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Reviewed on Jan 26, 2018

Oppo PM-3
HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
6.9
Mixed Usage
7.8
Critical Listening
6.4
Commute/Travel
6.3
Sports/Fitness
6.8
Office
6.3
TV
6.9
Gaming
Type : Over-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : No
Noise-Cancelling : No
Mic : Yes
Transducer : Planar Magnetic

The Oppo PM-3 are well-made critical listening headphones with a good sound. They have a mobile-friendly, planar magnetic design and a stylish yet sturdy build quality. They're also very comfortable headphones. However, their closed-back ear cups and slightly sharp audio reproduction, may not be ideal for all critical listeners.

Test Results
Design 7.5
Sound 7.8
Isolation 6.7
Microphone 6.4
Active Features 0
Connectivity 5.1
Pros
  • Above-average audio reproduction.
  • Comfortable
  • Sturdy, well-built design.
Cons
  • Poor noise isolation
  • Slightly heavy and cumbersome.
Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
Update 10/2/2017: The microphone has been tested with our new methodology, as explained here
Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

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7.5

Design

The Oppo PM-3 are well-crafted and stylish-looking headphones. They have amply padded and decently spacious ear cups coated with a faux-leather finish that's comfortable to wear for long listening sessions but does make your ears a little warm. The brushed aluminum frame gives the build quality of the Oppo PM3 a high-end feel. However, the top of the headband has a slightly cheaper looking plastic casing and they're a little heavy for their size. They also don't fold into a more compact format to carry around, and they're not the most stable headphones for sports. They will slip off your ears if used while running or exercising. 

Style

The Oppo PM-3 have a simple design that looks great and feels premium. They come in three color schemes: Black, white and the two-tone steel blue option of the unit reviewed. They feel more high-end than the Nad VISO HP50 and they stand out in a crowd, yet are not as flashy as some other over-ear headphones we've tested. They also make use of a lot of metal and premium materials in their build, which further adds to their high-end appeal.

8.5 Comfort
Weight : 0.69 lbs
Clamping Force
:
1.04 lbs

The Oppo PM-3 are a little heavy but comfortable headphones. They don't apply too much pressure to your head. The headband is well padded, and the ear cups are sufficiently large for most listeners ears. That and the high-end feel of the faux-leather results in a design that you can wear for hours, similar to the Sony MDR-1A.

7.4 Controls
Ease of use : Good
Feedback : Decent
Call/Music Control : Yes
Volume Control : Yes
Microphone Control : No
Channel Mixing
:
N/A
Noise Canceling Control : N/A
Talk-Through
:
N/A
Additional Buttons : No

The Oppo PM-3 have an efficient control scheme that delivers call/music, track skipping, and volume controls. Sadly, the buttons of the inline controls lack a bit of tactile feedback and are too flat, which is slightly disappointing.

6.1 Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference : 6.6 C

The Oppo PM-3s will make your ears a little warm after 1 hours of continuous listening. This is about average for most closed over-ear with a faux leather padding but this also means they won't be ideal for sports.

6.1 Portability
L : 7.28 "
W : 7.48 "
H : 1.77 "
Volume : 96.56 Cu. Inches
Transmitter required : N/A

The Oppo PM-3 are mid-sized over-ear headphones. The ear cups lay flat to take less space, making the PM-3 somewhat portable. Unfortunately, they don't fold into a more compact format and will take a decent amount of space in a backpack. They're a little cumbersome to carry on your person and won't comfortably fit into smaller bags.

7.5 Case
Type : Hard case
L : 8.27 "
W : 7.87 "
H : 2.17 "
Volume : 140.9 Cu. Inches

The Oppo PM3 come with a durable hard case covered in a denim fabric that will protect your headphones from minor falls and water damage. It adds a bit of bulk to the headphones but easily transports all the provided headphone accessories.

8.0 Build Quality

These headphones are well built. The frame and joints of the headband are made of metal and feel sturdy and durable. The ear cups are dense enough to handle a couple of drops without breaking. The cable is thick and rubberized and won't get damaged quickly by wear and tear. The swivel mechanism may eventually loosen over time but isn't something to be too worried about.

6.5 Stability

The Oppo PM-3 are not sports headphones. They're a little bulky and slightly heavy for their size. They're not very tight on the head which is good for comfort, but also makes them prone to slipping off your ears during exercise or while running. On the upside, they easily stay in place during casual listening sessions and also come with a detachable cable that will disconnect if hooked on something rather than yanking the headphones of your head.

Cable
Detachable : Yes
Length : 9.97 ft
Connection : 1/8" TRS

The Oppo PM3 come with a regular 1/8" TRS audio cable with no inline remote and a 1/8" TRRS audio cable for Android or iOS.

