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Oppo PM-1 Planar Magnetic Headphone Impressions Thread - Page 173

post #2581 of 3442

Walking up to the Oppo Table, I waited patiently for the next available headphone.  On the Oppo Stand was a PM-1 headphone that was displayed proudly.  They really are a marvel to look at.  A spot opened up and I sat in to listen to the headphones...  I wasn't aware that the PM-2 was there so my initial impressions kind of perplexed me...  

 

 

 

Before I continue further, I should note that it was noisy at the meet (as one could assume) and the music used to test wasn't mine.  Though I tried my best to find songs/artists/albums that I was familiar with (or closer to what I am familiar with).  

 

Oppo PM-2 Impressions

 

The first initial impression was that the headphones were sweet vocally, and the treble was a little edgy.  The low-end had a thorough punch to it that offered good impact.  The bass body wasn't the largest, however, and sub-bass texturing wasn't as strong as I'd want it.  In essence, the midrange as a whole seemed a thinner (in contrast to the PM-1).  I do have to say that the PM-2 offered great detailing throughout the treble though it did roll off quite early (more-so than the PM-1 IMO).  As implied, the treble on the PM-2 is more present and higher in quantity in contrast to the PM-1.  However, it is also edgier and surprisingly doesn't extend as far.  

 

 

 

I figured out I was listening to the PM-2 after I put it down and an Oppo rep was explaining to another person the differences between the two models.  I then took the PM-1 and took a listen.  I do have to say, I wasn't as perplexed this time...

 

 

 

Oppo PM-1 Impression

 

Leather pads were used on the PM-1 when I listened to them.  The PM-1 with velor pads was on the stand.  I did get a chance to hear them, but didn't do it as analytically as I normally do.  Nor did I get to make any comparison between them.

 

 

 

While I would describe the PM-2's sound as sweet and punchy, I would call the PM-1's warmer and thicker as a whole.  In a way, I felt the same way about this as I did when going from the RE-400 to RE-600 (HiFiMan IEMs), though the RE-600 is technically less accurate (in terms of neutrality), it was technically stronger.  The same can be said about the PM-2 to PM-1.  

 

 

 

As stated, the bass was thicker, but it also extended better into the lower octaves allowing it to have better depth and texturing, something I felt the PM-2 lacked on.  The midrange offered a smoothness to it, it wasn't as analytical as the PM-2 proved to be, however, it was still very detailed with great dynamics.  In the high end, the treble was subdued a bit, more refined (in comparison to the PM-2), but also a lot more detailed with better extension.  

 

 

 

PM-1 vs PM-2

 

For starters, the signatures are different (no speculation here).  That I could tell for sure.  The PM-2 had a sweeter midrange and more pronounced treble while the PM-1 was warmer and more refined in the treble.  The PM-1 also has more bass body and better extension.  With that said, the PM-2 is closer to neutral than the PM-1 is, however, the PM-1 is still technically better IMO.  

 

 

 

Do note that I was NOT the only one at the meet that felt the PM-2 had a little more treble energy than the PM-1.

 

Design

 

The PM-1 and PM-2 have some key differences in design.  For one, the housing on the PM-2 is indeed made out of plastic instead of metal.  The frame and headband still uses metal instead of plastic though.  The metal has changed though.  Any part of the PM-1 that has a glossy finish has been replaced with a sandblasted one.  Leather has been replaced with pleather...  And although I didn't hear it stated, I do not believe veneer pads are included with the PM-2.  

 

 

 

With that said, the main aesthetic queues of the PM-family are shared.  From a design/look, the PM-2 is my preferred design.  Yes, the glossy finishes stand out on the PM-1, however, compared to the PM-2, they look out of place.  Though I should note that the PM-1 does stand out more because of the glossy parts.  

Regardless, the PM-family is designed beautifully and they look great in person too.  Essentially, they look and feel luxury while holding a very strong industrial design.  

 

 

 

Comfort and fit

 

The pads that the Oppo come with are rectangular and create a smaller profile.  They fit quite comfortably and snug.  The weight didn't seem so much of an issue.  So initial impressions are positive in this regard, but I didn't wear it for that long.  

post #2582 of 3442

^

 

Much better write up than mine, tinyman392.  Impressed, and humbled about my own comments now.  Can't wait to hear these in a better environment.

