Pros - Compatible with most sources, very comfortable, warm balanced sound, detachable cable
Cons - Isolation and sound leakage average
There are a few brands that could be considered a powerhouse in the world of audio and headphones and beyerdynamic is without a doubt one of them. beyerdynamic has been family owned since its founding in 1924 and are regarded as one of the best when it comes to headphones. The original T5p was released way back in 2010 and was a fully closed, portable headphone with Tesla technology. Today I'll be doing my review of the current tour with the beyerdynamic T5p 2nd generation, a 32 ohm, closed-back designed for use at home or on the go.
This product was loaned to me as part of a Southeast Asian tour for the purpose of an honest review. All opinions and observations are my own, based on my experience with the product. I’d like to thank Peak Fusion for the opportunity to test the Amiron Home. Special thanks go out to Mateen, Kamal and Jannavie for making this review possible. Peak Fusion website beyerdynamic product page T1 2nd gen on Amazon
Headphone design (operating principle)
Headphone frequency response
5 – 50,000 Hz
Nominal sound pressure level
Circumaural (around the ear)
Cable & plug
1.40 straight cable (double-sided), OCC 7N copper, textile braided, 3.5 mm jack plug with 6.35 mm jack adapter
Net weight without packaging
Packaging and accessories:
In a typically styled beyerdynamic box comes the T5p 2nd gen. Open that up and just like with the T1 2nd, some may be disappointed to find a fabric covered, portable carry case in place of the great aluminium one that housed the original.
Once opened we find the headphones, 1.4 meter textile braided cable and a 6.35 mm screw--on adapter. The unboxing was bittersweet as I was underwhelmed by the accessories but at the same time it meant I could get straight to listening. The cable is much more manageable than the 3 meter version that comes with the T1 but it's still a big old chunky thing which doesn't shout "portable" when you feel its girth and weight. It is however of a high quality and is resistant to tangling.
Build, comfort and isolation:
The T5p 2nd gen is constructed very similarly to the original but there have been some changes, most notably pleather on the headband in place of the original's leather and now the cable is detachable. There have also been some tweaks to the sound tuning which the company claims is
There's no denying that the classic yet modern styling of this headphone is timeless just like its predecessor as it still looks absolutely gorgeous. Taking it out of the carrying case for the first time was like lifting a precious piece of treasure from a pirate's chest. It feels as good as it looks with its robust materials and components that were handcrafted in Germany. It's extremely comfortable with just enough clamp force to keep them in place without mashing your skull. The pleather covered ear-pads are a generously thick and super comfy memory foam. The T5p has angled drivers, similar to the T1. This is to enhance the soundstage but because they're non-centric there's ample room for your ears so they don't come in contact with the hard plastic baffles. The company is obviously confident in the build quality of these because they offer a generous 5-year warranty.
Isolation is good as you'd expect from a closed-back design. Sound can still get through but once the music starts you can easily become lost in your own little world and become oblivious to your immediate surroundings.
PC/MusicBee > Audinst HUD-MX2 > T5p Shinrico D3S > Arcam irDAC-ii > T5p FiiO X1ii XDuoo X2 Because they're just 32 ohms these don't really need amping but obviously you'll get a better result using a good DAP or headphone amplifier but a smartphone can happily power these.
