Reviewed on Feb 26, 2016

Creative HN-900 HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 0.9
5.6
Mixed Usage
5.4
Critical Listening
5.7
Commute/Travel
5.8
Sports/Fitness
5.6
Office
6.5
Home Theater
Type : Over-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : No
Noise-Cancelling : Yes
Mic : Yes
Transducer : Dynamic

The Creative HN-900 are mediocre headphones. They look well-designed but feel a little cheap. They're also pretty comfortable but their audio reproduction is disappointing. They don't isolate from ambient noise very well and they also leak a lot so they won't be the ideal headphones for commuting or to use at the office.

Test Results
Design 6.7
Sound 5.2
Isolation 5.3
Active Features 5.5
Pros
  • Simple comfortable design.
  • Decent build quality.
Cons
  • Sub-par noise isolation performance.
  • Bad audio reproduction.

Check Price

6.7

Design

The HN-900s are comfortable. The ear cups are soft and the simple, one-button design works well. They are moderately sturdy but some of the plastic feels cheap. The thin cable provided has a mic and a play/stop button but no volume controls.

Style

Simple modern design. The headband is thin and the oval ear cups are not too large. The coloring is black with dark grey accents around the ear cups. They look good but there's nothing special about their style.

7.5 Comfort
Weight : 0.41 lbs
Clamping Force
:
0.86 lbs

One of the lightest over-ear headphones we have tested. Quite comfortable on the head, too.

5.0 Controls
Ease of use : Good
Feedback : Subpar
Call/Music Control : Yes
Volume Control : No
Noise Canceling Control : No
Talk-Through : No
Additional Buttons : No

Simple and clear design. There's only one button on the headphones, so no chance of confusion. The in-line remote only has call/music control and no volume control.

6.5 Stability

The Creative HN-900 are moderately stable headphones. They stay in place during casual listening sessions and have a detachable audio cable that won't yank the headphones of your head if it gets hooked on something. Sadly, these are not sports headphones they feel too bulky and sway easily because of the relatively thin headband.They will quickly slip off your ears during high-intensity, physical exercise.

6.3 Portability
L : 7.48 "
W : 6.69 "
H : 1.57 "
Volume : 78.9 Cu. Inches
Stand required : N/A

The HN 900 are moderately portable headphones. They have a relatively small frame compared to some other over-ear headphones, and their ear cups lay flat to take up less space. However, they do not fold into a more compact format and will be too cumbersome to carry around on your person as they won't fit into any pockets, even larger jacket pockets.

5.5 Case
Type : Pouch

Comes with a thin, fabric pouch that doesn't add much bulk and will protect the headphones from scratches. However, the pouch will not shield the headphones from hard falls or water damage.

6.5 Build Quality

They feel quite flimsy and cheap in all areas. However, headband adjustment produces a decent click for the most part and the headband retains its position well.

6.9 Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference : 4.4 C

Cable
Detachable : Yes
Length : 5.25 ft
Connection : 1/8" TRRS

Comes with one 1/8" TRS-TRRS cable with mic and call/music control but no volume up/down.

Front
Angled
Side
Rear
Top
5.2

Sound

The Creative HN-900 are a poor sounding pair of closed-back over-ear headphones. They have a poor Bass which lacks sub-bass and sound boomy, a mediocre Mid Range that sound muddy, and a poor Treble that lacks presence and brightness. They also don't have a good Soundstage, but on the plus side, they produce little distortion.

