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OneOdio has sent me several of their products and I thought I was finished after the trilogy of the Wireless C, Pro 10 and Monitor 60, but then they asked if I was interested in their latest open back OneOdio Monitor 80. Of course I wondered what could OneOdio do with open back designs since none of their previous offerings were of this variety, the answer is something with delicate silkiness intimate and non-fatiguing.
|Disclaimer: This is where all reviewers thank the provider and attempt to sound unbiased, me included. OneOdio seems to be fine with my critiques and provided these free of charge. Thank you OneOdio for helping me clutter my office, and if you too would like a pair consider picking them up from OneOdio for $99.
- Non-Fatiguing sound signature
- Good height reproduction
- Lower volume listening preferred due to the boosted warm bass presentation
- Stinky chemical smell with the hard zipper case
- Detail retrieval
The OneOdio Monitor 80 over ear open back is clearly destined for home/stationary use with the 250 ohm impedance and large stature although they provide a fold-able design and hard carrying case. It comes with two long adapter free cables, one coiled and one straight. The adapter free design is something carried through on almost all their models where one end is 3.5mm and the other a 6.35mm or ¼ single ended plug that can be switched around to be plugged into one side of the headphones and the equipment it is connected to.
The headband on the OneOdio Monitor 80 is that same larger one used on the Monitor 60, but with one minor but important change, a 45 degree offset swivel that is also travel limited. This simple change reduces the chance of the ear cups flopping down. A straight earcup swivel is beneficial for DJ one cup usage but annoying any other time. There was a little squeakiness in one of the swivels, but that is fairly standard for plastic on plastic designs.
Fuzzy heavy grain plush covers the earpads, not as fine of a texture found on the Philips Fidelio X2HR or the Sennheiser HD6XX for example. The padding has plenty of give I rate it as medium firmness again in comparison to the above two models. The earcups are also denser than past OneOdio models and gives off a lower noise when tapped on. I rate the density of earcup plastic on the same level of the Philips SHP9500 and tick below the X2HR.
- Hard Zipper EVA Carrying Case
- Coiled 3.5mm to 6.25mm 1.5-3.5m long cable
- Straight 3.5mm to 3.5mm 3M long cable
- Headphones with Adjustable band, velour earpads and swivel articulated earcups
|Tested with Liquid Spark DAC + JDS Labs Atom
I forget what a pleasure open back headphones deliver in positional staging since I spend more time using IEMs. The OneOdio Monitor 80 present nice width and height, with no crowding. Depth is defined nicely too. Macro details are excellent, it does fall a little short on micro details. It’s not as noticeable unless directly comparing say the Philips X2HR (Orig $300 now $150) or Sennheiser HD6XX ($200).
The Philips SHP9500 ($80) is a closer comparison, but still has improved layering and depth than the Monitor 80. The piano percussion is easier picked up on the Philips SHP9500. Sometimes after a long day, the softer appeal of the OneOdio Monitor 80 is appreciated.
Bass is punchy and warm, a little more peaky than the Philips X2HR with slightly less lower midrange and some low end extension roll off that is normal for open backs. The Philips X2HR edges out the OneOdio Monitor 80 on Bass and Cello in terms of fullness. While the Philips X2 and Philips SHP9500 is considered quite bassy for open backs, the Monitor 80 brings it up a notch.
Female vocals sound a little shrill and recessed compared to the Philips X2, but perhaps it is not fair comparing an originally priced $300 headphone to a $100. Comparing to the Philips SHP9500S is a closer comparison for vocal presentation.
Treble is nice and sparkly albeit smoothed and soft. Just enough of the edge taken off but still very realistic sounding. Listening late at night on low volume was relaxing given the treble still shines while having that extra bass toned down and not lost. At louder volumes, I felt it struggled a bit but it is also highly possible my JDS Labs Atom just didn’t have enough gusto to really amp it up.
The OneOdio Monitor 80 is a great starting point for a budget open back, for warm bass and sparkly highs with above average technical details. My favorite budget pick is still the Philips SHP9500S and if you are willing to stretch your budget, the Philips X2HR is usually around $150 on Amazon. If you don’t already own a headphone amp, the Monitor 80 is going to require you to open your wallet for that accessory as it is a necessity with the 250ohm impedance.
OneOdio is clearly looking to take a piece of the pie for critical home listeners. There is not a whole lot of options between $100 to $150 in open backs, with the exception of the Sennhesier HD59x series or Beyerdynamic DT770 which is known for being analytical and sometimes fatiguing. Hifiman also offers soem planar options near this price range.
The Oneodio Monitor 80 is a rarity in that sense and a good night-time listen when I prefer listening at lower levels. It does not dethrone either of older model Philips but instead adds a nice option if looking for a lighter softer presentation with warmer bass. It is in good company.
- 40mm driver
- 100db+/-3db Sensitivity
- 250 ohm Impedance
- 10Hz-40Khz Frequency Respone
- < 1% Distortion
- 1600mW Max Input Power