Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › PSB M4U 2
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

PSB M4U 2 - Page 8

post #106 of 535
Ep
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

I've actually just written up my impressions of the PSB M4U 2 and put it in the reviews section. Do feel free to comment or ask any questions, and I'll try to answer.

http://www.head-fi.org/products/psb-m4u-2-noise-canceling-headphones/reviews/7183
Do you still have the m80 and the PSB? Can you tell me if by chance the iPod cable for the m80 works with the PSB? My only gripe with the PSB is no volume control on the iPod cable so looking for a replacement.
post #107 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolkManiac View Post

Ep
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

I've actually just written up my impressions of the PSB M4U 2 and put it in the reviews section. Do feel free to comment or ask any questions, and I'll try to answer.

http://www.head-fi.org/products/psb-m4u-2-noise-canceling-headphones/reviews/7183
Do you still have the m80 and the PSB? Can you tell me if by chance the iPod cable for the m80 works with the PSB? My only gripe with the PSB is no volume control on the iPod cable so looking for a replacement.
Unfortunately I've sold my M-80 but to a friend so I can borrow it easily to test the cables.
post #108 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

Unfortunately I've sold my M-80 but to a friend so I can borrow it easily to test the cables.
If its not too much trouble I would appreciate it
post #109 of 535

Mine came in today.  A few initial impressions/notes:

 

-These are definitely going back, and not because I dislike them.  Out of the box, the left hinge creaks so loudly that my girlfriend can hear it in the next room.  Furthermore, the headband was already cracking straight out of the box and one of the batteries gets pushed upward by the contact causing the door to not properly close. (it actually fell off partially when I took them off my head the first time)

 

-As photos show, the build quality is plastic.  VERY plastic.  Next to the K550 that I'm comparing them to they both look and feel cheap in my opinion.  Even the cable feels more plastic than rubber.  

 

-The earpads just barely surround my ears and are quite shallow.  The inner lining touches my pinna more often than not, but I find the fit to be quite secure so I haven't experienced any rubbing or other unpleasantness.  They clamp quite a bit but still feel sufficiently comfortable on/around my ears.  The headband pad, however, is more rigid than I would like and weight distribution is focused on the center.  After a bit of playing/squishing I don't find it overtly uncomfortable, (though, I haven't sat down with these for long) but it is ever-present and the feeling lingered after taking them off.

 

-Isolation seems good, but I honestly think my properly-fitted K550 does a better job.  I cannot comment on leakage at this time.

 

-Sound-wise, this is an excellent headphone in my opinion.  Very clean and controlled.  One of the most grain-free presentations I've heard from a headphone.  They're not detail monsters as they hide recording flaws well, but nothing seems to be "missing" either.  They're incredibly easy to drive, even in passive mode. (they're about two volume clicks apart when being fed by my Macbook)  The presentation is a bit forward and the soundstage size is merely adequate, but tonal balance seems very even with only a slight boost to the bass.  This isn't a warm sounding headphone, but I have reservations to call it "bright" as well.  Tonal weight is very satisfying and what I would consider to be darn-near perfect across the board.  No too thin/thick violins, no chesty/nasally vocals, no bass drum "taps" or "booms."  It just sounds correct to my ears... (good) speaker-like.  Transients are fast and instrument placement is exhibited with impressive precision.  Individual notes are conveyed with a natural roundness without being soft/dispersed.  Almost everything about the sound of these headphones seems extremely deliberate and well thought out.

 

-I haven't ran these through an amp yet... and I honestly don't feel the need to.  This is, without a doubt, the BEST my MacBook Pro's headphone output has sounded.  Pairing it with Amarra, I really can't ask for much more from such a simplified setup.  I will, however, be running them through the Icon HD before shipping them back to see if it helps increase soundstage width. (the DAC is great in this respect)

 

-I have zero need for the active noise canceling circuit, so I didn't bother listening to it.  However, I did do some A-Bing of the passive vs. active modes.  Firstly, there is a slight audible hiss when the internal amp is turned on.  It's so faint, however, that I suspect most listeners over the age of 30 wouldn't even pick up on it.  It's also a perceivable non-factor when actually playing music through them as I don't find the background to be any less "black" than when they're in passive mode.  In terms of tonal balance, I honestly don't see an advantage of one over the other.  I expected the bass in particular to gain some presence, but there really wasn't any more injected into the presentation.  I think Tyll's comments about the change in signature with the electronics on referred to the noise canceling setting exclusively.  What the 'phone does gain with the internal amp engaged is some added air around the instruments and increased attack.  I don't feel that there was a perceivable gain or loss in soundstage size.  I listened to the amped setting for a fair bit without fatigue, but I currently prefer the passive mode.  The active mode isn't unpleasant to listen to, but I prefer the less-forward passive presentation.  As I stated, passive does seem to give up some instrument separation (still very nice, however) but I don't feel as though this is missing unless I'm switching back and forth and prefer its smoother presentation.  However, using a more "veiled" player like iTunes could benefit greatly from the amped mode.

