Friday, October 28, 2011
Sennheiser MM 400 Bluetooth Headphones
My regular searches on audiophile forums for a pair of portable wireless headphones that sound as good as wired headphones had me move towards purchasing a pair of MM 400s, but the £200 list price seemed a bit steep.
A half-price offer on Amazon encouraged me to take the plunge, and a couple of days later the familiar brown & black cardboard package arrived. First impressions were good. They are a well-built, with soft leather padding on the ear cups and headband. When folded they fit neatly into the provided 11 x 18 x 5cm nylon carrying case, which has a side pocket for cables.
Charging is via your computer's USB port, or with the provided mains charger. The headphones have a non-standard socket, meaning you have to use the Sennheiser-supplied cable, and the cover for the socket is flimsy and poor-fitting, one of the plastic hinges on it has already broken after just a few months use. Claimed operating time is 10 hours, but if the batteries expire, you can connect directly using the supplied cable.
Pairing to my iPhone was simple and quick. The closed earpieces are comfortable, and keep the sound extremely well contained. The volume (like all Bluetooth headsets I have used) won't go as loud as a wired pair, but is perfectly adequate.
The sound quality is not as detailed as the B&W P5s but the overall quality is involving and enjoyable to listen to for long periods of time. And despite being closed, the earpieces remained comfortable.
The play/pause/skip/volume controls on the right earpiece all work efficiently and mean that you can leave your iPhone in your pocket/bag most of the time. The Bluetooth reception is the best of any headset I have used, with only the occasional 'blip'.
I am also pleased to report that they stay firmly in place on my Sunday 4-mile runs, although the isolating effects of the closed earpieces does mean you have to be extra careful when crossing roads!
Although I don't use my iPhone much as a phone, the couple of times when incoming calls have occurred, the pause/resume buttons worked fine, and the microphone picked up my voice just fine.