To start with, the cans are huge and comfortably clasped my ears without causing any discomfort for the half an hour listening I subjected them to. A look at the cans and you know where they belong to...a sound studio! The company has surely made them for indoor use and this is reiterated by the sheer quality of cables, jacks and oh boy, the size of each. The jacks are especially made of metal and give a heavy feel to the headphone, something you wouldn't want to lug around. But mind you, if you do intend to carry them, they come with a "Nuke box".....a term I coined since they come packed in military grade sort of sturdy case that resembles the way cases for portable nukes are shown in Hollywood flicks. In my opinion, they are meant to showcase that they are for professional use and nothing less.
Disclaimer: I am fairly new to audiophile world. I paired them with my humble FiiO X1 directly and then with a combo of E17K+X1. Would like to use them with X5, X3 with some DSD reference files paired with an E17K. Unfortunately my X1 does not have an optical so any amp I connect will take the signal from the 3.5 mm standard line-out.which is good but technically not as good as optical connection between X3, X5 and an amp.
I also own a Beyerdynamic DX 160 iE.
The cans are planar which means they move the air around your ears and are open back. I noticed what's happening when Ahsan looked at me the moment I started blasting Eagles-Hotel California in flac. Then across my listening experience I removed them to check how much audible they are outside. And yes, they are very much audible. A person sitting beside you will definitely enjoy the passive music experience, though they are experiencing only some 100 notches down perhaps. Coming to the quality part, these earphones justify their premium price. The quality of segment they belong to is an uncharted territory to most of us Indians due to lack of availability of high end audio recording, use of pirated music encoded in MP3s, etc. These headphones are meant to be used with avante garde lossless music and gear and they do their job brilliantly. I would describe my bass experience as a woofer placed near my ear that was displacing real air to produce lowest of bass the moment I bumped it up on the E17K. Needless to say, versatility is a virtue you would expect by default from a professional grade headphone and they deliver. For the mids and highs, they reproduced music well from the limited listening experience I had with them.
No, value for money is not something you seek in this price range. But then I guess, you just seek justice to whatever money you pay and the headphone delivers. Besides, audiophiles have their own sound signature liking from headphones so that should be a factor when you are spending so much money on a pair of professional cans.
Lomash currently works at Citi India in Mumbai. In his free time, he answers to the doubts on Quora & listens to his music at the comfort of his home. At our humble request, he reviewed the Audeze LCD-X headphones for us.