 

And no, you are not the only person who commented about the treble energy change between the 1 and the 2.  Several people mentioned that.

 

And good to meet you today.  :D

post #2583 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffA View Post
 

For some, like me, who already have invested in the PM-1 based on Oppo's repeated representations that the PM-2 would be voiced exactly like the PM-1 but be of a lesser build quality, it is disconcerting to think the PM-2 might sound better than the PM-1, at least to some ears.

 

JeffA, we were in meet conditions, and it was a pre-production PM-2. I wouldn't read too much into yet--I'm certainly not prepared yet to come to any conclusions.

 

When you have a headphone with the same driver (which I think it is), in a similar housing and overall design, but with some differences in materials and construction, then any differences may appeal more to some and not as much to others.

 

I can say that, like the PM-1, the PM-2 seems to be shaping up to be one heck of a headphone, and for a substantially lower price than its stablemate.

post #2584 of 3442

How does the paint on the hinges hold up given it rotates so much?

post #2585 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggieSmalls88 View Post
 

How does the paint on the hinges hold up given it rotates so much?

 

There is paint on the hinges?  XD  I did not notice that :p I think (don't remember 100% while using them) with most of the moving parts, the parts don't actually touch each other while moving...  I could be wrong though. 

post #2586 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyman392 View Post
 

 

There is paint on the hinges?  XD  I did not notice that :p I think (don't remember 100% while using them) with most of the moving parts, the parts don't actually touch each other while moving...  I could be wrong though. 

Talking about overall wear, not usage. E.g. Sennheiser HD800s and older Denons were highly prone to paint chipping due to their coating. 

 

I try to take good care of my cans but I also use them in multiple locations so they don't always hold up as well as I intended. 

post #2587 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by jude View Post
 

 

JeffA, we were in meet conditions, and it was a pre-production PM-2. I wouldn't read too much into yet--I'm certainly not prepared yet to come to any conclusions.

 

When you have a headphone with the same driver (which I think it is), in a similar housing and overall design, but with some differences in materials and construction, then any differences may appeal more to some and not as much to others.

 

I can say that, like the PM-1, the PM-2 seems to be shaping up to be one heck of a headphone, and for a substantially lower price than its stablemate.

 

So what you're saying is, I should buy the PM-2 and then go to a local cigar shop, buy a humidor. Then tape the oppo logo on the top?

post #2588 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggieSmalls88 View Post
 

Talking about overall wear, not usage. E.g. Sennheiser HD800s and older Denons were highly prone to paint chipping due to their coating. 

 

I try to take good care of my cans but I also use them in multiple locations so they don't always hold up as well as I intended. 

 

Hm...  If I'm mistaken, there isn't any paint used on the Oppos...  Chips will happen, but it won't (shouldn't) change color or show too much as they use the natural color of the metal.  They either give it a glossy finish or a sand-blasted one. 

post #2589 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by jude View Post
 

 

JeffA, we were in meet conditions, and it was a pre-production PM-2. I wouldn't read too much into yet--I'm certainly not prepared yet to come to any conclusions.

 

When you have a headphone with the same driver (which I think it is), in a similar housing and overall design, but with some differences in materials and construction, then any differences may appeal more to some and not as much to others.

 

I can say that, like the PM-1, the PM-2 seems to be shaping up to be one heck of a headphone, and for a substantially lower price than its stablemate.

 

Good points. 

post #2590 of 3442

Thanks... I haven't seen it in person yet so just curious based on the pictures/videos I've seen.

post #2591 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffA View Post
 

For some, like me, who already have invested in the PM-1 based on Oppo's repeated representations that the PM-2 would be voiced exactly like the PM-1 but be of a lesser build quality, it is disconcerting to think the PM-2 might sound better than the PM-1, at least to some ears.

 

No need to worry about this. Our fingers are always on the pulse of the community, and we take all feedback seriously. As I said back several moons ago, we are always looking to improve our products, but we prefer to make changes which are actionary, not reactionary.

