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Customer Review

123 of 143 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Do believe the hype, December 22, 2011
This review is from: V-MODA Crossfade M-80 On-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone (Shadow) (Discontinued by Manufacturer) (Electronics)
There are a ton of new headphone manufacturers out right now and the majority of them are making some outlandish claims about how good their products sound. I'm often skeptical of the ones who spend an almost equal amount of time on pretty packaging and good looks. So, you can imagine that when the hype-train came rolling through with the V-MODA M-80s on board I wasn't sure what to expect. One of their models is co-branded by an HBO series called True Blood, they're packaging is nothing short of beautiful and they are nothing short of drop dead gorgeous looking. I immediately think, "this company really knows how to market to the masses, they look beautiful, but I'm not sure how they sound."

You see, there are times when a new product gets the attention of the headphone web forums and it turns into irrational exuberance. I'm convinced that many of the posters on these threads haven't even listened to the overly-hyped headphone in question, they just enjoy being a part of the "gang." The V-MODA M-80 is one such headphone that has been "hyped" a lot lately. I wasn't sure if I could believe all of the good press they were receiving. I've been deceived before by the hype-train. When I finally got a chance to listen to them, I can say that I was surprised.

So my advice with the M-80 is: Do believe the hype. They're really that good.

They are extremely accurate headphones which will please the ears. They isolate very well, which is hard to do with a supra-aural headphone. As such, with the right positioning on your ears the bass will deliver. The vocals come though crystal clear and do not seem to be overpowered by the other ends of the frequency spectrum. There is a slight amount of roll-off at the very top end of the spectrum, but that helps make for a non-fatiguing listening experience. They also have very good instrument separation, that will only improve with a really good source (or even better with an external amplifier). But, if you want to listen to them from an iPod, iPhone or other MP3 player they will not disappoint in the least.

I have owned many, many headphones in my audiophile career and these are "keepers" for sure.

Great work Val and the team at V-MODA, you've got a fan here!

Phil
"SoulSyde" on Head-Fi.org
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Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 6, 2012 6:17:52 AM PST
C. Albanese says:
How many hours before they are "broken in" do you think?
thank you.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 4:00:16 AM PDT
Alejandro A says:
if by broken in, you mean running at full capacity, and peak sound, not even an hour. They work right off the bat. They are damn impressive in that respect.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 4:34:24 AM PDT
Philip R says:
Correct.

Posted on Dec 11, 2012 4:13:46 PM PST
Mitch says:
Thanks for the review, I think you should add a link to your review on head-fi though. Just for the sake of any audiophilles that may have turned up here.

Posted on Apr 13, 2013 9:04:43 AM PDT
Strengths:

Built quality is top notch. I think this the the thing that you are really paying for this product.
Highs are really good. Mediums are there as well but it a bit thin sounding mids. For the this price range it should be thick mids which disappoints.

Suppiled cables are very good and the 45 degree designs are very good.
Cables are removable and replaceable.

Appearance is cool too.

Disappointments:

In terms of Isolation and leakage.. it really disappoints me and I think V-Moda over advertised it. I am an owner of this product.. and also and owner of AKG K430 and K450 which provides good punchy listening volume without leaking sound (3/5ths of volume) perfect at office environment and elevators :). The isolation and sound leakage is really a bit terrible. When you crank the sound above half(which is not much of a sound with a punch) it starts to leak. Lower than half volume is so quiet that you would not enjoy the music. We buy headphones at these price range so we can enjoy the details of the music at a decent volume and not to listen very quiet. Comfort is quite poor too, the foams are a bit on the hard side (the AKG K450 foams are heaven). About the bass, the sound is there and detailed. But it is lacking volume. The bass is not wide at all. What I HATE most is when when you adjust the volume above 3/4s the bass starts to crack in a bass heavy songs (it's makes the speakers feel cheap very disappointing at these price range). I know this is not a BASS heaphones but come on.. IT SHOULD NOT CRACK at volumes 3/4th and UP. You have to tweak it with an EQ below normal bass frequency to prevent the crack at full volume.. makes me feel that the speakers are at CHEAP level when speakers CRACK easily.

For the price range, I can say the sounds does not justify. The BASS Cracks easily in heavy Bass songs at high volume. (Come on a headphone that cannot handle BASS at 3/4 volume?)

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 7, 2013 5:31:04 PM PDT
Dorian says:
These things are built to last, they won't break in an hour, no doubt on that.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 7, 2013 6:48:26 PM PDT
Robespierre says:
O.D.: Given the number of reasonable complaints you might have made about the M-80s, I find it odd you focused on an absence of mid-range emphasis and thought that area of the FR was "thin." The M-80s' 40mm drivers were tuned to emphasize the mid-range specifically. More typical verdicts from reviewers are that the mids are satisfyingly creamy or unpleasantly forward. M-80s are tuned for tracks with vocals.

I respect the fact that everyone's hearing is different, but I wonder whether you might not be talking about a different aspect of the sound's being "thin." What frequencies or instrument ranges are you missing specifically?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 9, 2013 9:04:20 PM PST
Mockingbird says:
The M80's have an average rating of 9.3 out of 10 on most review sites. The AKG K430 has a 7.1 rating and the AKG K450 has a 7.3 rating. Maybe the M80's are better, don't you think?

Posted on Dec 16, 2014 5:31:13 PM PST
you're correct about hype and packaging. I recently tried a set of Dr. Dre's BEATS Headphones and went "Huh?" They were hyped so much I expected good, well great sound. What I got was terrible. So glad I was able to replace the ear pads on my old Bose on ear headphones. To me, they are the best, and I really want to know how these compare to the basic model of Bose headphones.
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