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7.8

Sound

The Oppo PM-3 are a decent sounding pair of closed-back over-ear headphones. They have a very good and extended bass, capable of producing deep thumps and tight kicks. Their mid-range is neutral and nearly flawless,  but their treble is only decent as it could sound slightly sharp and piercing on certain tracks. However, their bass is susceptible to inconsistencies from person to person, especially if they wear glasses. The soundstage of the Oppo PM-3, like most other closed-back headphones, is not very spacious and the sound may be perceived to be coming from inside of the listener's head, as opposed to from a speaker in-front.

8.9 Bass
Std. Err.
:
1.56 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
10 Hz
Low-Bass
:
-1.64 dB
Mid-Bass
:
-0.32 dB
High-Bass
:
1.72 dB

The Oppo PM3 has a very good bass response. It is extended down to 10Hz, meaning they are able to produced deep thumps and rumbles. Low-bass, which is the region responsible for thump and rumble is lacking 1.6dB. This won't be noticeable to most, but fans of excessive bass may not be fully satisfied by PM-3's low-end. The 1.7dB bump in high-bass also won't be very noticeable, as it adds only a tad clutter and muddiness to the bass.

9.1 Mid
Std. Err.
:
1.17 dB
Low-Mid
:
-0.41 dB
Mid-Mid
:
0.26 dB
High-Mid
:
0.61 dB

The Oppo PM3's mid-range is excellent and nearly flawless. The entire mid-range response is within 0.6dB of our target, which is quite impressive. The results is a proper balance between the kick/bass instruments in the bass region, and vocals/leads in the mid region.

7.2 Treble
Std. Err.
:
4.2 dB
Low-Treble
:
1.19 dB
Mid-Treble
:
3.1 dB
High-Treble
:
-3.98 dB

The Oppo PM-3 has a decent treble range response. It's only slightly over our target in low-treble, which brings a bit of excess presence and brightness to the cymbals and higher harmonics of vocals and other lead instruments. The 10dB bump in mid-treble however, will have a small but noticeable negative effect by making sibilances (S and T sounds) sharp and piercing on overly bright tracks.

6.7 Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
:
0.7 dB

The frequency response consistency and bass delivery of the Oppo PM-3 is about average. In our bass measurements on five human subject, the PM3 showed about 5dB of variance at 20Hz. The biggest drop in bass was measured on the subject who wears glasses, since certain glasses' arms tend to break the seal on closed-back headphones. The treble range also shows about 5dB of variance depending on the positioning of the headphones on the user's head.

7.9 Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
:
0.23
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
:
1.62
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
:
2.13
Weighted Phase Mismatch
:
7.62
6.0 Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
:
2.87 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
:
5.46 dB
PRTF Distance
:
11.16 dB
Openness
:
3.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
:
2.7
Correlated Crosstalk
:
-0.13 dB
8.2 Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 90
:
0.34
Weighted THD @ 100
:
1.447

The Oppo PM-3 has a very good harmonic distortion performance. The overall amount of harmonic distortion is low and within very good limits. It also seems that the amount of harmonic distortion produced by the Oppo is not significantly affected by an increase in volume.

6.7

Isolation

The Oppo PM-3 are not active noise isolating headphones. They will block some ambient, high-frequency noise thanks to the good seal they create around your ears. Sadly, you will still be able to hear the train or bus on a busy commute and  the people around you in a loud office. On the upside, they don't leak too much and won't be distracting at moderate volumes.

6.2 Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
:
Overall Attenuation
:
-15.55 dB
Bass
:
0.25 dB
Mid
:
-10.04 dB
Treble
:
-37.58 dB
Self-Noise
:
0 dB

The isolation provided by the Oppo Pm-3 is mediocre. They provide no isolation in the bass range, where the rumble of airplane engines and buses are. This is because the Oppos don't have ANC and isolate passively only using their ear cups. In the mid-range, where is important for blocking out speech, the PM3 achieves about 11dB of reduction, which is about average. However, they are good at blocking higher frequency sounds, such as the hiss of a fan or an air conditioning system, because they achieve 39dB of isolation in the treble range.

7.7 Leakage
Leakage Audio
:
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
:
35.94 dB

The Oppo PM-3 has a good leakage performance. The majority of leakage is in the 500Hz-2KHz frequency range, which is a relatively narrow band and occupied mostly by the upper harmonics of voice, cymbals, and lead instruments. Additionally, the overall level of the sound that escapes the headphones is relatively low and only at moderate to high volumes people around you may be able to hear what you are listening to.

6.4

Microphone

Integrated
:
No
In-line
:
Yes
Boom
:
No
Detachable Boom
:
N/A

The PM-3's inline microphone has a mediocre performance. Recorded speech will sound noticeably thin, and will lack a bit of presence and air, but it should be decently intelligible regardless. They also perform about average in noisy environments, and won't be able to effectively separate speech from ambient noise in environments as loud or louder than a busy street.