 

The PM-1 and the PM-2 share the same components, with changes in secondary components (housing, band and earcups being synthetic leather, OFC cables, etc) being the only differentiating factors. This means that all tuning can be done by simple manipulation of the earpads, rather than the headphones themselves.


This allows us great latitude in what we are able to do for you, the end customer, in terms of defining the overall audio experience from our current line of headphone products.

 

As a proof of concept, the PM-2 headphones auditioned at the Chicago meet uses the same driver and ear cup design as the PM-1. The only difference was the ear pads. It is always our intention to make our headphones be the best headphones we can produce, so it has always been our intention to make enhancements to the headphones which are not disruptive to the customer (ex. Having to replace/recall/refurbish the headphones to make them sound different). Being able to offer alternative/replacement earpads, the key component of our tuning, is a key component to ensuring the absolute best performance of our headphone products to our customers.

 

As part of this intention, we will be making the new earpad design for our current customers free of charge. You can continue to use your current leather earpads, the velour earpads, and in the future, the re-tuned earpads completely as your personal preference.

 

We will be announcing more details in the future on how to obtain these alternative/replacement earpads. So, in the interim, continue to sit back, relax, and know you are in good, capable hands.


EDIT: I seem to always post long comments after a big meal. Some language has been cleared up. You will likely see more edits from me in the future.


Edited by HasturTheYellow - 6/21/14 at 8:14pm
post #2592 of 3442

As part of this intention, we will be making the new earpads design for our current customers free of charge. You can continue to use your current leather earpds, the velour earpads, and in the future, the re-tuned earpads completely as your personal preference.

 

We will be announcing more details in the future on how to obtain these alternative/replacement earpads. So, in the interim, continue to sit back, relax, and know you are in good, capable hands.

Outstanding. I look forward to hearing more about possible tuning options. Thanks to Oppo for keeping us early adopters in mind. And I'm impressed by the flexibility built into Oppo's design, and Oppo's willingness to pursue and make available optional tweaks that might please certain listeners.

post #2593 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by jude View Post

JeffA, we were in meet conditions, and it was a pre-production PM-2. I wouldn't read too much into yet--I'm certainly not prepared yet to come to any conclusions.

When you have a headphone with the same driver (which I think it is), in a similar housing and overall design, but with some differences in materials and construction, then any differences may appeal more to some and not as much to others.

I can say that, like the PM-1, the PM-2 seems to be shaping up to be one heck of a headphone, and for a substantially lower price than its stablemate.

^ What Jude says.

Also, the difference in pad material between the two could cause the sonic difference the tester noticed, all by itself.
post #2594 of 3442
Quote:
Originally Posted by HasturTheYellow View Post
 

As a proof of concept, the PM-2 headphones auditioned at the Chicago meet uses the same driver and ear cup design as the PM-1. The only difference was the ear pads. It is always our intention to make our headphones be the best headphones we can produce, so it has always been our intention to make enhancements to the headphones which are not disruptive to the customer (ex. Having to replace/recall/refurbish the headphones to make them sound different). Being able to offer alternative/replacement earpads, the key component of our tuning, is a key component to ensuring the absolute best performance of our headphone products to our customers.

 

As part of this intention, we will be making the new earpad design for our current customers free of charge. You can continue to use your current leather earpads, the velour earpads, and in the future, the re-tuned earpads completely as your personal preference.

 

We will be announcing more details in the future on how to obtain these alternative/replacement earpads. So, in the interim, continue to sit back, relax, and know you are in good, capable hands.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffA View Post
 

Outstanding. I look forward to hearing more about possible tuning options. Thanks to Oppo for keeping us early adopters in mind. And I'm impressed by the flexibility built into Oppo's design, and Oppo's willingness to pursue and make available optional tweaks that might please certain listeners.

+1 for sure against this news.


Edited by HiFiAudio - 6/21/14 at 11:03pm
post #2595 of 3442
Great news to hear that oppo is working on an alternative pad for those in search of a bit more liveliness! The PM2 with possible some additional leather pads for when the mood strikes could be the ticket for me!
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