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Reviewed on Aug 11, 2016

HiFiMan Edition X
HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
5.9
Mixed Usage
8.3
Critical Listening
4.4
Commute/Travel
5.0
Sports/Fitness
5.1
Office
6.0
TV
6.0
Gaming
Type : Over-ear
Enclosure : Open-Back
Wireless : No
Noise-Cancelling : No
Mic : No
Transducer : Planar Magnetic

The HifiMan Edition X deliver a comfortable listening experience with a balanced and open sound. Their build quality feels premium and looks unique, but the headband is a little weak. Also, they're not intended for casual use, and will perform poorly outside of a quiet, stable environment.

Test Results
Design 6.3
Sound 8.6
Isolation 1.4
Microphone 0
Active Features 0
Connectivity 4.8
Pros
  • Comfortable.
  • Durable ear cup design.
  • Excellent and open audio reproduction.
Cons
  • High leakage by design, can be distracting to others.
  • Bulky and heavy headphones.
  • Sensitive to ambient noise, by design.
Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

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6.3

Design

The HifiMan Edition X stand out with their unusual design. They're incredibly comfortable headphones with a sturdy build quality. The ear cups, especially, feel durable and make use of premium materials. However, these are one of the biggest headphones we've tested so far. The ear cups easily cover a large area of your face, particularly on smaller heads. They're unstable, cumbersome and do not have any audio controls. Simply put, they're not made to use outdoors.

Style

HifiMan Edition X are uniquely designed headphones. They have a retro style headband and very large, flat and open ear cups. They look and feel premium and are superbly well-padded with a suede-like cushioned fabric. However, the sheer size of these headphones makes them awkward to wear in public. The headband also feels a little cheaply built compared to the level of care put into the ear cup design.

8.0 Comfort
Weight : 0.88 lbs
Clamping Force
:
1.16 lbs

The HifiMan Edition X deliver a comfortable listening experience. They're exceedingly well padded, with a suede-like material, that's soft and pleasant on the skin. The headband, although a little stiff is not too tight on your head. However, the size of these headphones could be bothersome for some listeners, and they're a little heavy even if the weight is well distributed.

0 Controls
Ease of use : N/A
Feedback : N/A
Call/Music Control : No
Volume Control : No
Microphone Control : N/A
Channel Mixing
:
N/A
Noise Canceling Control : N/A
Talk-Through
:
N/A
Additional Buttons : N/A
6.1 Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference : 6.6 C
5.1 Portability
L : 9.45 "
W : 7.09 "
H : 3.94 "
Volume : 263.5 Cu. Inches
Transmitter required : N/A

The Edition X are not headphones you carry around often. They're very big and bulky and don't fold into a more compact format. The ear cups lay flat, but don't save much space. They will fit into a backpack, but sadly, they will be too cumbersome for most smaller bags or handbags.

0 Case
Type : No case
L : N/A
W : N/A
H : N/A
Volume : N/A
7.5 Build Quality

The Edition X have an above average build quality. The open ear cups are dense, and the open-back design is reinforced with a sturdy metallic grid. The headband also has a relatively simple design with a metal frame, that's a little thin, but feels sturdy enough not to break under a fair amount of physical stress. Sadly, the joints that connect the frame to the ear cups is a little plasticky doesn't feel as durable as the rest of the design. This feels out of place on a headphone of this caliber. The cable on the other hand is thick and coated in a braided fabric that's durable.

5.5 Stability

These are not sports-oriented headphones. They're big and bulky, and although comfortable, they're not stable enough on your head to use while doing any physical activity. The large and heavy earcups will sway and slip off your ears if used while running or exercising. On the upside, the cable is detachable in case it gets hooked on something.

Cable
Detachable : Yes
Length : 10 ft
Connection : 1/8" TRS

Comes with two cables a, 1/8" TRS and a 1/8" to 1/4 TRS audio cable.

Top
Headshots 1
Headshots 2
8.6

Sound

The Hifiman Edition X is an impressive sounding pair of open-back over-ear headphones. They have an excellent, well-balanced and relatively extended bass (better than the Sundara), especially for an open-back design. Their Mid Range is also very good and they have a nearly flawless Treble. Additionally, they perform quite consistently across multiple users and have an open and spacious Soundstage. On the down side, they lack a bit of sub-bass and their low-mid is on the muddy side.

