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Onkyo ES-HF300 review

Tom Morgan
2 Aug 2013
Expert Reviews Best Buy Logo
Onkyo ES-HF300
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
180
inc VAT

One of the best sounding headphones we’ve heard for less than £200

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Onkyo certainly won't be the first name that springs to mind when you think headphones; the ES-HF300 are the Japanese company's first pair. Designed for mobile listening, rather than as an accessory for Onkyo's home cinema amplifiers, they have a detachable, cable that promises excellent sound quality as well as added durability.

Available in eye-catching white and purple, or the far more subtle black model we were sent for this review, the ES-HF300s make an impression without being ostentatious. The cups, along with the ratcheted headband, are made from a combination of aluminium and ABS plastic, making them tough and scratch resistant without weighing down your head. The cushioned leatherette ear pads and head band are comfortable to wear for long periods without becoming uncomfortable.

Onkyo ES-HF300

The ES-HF300's stand-out feature is its detachable cable. The tiny MCX connectors lock in place firmly, and won't pop out unless you tug on the cable with extreme force. Should the cable break, you can replace it without having to dispose of the headphones entirely. Onkyo is fairly confident in their sturdiness, though, having made the cable using a tangle free elastomer plastic.

Each ear cup has a 40mm titanium driver, and we were certainly impressed with the sound quality. The ES-HF300s sound clean and precise, with an incredibly crisp high-end that doesn't unbalance the mid-range.

Bass is delivered through two dedicated chambers in each ear cup, which create a powerful low-end that doesn’t overpower the rest of the frequency range. It’s refreshing to find a pair of fashion-friendly headphones that don’t exacerbate the bass so that we can enjoy acoustic tracks in between pounding dubstep and heavy rock.

The earcups create a comfortable seal around your head, and they block out a reasonable amount of outside noise, so you can comfortably listen at half volume and still appreciate the more subtle details of your tracks. Unless you're listening at maximum volume, you shouldn't have to worry about sound leaking, either. We had no complaints when using the headphones on our daily commute.

The design might be a little too restrained for the fashion-conscious, but we think users will be impressed with the sound quality. The balance between high end, mid-range and bass is excellent, and the removable cable should mean they’ll last far longer than the competition too. Although they can't quite match Sennheiser's phenomenal Momentum headphones, they are easily among the best cans you'll find in its price bracket. If you're after a quality pair of on-ears for less than £200, the Onkyo ES-HF300 are among the best.

Details

Price£180
Detailswww.eu.onkyo.com
Rating*****
AwardBest Buy

Specifications

Typeover-ear headphones
Driverclosed
Active noise-cancellingno
Power sourcenone
Sensitivity97dB
Frequency response10-27,000Hz
Impedence32 ohms
Plug type3.5mm stereo jack plug
Inline volumeNo
Weight240g
Cable length1.30m
Extraspouch, audiophile grade cable

Buying Information

Price£180
Supplierhttp://www.superfi.co.uk
Detailswww.eu.onkyo.com

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