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Huge Comparison of [almost] all the Best Bluetooth Headphones - post your own comparisons here

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by giogio, Dec 15, 2014.
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  1. Datawraith
    Oh, you're quite right; the Bose isn't sound cancelling. That's alright though, he's not a fan of ANC.

    Would you or anybody else be able to offer their opinion on comfort comparing the two (after the ATH has the Brainwavz earcups)? This is the aspect that is the most important to him.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Sonic Defender Contributor
    I had the WS99BT with and without the H5 pads, and it was very comfortable either way, more comfortable with the H5 pads, but the stock pads are quite comfortable, just not as plush feeling.
     
  3. MICHAELSD
    Unfortunately there really aren't a lot of genuinely excellent wireless headphones on the market. Bluetooth technology has reached the point where AAC can at the least sound as good if not better wirelessly, yet not a lot of headphones exhibit this. But if I try to spend $100-$150 over what I paid for the Solo3 for a better pair, I find there isn't a no-compromise option. Crossfade Wireless ticks all the boxes except comfort. Sennheiser's Momentum 2.0 seems like a solid option, but the lack of AAC codec support and the inability to disable active noise cancelling are huge deal-breakers. I'm willing to pay for a perfect ten in sound quality, comfort, and wireless connectivity, but the option just doesn't exist at this time. I'm sure in a year or two the market will change drastically and that 2017 will be the year of amazing wireless headphones, but for now I stand by my consensus of the Solo3 being the first practical wireless headphone even though I've been looking into upgrading to a pair with better sound quality, and can't find a pair that I'd confidently pay the inflated Bluetooth pricing for.
     
    Not that I'm dis-satisfied with the Solo3's sound quality (easy 8/10), but I'm a little annoyed having another headphone I can't enjoy for long periods without discomfort.
     
    At least jumping from the open soundstage of the ATH-700 that very much preferences treble over bass to the Solo3 is a completely opposite experience, in a positive way where both bring out different details in music.
     
  4. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Well there are excellent Bluetooth headphones available, and while I get that these offerings aren't for your tastes, this is a subjective hobby and others may disagree with your assessment. I think the B&W P7 is excellent, as was the B&O H7 and finally so is the ONKYO H500BT. None of those are without issue, sure, that is a given, and yes you can debate about the diminishing's returns for extra expense, but that doesn't mean that others won't find some of the headphones that you aren't impressed with to be excellent. Each to their own righ?
     
  5. MICHAELSD

    Honestly the only issue with those options to me is price. At the $400 price point for the B&W and B&O I'd want best-in-class sound, and while they both receive excellent reviews I'd want sound that rivals the best wired headphones. We're getting close and I think we'll start to see that very soon.
     
    Yes, to each their own. If I wanted to have one headphone for home and traveling I'd go with one of those options.
     
  6. Sonic Defender Contributor
    They do rival wired headphones at the same and similar pricing. Why should a $400 wireless rival say a $2000 wired headphone? They aren't even really designed for the same type of listening. I don't think people buy $400 wireless for pure, critical listening, they buy it to have high quality sound wireless. And yes, we will see this equivalence soon as you say, but the prices will also become equivalent so the top of the line Bluetooth headphone will start costing as much as any wired flagship.
     
    I think when you look at how people use a Bluetooth headphone, at least based on my sense and experience, they aren't trying to find reference grade sound, they know there will be some compromises. A great deal of the sound signature comes not just from the driver, but how they are tuned to work with the enclosure and obviously non-portable headphones that don't need to have a battery and electronics in the cups have an advantage tuning wise. Not to mention, portables are generally smaller and lighter so a Bluetooth headphone is already at some disadvantage. That said, the sound signatures achieved with Bluetooth can be excellent and some may even prefer them, or at least really, really like them.
     
    I'm not disagreeing with you completely, I'm just saying that in my view a true portable Bluetooth headphone doesn't have to equal or compete with stay at home, full sized headphones.
     
  7. bladefd

    For me, it clamps right at top of my head. Within about 3-4hrs, it starts hurting until I remove them. *Sigh* :frowning2:

    I can get used to the ear pads. It is the top padding that truly irritates me :triportsad:
     
  8. 1wyseman
     
    3 to 4 hours without ever taking them off is a long time for anything to be on your head...[​IMG]
     
  9. Techfixation
    I've actually gone back to the Onkyo H500BT's due to the comfort of the P7's!

    I'd hoped by now that the P7's would have become more comfortable but after just a couple of hours use I feel I can't keep them on my head any longer without them becoming irritating. It gets to a point where it's actually distracting me from the music or film I might be watching! It's not terrible, I've worn worse but it's enough that I may even end up selling them!