8.8 Bass
Std. Err.
:
1.59 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
33.15 Hz
Low-Bass
:
-2.52 dB
Mid-Bass
:
-0.36 dB
High-Bass
:
1.74 dB
8.5 Mid
Std. Err.
:
1.96 dB
Low-Mid
:
2.04 dB
Mid-Mid
:
1.91 dB
High-Mid
:
-0.26 dB
8.8 Treble
Std. Err.
:
2.51 dB
Low-Treble
:
1.23 dB
Mid-Treble
:
-1.15 dB
High-Treble
:
-1.58 dB
7.9 Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
:
0.41 dB
8.8 Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
:
0.2
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
:
0.18
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
:
1.86
Weighted Phase Mismatch
:
5.45
8.5 Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
:
2.85 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
:
6.11 dB
PRTF Distance
:
17.95 dB
Openness
:
9.2
Acoustic Space Excitation
:
9.9
Correlated Crosstalk
:
-0.02 dB
7.4 Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 90
:
0.831
Weighted THD @ 100
:
6.436
1.4

Isolation

The Edition X are open-back headphones and are not designed to isolate listeners. Openness is one of the key components of their superb sound quality, but this also makes them unusable in everyday settings. They will distract anyone near you even at low-to-moderate volumes and also don't block any noise from your surroundings.  They won't fare well in loud environments and are best used to enjoy high-res audio in private.

2.1 Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
:
Overall Attenuation
:
-1.16 dB
Bass
:
0.0 dB
Mid
:
0.66 dB
Treble
:
-4.0 dB
Self-Noise
:
0 dB

Poor isolation. The drivers of the Edition X are huge and have an open-back design, therefore, they block very little noise. They provide no isolation in Bass and Mid ranges, and provide only 5dB of isolation in the Treble, which is negligible.

0.1 Leakage
Leakage Audio
:
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
:
69.45 dB

Poor leakage. These are the loudest and leakiest headphones we have measured so far. Not only the level of the leakage is extremely high, the profile is extremely broad too. Most headphones either level off at higher frequencies, or roll-off. But the Edition X keeps getting louder as the frequency rises.

0

Microphone

Integrated
:
N/A
In-line
:
N/A
Boom
:
N/A
Detachable Boom
:
N/A
0 Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
:
N/A
LFE
:
N/A
FR Std. Dev.
:
N/A
HFE
:
N/A
Weighted THD
:
N/A
Gain
:
N/A
0 Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise : N/A
Speech + Subway Noise : N/A
SpNR
:
N/A
0

Active Features

No active features.

N/A Battery
Battery Type
:
N/A
Battery Life
:
N/A
Charge Time
:
N/A
Power Saving Feature
:
N/A
Audio while charging
:
N/A
Passive Playback
:
N/A
0 App Support
App Name : N/A
iOS : N/A
Android : N/A
Mac OS : N/A
Windows : N/A
Equalizer
:
N/A
ANC control
:
N/A
Mic Control : N/A
Room effects
:
N/A
Playback control
:
N/A
Button Mapping : N/A
Surround Sound : N/A

No compatible app.

4.8

Connectivity

0 Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
:
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
:
N/A
NFC Pairing
:
N/A
7.2 Wired
OS Compatibility
:
Not OS specific
Analog Audio
:
Yes
USB Audio
:
No
PS4 Compatible
:
Audio Only
Xbox One Compatible
:
Audio Only
PC Compatible
:
Audio Only
0 Base/Dock
Type
:
N/A
Optical Input
:
N/A
Line In
:
N/A
Line Out
:
N/A
USB Input
:
N/A
RCA Input
:
N/A
PS4 Compatible
:
N/A
Xbox One Compatible
:
N/A
PC Compatible
:
N/A
Power Supply
:
N/A
Dock Charging
:
N/A
0 Wireless Range
Obstructed Range
:
N/A
Line of Sight Range
:
N/A
10 Latency
Default Latency
:
0 ms
aptX Latency
:
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
:
N/A

In the box

  •  HiFiMan Edition X Headphones
  • 1/8" to 1/4" adapter
  • Audio cables (x2)
  • Manual

Conclusion
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

5.9 Mixed Usage
These headphones are intended for the specific use of critical listening and will not be versatile enough for other use cases.
8.3 Critical Listening
The HifiMan Edition X are ideal for critical listening. They're designed to deliver a spacious soundstage thanks to their large open earcups. They also have a balanced and crisp sound quality. Plugged into a good amp, in a quiet room, their audio reproduction will not disappoint.
4.4 Commute/Travel
Unideal for commutes. The open ear cups let all the ambient noise seep into your audio. They're also cumbersome and not practical to use outside.
5.0 Sports/Fitness
Not made for sports. They're too bulky and unstable. They will quickly fall off your head if used while doing any physical activity.
5.1 Office
Not good for the office. These headphones are built to leak, so everyone will hear what you're listening to. They also won't block any office chatter.
6.0 TV
Above-average for Home Theater. They have a great sound for both music and watching movies and since they're wired they have no latency. The audio cable is also about 10 ft, which is a lot longer than most wired headphones. However, range may still be an issue if you want to watch TV from your couch with out an audio cable extension cord.

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