HD-25-1 / Ultrasone Proline 750 - Comfort, Portability (?)
Apr 9, 2008 at 1:53 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 5


100+ Head-Fier
May 3, 2005
I'm somewhat tempted to try the HD-25-1, but I have a few reservations:

1) Comfort. I'm wary of supra-aural headphones (seem to get painful after an hour or so,) but I have never been dissatisfied with the comfort factor for circumaural headphones (RP-15MC being a possible exception.)

2) Sennheiser sound. To me, it sounds impressively neutral. So neutral, in fact, that I would literally fall asleep to my favorite grungy rock music. It's a little too flawlessly accurate for my tastes, I think. (Previous comments were in reference to HD595s). On the other hand, I found Grados a bit too harsh/shrill (SR-60.)

3) Portability. People say these are one of the best portable headphones, but do these even "fold up"? That's a big one in my book, when it comes to portability.

I do really like the relatively low profile the HD-25-1 cast, with their plain/simple look. They also are reportedly very durable.

The main alternative I'm considering are Ultrasone Proline 750s, which beat out the HD-25-1s in most of my considerations (comfort and sound) but the 750s aren't highly recommended as portables. --they do fold up nicely, though, don't they? It seems to me that at a pretty reasonable price comparison, the 750s are overall a much better value. How do they measure up as portables?

Any feedback is appreciated!

EDIT: by the way, I read through this thread (http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f4/ult...-25-ii-273693/), but there doesn't seem to be much discussion of portability. One particularly relevant comment is:


Originally Posted by Phraxos
This is a no-brainer.

The Prolines easily outclass the HD-25-II's in every category except portability (and perhaps isolation). Unless you want a on-the-go phone (which you can upgrade with a wide selection of after-market cables for a truly top-class portable performer), get the PL750.

Seems like Phraxos is saying that if portability is a factor, 750s are a bad choice. How do you 750 owners out there feel about this? Do you mostly agree?
Apr 10, 2008 at 6:02 PM Post #2 of 5


1000+ Head-Fier
Feb 5, 2006
Listening to mine out of a 1st Gen iPod Nano (listening the Dillinger Escape Plan - Ire Works right now)

1) Comfort: The pads are pretty cozzy, I am still using the pleather ones that came with and haven't put on the velour pads that come with the newer HD-25-1 II models (which are identical except for the extra pads). The clamping force could be killer for some people. Let's put it this way, these are more comfortable by a good margin that the Sony MDR-7506 and a Koss Pro 4AA. Mostly it is because they are pretty light which allows you to set the drivers down a bit lower of the head band for a wider head grip, then by opening up the split headband it adjusts a bit lower height to fit on your head. Its a tight fit, and depending on your ear types might be more of a bother. I can still wear them for hours with some minor discomfort and adjustment every so often. They aren't the HD-555s in the comfort arena..

2) Sound: Impressively neutral? I'd describe them as balanced with a recessed mid. However, to me this is a balance that works well for their application. They aren't overly bright phones, but are brighter then most Senns that I've listened to (HD-555, HD-280s). These take a bit to burn in, but are incredible headphones. They can be driven from anything and still deliver great sound quality. In that they are dependable. Again, important for their application. They are perhaps the most efficient headphones in their class. Regards to rock and even metal, yes, its warms them down with that Senn 'blanket'. But its has great slam for percussion and bass. A very enjoyable experience for these genres.. Superb for electronic too.

3) No fold up, but you won't be doing much of that if you're wearing them
They have a small profile, and slip into a laptop bag well, or can crunch into a big pocket without worry. They have an urban street look, and you can wear them around your neck without looking like a dork or a DJ on the run. I wouldn't wear them to the gym, but for a trip outdoors walking around... bliss.

The big advantage of the HD-25s are their versatility. This is what makes them pro in my opinion. I use them for engineering applications, DJing and at work.

Best headphones I've owned. I'm sure there are better sounding, but its well into the enjoyable and audiophile territory.
Apr 10, 2008 at 6:40 PM Post #3 of 5

Denver Max

100+ Head-Fier
Feb 6, 2007
The Proline 750s have been going with me almost everywhere since my Shure SE530s were stolen, and I would say that in most situations they are portable.

The foldability is nice for throwing them into a bag. They isolate decently, but not as good as an IEM of course (or as a DT770).

They also can be hard to position on the head if you are very active in your portable situation. For example, when I'm on metro or walking around, they're fine, but if I have to run to catch a bus/rail, they'll sometimes fall down to my neck. Also, I ride my longboard with them on sometimes, and they bounce around a little bit.
Apr 10, 2008 at 6:48 PM Post #4 of 5


06 National Meet Co-Coordinator
100% THD and S/N = 0
Jan 17, 2003
I used the HD 25-1 as my main portable headphone for a while. From a practical point of view they are pretty convenient if you're going to use a relatively large headphone as a portable. They don't take up much room in a bag and they do have the split headband which is nice. With the velour pads they are quite comfy but I found my ears got perspired with the pleathers.

From a sound point of view I was not terribly happy. The stock steel cable gives them a congested sound. I improved the sound significantly by adding a Headphile cable. The HD 25 can fit the HD 6xx cable, both stock and aftermarket. However, it does not stay in well and in order to keep the cable in place I needed to put a little bit of sticky putty. After a while, it just got too much to deal with as it still would not stay all the time, especially if I moved around too much. Also, the putty eventually loses its stick and gets gummed up.

I own the Proline 750 cans now as my main closed cans at home. The sound is significanlty better than the HD 25, although at twice the price you would expect that. However, these are even bigger and bulkier than the HD 25s so I wouldn't even consider them as regular portable cans. But I've seen people use K-1000s portably so go figure.
Mar 4, 2009 at 2:45 AM Post #5 of 5


100+ Head-Fier
Oct 30, 2007
oo recessed mids, don't like that.

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