The Nad Viso HP50 is closed-back dynamic headphone priced at $249. Compared to other models in the price range, it’s a strong performer with some key differences – making it an ideal choice for some listening tastes and a sub-par option for others.
Nad Viso HP50 Review
Construction of the Nad Viso HP50 is top-notch. The thin headband and largish earcups feature soft pleather padding that prevents the headphone from getting uncomfortable. Dual-entry options on the earcups allow you to wear your audio cable on the left or the right, and the cups themselves rotate 90 degrees to rest cup-down around your neck if needed.
In the box, there’s a carrying case, two 4 ft (1.2 m) audio cables -one with an iOS-compatible mic and remote – and a 1/4” stereo adapter plug.
Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20,000Hz +/- 1.5dB, -3dB @ 15Hz
THD (Total Harmonic Distortion): <0.25%
Power Handling: 30mW Max.
Impedance: 32 Ohms
These specs show us the headphones feature a run-of-the-mill frequency range, but a very low level of distortion. The low impedance means these will run just fine with your smartphone or portable player.
The lows on the Viso HP50 are home to some good detail, and the overall sound could be described as deep and full. This sound is well controlled, with almost no bleeding between male vocals and thumping bass notes. That thumping bass has great impact, and I’d go so far to say it’s downright fat – the perfect bass for rock and hip hop.
The HP50 has amazing mids. The midrange is accurate, with ample separation and clarity (at least, for a closed-back headphone). Vocals here are EXCELLENT.
A little weak or thin when it comes to the highest highs, the upper end of the HP50’s frequency range can come off as a little suppressed. While not horrible, this sound isn’t really fantastic, either – screechy violins should sound screechy, after all.
The sense of soundstage on the HP50 isn’t fantastic, but there’s still some semblance of depth and space there, so it’s still better than most closed-back headphones.
One of the big selling points of this headphone is the inclusion of Roomfeel Technology – some sort of headphone hoodoo that supposedly makes them sound more realistic and immersive with greater soundstage.
Take it from me, the greater soundstage thing seems to be a bunch of hogwash. But that being said, the mids and lows do sound more realistic than most other headphones at this price. So maybe this Roomfeel isn’t complete bunk.
HP50 vs MSR7
The closest competitor we could think of to this headphone was the Audio Technica MSR7. Both headphones are priced at $249, both are consumer-oriented, and both feature a pretty classy design. But when it comes to hifi sound, how do they stack up? While the Audio Technica MSR7 sported slightly more high-frequency detail and a greater sense of soundstage, the HP50 offered more impact in the bass and more low-end detail in general. Both were too close to call in the mids, and suffice to say that both would give you near-perfect midrange performance.
The Nad Viso HP50 is a strong performer with excellent lows and mids, and a slightly-less-than-perfect high end. While it feels durable and offers some nice consumer-oriented features, it isn’t heavy or ugly. Finally, the gimmicky Roomfeel technology could be the only strike against it, but we’re willing to overlook that fault in light of the superior sound this headphone delivers.
If you’re after fine midrange detail and excellent highs, but you don’t want bass, you could just as well opt for the Audio Technica MSR7 and get some better soundstage, too. However, if you’re after a truly dynamic headphone that delivers stupendous bass and low end detail, in tandem with some banging mids, don’t look any further than the Nad Viso HP50.
You can find these headphones for the best price here:
Audio 46 (Use our promo code, “majorhifi” to get 10% off)