6.3 Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
:
LFE
:
500.69 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
:
1.49 dB
HFE
:
3948.06 Hz
Weighted THD
:
0.236
Gain
:
16.34 dB

The microphone of the PM3 has a mediocre recording quality. The LFE of 500Hz means that speech recorded with the PM3 will sound very thin. However, low-frequency response is not a factor in speech intelligibility and should not affect the comprehension of recorded speech. The HFE of 4KHz, however, means that sound captured by this microphone will lack brightness and airiness. This will have a small negative effect on speech intelligibility. On the upside, the region between LFE and HFE is captured well.

6.5 Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise :
Speech + Subway Noise :
SpNR
:
17.46 dB

The noise handling performance of the PM3's inline microphone is average. In our test, PM3's mic achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of 17dB. This means that this headphone's mic may struggle to separate speech from background noise in moderate to loud environments, such as a busy street.

0

Active Features

The Oppo PM-3 have a low latency wired connection but no active features. If you're looking for a headphone with more active features try the Bose QuietComfort 25. They are as comfortable as the PM3s and have excellent noise cancelation.

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

The PM3 has no active feature, therefore have no batteries.

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

These headphones do not have a compatible app or software. If you want a wired headphone with app support, try the Logitech G430.

5.1

Connectivity

The Oppo PM-3 only connect via a wired 1/8TRRS audio cable which does not have microphone compatibility with Xbox One or PS4.

0 Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
:
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
:
N/A
NFC Pairing
:
N/A

The Oppo PM-3 do not have any Bluetooth capabilities. If you want Bluetooth compatible headphones, check out our best recommendations here.

7.8 Wired
OS Compatibility
:
iOS
Analog Audio
:
Yes
USB Audio
:
No
PS4 Compatible
:
Audio Only
Xbox One Compatible
:
Audio Only
PC Compatible
:
Audio + Microphone

The PM3 have a 1/8TRRS analog audio cable that does not have microphone compatibility with consoles.

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

These headphones do not have a base station or dock.

0 Wireless Range
Obstructed Range
:
N/A
Line of Sight Range
:
N/A

The Oppo PM-3 are wired so they have no wireless range.

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

These headphones have a wired connection with negligible latency.

In the box

  • Oppo PM-3 Headphones
  • Carrying case
  • Cable pouch
  • Audio cable (x2)
  • 1/8" to 1/4" Adapter
  • Manual

Compared to other Headphones

The Oppo PM-3 is one of the few planar magnetic closed-back headphones. This makes them relatively different from the competition and somewhat pricey but their sound is on par if not better than the other headphones compared below. See our recommendations for the best over-ear headphones, the best wired headphones, and the best headphones for music.

Sennheiser Momentum 2.0/HD1 Over-Ear

The Oppo PM-3 are a better headset overall than the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0. The Oppos have a better build quality and a more comfortable over-ear fit that most will prefer over the Sennheiser. They also sound a bit better balanced in the bass mid and treble ranges, although the Oppos do tend to sound a bit sharp at times. This means that some people may prefer the darker sound of the Sennheiser. The Sennheiser also have a slightly more compact and portable design, thanks to the folding joints, and their iOS-specific audio cable has mic support with the PS4 controller, unlike the Oppos.

Conclusion
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6.9 Mixed Usage
The Oppo PM-3 are decent for mixed usage. They have a good, sturdy design and a comfortable fit you can wear for hours. That combined with their above average sound quality make them a good choice for critical listeners. Their closed-back design also makes them a bit more suitable for more casual uses like watching a movie at home or listening to music at the office but they won't be ideal for commuting or sports.
7.8 Critical Listening
The Oppo PM-3 are good headphones for critical listening. They have planar magnetic drivers that deliver a balanced and clear audio reproduction. However, they tend to sound a bit too sharp on some tracks and the closed-back design limits a bit their soundstage.
6.4 Commute/Travel
The Oppo PM-3 are average for commuting. They're comfortable, but the passive isolation is a bit too weak for loud environments like being on a train.
6.3 Sports/Fitness
These headphones are average for sports. They have a comfortable and moderately stable fit but are too bulky and heavy, for strenuous exercises and sports. The faux leather also traps a lot of heat which will make your ears sweat rather quickly during workouts.
6.8 Office
These headphones are above-average for office use. They don't block that much noise which is not ideal for a busy office. However, they also don't leak much so you won't distract anyone in your vicinity at average volumes.
6.3 TV
The Oppo PM-3 are above-average for home theater use. They're comfortable headphones with an above-average sound for watching movies. They're also wired, so they have negligible latency. Unfortunately, they won't have the best range unless you have an extension cord for the audio cable.
6.9 Gaming
The Oppo PM-3 headphones are above-average for gaming. They have a low latency wired connection and a comfortable design you can wear for hours. However, they do not have an app or wireless capabilities which are typical for gaming headsets. They also do not have the best mic for multiplayer gaming.

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