The Pioneer HDJ-X5 DJ headphones are the budget version of the X10 and X7, so I was interested to hear how the X5 compared to the more expensive models. The Pioneer X5 is $250 cheaper than its big brother, the X10, but shares a lot of its design features. Here’s a look at whether the X5 is a reasonable compromise.
IN THE BOX
Soft carry case
Detachable coiled cable
6.3 mm adapter
DESIGN and FIT
The Pioneer HDJ-X5 are very durable, clearing the US Military Standard Shock test. They are meant to endure even the roughest treatment, allowing you to knock them around and twist them to your heart’s content. The headband is bendable and the ear cups swivel. They are also fold-able and surprisingly light. The headband and ear pads are made from leather, and they fit firmly around the ear. The seal is good and they do a decent job of cutting out some ambient noise. Wearing glasses, I still found these headphones to be comfortable after using them for a prolonged period of time. The plastic ear cups also have some traction to them, helping to prevent slipping during long DJ sessions.
Unlike the X10 and X7, which have 50mm drivers, the X5 has 40mm drivers with a narrower frequency range of 5 Hz – 30,000Hz. My first impression of the X5 was that it had great presence and detail. One of my favorite aspects of these headphones are the vocals; they have a real closeness and convey vocal texture well. The bass is weighty but not too thick or thumpy, so hip-hop and pop sound great in the bass range. The downfall is that the treble has quite a bit of sizzle, which isn’t overwhelming, but still unpleasant at high volumes. The mids aren’t as juicy as I would have liked, so rock anthems don’t live up to their potential. Drums sound fine but perhaps not punchy enough. Acoustic instruments have great clarity and impact, and brass has a fantastic breathy quality. Listening to live recordings, I was really impressed with the imaging as well. They’re not the most balanced sound out there. But I have to say, these cans really pop, and they’re fun to listen to in a DJ environment. For the price, they are a really nice alternative to the more expensive X7 and X10.
Type: Closed, Dynamic
Impedance: 32 Ohms
Sensitivity: 102 dB
Frequency response: 5 Hz to 30,000 Hz
Maximum input power: 2,000 mW
Weight: 269 g (without cable)
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