 

I've only spent a few hours with these, but so far it's a mixed bag.  Honestly, their out of the box condition really irked/disappointed me, feeling their plasticky build quality shook my confidence, and having comfortability quirks really put me off before ever pumping sound through them.  Once I did, however, it wasn't love on first listen... but that's because of how un-hyped these are.  If they're at all a specialist, they're one at cleaning up poor recordings/sources.  They are not, however, a bass/treble/etc. specialist that plows "wow factor" into your ear canals.  The word that was conjured within the first minute was "natural..." and that's a very good thing.  I've spent the majority of my time analyzing passive and active thus far, but when I just forgot about settings and listened to the music that sentiment held up.  I consider the M4U 2 to provide a very good headphone listening experience, but due to the soundstage size I would stop short of calling it one that replicates being in a listening room with loudspeakers.

 

Due to quality issues, these are going back.  That much is certain.  I'll likely keep them through the weekend to nail down a definitive opinion, but thus far I would say that most would be best served waiting for the M4U 1. (if it is, in fact, coming to market)  With my preferred source, I don't think that the internal amp offers me what I consider to be a worthwhile advantage.  Furthermore, with the reported issues (the cracked headbands in particular) it's very likely that revisions will be made to future models.  If I find that these are suitably comfortable for long-term use and my opinion of passive vs. active holds, I could very well be sitting tight for PSB's all-passive offering.


Edited by Curly21029 - 8/1/12 at 6:02pm
post #110 of 535

I personally chose not to let the quality issues put me off.  They have a two year warranty and PSB has already said publicly that they'll cover the known headband issue even beyond that time period.  I personally find them to be perfectly comfortable and sound superb, and the headband issues (mine also creak and have the cracking) just aren't enough for me to return them.  Were I dealing with a lesser warranty or unknown company I'd be hesitant to keep them, but given the warranty and that its PSB I'm good keeping mine.  

 

The B&W P5, by contrast, is a SUPERBLY built headphone with excellent materials and quality that I just couldn't enjoy listening to, so it went back.  

post #111 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolkManiac View Post

I personally chose not to let the quality issues put me off.  They have a two year warranty and PSB has already said publicly that they'll cover the known headband issue even beyond that time period.  I personally find them to be perfectly comfortable and sound superb, and the headband issues (mine also creak and have the cracking) just aren't enough for me to return them.  Were I dealing with a lesser warranty or unknown company I'd be hesitant to keep them, but given the warranty and that its PSB I'm good keeping mine.  

 

The B&W P5, by contrast, is a SUPERBLY built headphone with excellent materials and quality that I just couldn't enjoy listening to, so it went back.  

 

Don't get me wrong, I have a great deal of respect for PSB acknowledging the issue and detailing a clear plan to support the product.  Most manufacturers downplay, refuse to acknowledge, or even outright tout a widespread defect as a performance attribute. (as was the case with Panasonic's plasma televisions a few years ago... ugh)

 

On the one I received, the right side is perfect.  It's the left side that creaks/pops at the hinge every time I take them off, put them on, or reposition them on my head.  It's excessively loud/sensitive and I'm fairly certain it's an outright defect.  Does yours creak on one or both sides?

 

As an aside, I greatly disliked the P5 that I demoed.

post #112 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curly21029 View Post

 

Don't get me wrong, I have a great deal of respect for PSB acknowledging the issue and detailing a clear plan to support the product.  Most manufacturers downplay, refuse to acknowledge, or even outright tout a widespread defect as a performance attribute. (as was the case with Panasonic's plasma televisions a few years ago... ugh)

 

On the one I received, the right side is perfect.  It's the left side that creaks/pops at the hinge every time I take them off, put them on, or reposition them on my head.  It's excessively loud/sensitive and I'm fairly certain it's an outright defect.  Does yours creak on one or both sides?

 

As an aside, I greatly disliked the P5 that I demoed.

 

I know you addressed this to PolkManiac but I just wanted to tell you that I'm with my second pair and I have four small cracks accumulated thus far (I had returned the first pair because of this) and also have the intermittent creaking which I agree is quite annoying. I don't like this brittle plastic and Beats lookalike physical design. I do love the sound.

 

I hope you don't bail on the PSB. It really is a wonderful sounding headphone once you have run it in for a few weeks, and it really tells the truth about your gear and recordings.

 

Sounds like you will also develop cracks (since you have the creaking) so you will have the option of returning them, and by that time they should have the new headband. I'm waiting for my dealer to advise me when they get them but I would also prefer to return them for the M4U1 (passive version).


Edited by Beagle - 8/1/12 at 6:16pm
post #113 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beagle View Post

 

I know you addressed this to PolkManiac but I just wanted to tell you that I'm with my second pair and I have four small cracks accumulated thus far (I had returned the first pair because of this) and also have the intermittent creaking which I agree is quite annoying. I don't like this brittle plastic and Beats lookalike physical design. I do love the sound.

 

I hope you don't bail on the PSB. It really is a wonderful sounding headphone once you have run it in for a few weeks, and it really tells the truth about your gear and recordings.

