Saturday, October 4, 2008

Full Size Cans: Sony MDR-900HD High Definition Studio Monitors.

I am going to talk about the Sony MDR-V900HD full sized dynamic headphones, they should not be confused with the standard MDR- V900 studio monitors which are no longer in production (See my other review). The HD stands for High definition - 5Hz - 80,000Hz - frequency response rating would classify them as high definition ear cans.

About the sound, the highs are clear and sharp and I have noticed new details in some of my favorite pieces of music as a result using the Sony's. They are a bit more refined and well rounded generally when compared to my MDR-V900 standard model. Great highs and Mid range, very warm sound, very sensitive. Insufficient bass definition for bass-heavy music.

There is some controversy about burn in for headphones, IMHO there is a period where all new hi fi equipment needs to burn to reach it's intended optimal performance and headphones are no different. With these cans, I found the sound and dynamics opening up even further after about 40 hours of use and the bass extension further improving. But to be frank the M-Audio Q40 Studiophile headphones are much better sounding. The lower price range Sony MDR-V700DJ take a mere 15 to 20 hours to burn in. To be fair to the HD's, after the burn in period, I found the bass extension improving quite a bit and the bass tightening and being better controlled. You need to give them time.

The Sony MDR-V900HD Studio Monitor are a Close-Type Headphone System which features an Aura-nomic design. 50mm driver. High Definition driver. Neodymium magnets. Reversible ear cups for single side monitoring. Concealed, single-sided class 1LC-OFC coiled cord. Sony retails them for $259.99.

These headphones are good but for the price range they are not what I expect for the value hence I would only give them a 4.6 out of 5. Ambiance and aire are a selling point of the monitors which give live recordings and vocals a very vivid and almost real sound stage.

Note: I received a comment that the brown padding on the ear cups and head band seems to indicate a fake. On the contrary if you check out the Sony website and study carefully, the padding is not black but very very dark brown. The second photo that I took is over-exposed the first one is the correct color tone. The cans came from Sony in original box direct with warranty so I am not that worried. I have also ordered a set of look alike and have made comparisons. The cushions are of a different feel, the molding for the ear cups are not finished as well as the originals and the padding for the ear cups do not fold well over the molding. As for sound, there is some difference between the look alike and the originals, less details, sound stage is not well defined and the bass is muddy.

Check the Sony website for your self and study closely the padding and the ear cups and you will see that they are indeed very very dark brown in color:

Construction is very good and they are extremely attractive and look good.


  • Driver Unit : 50mm
  • Frequency Response : 5Hz - 80,000Hz
  • Impedance : 24 ohms
  • Sensitivity : 107dB/mW

Product Type Headphones

Headphones Type Headphones - Binaural
Headphones Form Factor Ear-cup
Headphones Technology Dynamic
Connectivity Technology Wired
Sound Output Mode Stereo
Diaphragm 2 in

Connector Type 1 x Headphones ( Mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm )

Cables Included 1 x Headphones cable - Integrated - 10 ft

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