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Over-Ear item created by TeddyG, Jan 7, 2011
Pros - iPod control
Cons - Ear cups are leather (ears sweat)
I love the iPod control. Good all around sound but they are a tad bass heavy. The fit is good but the ear pads can make you sweat here in Las Vegas.
These headphones are excellent portable headphones. In this category, I would rank them quite high.
The headphones do well in all categories. The highs and lows are good, and the mids are warm. The bass is amplified unnecessarily, but I would consider them to be better quality than the Beats Studio or Solo.
The design is minimalistic and refreshing when compared to some of the weird designs today. The headphones are sturdy, but can also acquire some smudges.
The cups are a bit smaller than what they should be, but they provide good isolation. Also, people around you cannot hear anything you're listening to even at a decent volume. Overall, these headphones are well worth the money if you're in the market for portable headphones.
Pros - clean and crisp sounds if equalized, iPhone remote/mic
Cons - bass quantity, technical design
My first impressions were simply horrible! The bass quantity is way too much.
So in the following review I will have equalized the iPod app in iOS 4.3 with the "less bass" option.
Build quality: Rubbery plastic, fake leather, fake chrome made out of plastic, ... typically made/designed in America! Nice looks at first, but cheap materials on closer looks. The design is a cross of Phiaton's PS320 and Bose's On-Ear. It's not too bad, but it's still very far from anything high quality or luxurious.
The cable feels nice and the plastic buttons on the remote respond well.
My only two actual concerns with the design are that the earcups don't rotate far enough (they remain bent so that your ear has more pressure in the back) and that they're not foldable (the cable is two-sided, Klipsch could have easily added some more joints, really).
Bass: Uncontrolled, echoed, bloated, rumbling, extends even to the higher mids, ... IF not equalized!
However, if you take the bass by the balls and bring it down on its knees, you will have a nice musical thumping bass with nice punchy impact that extends very deep.
But again, I must warn you! If your source does not provide an equalizer, stay away from this beast! The bass rumbles. A lot!
Mids:The overall sound has a great energetic feel, similar to that of the Panasonic RP-HJE900 in-ears. Even though recessed, guitars sound powerful. (Especially female) voices are crystal clear and are highly detailed without being too sensitive about production quality. I'm not saying that RHCP's Californication sounds good, but the body and richness of the sound can overshadow a few mishaps. Even though definitely not designed for that purpose, the Image One does offer adequate analytical capabilities for the price.
IF not equalized, the bass extends fairly deep into the mids, not only darkening the sound, but even ruining the sound of electrical guitars: Dear Klipsch, if you have a song starting with a guitar intro, people do not expect it to rumble! Thank you!
Highs: Similar to the medium frequency range, the Image One does a nice job creating a rich and full bodied sound. Occasionally I experienced a small sparkle. On the other hand, I've noticed some high notes were cut off. This is a phenomena I only know by Bose's cheapest On-Ear: cymbals that are supposed to sound like "TS" end up as a flat "SH". This is not often the case (with the Bose always) which leads me to believe that the high frequency graph is not linear at all. However, I hardly noticed any sibilance, which, regarding the extension, is very good.
Luckily, the bass does not affect the highs.
Timbre is bad, IF unequalized (sorry, but I can't emphasize this enough)! The overall sound is too dark and the low mids and bass are a rumbling mess without any chance of instrument separation or recognition. Maybe my ears are a little too touchy, but even with the iPod equalizer settings set to "less bass", quantity surpasses that of the HFI-780 - it's really that strong.
Equalized, I really enjoy the overall sound presentation. Timbre and soundstage (the sound has a nice amount of air) are good for the price.
The remote works well, calls are a little too quiet (but the volume buttons are easily accessed) and the mic is alright. It's nothing worth rewarding, but it works well, both with the iPhone 3GS and 4.
To conclude, my main gripe with the Klipsch Image One is the killer amount of bass that has an awful powerful rumble. I've had an eardrum perforation once and I can say that the Klipsch sounds exactly like that! Why I would pay 150 € for a boxed version of a default is beyond me!
Luckily, the Image One does have potential and it just needs some help to get into that direction. A fun and rich sound awaits the durable eardrum. Fans of high fidelity will be ashamed by Klipsch for the mainstream youth product that's been thrown on the market, even more so by the popularity.
Sources that do not provide an equalizer should stay far away!
You get a decent headphone, average build quality and a good enough headset.
Audio Quality: 1.5/5 unequalized, 4/5 equalized
The rumbling bass is just way too much. It has the most amount of bass I've ever heard.
Looks are good but some decisions, like the earcups or missing joints, are confusing.
A lazy copy of Bose. Pressure on the ears is awkward and the soft cushions still manage to crease my ears.
The Image One is fairly new and it's on sale already. Looks are good and sound can be very engaging. The high resolution and strong presentation make a great couple. I also value the headset.
Price paid: 69,95 + 5,95 € (new)