 

Sounds like you will also develop cracks (since you have the creaking) so you will have the option of returning them, and by that time they should have the new headband. I'm waiting for my dealer to advise me when they get them but I would also prefer to return them for the M4U1 (passive version).

 

Thanks for chiming in.  And no, I'm not "bailing" on these, but as of now the search continues.

 

Interesting that you have a preference for the M4U 1.  I'm assuming that you're happier with the passive performance vs. active, then?

post #114 of 535

Uggh. There's a few of you folks with these issues on the headbands that I'm now becoming a bit paranoid. (and it's not just PSB branded cans with this problem AFAIK, so maybe a more widespread problem with headphone makers using plastics ?)

 

Just out of curiosity, for those whose have cracked, did they crack when you were putting them on your head? If so, how much did you have to stretch them to put them on your head? Or did they crack while putting them down on a hard surface, or during travel, etc.

 

I did hear a "snap-like" sound the first time I opened them up from the case, but haven't used the case or folded them up since that time. So I (just now) folded mine up, and when opening them they snap into the open position, but luckily I've still not heard any creaking/cracking. I think that probably explains the snap-like sound I heard when I first got them...?

 

A visual inspection of my set reveals no cracks or drama with the materials. I wonder if there was a small series of them that are having this issue. I expect mine were from an early production run since I got them in April. My Serial # is: 17010-100950, and again thus far, no issues.

 

I'm in love with the sound of these headphones and want to keep them, so I sure hope longevity wont be an issue for me, or any of us, once the headband gets sorted.

 

edit: my brain doesn't work, bolded the edit above


Edited by DnB4Guy - 8/1/12 at 6:59pm
post #115 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by DnB4Guy View Post

 

Just out of curiosity, for those whose have cracked, did they crack when you were putting them on your head? If so, how much did you have to stretch them to put them on your head? Or did they crack while putting them down on a hard surface, or during travel, etc.

 

Cracked fresh out of the box.

 

Another quick note on performance, I was doing some more listening last night and decided to A-B active/passive once more.  I stand by my sentiment that frequency response goes unchanged but they become more forward in active mode.  I don't think there's any perceivable gains in width, but I did detect improvement in vertical soundstaging when active.  Both modes are nicely cohesive, but I will admit that there's a slight sense of lifelike engagement that's lost when running passively.  Again, without directly comparing I don't think that it's missed and haven't yet tried an external amplifier.

 

Does anyone have any tips for achieving maximum comfort?  The earpads/cups are fine.  Although they sit on my ears they're evenly distributed and don't move, so I experience no discomfort while wearing or taking them off.  The headband's convex curvature, however, is unpleasant and counterintuitive.  They exert pressure directly on the point of my cranium.  After some time, I actually feel like they're giving me a headache and this feeling persists for a bit after taking them off.

post #116 of 535
Boy you're unlucky. I've 1/2 travelled with mine on the plane, shoving it into the airplane magazine pouch even (Economy class - nothing big). Still no cracks.

About SQ, agree with you about active mode (as per my review). But seems you like passive mode more than me.
post #117 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

Boy you're unlucky. I've 1/2 travelled with mine on the plane, shoving it into the airplane magazine pouch even (Economy class - nothing big). Still no cracks.
About SQ, agree with you about active mode (as per my review). But seems you like passive mode more than me.

 

"Unlucky"... story of my life. tongue.gif (kidding)

 

Glad to read that yours are holding up well.  Sure I haven't had a good experience, but more often than not the negatives of anything are put under the microscope and amplified to an absurd degree on Head-Fi.  I in no way mean to rail on the M4U 2.  It sounds great, but *I* have experienced issues... that doesn't mean that everyone else will. (and I'm confident that most won't given the pedigree of the manufacturer)

 

I really do enjoy the passive mode on these.  I can't comment on combining it with a portable source as I have no need to, (the KSC75 is the perfect blend of quality sound and expendably cheap pricing... it won't be supplanted in my stable) but out of a Macbook it's driven perfectly.  I normally HATE running directly out of its headphone port, but as I've previously described the PSB does a phenomenal job of cleaning up a poor source/content.  Heck, I'm even content listening to high-bitrate MP3s with it. *gasp!*

post #118 of 535
Quote:

Originally Posted by Curly21029 View Post

 

Interesting that you have a preference for the M4U 1.  I'm assuming that you're happier with the passive performance vs. active, then?

 

I just use them in passive so I can use them with my amps. In active mode, you bypass any contribution the amps are making, the phones are amping themselves. I'm also hoping that the M4U 1 will have addressed this cracking problem with an upgraded, softer plastic headband.

post #119 of 535

So no thoughts on a replacement iPod cable that has the volume controls?  I may just order the cable from V-Moda and see what happens

post #120 of 535
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolkManiac View Post

So no thoughts on a replacement iPod cable that has the volume controls?  I may just order the cable from V-Moda and see what happens

 

Sorry, I haven't visited my friend with the M-80 yet to test.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › PSB M4U 2