The Koss Porta Pro Wireless are decent critical listening on-ears and an update to the classic Porta Pro design. They're practically identical except this model has a cable that houses the wireless components and links to two ear cups. Their retro look and build quality won't be for everyone and they don't block any ambient noise but they're comfortable, super lightweight and deliver a decent and open sound quality.
The redesign of the Koss Porta Pro to the Porta Pro Wireless doesn't change much to the old model apart from adding a cable that links the Bluetooth and battery compartments to the two ear cups. They have the same retro look which some love but won't be for everyone and their build quality is still quite flimsy, especially compared to cheaper headphones like the Skullcandy Grind or the Bluedio T4. On the upside, they are considerably more lightweight and comfortable enough that once you get the right fit, you forget that they are there. They're also a bit more convenient for running thanks to the wireless design and very breathable ear cups.
The Koss PortaPro Wireless are identical to the regular Koss Porta Pro but with a cable linking the two ear cups that has a wireless Bluetooth adapter and a battery. They have the same unique and retro appeal that has set the Porta Pros apart from the competition for years, but the look won't be for everyone. They have small plastic on-ear ear cups that are attached to a thin metal frame. That combined with the fragile-looking audio cables and overall flimsy build quality, makes them feel like cheap airline headphones.
The Koss Porta Pro Wireless, like the originals, are extremely lightweight on-ear headphones. They're slightly heavier since they have the additional cable with the wireless and battery components attached, but it's negligible and typically rest on the back of your neck. The headband is flexible, they're not too tight on the head, and they have an adjustable tension slider that alters the angle of the ear cups. It doesn't change the fit that much but it's a nice addition to the design. Unfortunately, they're poorly padded and the headband might get tangled in your hair, especially if you adjust the headset while on your head. However, they're so lightweight that you will barely notice them once you have them on.
The wireless version of the Koss Porta Pro comes with an inline control module that provides call/music, track skipping, and volume controls. The buttons provide better feedback than the Porta Pro KTC, but they do feel a bit mushy and are not as easy to find by touch alone, unlike some of the other inline remotes we've tested.
The Koss Porta Pro Wireless, like the original model, are one of the most breathable on-ear headphones we've tested. They have an open back design and since they just rest on your ears and do not seal them like over-ears do, they barely cause any temperature difference even while running or working out. They may not be stable enough for sports but they are definitely breathable enough for even intense workout regiments.
These headphones are very portable and fold into a small, compact format that's easy to carry around on your person. They're on the smaller side for an on-ear model and can even fit into some pockets. However, they are larger than in-ears so you won't be able to cram them into your jeans but they will easily fit into most bags.
They come with a good hard case that will protect the headphones from scratches, impacts, and drops. It's a lot better than the pouch provided in the original Koss Porta Pro's box although it does add a bit of bulk which means the headphones will not fit as easily in your pockets once you put them in the case.
The build quality of these headphones is sub-par and feels cheap. The headband is a thin metal frame with no padding and an awkward sliding mechanism to adjust its size. The ear cups are not particularly dense, although their lightweight build makes hard falls less damaging. Unfortunately, they don't feel durable. They have a lot of moving parts that will wear over time. The audio cables are thin, frail and could snap relatively easily from regular use. On the upside, they come with a reliable lifetime warranty as long as you're able to send the headphones back to Koss.
These headphones have a decently stable design. They're better suited for running than the previous Koss Porta Pro since they're wireless and less likely to be yanked off your head because the audio cable got caught on something. However, they do sit pretty loosely on the ear which makes them comfortable but also means they will occasionally slide off your ears during more intense exercises.
The Koss 'Porta Pro Wireless' is a decent sounding pair of open-back on-ear headphones. They have a deep and consistent bass, an even mid-range, and very good imaging. However, their bass is a bit boomy, their mid-range tends to sound cluttered and muddy especially on vocals, and their treble lacks some detail and presence. Also, like most other headphones, they don't have a large and speaker-like soundstage.
The bass of the Koss Porta Pro Wireless is good. The LFE (low-frequency extension) is at 22Hz, which is very good. Also, low-bass, responsible for the thump and rumble common to bass-heavy genres, is within 0.4dB of our neutral target. However, mid-bass and high-bass are overemphasized by more than 4dB, which brings excess boominess and muddiness to the bass.
The Koss Porta Pro Wireless have a very good mid-range. The 4dB bump in low-mid, is the continuation of the high-bass overemphasis, which thickens vocals and clutters the overall mix. But mid-mid and high-mid, occupied by the upper harmonics of vocals and lead instruments, are more flat and better-balanced.
The treble is sub-par. The overall response is rather uneven and consistently under our neutral target by more than 3dB. This means that vocals and lead instruments will lack a bit of detail and brightness, especially when considering the overemphasized upper-bass/lower-mids of these headphones.
The Koss Porta Pro Wireless has a great frequency response consistency. In the bass range, the maximum amount of deviation across our five human subjects is about 3dB at 20Hz, but the rest of the bass range is quite consistent. The treble delivery is also very consistent across multiple re-seats, with the maximum deviation below 10KHz being less than 3dB.
The imaging is great. Weighted group delay is at 0.22, which is within very good limits. The GD graph also shows that the entire group delay response is below the audibility threshold. This ensure a tight bass and a transparent treble reproduction. Additionally, the L/R drivers of our test unit were very well-matched. This is important for the accurate localization and placement of objects (voices, instruments, video game effects) in the stereo image.
The soundstage is mediocre. The PRTF graph shows very little pinna interaction/activation which is due to the on-ear design of these headphones. This results in a small soundstage that is perceived to be located inside the listener's head. However, because of the open-back design of their enclosure, they tend to sound more open and spacious than closed-back headphones.