Music used for testing (all flac files):
Katatonia - Night is the New Day Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 3 Usher - My Way Storm Corrosion - Storm Corrosion (Special Edition)
For a closed set these have a brilliant soundstage that is spacious and wide with a vivid sense of 3d positioning and imaging. Just like with the T1 and Amiron Home I was surprised with the warmth that the T5P brings. That's not to say they're dark but...words escape me. For some reason I'm thinking of a nice hot meal on a cold winter's day. All the flavor,heat and texture is there and it's welcoming, enticing and comforting. You want to wrap your hands around it and savor the experience. Okay enough with the bad analogies, let's move on. Bass is slightly elevated, as with the T1 but it's just a slight boost and is still what I would consider balanced. There's plenty of punch and texture that's extremely well controlled and there's no bleed into the lower mids. Bass extension is great but I personally would have liked just a touch more quantity in the sub-bass regions for some added rumble in things like "The Vagabond" from The Witcher 3 - Wild Hunt official soundtrack. That's my personal preference though, as it stands the lows are spectacular. Mid bass is not super fast but has a natural decay that makes it sound organic and natural. The midrange is the star of the show again here being rich and detailed without sounding too forward. Instrument separation is superb as is resolution and detail. Male and female vocals are treated to natural, rich tonality. Everything from the pure, high notes of Marjana Semkina of iamthemorning from their Lighthouse album to the deep, gravely voice of Rory Graham (Rag'n'Bone Man) in "Disfigured" on his Disfigured EP are beautifully reproduced and loaded with emotion. Lower mids have some added warmth which gives them some body but they're still startlingly clear yet smooth at the same time. Treble also has a smooth approach that extends really well. It's crisp and detailed with a light airiness and without any harsh peaks so it's also non-fatiguing and perfect for lengthy listening sessions. It's similar to that found on the T1 2nd gen and Amiron Home. It seems that beyerdynamic has gone for an overall smoother approach with their latest offerings which I for one am very appreciative of. That's not to say they can't be analytical because if you listen for them, the details are all still present.
T5p 2nd gen vs beyerdynamic T1 2nd gen ($1,199) USD:
Physically the T5p is very similar to the T1 all the way down to the cups. Both headbands share the same materials and characteristics but the T5p has the slightest extra bit of clamping force which makes sense since they're designed to be portable so you're more likely to be moving around with them. You can tell that beyerdynamic's engineers put a lot of thought into the entire design process that goes further than just optimizing the sound. Unlike the T1 the T5p is a closed back system so they lose some of the airiness and soundstage in comparison. They both share angled, decentralized drivers to improve the soundstage but because of its semi-open traits the T1 comes out ahead in this department though the T5p is still impressive for a closed set. The ear-pads are different too with the T5p having pleather covers in place of the T1's velour which means they get warmer on your ears but also improve isolation and reduce sound leakage. These two headphones share a similar bass signature that is slightly north of neutral with the T5p having a slightly crisper edge. I find near equal pleasure from both of these headphones and for me personally were I to buy either it would be a tough decision as you have the semi-open benefits of the T1 coupled with its demand for serious amplification vs the T5p's versatility which allows you to pair it with almost any source without sacrificing quality and use it on the move.
T5p 2nd gen vs beyerdynamic Amiron Home ($599 USD):
Designed for portable use the cups on the T5p are smaller than those on the Amiron Home which means for some with large ears they might not be as comfortable. Because they're a closed design the T5p don't have the same sense of air yet they still have an impressive soundstage. Being just 32 ohms the T5p are much easier to drive and can be driven from a phone or budget DAP. The Amiron Home sounds a bit more balanced, while the T5p has a bit more weight and sharper edge to its bass and just a little more energy in the treble. Just like the T1, the T5p are not as relaxed as the Amiron but that's probably better when you're on the move. The Amiron Home is a super comfortable and slightly more relaxed presentation and at 250 ohms need amplification to sound their best. Apart from sonic differences other considerations would be semi-open vs closed back design. If you have a quiet environment and don't need to worry about sound leakage the Amiron Home is truly luxurious but if you ever want to leave your listening chair the T5p offers more versatility.
Visually stunning, versatile, comfortable, balanced, resolving, 5-year warranty. Do I need to say more? In case you haven't noticed, I like this a lot. In the past if someone had suggested I pay over $1000 for a closed-back, 32 ohm headphone I wouldn't have taken them very seriously. After my time with the T5p however I totally get it. In fact these are now on my wishlist and I find the thought of life without them a little saddening. The fact that you can unplug them from your high powered headphone amplifier and stick them straight into a budget DAP is a huge bonus but of course the biggest draw is the great sound. If you're looking for a TOTL closed phone, definitely consider the T5p.
These were loaned to me by Polar Audio for review, I always try to write honest reviews. These have had over 50hrs of burn-in before I received them so I do not know if they have changed in that time.
