Today we’re looking at MM 500-X Bluetooth over the ear headphones by Sennheiser. These are closed noise isolating (not noise cancelling) headphones. Spend a little more and you can get the MM550’s with included active noise cancelling and a SRS WOW enhancement button.
These headphones are a luxury car for your head; all that they are missing is heated ear cups. The closed ear design provides a passive noise isolation that is very satisfying. Walking around the supermarket with people’s conversations and overhead announcements blaring is no problem for this set of cans. Sound is clear and very nice for a set of Bluetooth headphones. If you’re coming from a wired set of headphones with a couple nice drivers in them though, you will feel a difference. You’ll lose instruments at times and generally the sound can feel a little shallow. This is unfortunately exacerbated by the fact that the top volume is still pretty low. I’m going to use my ears while I have them and I can be trusted to regulate my own volume. The volume limit is most likely an attempt to regulate sound quality though. Vocals can break a little at the very top of the volume range.
You’ll find a decent zippered nylon carrying case included that fits everything needed to travel with these headphones. You'll find an airplane adapter, major travel power adapters, usb charging cable, as well as an optional audio cable for devices without Bluetooth. the earcups rotate and swivel and fold up to a very small footprint that fits nicely in the included bag with all the accessories as well. The shining star of the headphones might be the seamless phone audio quality. On both ends of the line calls are natural and seamless. Music is paused and resumed effortlessly on the answer and end of calls. The MM 500-X real value is how it can replace your arsenal of audio accessories on a business trip. No need for the noise isolating headphones on your flight, leave your Bluetooth earpiece in your bag, and say goodbye to wired headphones.
Thank you again to Sennheiser for supplying their product for review.
Main advantage: ultimate luxury, very plush and comfortable even during long term use, on-device controls function on all major platforms, great call quality on both sides
Main concern: limited volume, weak mids and some problems with vocals at the top of the volume range
Unique features: Apt-X codec for compatible devices, 2 year warranty
How much: $329.95 at amazon.com
Alternatives: many other versions from Sennheiser, options from sony, SMS sync (kleer), beats wireless (overpriced), TDK WR700 (kleer)
Is it worth buying: These are nice for a set of Bluetooth headphones, but they won’t impress audiophiles. Not enough of a difference over my $50 pair of Bluetooth headphones by Motorola in terms of basic sound quality. There is a huge difference though in call quality on both sides of the line. It’s a very natural experience while speaking. The luxury factor has to be considered, these feel like the Audi or Lexus of earphones. Build quality is great. If you want a great looking pair of headphones that feel great and sound good enough, then these are for you. If you’re particular about your sound and you still want wireless, consider some of the Kleer technology equipped headsets or keep searching.
ENJOY YOUR GADGETS!