The harmonic distortion performance of the Koss Porta Pro Wireless is above-average. The overall amount of THD is low, especially in the bass and mid ranges. The spike in THD around 4.5KHz however, could have a negative effect on the clarity of that frequency range.
The Koss 'Porta Pro Wireless' have an open-back design not meant to isolate listeners from ambient noise. They let a lot of noise seep into the ear cups and would be a poor choice to use in loud conditions. They are not suitable for commuting, and since they have open cups, they also leak quite a bit at moderate volume levels which may be distracting to the people around you. They're a compact critical listening headphone that's best used in isolation or while jogging/biking since you can monitor your surroundings for traffic but they will not be ideal for using on public transit or in a quiet office environment.
The Koss Porta Pro Wireless have a poor isolation. In the bass range, where the rumble of airplane and bus engines sit, they achieve no isolation. They also don't isolate in the mid-range, which is important for blocking out speech. In the treble range, occupied by sharp sounds like S and Ts, they achieved about 7dB of isolation, which is sub-par.
The leakage performance is sub-par. The significant portion of the leakage is between 1KHz and 12KHz, which is broad but mostly concentrated in the treble range. The overall level of the leakage is relatively loud too. With the music at 100dB SPL, the leakage at 1 foot away will average at 46dB SPL, and peaks at 65dB SPL, which is quite a bit above the noise floor of an average office.
The Koss 'Porta Pro Wireless' have a below-average microphone. In quiet environments, speech recorded or transmitted with this mic will sound relatively thin, and noticeably muffled and lacking in detail. It will still be relatively easy to understand. In noisy situations, it'll struggle to fully separate speech from background noise, even in moderately loud places, like a busy street.
The microphone has an average recording quality. The big dip around 120Hz results in a recorded/transmitted speech that sounds relatively thin. The HFE (high-frequency extension) of 3.3KHz means that speech will sound muffled and lacking in detail. But it'll still be decently understandable, since speech intelligibility is mostly dependent on the 500Hz-4KHz range.
The in-line microphone of the Koss Porta Pro Wireless is mediocre at noise handling. In our SpNR test, they achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of 13dB. This suggests they are best suited for quiet environments and will struggle to fully separate speech from ambient noise in moderate and loud places.
The Koss 'Porta Pro Wireless' have an above average battery life but no app support for added customization options. They lasted about 15.1 hours on average and do not take too long to charge. However, they do not have any power saving features to extend their battery life and their lack of a good app makes them feel a bit bland and outdated.
These headphones have an above-average battery life but lack good power saving features. They will easily last you the whole day with up to 15 hours of continuous playback at average volumes. However, they will stay paired to your phone or Bluetooth device even when inactive. If you forget to switch them off the battery will continue to drain although not as fast. Overall, it's a decent battery life but it could be better. On the upside, they do not take too long to charge at 1.3 hours.
These headphones do not have any compatible app for added customization options.
The Koss 'Porta Pro Wireless' are Bluetooth only headphones. They do not have an audio cable and cannot pair with multiple devices at once. They do not support NFC and have a bit too much latency for gaming or watching movies, although they do a bit better than most Bluetooth headphones. On the upside, they have a surprisingly good wireless range and support the aptX codec.
They only connect to other devices via Bluetooth. They do not support NFC or simultaneous multi-device pairing but do remember the last sync device.
These headphones are bluetooth-only and do not have an audio cable or a wired connection. If you want a decent sounding on-ear with a wired connection, we would suggest the Skullcandy Grind.
These headphones do not have a dock. If you want a headphone that's versatile and has a dock, try the SteelSeries Arctis 7. However, they won't be as compact or portable as the Porta Pros.
These headphones have a good wireless of 43ft when the Bluetooth source was obstructed by walls and up to 157ft in direct line of sight. It should be more enough for everyday use cases, especially if you keep your paired device on you.
These on-ears have a bit too much latency for watching movies and gaming. They perform a bit better than typical Bluetooth headphones, especially when using aptX but unfortunately, they also have no wired mode so they won't be the ideal home theater headphones.
The Porta Pro wireless are lightweight and compact headphones with a good enough sound for critical listening. They are pretty much identical to the old model except that they are wireless. They're compact enough to fit into some pockets and the breathable design makes them a decent option for sports. Unfortunately, their build quality feels very flimsy and they do not block any noise so they won't be as versatile as some of the other on-ears compared below.
The Koss Porta Pro are the wired version of the Porta Pro Wireless. They're also lightweight and comfortable on-ears with an identical design except they connect via a 1/8TRRS wired audio cable. They're compact enough to fit in some pockets, unlike the other on-ears and their open ear cups means they leak a lot and don't block much ambient noise. They are pretty much identical to the old model so if you do not need a wireless design, then get the cheaper wired Porta Pros.
The Skullcandy Grind are a much better-built on-ear than the Koss. They're also a bit cheaper since they've been released for a while and the Porta Pro wireless are still relatively new. They're almost as comfortable as the Bose, with a simple and sturdy on-ear design that's well padded and not too tight on the head. However, they won't be as lightweight as the Koss so you will feel them more on your head. They have a closed back design so they do not leak as much and are a bit more suitable for commuting and using at the office and they come with an audio cable so you can use them wired. The Grind are a much better headphone but if you need something more compact and want the open sound of the Koss, then get the Porta Pro Wireless.
The Grado SR60e are also open back critical listening headphones that are a bit less convenient to use on a daily basis since they have a thick and bulky wire. They also have a flimsy build quality that doesn't feel very durable but they sound a lot more open than the Koss. Unfortunately, their audio reproduction is less balanced and very sharp on already bright tracks and they're considerably bulkier and do not fold into a more compact format. The Koss are the better headphone overall but if you want a wider soundstage in an on-ear format, then the Grado could a decent but less versatile option.