It is now time to turn our focus over to one specific brand, hailing from Germany with so many years experience delivering popular headphones, microphones (and more): beyerdynamic. With three stories surrounding some of their latest headphones, we will bring them to you one at a time, and to begin with, we are going to discuss their T51i on-ear headphones.
Marketed towards mobile users looking to bring their music with them on the go, the T51i headphones feature a smaller design that makes them ideal for travel. They are decently lightweight in design, despite the durable aluminum approach, and have a great visual appeal. With my first visual impression of them, they reminded me of something you’d find Daft Punk wearing around.
The backs of each muff feature a brushed steel look, with the aluminum running everywhere else leaning more towards a matte powder coat finish. There are black accents throughout, including black cushions. The cushions feel both durable and so very soft to the touch, and there are two similar cushions (material-wise) running across the bottom side of the band.
The muffs swivel around, both up and down slightly, as well as to the sides, allowing for a nice comfortable fit around the head. They of course slide up and down to adjust for head size as well. The only downside to mobility is that they do not fold into themselves for easier storage while on the go.
Near the right muff, there is an in-line remote on the cable that features the basic 3-button set for control of both music and phone conversations. You can control your volume as well as track selection via the outer two buttons, and the center button can play, pause, answer phone calls and so forth. Quite common for today’s headphones. On the back side of the remote is a small hole that leads to the microphone inside. The mic performs very well, allowing your voice to be delivered clears to the party on the other line.
The headphones perform quite well in certain areas that really allow them to shine. Most of which falls within your high and mid range frequencies. Extremely crisp audio, allowing you to really get the feel for vocals, brass and other elements that really shine through this range. I found that the headphones performed exactly how I’d expect them to within this price range, if not a little better (mids and highs).
Lower frequencies however do leave a little to be yearned for. I found that the bass levels are a bit soft and distant from where I’d like them to be, albeit the range does go pretty low. If you personally enjoying avoiding some of the low end of what you are listening to, then this is fine, as it allows for a very relaxed (yet still deep) sound stage. However, if you want to hear your tracks with the power and delivery they were meant to be listened to at, then these lack a little.
There is a little bit of cable noise (a metallic hollowness you could say) when it comes to rubbing (ie, across your clothes or objects near you) that can be transmitted to your ears. Nothing terrible, but it is there, so these would be best for situations where you are mostly still and not heavily active.
I would say they are great for those with well-trained ears looking for wonderful audio, specifically targeting the mid to high range with a soft low finish. They are not quite on the level of audiophile, but good for music enthusiasts nonetheless. Also good for monitors as well, if your focus is on vocals (although I’d prefer an over-ear approach for such.
In the package, you should find an adapter for non-Apple devices, an in-flight adapter (for those special inputs that certain airlines use), a 1/4″ adapter and some instructions. All of this is neatly packed in a semi-hardshell case for storage and travel. The case itself is nice on the outside with a velcro strap that keeps it shut. The inside lining is a bit cheap, but I’m sure you’d be more happy focusing your money on the headphones themselves than the case they come in.
As I pointed out, they are great for those looking for a sharp/crisp mid to high range, with a soft and slightly distant, yet deep low-end (they are supposed to reach as far down as 10Hz). They sound terrific for this and I could find myself recommending them quite easily. I would say that they aren’t the best that I have listening to within the price range, but I could easily say they are close to one of my favorites, if used for the right listening scenarios. Personally, I have a number of headphones, each for a specific purpose.
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*Average price is based on the time this article was published
- Transducer type: Dynamic
- Operating principle: Closed
- Frequency response: 10 – 23,000 Hz
- Nominal impedance: 32 ohms
- Sound pressure level: 111 dB
- Power handling capacity: 100 mW
- sound pressure level: 131 dB
- Sound coupling to the ear: Supraaural
- Headband pressure: 2.5 N
- Cable: 1.2 m, from both sides
- Connector: Mini stereo jack plug 3.5 mm
- Carry case, in-flight adapter,
- 1/4″ adapter (6.35 mm),
- adapter for non Apple
- compatible devices
- Weight without cable: 174 g
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