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Philips SHP9500 Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.4
Updated Sep 15, 2016 at 12:14 pm
Philips SHP9500 Picture
Test Methodology v1.4
5.2
Mixed Usage
8.1
Neutral Sound
4.0
Commute/Travel
5.3
Sports/Fitness
4.8
Office
4.7
Wireless Gaming
6.8
Wired Gaming
1.7
Phone Calls
Type Over-ear
Enclosure Open-Back
Wireless No
Noise Cancelling No
Mic No
Transducer Dynamic

The Phillips SHP9500 are a great pair of budget critical listening headphones. They're incredibly comfortable and have a sturdy yet lightweight build that feels durable. They're not casual headphones that can be used outdoors, but they deliver a good, well-balanced sound, on par with much pricier open-back models.

Our Verdict

5.2 Mixed Usage

These headphones are not designed for everyday, casual use. They're best used for critical listening in private.

8.1 Neutral Sound

Great sound quality for neutral listening. The SHP9500 deliver a comfortable listening experience and reproduce tracks with above-average fidelity. Bass, mids, and treble are well balanced, and the large and open ear cups give these headphones a spacious soundstage.

See our Neutral Sound recommendations
4.0 Commute/Travel

They purposely don't block any ambient noise, which is not ideal for commuting.

See our Commute/Travel recommendations
5.3 Sports/Fitness

Not designed for sports. They're too cumbersome and unstable to use while doing any strenuous physical activity.

See our Sports/Fitness recommendations
4.8 Office

Not designed for office use, unless you work in an isolated environment, these headphones will be distracting to the people around you.

See our Office recommendations
6.8 Wired Gaming
  • 5.2 Mixed Usage
  • 8.1 Neutral Sound
  • 4.0 Commute/Travel
  • 5.3 Sports/Fitness
  • 4.8 Office
  • 4.7 Wireless Gaming
  • 6.8 Wired Gaming
  • 1.7 Phone Calls
Pros
  • Comfortable design.
  • Good audio reproduction.
  • Durable build.
Cons
  • Big and bulky headphones.
  • Open-back design, so they leak a lot.
  • Very sensitive to ambient noise, by design.
  1. Update 2/4/2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.4.
  2. Update 11/21/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  3. Update 11/6/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  4. Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
  5. Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

Check Price

Test Results

Design
Design
Style

The Phillips SHP9500 have a utilitarian design that looks good without being too flashy. They come in a matte black color scheme highlighted by the metal frame and Philips branding on the ear cups and headband. They're well-padded, and look more premium than other headphones above their price range. The ear cup padding is soft, however, it's not the best, and looks a little cheap compared to the rest of the build quality.

8.5
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.65 lbs
Clamping Force
0.70 lbs

The SHP9500 are very comfortable headphones. They have large ear cups that will easily fit around most listeners ears. They're not too tight or heavy on the head for their size. The headband like the ear cups are well padded but coated in a slightly rough fabric that's not as pleasant on the skin as the leather or faux leather used on some models.

0
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
No Controls
Ease Of Use No Controls
Feedback No Controls
Call/Music Control No
Volume Control No
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
No
Noise Cancelling Control No
Talk-Through
No
Additional Controls No
7.8
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 2.5 C
5.2
Design
Portability
L 8.75 "
W 7.13 "
H 4 "
Volume 249.6 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required No

The SHP9500 are not portable headphones. They're quite large and don't fold into a more compact format. The ear cups also don't lay flat to save space, which results in a headphone that's cumbersome to carry around, and that will only fit in a backpack. Disappointingly, they also don't come with a case or a pouch either.

0
Design
Case
Type No case
L N/A
W N/A
H N/A
Volume N/A
7.0
Design
Build Quality

The SHP9500 are well-built and durable headphones but feel a little too plasticky. The ear cups and headband can withstand a couple of drops without getting damaged. The headband especially is reinforced with a thin metal frame that should be able to handle a fair amount of physical stress. However, the fabric covering the padding feels easily tearable and will show more signs of wear than leather. The swiveling ear cups are also a weak point being relatively narrow and susceptible to breaking under moderate stress.

