Coming in at a price tag of $700 price is Sony’s new audiophile-grade closed-back headphone. Get all the details and determine if they’re really worth all the hype in our Sony MDR-Z7 review.
Sony MDR-Z7 Review, Closed-Back Audiophile Headphones
Sony MDR-Z7 Review – Packaging
The box is big. I’ll take this as a sign of greatness. That’s because inside are the MDR-Z7 headphones which feature pretty large ear cups because the MDR-Z7 has pretty large drivers. We will get to more of that in a minute. The top portion of the gift box-like packaging holds your cables and the bottom portion rests your new cans. There are two detachable cables included in the box: a normal headphone cable and a balanced connection cable intended for use with Sony’s portable headphone amplifier PHA-3. The cables attach in a unique fashion. They not only plug into each ear cup, but each side of the cable screws into each side of the headphone. So, these cables aren’t going anywhere.
Sony MDR-Z7 Review – Build & Design
The ear cups are fashioned to ensure the purest sound production. The high density metal used to create the headphone frame suppresses vibrations while the metal housing does the same to keep unwanted resonance at bay for “clearer mids to highs and smoother low frequency sounds” in the ear cups.
The ear cushions are ergonomically angled to provide a relaxed fit. The cushions are made of polyurethane foam which is super soft and nestles it self perfectly around my ears. The fabric is so soft it keeps pressure off the side of your head, even if you’re wearing glasses as I am. Honestly, the material is so cushion-y I’m currently wearing glasses and have yet to feel an ache or pain on the sides of my temples. Moreover, this material is said to better retain the low end and deliver a powerful bass line. The ear cups swivel slightly from left to right and the headband is flexible enough to allow some forward and backward movement of the extenders. More on that in the sound section. The headband is literally just as soft. The underbelly features the same polyurethane material while the top is lined with a heavy-duty leather strip.
P.S. The headphone is incredibly light for an audiophile-grade headphone of this caliber.
Sony MDR-Z7 Review – Features
The nearly larger than-life ear cups (nearly because this headphone is designed to be somewhat portable) because it holds 70 mm drivers that operate off of an impedance of 70 ohms. These drivers are angled inside of the ear cups for better delivery of sound to your ear drums.
Sony MDR-Z7 Review – Sound
The sound is surprisingly wide and open for a set of closed-back cans. Spatial recreation is truly amazing. Vocals are really nice. These headphones make recordings with voices seem more like the artist is in front of you rather than pre-recorded. The overall reproduction is very relaxed across low, mids, and highs. Your music is also very balanced without adding a boost to treble or bass. Nothing is over pronounced. I think these headphones provide just enough bass to serve both the bass hungry and those who’d like to do without a bass boost. At times, I wished the highs were a teeny weeny tad more forward because I like to hear electric guitars screeching in my face. But that’s just me. Regardless, I’ll take their distance due to the wide and impressive sound stage.
Drivers: Dynamic 70 mm
Frequency Response: 4-100,000 Hz
Sensitivity: 102 dB/mW
Impedance: 70 ohms