4.9 Bass
Std. Err.
:
7.16 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
47.91 Hz
Low-Bass
:
-7.32 dB
Bass
:
4.75 dB
High-Bass
:
8.15 dB

6.2 Mid
Std. Err.
:
5.04 dB
Low-Mid
:
5.48 dB
Mid
:
4.61 dB
High-Mid
:
-3.03 dB

3.4 Treble
Std. Err.
:
7.65 dB
Low-Treble
:
-9.75 dB
Treble
:
-1.31 dB
High-Treble
:
0.78 dB

4.9 Soundstage
PRTF Error
:
8.49 dB
Openness
:
5.9
Acoustic Space Excitation
:
4.5
Correlated Crosstalk
:
-0.05 dB

4.0 Imaging
Phase Error
:
202.11 °
Driver Mismatch (Amplitude)
:
0.64 dB
Driver Mismatch (Frequency)
:
3.69 dB
Driver Mismatch (Phase)
:
176.82 °

9.1 Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 90
:
0.105
Weighted THD @ 100
:
0.242

5.3

Isolation

The noise isolation in the HN-900s is weak. The active noise canceling is barely differentiable from the passive isolation provided by the seal of the ear-cups. They are quite leaky and are not recommended for travelling or very noisy commutes.

5.2 Noise Isolation
Overall Attenuation
:
-12.35 dB
Bass
:
-1.44 dB
Mid
:
-9.36 dB
Treble
:
-28.79 dB
Self-Noise
:
18.15 dB

Most of the isolation is provided passively by the ear cups. The ANC (Active Noise Cancelling) only adds 10dB of reduction at around 200Hz and does even less at other frequencies, which is disappointing.

5.5 Leakage
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
:
47.21 dB

A considerable amount of sound leaks from these headphones at a wide range, starting from around 400Hz and up to 5KHz (from low-mids to mid-treble). The leakage continues up to 20KHz, though to a lesser extent.

5.5

Active Features

The HN-900 only have noise canceling as an active feature. This makes them less versatile for other use cases except as noise canceling headphones, as they lack both wireless or an app, to enhance and customize their sound. On the upside, with the AAA battery, they deliver a good up to 32 hours of continuous playback, which should easily cover a weekend's worth of use without needing to change batteries.

0 Wireless
Type
:
N/A
Obstructed Range
:
N/A
Line of Sight Range
:
N/A
NFC
:
No

10 Latency
Base Latency
:
0 ms
aptX Latency
:
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
:
N/A

8.1 Battery
Battery Type
:
AAA
Battery Life
:
48 hrs
Charge Time
:
N/A
Auto-off
:
No
Audio while charging
:
N/A
Passive Playback
:
No

The Creative HN-900 can last up to 48 hours of continuous play time at average volumes. You won't have to change the triple AAA battery throughout the day, which is great for long flights or road trips. Unfortunately, they do not have any battery saving features like an auto-off timer but can continue playing audio even when the battery is completely drained.

0 App Support

No compatible app.

In the box

  • Creative HN-900 Headphones
  • Flight adapter
  • Carrying pouch
  • AAA battery
  • Audio cable
  • Manual

5.6 Mixed Usage

The HN-900 do not excel in any use case. They don't isolate well enough for commutes or office use. They're leaky and don't have a good enough sound for recording or critical listening.

5.4 Critical Listening

Subpar for critical listening. They have a poorly balanced, mid-range-heavy sound, and their closed back design limits their soundstage.

5.7 Commute/Travel

Subpar for commuting. The noise canceling is weak and struggles in loud environments.

5.8 Sports/Fitness

Mediocre for sports. They're lightweight and comfortable but too unstable for strenuous exercises.

5.6 Office

Not suitable for office use. They leak and do not isolate much. You will still be able to hear the noise of a busy office.

6.5 Home Theater

Average for Home Theater use. They have no latency since they're wired but u nfortunately, their sound quality may be a deal breaker. They also have a relatively short audio cable, so they won't be the best headphones to comfortably watch movies with from you couch.

Recommended Articles

LOG IN

JOIN RTINGS.com

Be part of the most informed community and take advantage of our advanced tools to find the best product for your needs.
Join our mailing list:
Become an insider

Unlimited access to full product reviews, test measurements and scores

test table UI

Product prices across the site on reviews, tables and tools

product prices UI

Additional votes for our
next reviews

Additional votes UI

Early Access
to our reviews and test measurements

Early Access UI

Create Discussion