The folks from Sennheiser graciously sent us a Momentum On-ear headphone for us to toy around with. I was personally excited to get my hands on this because it just looks really cool. So what can we expect from Sennheiser this time around?
Build and Design
Looking at the headphones, I immediately noticed the colors. 7 color schemes are available for the headphone: black, brown, red, green, ivory, blue and we have the pink one as you can see.
Next, I noticed the use of suede leather for the ear pads and the headband”¦the use of leather is a nice touch of class if you ask me. The “œsuede” leather is actually not suede but is in fact man-made leather called Alcantara. Alcantara was designed to have the smooth and soft properties of suede but made to be more breathable and durable. This material is used in luxury cars and other premium Sennheiser products. The material really feels nice on the ear, very, very comfortable without that sticky or hot sensation we find on other ear pads that uses smooth leather.
I also noticed the use of a stainless steel headband that looks like one solid piece. The headband is sturdy yet flexible and provides just the right amount of pressure on my ears. The headband has these loops where the ear pieces are attached. The ear pieces use a ball joint design to provide that custom fit. The ball joints allow us to slide the ear piece up and down the headband and also tilt the ear piece all around to follow the angle of our ears.
The Sennheiser Momentum On-ear comes with 2 audio cables. One cable has the iRemote that’s designed for iOS devices but also has limited functionality for Android devices. The iRemote also works as a microphone which effectively makes the Sennheiser Momentum On-ear function like a headset. The other cable can be used on devices that do not recognize the iRemote”¦so mp3 players, computers, and other devices will have to use this cable to work. Both cables are tipped with a 2.5mm on one end that goes to the headphone, and a 3.5mm on the other end that plugs to our devices. The tips are not gold plated though”¦I wonder why.
The headphone comes with a locking mechanism to prevent the audio cable from detaching easily. Basically, there’re small pegs in the headphone port and a matching grove in the audio cable. The locking action works by plugging in the jack and giving it a twist”¦make sure that the pegs line up with the grove found on the jack to make it work.
In general, the Momentum On-ear headphones deliver a balanced sound profile with a slight bass boost. What’s notable about the bass performance of the headphone is that it does not make the treble and mid-range less distinct or blurry. The bass reproduction is also punchy instead of getting dull thumps, which is nice. The treble doesn’t break my eardrums and the mids were hitting the right spots.
So let me try to describe how the headphone performed while listening to some songs. I listened to Chop Suey! from System of a Down (I love this song), the isolation of the drums, guitars and vocals were right on the money. The headphone also handled the drops from loud to clean whispers really well. I also listened to Blurred Lines from Mr. Thicke featuring Pharell, and as I expected, the headphones pumped phat beats without drowning out the vocals.
Do note that this pair does not come with noise cancellation, but I found that it could easily drown out office noises.
- Impedance: 18 Î©
- Frequency response: 16″“22,000 Hz
- Sound pressure level (SPL): 112 dB (1 kHz/1 Vrms)
- THD, total harmonic distortion: < 0.5% (1 kHz, 100 dB SPL)
- Contact pressure: approx. 3.2 N
- Ear coupling: Supra-aural
- Jack plug Cable 1: 3.5 mm low profile angled plug
- Jack plug Cable 2: 3.5 mm straight plug
- Cable length Cable 1: 1.4 m iPod®/iPhone® cable with integrated smart remote and microphone
- Cable length Cable 2: 1.4 m cable for computers, phones, music players and any device with a headphone output
- Transducer principle: Dynamic, closed
- Weight: 160 g (including remote)
- Load rating: 200 mW
Comparing this with the Sony MDR-XB400, I found that the Sennheiser headphones lose as far as bass goes”¦but it loses by a small margin. What’s better about the Sennheiser is that the bass doesn’t drown out the treble and mids unlike the MDR-XB400. The bass quality is also different between the two, the Sony’s deliver a wide duller thump whereas the Sennheiser’s produce a punchier and crisper bass feel. The build quality on the Momentum On-ear cannot compare to the all plastic MDR-XB400, especially with all the high-end materials that Sennheiser used to make this headphone”¦but the price difference is quite wide.
Something that’s closer to the Momentum On-ear’s price range is the Blaupunkt Style. The Blaupunkt Style is more expensive than the Momentum On-ear, but it does not mean that the Blaupunkt Style is better. As a matter of fact, I’d pick the Momentum On-ear over the Blaupunkt Style, because it just sounds better and looks like a high-end product brought about by better craftsmanship. Plus, I really like the vintage look of the Momentum On-ear. On the difference in sound quality, you might recall that I described the Blaupunkt Style sound as though it was boosting the vocals and consequently did not work well with some music genres. The Sennheiser Momentum On-ear on the other hand produces a more balanced sound profile and dishes out more bass than the Blaupunkt Style.
The Sennheiser Momentum On-ear is available for Php11,290 at Sennheiser retailers. With the amazing aesthetics, high-end build quality, and superb sound profile ““ this headphone is easy to recommend. So if you are looking to spend on a pair of headphones, take a good look at Sennheiser Momentum On-ear.