The Bit Opus #1 > T5p 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation
The Bit Opus #1 > Optical Out > Matrix Quattro II > T5p 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation
Transducer type: dynamic Operating principle: closed
Nominal frequency response: 5 - 50,000 Hz
Nominal impedance: 32 Ω
Nominal SPL: 102 dB
Sound coupling to the ear: circumaural
Weight without cable: 350 gram
Cable: 1.40 meter, double-sided, detachable OCC 7N copper conductors, textile braided
Connection: gold vaporized mini stereo jack plug (3.5 millimeter) & 1/4 inch adapter (6.35 millimeter)
Accessory: luxury-grade hard carry case
Warranty: 5 years
Packaging, Build Quality and Accessories:
The packaging is similar to the T1 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation, with a very nice outer box with quality pictures on it, on the back you will find the specifications and a list of accessories, on the sides key features are explained. Inside the box you will find the guarantee and manual papers on top, and underneath this you will find the carry case which holds the headphones. Very attractive packaging, one that tells you all you need to know about the product and it also protects them during transit.
Build quality is what you would expect from Beyerdynamic, high quality laser etched panels on the cups, the cups are plastic but soft touch plastic. The arms are metal, the headband is covered in soft pleather, the earpads are also very soft pleather with memory foam. The cable is detachable and uses a 3.5mm jack each side, the cable clicks in to place nicely and the cable itself is covered in fabric an uses 7n OCC copper. The jack is a little on the larger side, and won’t fit phones with bumper cases, but this design may change somewhere down the line.
The L and R connectors are distinguished by colours on the jack and also the left side has 3 raised dots, the same with the headphones, there is a L printed in on the inside of the slider with 3 raised dots. The cable exits at a slight forward angle rather than straight down.
Included accessories are a 3.5 – 6.3mm jack and a carry case. The carry case is not too big, and much better than the aluminium one the old T5p came with, the headphones fit in with the cable attached which is great. The 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation don’t come with an extension cable for home listening, I believe due to cost and also you can get an optional 3m cable for these, and a 4-pin XLR balanced cable. Overall for a full size headphone, nothing else is needed.
Comfort, Isolation and Cable Noise:
The comfort is excellent, they clamp just enough to create a good seal without causing discomfort. The pads are soft and deep, the drivers are angled my ears never touch the baffle. They are not too heavy for portable usage and the headband pad is well padded, I find these comfortable for longer listening sessions. As with any closed back headphone you may experience your ears heating up, but these don’t suffer hugely from this due to the spacious cup size.
Isolation is good for a closed back full size headphone, perfectly adequate for daily commutes but if you are planning on using them in noisy environments you may want to look for something that isolates more. There are 2 bass ports, one on the back of each cup, these do cause minimal leakage, providing you are listening at normal volumes this should not cause any problems. Overall great for a daily portable headphone, and also if you need a closed headphone at home to block out unwanted noise or to not disturb your partner these would fit the bill (providing you don’t listen too loud)
Cable noise is present but not enough to really cause a problem.
Split in to the usual categories, with a conclusion at the end.
Those who disliked the original T5p can rejoice, these have bass. Just like they improved the T1, the T5p 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation have more bass but without going over the top. I think the amount of lows these have is just north of neutral, they have very good extension and body with enough punch when called for to make them a little more fun to listen to. Listening to Metalcore they can keep up with the double kick drum without lagging, acoustic is full bodied and natural, bass guitars are articulate, the only time I would want any more would be listening to EDM (EQ if you need to). For all round listening I find the quality to be excellent, very natural decay and presentation with enough quantity to keep them from sounding thin. There is nothing lacking in the lows, and they also don’t spill over in to the mids.
Airy, spacious, detailed yet natural is how I would describe the mids. Vocals cut through the mix cleanly with only a hint of extra body, the mids sit perfectly in the mix with a very smooth presentation. Guitars how power and authority, both male and female vocals fair evenly with no sibilance to be detected. The detail retrieval is incredible, you can hear every nuance yet they are not presented harshly. Not a lot to say about the mids, they just sound right.
The highs no longer have the famous Beyer peak, instead they have smooth extension and great detail and presence without harshness. They are also very accurate, I really enjoy the highs, I am a bit of a treble head and these satisfy my craving without any annoyance or fatigue. Most users won’t have a problem with the highs on these, they shimmer and sparkle is incredible, they extend effortlessly and are always audible without being too much.