    Interestingly though having gone back to the Onkyo's I think I may actually prefer them to the P7's even though initially I'd have put the P7's ever so slightly in front! As I mentioned before both pairs are sonically incredibly similar but the Onkyo's definitely take the edge when it comes to comfort and there's just something I prefer about their sound, especially while watching movies with them. The P7's do have slightly better staging being Over Ear, but I think prefer the mids of the Onkyo's and it feels like they have a tad more sub bass too.

    It was great to be able to sit back and listen to the Onkyo's for hours on end without the need or thought that I may need to remove them! You can still feel they're there unlike some others I've tried, but they're certainly not uncomfortable or distracting in the way that the P7's are.
     
  10. MICHAELSD

    While I see your point and willingness to compromise for a Bluetooth headphone, I've created a checklist of what I believe makes a Bluetooth headphone next-generation. Bluetooth headphones aren't new, and what I mean by next-generation is that they're practical being as good or better than wired alternatives; thereby, separating the Bluetooth headphones of the past, present, and "future." It's time for a new type of Bluetooth headphone.
     
    MICHAELSD's checklist for a practical "next-generation" Bluetooth headphone (in order of importance)
     
    - Sounds as good or better than the wired alternative.
     
    Since headphone manufacturers are able to use their own DACs and amplifiers in Bluetooth headphones (rather than the DAC/amplifier built into a phone or computer), they have the opportunity to put a high-quality amp into their wireless headphones that makes them sound the absolute best they can be without the need for separate gear.
     
    - Lossless support for multiple codecs like AAC, aptX, etc. so that the headphones work perfectly with iPhone/Android phones.
     
    - Solid connection with no drop-outs, even in a city with a myriad of Bluetooth devices. 
     
    Again, Apple's W1 chip solves this as well as...
     
    - Sufficient range to move at least a room or two away from the source device with no issues.
     
    - 20+ hour battery life with many more hours of standby; however, 40+ hours is ideal.
     
    20 hours is the minimum because it's enough time to last even if a user forgets to charge for a night or two. 40 hours is the ideal target because it's the best of what can be achieved with today's technology, and should last most users a week or two between charges.
     
    - NFC/Apple W1 support for seamless pairing.
     
    - Applicable to headphones with active noise cancelling: the feature should be disable-able to save battery life, and for users who prefer to forgo it. Looking at you, Sennheiser.
     
    Note to all headphone manufacturers: please continue focusing more effort into headband/earpad/earcup comfort. I'm personally finding that very few on-ear/over-ear headphones are comfortable for long periods.
     
  11. Coop
     
    Also, shielding to prevent having your eardrums swap places when walking through a detection gate in a shop would be a nice feature. My AKG K830BT was particularly sensitive to this. Loud noise, everytime I walked in/out of a shop.
     
  12. MICHAELSD

    Hmm, that's odd. Metal detectors at stores cause driver interference? I typically don't wear headphones while out around people since I like to take in the environment and be open to conversation so that's a non-problem. Also, I've found some great songs/artists from music played in malls.
     
  13. Coop
     
    I prefer to not wear headphones in public, but I regularly experience things like sensory overload. It happens mostly in environments with with lots of unpredictable elements, such as people. In those situations, putting on headphones and regaining a little control over the input has an awkwardly soothing effect on me. Usually enough to allow me to remove myself from the situation that triggered it. 
     
    Now the AKG K830BT are the only BT cans I used in a while, but they were very much affected by this problem. To a level where I couldn't stand using them (I mean, when trying to stop sensory overload from happening, the last thing you need is sudden loud noises injected directly into your ears). So I gave them to my dad and he likes them. 
     
    I recently upgraded my DAP to an AK70, which has BT support, so I'm looking into my options to give BT another go. But so far I haven't really found what I'm looking for (which is basically a BT MSR7). 
     
  14. bladefd
    Are there any new BT headphones coming out soon for $400 or less? I'm thinking of returning the P7 due to comfort issues. I really love how they sound, but I start feeling them after 2hrs. Around 3hrs is when I have to remove them as they start to hurt on top of my head. I guess my search continues!

    I like the Beoplay H9 but $500 is too far past budget. My budget is $350, extended it to $400 already. No chance for $500! :p
     
  15. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Try the H500BT, or the H7 for instance, both more comfortable, and both sound great.
     
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