July 30, 2014

Sweet Headphones for you "Wanna-Be" Vamps out There!

For all you fans of the show True Blood, headset manufacturer V-Moda has created two sets of premium listening devices to show off your devotion to the dark side.  Shown above is the on ear “V-80 Trueblood”, check out the “Revamp” model after the break as well as our review of the two devices.

The V-Moda Revamp

If you are an audiophile, you are probably familiar with the brand V-Moda, and the quality they put into their headphone builds.  The V-80 and Revamp are no exception to this rule, as we were pleased with the quality feel of the headsets.  The V-80 is an on-ear headset, meaning that the cushions will sit on your ear, giving the cups a smaller overall footprint on your head.

The V-80 retails at $229.00, which certainly puts the unit in the premium range, but we feel it is worth it for the package you get.  Inside the box you get an exo-skeleton case to hold the headset, plus two removable cords to connect the V-80 to your audio source.  Both are kevlar reinforced, which is really nice, with the difference between the two being that one cord has a mic so you can use it with a smartphone.

The unit is light and very comfortable on the head, when listening to it for hours we did not notice any fatigue or our ears getting sweaty.  (gross we know, but this is something that drives us nuts!)  The headband is adjustable of course, and it is very strong and sturdy, while remaining pliable.  The cups have metal plating on the side for looks, but those plates can be replaced with custom ones if you so desire, a nice touch to be sure.

As far as looks, we were pleased with the fact that V-Moda chose to be tasteful with the True Blood tie in.  They did not plaster blood decals or fangs on the unit.  It is a very cool looking set of headphones that can be worn really by anyone, this is not simply a unit that will fit the the niche of True Blood fans only.

We can hear all the audiophiles screaming at us to get to the important part, how the V-80 sounds.  Rest assured, this unit is right up there with the other V-Moda headsets we have tried out.  The sound is gorgeous, full with little distortion.  The lows are not as low as we would like, but they were deep enough to give presence to music that demands it for the full experience.  We tested the unit on the Tron:Legacy soundtrack, as well as an array of classical orchestra music.  The V-80 reproduced both very well, and felt like a premium experience.

The V-80 really shined during movie and show watching.  The unit brought out the speech nicely, and reproduced the music tracks at a level that was very enjoyable and sounded great to our ears.  Overall a great audio experience.

The only area where we were disappointed in the unit was it’s noise cancelling ability.  Being on-ear, there is room for outside noises to get in and distort the experience.  We did not have a chance to try these on a plane, but we used them on a riding mower which has been a good comparison to being right next to an engine on a smaller plane.

We found ourselves having to turn up the volume to hear the audio source, and even then the source was fighting for attention.  If you are wanting something to block out noise and isolate yourself, these are not the units for you.

Otherwise, if you are in the market and have been looking at V-Moda’s these are beautiful headphones for the money, both in looks and in sound quality.

The Revamp model goes in a total direction as portability is the name of the game for these in-ear headphones.  Retailing right now at $99.00, the Revamp reflects the V-Moda method of excellence in a smaller form factor.  As for looks, the units are sturdy metal, with kevlar lined cording, which again is a really nice touch.  The units have the True Blood logo on it, a well as some decoration that reminds a user of the show.  We noticed it a lot more on this unit, but it comes down to the fact that these things are much smaller, so the decoration is going to pop out a lot more.

We compared these to some TSC in-ear headphones,  (TSC was an internet startup, a subsidiary of a well known speaker manufacturer, high quality on a budget, now out of business), and were very pleased with the sound for a lower end headset.  The noise cancelling of this unit was excellent, with the sound being pretty good for such small drivers.  Again, we listened to Tron:Legacy and a variety of classical.  The mid-range on the unit is excellent, with very little distortion in the highs and lows.  For a portable headset, this is an excellent unit.

The only complaint we had was that the metal piece that separates the cord into two for each ear is a little high up for our taste, and cannot be adjust.  The metal piece sits right at our necks when we listen to the device using the configuration of wrapping it over the top of our ears and over into the canals so that the cords stay seated.  Annoying but not a deal breaker.

Overall, if you are in the market for a higher end set of portable headphones, we have no problem recommending the Revamp.