Soundstage is huge for a closed back headphone, the separation and air is also very impressive, you will be immersed in a very 3D holographic sound with these.
Source: These work well out of portable devices, but do fair better with high quality players. Also they may sound fine with MP3 320kbps, but play some FLAC and you can hear the difference.
Conclusion: Well they definitely listened to what the users wanted, and have made one hell of a closed back headphone. Ok they cost £849 which does make them one of the more expensive portable headphones, but these also work fantastically at home. They are run off a portable source with ease, but scale up very well with good equipment. I do not ever feel like these are lacking at any end of the spectrum. They have a balanced and natural sound, with a hint of warmth, but this slight warmth does not alter the incredible detail retrieval or ever make these sound congested. I actually found these to work wonders with Metalcore music (Suicide Silence, The Devil Wears Prada etc...) I have never had a headphone sound this good with the above music.
I am seriously tempted to get a pair, I cannot imagine anything this versatile sounding any better than these do. If I were only allowed 1 pair of headphones, I think these would be them. I love the T1 2[sup]nd[/sup] Generation, but I might actually prefer these on the whole, and you cannot take the T1’s outside. Fostex TH-500rp are great but again not portable, as are one of my all time favourite headphones the HE-6. These offer real high end sound quality, in a portable friendly package.
Rating: 10/10 (the sound is fantastic, the build and everything about them screams quality)
* click on images to expand.
While looking at all the headphones I’ve tested and reviewed in the last few years, you can see a rather uneven split with in-ear monitors dominating the list. I have nothing against full size headphones, but do have a preference for a portable setup. Often full size headphones don’t fulfill this requirement since a number of them are either too bulky, or have open back design, or not easy to drive from a portable source. Furthermore, if you are in the market for a flagship full size headphones, many of them continue to rise in price and still require a pair up with a powerful source/amp to make them shine. Almost feels like you have to spend a fortune in pursuit of audio perfection.
Two years ago when I had a chance to test the original T5p, I was impressed by its design and sound, and also remember a bit of a shock when I saw its premium $1.4k price. Fast forward to today and we have “premium” releases from other manufacturers in $3k-$4k price range where they even offer budget versions with water down performance and build quality that still cost arm’n’leg. I kept my eyes open for new Beyer announcements and was excited to hear about the release of T1 2nd gen (T1.2) followed by T5p 2nd gen (T5p.2), both with an improved sound signature, an updated design, and a reduced price. Does this sound too good to be true? Lets see what I found after taking the portable T5p.2 version of this Tesla roadster for a test drive!
Unboxing & Accessories.
My review unit arrived without an exterior packaging box, but from what I have seen on-line and my previous experience with other Beyer products, you can always count on a detailed cover image on the front and a complete list of accessories and technical specification on the back. I also remember my unboxing reaction of the original T5p when I discovered a rectangular aluminum case inside of the box which I referred to as “Deal, or No Deal” case It certainly looked great, but I didn’t find it practical enough for daily transportation.
I’m glad Beyer revisited this important accessory, and changed it for both T5p.2 and T1.2 models, turning it into a more practical and still luxurious hard shell case with a soft felt exterior finish and form fitted secure interior mold to accommodate T5p.2 even with cables attached. Besides the point that some manufacturers don’t even include a carrying case or provide only a drawstring pouch, others do come with a case but require cable to be removed in order to close the top. This usually puts extra wear'n'tear on the connector attachment.
Here you have plenty of room for T5p.2 with attached cable and no worries about cable bending around earcup attachment, also room to store the rest of the cable (either if you are using stock 1.4m or optional extended 3m), and even a small elastic pocket attached with velcro for 6.3mm adapter so you don’t lose it. There are also two attached ribbons on each side to keep the case top from swinging all the way open. Since you can’t fold or rotate earcups to store these headphones flat, the case is not very compact but still more portable than aluminum box.
