I've got the California Headphone Company stuff ... not so good IMHO.
Noontec Zoro - Page 5
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- 3,843 Posts. Joined 6/2001
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Actually, I think it's a pretty interesting headphone design-wise, but the sound is fairly colored and lacks control. A little better than the Fanny Wangs, but not much.
Hmm, okay. I'm still rather curious about them, but decidedly less so now. Thanks for the heads up!
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OK, tried a 75ohm impedance adapter with these tonight. Out my iphone NOT GOOD! But that is to be expected as it really does put to much resistance on these. Out of the iphone I had to really crank the volume and the headphones had a very unpleasant sound.
Out of my desktop amp it feels like the bass is tighter, more punchy and they might have a bit better mids (warmer and not as sibilant) and the treble seems a bit more detailed. I have a feeling I will be using the adapter when I am using my amp from now on and may even use it with some of my IEM's as well.
Hopefully I have time to do some A/B testing between these and the M80 later this week.
Well, I am not expecting it to be an audiophile phone. I suspect they are deliberately going after the mainstream segment which seems to be as much a matter of looks and design as opposed to pure sound. I have quite a few of the "big box" store headphones that will be in my next roundup. I was actually a bit surprised that some of the manufacturers wer willing to send review samples. Right now I've got four models from House of Marley and two from SOL Republic. I don't think you can blame some of these companies for wanting a piece of the Beats market. That's what sells and that's where the money is. Certainly Noontec was blatant about that with the Zoro and it's a huge surprise that they ended up with such a nice headphone. So, I'll be curious to check out the CHC Laredo and see how it stacks up.
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How do you find them in comparison the PX-200? Just curious...
Also, you might find this interesting. The guy who started Fanny Wang, Tim Hickman, has started a brand new company called California Headphone Company. Part of their approach is to make headphones that are not bass-centric like the FW and Beats, etc. They are supposed to be more suited to rock and country music as opposed to hiphop and techno. They are also trying to be more "retro" in their design and choice of materials, using stamped metal and real leather, etc. I'm going to be reviewing their Laredo model in the next roundup and with a list price of $99 USD it will be a direct competitor to the Noontec Zoro. I haven't recieved my review sample yet but they look promising.
A lot easier to seal for a start. Better bass in that it seems to attack with a little more slam. The PX200 also sounds slightly more 'steely' in the treble to me. I'm not a great fan of the Senn TBH and prefer the Zoro.
Ok, thanks. Actually the PX-200 is one of the few portable Senns I have not personally heard. I like the PX-100 II a lot, especially for a featherweight compact headphone. But overall I would say I enjoy the Zoro a bit more. I'm currently evaluating the HD229 and HD239 in the same roundup with the Zoro. Those are both very nice headphones and extremely comfortable. The HD239 has a bit more finesse and detail as well as a better soundstage than the Zoro. But still, I've been very surprised with how well the Zoro holds it's own against some very well-established competitors. Two others in this class that have impressed me are the new Beyerdynamic DTX 501p and the Ultrasone HFI-15G.
Gotta respectfully disagree with Tyll on this one. I recieved my review pair of the Laredos today and gave them a spin. Even OOTB they sound very good and the build quality seems excellent. I actually find them pretty similar in SQ to the Zoro. They have a bit more of a bass hump and a bit less texture in the mids. But still, very nice sounding and nothing like most of the "consumer" headphones. I will have them in my next roundup and I'm sure they will do well. I might give a very slight edge to the Zoro in SQ but the CHC is a far more original design. I'll see how they sound after burn in...
P.S. - Tyll, did you get a pre-production sample of these? From what I hear, they have only just started shipping this week and the other model is is still not available.
Edited by postrock - 9/11/12 at 2:27pm
Got them today (thanks, Amazon Prime!). Build quality and looks are really great.. yes, they're mainstream friendly.. but still, it's understated and clean. Also, they're very very comfortable for an on ear. Light pressure, the pads are above average quality. Nothing offensive, but not Stax O2 pads either . I only listended to them briefly but I was very impressed with the sound. Clean, clear, dynamic, and impressively balanced. No fart canon bass or shrill, sugar coated treble to speak/hear of, whatsoever. I can see why Tyll would have liked these.. great recco again, bud.. I'm enjoying them. For the $50 I paid for them.. they're a fantastic value.. even at $100, I'd say they're highly deserving of a purchase by audiophiles looking for something more fashionable with a sound that won't prompt the gas face.
I'll let these baby's marinate for a bit.. then surprise the wife...
only to steal them back for some extended listening on the desktop amp. muwahahaha.
More impressions & pictures coming..
how do you find the noise isolation on these headphones. I'm going to use them mostly during my commutes to and from school and i was wondering if its suitable for that?
Yeah, me neither, never heard of them.
Then some distributor in New Jersey contacts me and says I should hear them.
"They're like the Beats Solo HD but better!"
Yeah right. Using those headphones as a reference sure gets me excited ... not.
Then they show up. Look a LOT like Solos. Sound and measure like pure gold though, baby!
Woot! This is a seriously good headphone.
They're available here at Amazon.
hi Tyll, big fan! i've been following your reviews on youtube and on innerfidelity and i bought the monoprice headphones mostly based off your recommendation! i was wondering where did you do most of your listening with the zoros? could i possibly use them for commuting? bus/ trains/subway. i love the design of them, their portable (folding up feature) detachable cable. but all that seems counterintuitive if it can't isolate sound when your on the go?
Hehe yeah, you should see some of their earlier models: http://s.dealextreme.com/search/zoro.html?category=106
They weren't at CES back in January so they didn't get a lot of press coverage (if any). The earlier models popped up on my radar around March/April or so, and it's been kind of a soft launch since then. Didn't try them though because OMG they looked so much like Solos that I had no reason to expect anything significantly better. Bet you were thinking the same thing when you first saw 'em right?
I hope they're ready with some decent inventory lying around. A good recommendation from you tends to - I don't know - make sales shoot through the roof. I mean, look what happened to the Monoprice cans!
is that link to legit zoros?? i know it says genuine but still i noticed that back then dealextreme was selling fake beats, after that i'm kinda doubtful of the quality of their products, especially since they have A and B versions of the beats depending on the manufacturer. but its the lowest price i see on the web right now, soo thats the only plus i see