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Pioneer SE-MONITOR5 - Pioneer's high-end closed-back

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by xero1, Apr 26, 2017.
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  1. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Yes, many pages back now I commented about this as well. I also love how nicely you can warm them up and make them more fun sounding with an EQ adjustment to the bass.
    Benz-Fi likes this.
  2. Svatopluk
    I'm going on a year and a half with the SEM5, surprised how it never really became popular around here. I owned the TH-900 and MDR-Z1. After growing tired of both, (TH-900 recessed mids, MDR-Z1 sloppy bass bleeding into the mids) it was time for something different. I found the SEM5's balanced presentation right up my alley.
    The SEM5 may be a little weak in the bass department when used with a phone or tablet. However, when paired with the right amp or used with a little EQ, it's bass balances out next to perfect in my opinion
    Benz-Fi likes this.
  3. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Same here, I owned the TH900 and the Sony Z1R, although unlike your experience I didn't find the Z1R bass sloppy at all, I actually loved the Z1R. I sadly couldn't afford to keep the Z1R after a time due to leaving work to be at home with my daughter so I sold the Z1R and was able to pay a very nice friend slowly for a SEM5 he was selling literally as new. So my transition was from the Z1R to the Pioneer and yes, by way of comparison the bass on the SEM5 is certainly less foundational and prominent, but as you said, the quality is really good and very articulate. Again, as you said, if you want to pick the bass up it takes EQing nicely. I think the SEM5 is really under appreciated which is a shame. So well made as well. My only complaint is how difficult changing pads can be. That is a hassle and Pioneer should address that in the future with other models or versions.
  4. Benz-Fi
    I also owned the TH900 and still own the Z1R. Lately I've found myself being more critical of bloated bass and leaks into mid-range. So while I still love how fun and engaging the Z1R can be, depending on the genre and source I typically prefer the SEM5 and they seem to put out enough low end when powered with 8 channel dacs. -- I've been trying to compare them to my Focal Elegias and even then the SEM5 seems to be more open and wide. The Elegias also respond pretty well to EQ especially on the low department where they have a small advantage over the Pioneers.

    Totally agree on how difficult it is to replace the pads, I hope someone in Pioneer land is reading this and taking note.
    Sonic Defender likes this.
  5. Svatopluk
    My apologies guys and to Sony as well. It was the MDR-Z7 I owned and not the MDR-Z1R, never had the opportunity to hear the Z1R. I'm sure it would be on an altogether different level compared to the Z7.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2018
  6. speedwheels
  7. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Benz-Fi likes this.
  8. Beagle
    I concur.
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