I also received an optional 3m extended cable with a threaded adapter intended for a desktop use. Beyer offers another optional cable with 4-pin XLR connector for a balanced connection with external dac/amp equipment. Not necessary the accessory, but the included 5-year warranty certificate is something you don’t see everyday being offered with headphones. This demonstrates a high level of German engineering confidence where Beyer putting their mouth where their money is.
I usually reserve this section for IEMs with removable cables, but here I’m making an exception because it’s actually a big deal. One of the new T5p.2 features, the same with T1.2, was the implementation of double-sided detachable cable going to each earcup with 3.5mm TRS connector in a slim housing. Beyer chose to use OCC copper conductors, with 7N rated purity, dressed in a textile braided tight shielding. This stock cable stands out with a premium look, a little on a thicker side but still flexible enough for a portable use. The only issue here is some microphonics, probably due to a braided textile shield. It’s more noticeable when music is idle and you are moving around, but not as much when you hit the play.
With a main intention of portable use, the default cable is 1.4m in length and 3.5mm jack is not threaded with corresponding 6.3mm adapter that slides right in. One thing I'm not too thrilled about is connector being a bit too thick to accommodate rugged phone cases - I had to push hard the headphone jack through my Note 4 case (a slimmer connector collar would fix that). The extended 3m cable has a threaded jack with corresponding 6.3mm adapter for a more secure attachment. All the connectors have metal housing and you will also find a small and sturdy plastic y-splitter combining L/R sides while keeping individual ground references separate 'til the headphone jack. The connector plugs going into earcups are color coded with white rings on the Left side and red ones on the Right side, and with left housing strain relief having 3 bumps for a "blind" ID. Due to an angled non-symmetric placement of Tesla drivers inside of earcups and a symmetric exterior design, such ID bumps are quite useful when putting T5p.2 on in the dark.
I know some people might wonder why two sided cable with headphones intended for a portable use on the go? The answer is very simple – to keep Left/Right sides separated for an optional balanced wired connection and to increase reliability by eliminating wires going through the headband which usually required with a single earcup cable connection. Yes, it’s not as convenient dealing with 2 earcup wires when you are walking around, but it’s a small price to pay considering these are audiophile quality headphones with an option for balanced cable connection.
Being a fan of replacement cables, because I do hear the difference in sound when dealing with high end premium conductor material, having removable cables opened up the opportunity to test my TWag v3 Modular (pure silver) with T5p.2 in both single ended and balanced configurations. Due to a modular nature of this particular cable, I didn't have to get a new one and just added a modular extension with a pair of slim 3.5mm connectors for my test purpose. I can confirm that retrieval of details did scale up with TWag cable, and sound became a little brighter and more analytical while low end became more articulate and tighter. But if you prefer a little smother and more organic tonality, especially at the top, then stay with a stock OCC copper cable.
The option of removable cable gives you a choice, and I assume that sound signature of T5p.2 was probably tuned around stock OCC copper cable to give a sound slightly warmer tonality with a smoother top end. But if you want to push the retrieval of details further, pure silver or gold plated silver cables will do the trick. Also I noticed a little improvement in soundstage expansion when switching between Single ended and Balanced ports of AK120ii (and switched TWag modular to 2.5mm TRRS balanced connector). At the same time, single ended 3.5mm TRS output of PAW Gold yielded nearly the same wide soundstage as I have experienced with 2.5mm balanced from AK120ii. Also keep in mind that you can get an optional cable with XLR balanced connection to pair up with external amp.
In comparison to the original T5p, the exterior design of T5p.2 remained nearly the same, and overall it still has Beyer signature look with large round earcups and a wide steel yoke with "T5p" stamped out at the split of y-fork. The earcups itself have a very elegant look with a premium laser etched aluminum cover plates on outside and soft touch hard plastic housing around it. Facing back, each earcup has a single 5mm vent which I suspect is a culprit of sound leakage. At the bottom of earcups you have angled 3.5mm ports which bring the cable forward over your shoulders instead of pointing straight down.
Earpads are soft, not very deep, filled with memory foam covered by a butter soft protein-coated synthetic leather material which doesn't absorb sweat and easy to clean with a moist cloth. I spent hours wearing T5p.2 and my ears never got hot or sweaty. The earpads look like they are removable which makes me curious to try replacement with either velour material or something deeper in design. With Tesla driver placed asymmetrically angled back toward ear canal, there is plenty of room inside of earcup and my ears never touched the drivers. Even so earcups are a bit on a large size in diameter, they don't stick out too much and actually have a very slick shape for a comfortable use on the go.