6.0
Design
Stability

These headphones are not meant to be used while doing physical activity. They have the typical critical listening headphone build, which means they're big and bulky, and they will slip off your head if used during exercise or while running. They will stay in place during regular listening sessions, but they're not going to be stable enough to use while moving around outdoors. On the upside, the cable is detachable and will disconnect if it gets hooked on something.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  •  Phillips SHP9500 Headphones
  • 1/8" to 1/4" Adapter

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-4.67 db
Treble Amount
-1.15 db
7.9
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.42 dB
Sound
Raw Frequency Response
7.0
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.89 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
58.23 Hz
Low-Bass
-7.82 dB
Mid-Bass
-0.52 dB
High-Bass
1.96 dB
9.3
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
0.96 dB
Low-Mid
0.54 dB
Mid-Mid
0.35 dB
High-Mid
0.98 dB
8.6
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
1.91 dB
Low-Treble
0.99 dB
Mid-Treble
2.01 dB
High-Treble
-8.56 dB
7.7
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
1.63 db
Dips
0.73 db
8.6
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.2
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.44
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
1.85
Weighted Phase Mismatch
7.42
7.9
Sound
Passive Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
3.9 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
3.61 dB
PRTF Distance
10.85 dB
Openness
9.4
Acoustic Space Excitation
9.2
0
Sound
Virtual Soundstage
Head Modeling
No
Speaker Modeling
No
Room Ambience
No
Head Tracking
No
Virtual Surround
No App
8.0
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.098
WHD @ 100
0.196
Sound
Test Settings
Firmware
No Firmware
Power
Passive
Connection
Wired
Codec
PCM, 24-bit, 48kHz
EQ
No EQ
ANC
No ANC
Tip/Pad
Default
Microphone
No Microphone
Isolation
1.5
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-3.24 dB
Bass
0.13 dB
Mid
1.33 dB
Treble
-10.84 dB

Poor isolaton. Due to their open-back design, these headphones don't offer any isolation below 1KHz. Above 1KHz, there is a 3dB/Octave roll-off present, which won't be effective in blocking outside noise.

0.8
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
66.76 dB

Poor leakage. These headphones are quite loud and leak a lot. The significant portion of the leakage is between 300Hz and 20KHz, which is a very broad range. The overall level of the leakage is also quite high. The leakage out of these headphones will be loud and comprehensible.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
No
In-Line
No
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
No
0
Microphone
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
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise N/A
Speech + Subway Noise N/A
SpNR
N/A
Active Features
0
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
No Battery
Continuous Battery Life
N/A
Additional Charges
N/A
Total Battery Life
N/A
Charge Time
N/A
Power-Saving Feature
No
Audio While Charging
No
Passive Playback
Passive Headphone
Charging Port None
0
Active Features
App Support
App Name No App
iOS No
Android No
macOS No
Windows No
Equalizer
No
ANC Control
No
Mic Control No
Room Effects
No
Playback Control
No
Button Mapping No
Surround Support
No

No compatible app.

Connectivity
0
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
No Bluetooth
Multi-Device Pairing
No
NFC Pairing
No
Line Of Sight Range
N/A
PC Latency (SBC)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX HD)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX-LL)
N/A
iOS Latency
N/A
Android Latency
N/A
0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line Of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
9.5
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable Yes
Length 9.84 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Analog/USB Audio Latency
0 ms
Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC/PS4 Analog
Audio Only
PC/PS4 Wired USB
No
PC/PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
Audio Only
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Wireless
No
0
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
No Base/Dock
USB Input
No
Line In
No
Line Out
No
Optical Input
No
RCA Input
No
Dock Charging
No
Power Supply
No Base/Dock

Compared to other headphones

See our recommendations for the best wired headphones, the best audiophile headphones, and the best headphones under $100.

Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X
Unavailable
BestBuy.com

The Philips SHP9500 are all-around better headphones than the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X. They reproduce audio much more accurately, with more bass and a more present and detailed treble. They feel better-built and are more comfortable too.

Sennheiser HD 599
Unavailable
BestBuy.com

Both the Philips SHP9500 and the Sennheiser HD 599 are both very comfortable headphones that are great for neutral listening. The Sennheiser deliver more bass for those who prefer a bit of extra punch, but the Philips sound less boomy.

Sennheiser HD 598
Unavailable
BestBuy.com

The Philips SHP9500 offer better value than the Sennheiser HD 598. Both headphones perform almost identically and there are only minor differences in their audio quality. Both are very comfortable, but the Philips are slightly heavier and bulkier. For most people, the affordable Philips SHP9500 will be a better option.

Philips SHP9500 Price

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