Price: $199 (MSRP $299)
Wear style: On ear (Closed back)
In Short: The gold standard when it comes to portable headphones. The HD-25-1 is a favorite among DJs because of its excellent noise isolation.
The HD-25-1 has been around for a long time but is still one of the best portable headphones on the market. Sennheiser has recently given it a refresh in the Amperior, but it costs nearly twice as much and the phrase “bang for your buck” can be tossed out the window at that point considering this version is almost as good.
The construction is very sturdy. Nearly every part of the HD-25 is user replaceable and it takes only a few minutes to disassemble them. The rugged build won’t make you hesitate to toss them in your bag. The downside here is that they do not fold or swivel which can be annoying if your bag is overflowing.
The HD-25 is not very fashionable (at least by my standards), but there are customization options out there such as the UK company CustomCans. They can tack on any artwork or paint them whatever colors you might want. Check out the design below:
The clamping force on the HD-25-1 is pretty strong but this contributes to the fantastic isolation. Outside noise reduction and leakage is only a step below most in-ear headphones(!). The clamping force is not painful, but some people have reported developing sore ears after several hours of use. Worth mentioning is the “dual headband” which can split apart to better secure it on your head.
Sound-wise, the HD-25 is up there with the best portables. The sound is forward, balanced, and detailed. The bass impact is above average, the mids are well-textured, and the treble is nice and crisp. In terms of fidelity across the frequency range, the HD-25 is a monster at this price.
A few issues that plague the HD-25 are a lack of sub-bass extension and a small soundstage, but these are far from dealbreakers. The HD-25 is an excellent portable headphone and should certainly be considered if sound quality and durability are primary concerns.
|Color options||Black (Standard), Black/blue (Adidas originals), Fully customizable at CustomCans|
|Frequency Response||16 – 22,000 Hz|
|Total harmonic distortion||Less than 0.3%|
|Cable||5ft (1.5m) single-sided with L-plug|
|Included accessories||¼” (6.3 mm) adapter, carrying bag|