The steel yoke slides tight into headband and has a small degree of rotational adjustment, just enough for a comfortable fitment of earcups around your head. The headband height adjustment has a precise soft click and round markers for a visual feedback. I was a bit surprised that headband plastic end-caps where the yoke goes in didn't have assembly screws, perhaps being press fitted. Also, in there you will find on a right side "Made in Germany" and on a left side a serial number with "L" label and 3 bumps for a touch "blind" ID, as I mentioned before - very important to put headphones on the correct away.
On the inside the headband has the same memory foam and butter soft synthetic leather material as found on earcups, and on the top there is a strip of felt material with "beyerdynamic" stamped name/logo. The steel spring band inside of the headband is flexible where I can stretch it nearly flat or fold it looped, and it returns back to the original shape. As a matter of fact, I folded it a few times just to tighten the clamping force.
T5p.2 has a very comfortable fitment and with 350g of balanced weight distribution you forget these are even on. Clamping force is just perfect and along with soft earpads it creates a good seal with a noticeable sound isolation. You will not get a dead silent isolation which in my opinion perfect for outside use to keep the awareness of surrounding environment. My only gripe here is sound leakage which prevents using T5p.2 in places where you require to stay dead silent (like on a couch next to my wife ). It's not quite as bad as semi-open, but perhaps at "quarter-open" level where you can still hear some muffled sound 3-4 ft away.
After a proper 75hr burn in, I hear T5p.2 as having a balanced signature and a neutral tonality that has a slight tilt toward warm organic color. It has a high level of transparency with a dynamic sound performance which remains coherent not only at my usual comfortable listening level but also as I went up and down in volume. It remained consistent with all of my sources, either using summit-fi level PAW Gold or just a Galaxy Note 4 smartphone, where I actually found T5p.2 to be quite forgiving even with poorly recorded songs.
In more details, T5p.2 has a very resolving dynamic balanced sound with an excellent separation/layering and a neutral tonality. Detail retrieval is close to a micro-detail level yet not grainy or analytically-harsh (I refer to this as smooth micro-detail level). Low end extends deep down to sub-bass with a nice quality texture and a somewhat polite quantity, and a tight articulate mid-bass punch with a semi-fast attack, but not as much slam, while the decay gives it a more natural feeling. Bass is well controlled, accurate, balanced, and with absolutely no spillage into lower mids. Lower mids have a nice body which adds a touch of warmth to the sound. Upper mids are leaning more toward smoother analytical level (the best of both worlds), not too bright or too harsh. I was very impressed with clarity and details of vocals, both male and female, with an organic hint of smoothness. There is absolutely no sibilance or metallic sheen. Treble has a good extension, a nice detailed sparkle, crisp definition, no piercing frequencies or exaggerated brightness, and a polite level of airiness. Definitely great for an extended non-fatigue listening.
Soundstage is 3D holographic, for a closed back headphones the expansion is way above average in all 3 directions (width/depth/height). Imaging has a nearly 3D placement of instruments and vocals with an excellent separation and layering effect. The angled Tesla drivers create a natural sound space, in no way does it sounds artificial, and when I close my eyes it felt like I was in a room listening to speakers rather than headphones. The soundstage expansion came through shining especially when watching the movies where I felt like being right in the middle of the action.
In terms of a pair-up, 32 ohm T5p.2 is very efficient and easy to drive with authority from most of the sources - these are truly portable headphones that don't even require a powerful amp, though can certainly benefit if you have one. It paired up great with PAW Gold and X7, having more analytical brighter sound. Using L5 Pro and AK120ii - the sound is very detailed with a warmer low end and a little more bass slam, and actually 120ii AKT5p EQ preset did some interesting smoothing of the sound. It performed great with both X5ii and X3ii, though the sound was a little less dynamic and soundstage shrunk a bit. I also enjoyed how it paired up with my Galaxy Note 4, though sound was warmer and less resolving, but with Note 4 + HA-2 dac/amp (set to high gain) it scaled up with higher resolution and improved detail retrieval. In general, unlike some other flagship demanding or high impedance cans, you can make T5p.2 shine even with mid-fi sources.
