a Pro900), but nothing troublesome, and great with the rest.

 

definitely agree with you, D7000 vast improvement over D2000 and Signature Pro vast improvement over the Pro900 (I didn't like the 900s at all actually). I've settled on the D7000 and Signature Pros as my go-to phones, don't think I'll be upgrading headphones again for a while..
 

 

post #9 of 93

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roller View Post

If the Signature Pro is built anywhere near the Pro series, you can expect good durability. Obviously this takes in account average gear handling, not throwing it around or stepping on them, as for that you need specifically rugged gear.

 

The SigPros are built to be THE pinnacle of the Pro series. They double up as a weapon at times of war, or protective headgear if need be.
 

 

post #10 of 93
Thread Starter 

It's true.  I've used my SigPro's as a shovel, a twitch-up trap, and a temporary tread in my tank during the Zombie Apocolypse.

post #11 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by baglunch View Post

It's true.  I've used my SigPro's as a shovel, a twitch-up trap, and a temporary tread in my tank during the Zombie Apocolypse.



biggrin.gif

post #12 of 93

Agreed, the Signature Pros are among the most durably built headphones I've ever used. Unlike the Edition 8, I would not hesitate using them as portables.

post #13 of 93

i prefer the sound of the sig pros over the d7000 and edition 8. the pro 900 were way to fatiguing and gave me a headache. i can actually fall asleep with the sig pros on. maybe i was just exhausted earlier when taking my nap that i didnt even notice the music.

post #14 of 93

I have decided to buy a sig pro.  My one reservation is that I worry they will leak sound compared to my ED8.


Edited by XLR1 - 7/12/12 at 9:29am
post #15 of 93
Thread Starter 

Congrats!  Also, I'd say mine leak about as much as the other closed phones I've had (other than the Denon line, which leak a lot more).  I can listen at moderately loud volumes and nearby co-workers have to lean over and make an effort to hear whether there's anything playing.  I've never hear an Ed8 to compare, tho.  They must be like an ear vault if they isolate appreciably better.  :)

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