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Oppo PM-3 : The Portable Planar - Impressions

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  1. Uros
    Thank youu :) And what about pads wear off after a year? Has that been changed? Or just lonely unsatisfied owners on amazon :)
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2017
  2. FastAndClean
    you can put aftermarket pads very easy, but in my pair there is no wear and they are around 2 years old
  3. Charlie Norwood
    So I have a pair of first run PM-3s. About a week after I got them they were backordered for 3+ months. Anyway, the point is, however long these have been available, I've been listening to them, and I think I can comment on them pretty definitively at this point.

    I'll start off saying these are end-game closed back over ears for me. I'm sure I could get better results at the $1500+ range but it's not worth it to me.

    The second thing I'll say is that almost all reviews of the PM-3 are misleading, if not just flat wrong. So I can understand how Tuxan could come to this conclusion, even though I completely disagree with it. The PM-3, even in late 2017, are the best bang for you buck over-ear headphones on the market.

    Without taking too much more time, here's what you need to know about the PM-3 to make them work for you and your money.

    1) They need power, in fact, they crave it. Ignore the marketing about being easy to drive, they are, but you aren't going to hear what the rest of us that love the PM-3 hear. (That being said, if you love them straight out your iPhone or MacBook Pro, then good on you! Keep on rocking.)

    2) These are the flattest consumer headphones you're likely to find. And because almost no one knows what a flat response actually sounds like, it's going to seem like subdued bass and rolled off highs. If you want the PM-3 to shine, you need to EQ them. And holy crap do they respond to EQ. Someone above mentioned they handle +20db on the sub bass like a champ and I believe them. At the very least an amp with a bass boost (like the Oppo HA-2) is a must. But adding EQ to raise the veil on the vocals/horns will blow your mind. They aren't going to sound bad by any means without eq, but you're depending a lot on your source quality and how a particular track is mixed, if you forgo eq.

    And that's it. In 1:1 tests with a lot of other headphones using something like just the dragonfly, with no EQ, the Sine and many others you could compare the PM-3 to, aren't going to sound as fun or engaging. But if you're willing to add an amp and EQ for your musical preference, you're not going to find a better pair of headphones anywhere near $400.

    Obviously folks are welcome to disagree with me, this is just my feelings after like almost 3 years of listening to these guys daily.

    Currently my sources are: Macbook Pro > iFi idsd Black Label (goddamn get this amp, it's an absolute beast) > PM-3.

    Oh, here's my basshead EQ settings. A parametric EQ will get you even better results, but the free plugin i was using stopped working so it's the old fashioned 10 band graph for now.

  4. Charlie Norwood
    Do you know of any aftermarket pads that actually fit? After 3 years they are starting to wear down, still comfortable but don't look great. And no one that I can find is selling anything that explicitly states it fits on the PM-3.
  5. FastAndClean
    you can put pads over the cups like that
  6. FastAndClean
    yes pads from NAD Viso HP50 fit over the cup
  7. Charlie Norwood
    i guess but... nah.
  8. FastAndClean
    but i lot of pads can fit, just be sure that they are smaller than brainwavz pads for example
  9. FastAndClean
    you can remove the plate that hold the pads and instal the new ones with a glue to the plate then
  10. Uros
    So, in your opinion with Dragonfly red (I dont have more to spend on amp/dac), for previously posted genres of music, you think Pm3 would sound better then Meze's?
  11. Uros
    I am keen to go with Dragonfly Black but if there would be a big difference in sound q. i would buy DFR. But ha2se or other amp/dacs are to expensive for me right now.
  12. FastAndClean
    for me they are better, neutral, fast, very low harmonic distortion
  13. FastAndClean
    they are easy to drive, i think dragonfly black will be enough but if you can, go with dragonfly red to have more headroom on top if you will use bass EQ
  14. Uros
    Thank you FastandClean, I appricate your advice .. :) But still dont know how Meze managed to have more Bass and treble when their F response is 15-25000hz and Oppo's are 10-50000hz, but nevermind.. :)
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2017
  15. FastAndClean
    those numbers are just marketing, and more bass does not mean lower bass in frequency response
    phthora likes this.
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