Comparison to other headphones.
All the testing was done using PAW Gold as a source.
T5p.2 vs EL-8L - EL has a thinner sound, sub-bass doesn't extend as deep, mid-bass is not as fast or tight and overall it has less bass quantity, lower mids are thinner, upper mids are similar in terms of retrieval of details and clarity, except T5p is a little smoother and more organic, while EL is brighter and has some metallic sheen. Treble in EL is a little thinner and brighter. Soundstage width is similar but T5p has more depth and height. EL has much better isolation and nearly no sound leakage, its earcups rotate for flat storage but it's heavier for portable use. T5p sound has more body, and it's more balanced, more organic, and sounds more natural.
T5p.2 vs PM-3 - Low end has a similar tonality, but T5p mid-bass is faster and tighter, and overall bass is more controlled with a better separation from mids. Lower mids are similar, while upper mids in T5p are more detailed and have more clarity. Also, T5p treble has a better extension and better definition. PM3 is smoother, warmer, more organic, less detailed. T5p is a lot more detailed, more dynamic, with a better layering. PM3 soundstage has a similar width but in comparison to T5p it has less depth and height. PM3 is more portable with rotating earcups and slim storage case, and it has better isolation and no sound leakage in comparison to T5p.
T5p.2 vs R70x - a lot of similarities in sub-bass extension and quantity of mid-bass, though T5p has a faster attack and bass is a little tighter, while R70x is more relaxed. Very similar lower mids with a body that adds warmth to the sound, but the biggest difference is in upper mids where R70x is smooth, darker, more organic, and less detailed, while T5p shines with clarity and details. Also, T5p has a slightly better treble extension and a little more sparkle. Soundstage has a similar open sound (impressive for closed vs open back!), but I still feel that T5p edges it out due to a brighter and more detailed sound which enhances the perception of width and depth.
T5p.2 vs Momentum 2 (wireless in wired mode) - M2 has deeper sub-bass with more rumble, slower mid-bass, and overall bass performance is not as tight. M2 lower mids are similar, upper mids are less detailed, not as bright and sound is a bit more artificial in comparison, while treble extension and upper frequency sound quality is similar. M2 sound is more v-shaped and not as dynamic or layered, while T5p is more balanced, more neutral, more transparent, and with better retrieval of details. Keep in mind, in this comparison I was using M2 Wireless in wired mode with a cable.
T5p vs T5p.2 - I wasn't able to compare them side by side and this is only by memory, but I recall 1st gen having a more anemic low end performance with rolled off sub-bass and less mid-bass quantity. Upper mids of 1st gen were a little brighter and a bit more analytical, maybe even harsher. Don't remember exactly the treble, but I think it was similar. In terms of design difference, 1st gen didn't have removable cable, and had a real leather earpads and headband padding.
Prior to this review, I was satisfied with my budget and mid-fi full size headphones for everyday basic listening needs, and left high-end listening experience to multi-BA IEMs/CIEMs. It wasn't even my intention to embark on high-end full size headphone journey, but after taking T5p.2 Tesla roadster for a test drive I arrived to a conclusion that I could be looking at $1k Giant Killer (crazy I even mention "$1k" and "giant killer" in the sentence). I'm very impressed with T5p.2 balanced sound signature and neutral tuning, with its low end extension and smooth (yet energetic) top end, with its great transparency and retrieval of details, open-back like soundstage expansion, and a solid 5-year warranty. While sound leakage, especially at higher listening volume, and stock cable microphonics knocked a few points down from otherwise nearly perfect score, I was able to mitigate these issues with a replacement cable and by lowering my listening volume. This is just my subjective opinion, and considering how many people use open-back and semi open back full size headphones, for others T5p.2 will probably feel "silent" in comparison. I hope to continue with my full size flagship headphone journey, but for now have doubt that other flagship models at 3x-4x the cost will offer an improvement at the same rate. Will see...