Sennheiser’s new earphones are targeting the audiophiles in the room. I’m hesitant to call myself an audiophile, but alas, I suppose I am. I’m an audio-loving recording and mixing engineer. Therefore, they are calling my name with the new Sennheiser IE 80 S In-Ear Headphones and I’m thrilled to give them a listen for this full review.
Sennheiser IE 80 S In-Ear Headphones Review
In the Box
The box is packaged very nicely. When opening the cardboard, I immediately come across the hard-shell zipping carrying case. The IE 80 S’s are presented cleanly inside the case along with a few spare ear tips (in total there are 3 pairs of silicone and 3 pairs of foam ear tips in small, medium, and large).
Underneath the carrying case, there is a false bottom with a box including the ear hooks, the rest of the ear tips, a sound adjustment and cleaning tool, and a quick guide.
Design and Build
Not only do the earphones feel very durable. Also, the cable is detachable and the driver housings have weight and stability. The cable also has a stiffer feel than other cables I’ve seen.
I am pleased to say these earphones fit easily and comfortably in my ears, which means they are good for small-eared people like me. After placing them in my ears I also notice they are sound isolating, and you get even more sound isolation by using the foam tips. I could see these being integral for commuters.
On the back side of the earbuds, there is a tiny screw. The screw is an adjustable bass boost. When the boost is at its maximum, the bass frequencies infate around 80Hz-100Hz. It is quite intense, and I don’t like it so much.
When the boost is at its minimum, the bass is more balanced, but not particularly punchy. The subs frequencies are light. My favorite setting for the bass boost is right up the middle. I get some of the fun boominess in the subs without it being too overwhelming.
The bass frequencies feel balanced albeit less clear than others in the same price range. The low end does not have a lot of separation but they are aesthetically pleasing nonetheless. It reminds me a bit of the Shure SE series because while the low end is a little cloudy, it is not necessarily a negative thing.
These earphones have a wonderful mid-range! With a boost between 4kHz-5kHz, the mids feel balanced overall but still sound lively. They have more space than both the low and high end.
The high end, like the low end, is smooth and warm. It is more detailed than the lows but not hard or harsh sounding. As a result, high frequencies handle cymbals, strings, and bluegrass instrumentation well.
The Sennheiser IE-80 S In-Ear Headphones sound accurate in their left to right sound imaging, producing a nice sense of space. The top to bottom imaging is not particularly impressive but it is performs well enough to let me enjoy the sound without missing it. Reverbs and room microphones decay fully. The earphones seem to react to dynamic changes quickly, yet smoothly. While the soundstage isn’t 100% accurate, it is still very pleasant to listen to.
For $349.99, the Sennheiser IE-80 S In-Ear Headphones are great earphones! Nothing is too hyped to the point of distraction. Therefore, while they are not necessarily flat in all areas, all parts of the earphones sound good and would make other audiophiles happy.
The Sennheiser IE 80 S In-Ear Headphones are available for the best price below: