Bang & Olufsen in the world of audio is such … Apple world audio. Their products always put above all aesthetic impression and attention to detail, and then only care about the rest. And how is the latest baby company, Beoplay H9 headphones?
Beoplay H9 is a completely new design. They are round, wireless (Bluetooth aptX codecs) and have built-in active noise reduction. What exactly are we paying for buying B & O Beoplay H9?
First of all – the best in class quality workmanship.
Just take the new B & O headphones to your hand to feel that these are not the first better “cans”. The earmuffs covered with real leather and filled with memorable pose are soft and extremely pleasant to the touch.
On both handsets we will find aluminum panels; The headband is made of aluminum as well. And let’s say this openly: regardless of the color variant these handsets look just fine.
If I had something to do with the Beoplay H9, it would be two things: first, the hard padding of the headband, covered with fabric, which is very easy to get dirty and not overly comfortable due to its hardness; Second, the replaceable battery cap is clearly cut off from the structure and I feel that after some time it may start to gather dirt.
In addition to this the earphones are lightweight, durable and give the impression that they will last for years.
However, I would like to mention that I do not like the fact that in the set with headphones we get only a thin bag, instead of a hard case, protecting the “luxury” Beoplay H9. Really, at such a high price hard case should be standard.
We also pay for the insatiable quality of sound … if someone likes how he is properly “repainted” him.
Beoplay H9 is undoubtedly a great playing headset. They play purely, very loud and incredibly clear. Delving into the specifications for a moment, here are two 40 mm diameter transmitters that carry 20Hz to 22 KHz. On paper it does not look too impressive, but there is a reason for it.
What Beoplay H9 does not physically play, they will get it digitally. I have already mentioned in the headline that these headsets play insanely if someone likes this type of sound. If you are looking for faithful, transparent sounds – avoid the earphones as wide as possible. They are so clearly “tuned” that even without using the built-in dedicated equalizer application (about it in a moment) feel their “digital”. I do not write this as a drawback – a lot of people love this sound and grind their teeth with transparent studio headphones. I unfortunately (or fortunately) belong to the second group.
What surprised me was the selectivity of the bass. At just 20Hz down, I expected much worse response to low frequencies, but the Beoplay H9 plays them surprisingly well. In these headphones, the bass sounds good in both jazz and electronic music. Never felt the bass was too much. It is always “just in time”.
The mountains are wonderfully clean; Especially the voices of the vocalists and the string sections in orchestral music sound really great. In rock music is a bit worse, but it varies from genre to genre – rock with not guided guitar sounds clear, but strong djent or numetalk tracks tend to “fuse”.
On the minus side, I was surprised by the stage.
At the circular construction I expected much wider distribution of instruments, while the span closer to the earmuffs – all the instruments are squeezed in the middle, it does not feel the “concerto” of the sound.
We can control the sound with slider in B & O app for Android and iOS. It is clear, however, that it is dedicated to music laity, because we will not find traditional sound correction, but correction of mood. Nevertheless, it is very sensitive, and even the slightest shift of dots on the scale results in a noticeable change in the sound of the headphones.
At Beoplay H9 we also pay for active noise reduction.
To the ANC in the headphones always come with reserve. I love this feature and hate it at the same time. I love it because it allows you to cut off from the world or to drown the roaring train or flying aircraft. I hate it because few manufacturers can implement the ANC so that it does not affect the sound.
How is Beoplay H9? I would say that perfectly, but I can not. Active noise reduction is great, it’s a fact. It cuts the whole world, leaving us alone with music. Only that, by the way, noticeably interferes with the sound of the headphones. In addition, the trained ear will detect that when the ANC is turned on, it is as if it is light “phasing” when the external microphones cut out the frequencies responsible for the noise, and internally they try to compensate for it.
Fortunately, 99% of users probably will not return any of the above. However, I found that when testing a handset worth a lot of money, I was obliged to stick to every trifle that goes beyond the ideal.
That is why I am not buying quality handsets for these handsets.
B & O used touch control with an aluminum panel on the right hand side. Dragging from top to bottom turns ANC on / off, single touch pauses music and receives a call, and adjust volume by dragging your finger around the panel.
In theory it looks cool, in practice – it is insanely inaccurate. Particularly the volume control is the way through the torment, to the extent that I preferred to reach for the application on the phone, rather than to tire of the gesture of the panel mating.
I do not exclude, however, that this is a firmware bug that will be fixed by B & O soon. It sometimes happens that the panel reacts with a considerable delay, or does not react at all, although the headphones signal a beep that something has worked out.
By the way of signaling, I am very short of any voices on paralysis, battery status, and the like. Here the application informs us of everything.
However, he was comfortable with me.
I sat in these handsets a solid few hours each day testing and I do not remember when I had such a comfortable pair recently. Nothing oppresses and does not bite. At first, a bit of a hard bouncy head hurts, but in practice we quickly forget about it.
But remember that leather earrings are sweating – so I recommend every few dozen minutes to take a 5-10 minutes break from listening to not hurt your ears.
The manufacturer declares 14 hours of work via Bluetooth with ANC enabled and in fact I have squeezed so many of them. It was probably even a bit more. If we decide to listen to music “on the cable” and still have noise reduction enabled, the handset will last up to 21 hours without charging.
A little bit surprised me that the microUSB connector, not USB-C, was used for charging, such as the Beoplay A1.
Is it worth buying Beoplay H9?
With Beoplay H9 headphones is like the iPhone. The answer to the question “is it worth buying” is difficult for those who are going to buy electronics based on the price-to-quality ratio. Very simple for those who simply pull out a wallet card when they like something.
For the other group the answer is – absolutely yes. Apple, which you certainly have.
For the first – it depends. As I wrote at the beginning, B & O puts more than aesthetics and attention to detail, and this sometimes also means over-molding over content.
So it all boils down to how good the sound is in the headphones next to the sound you want to show your taste, taste or social status. If you do not care much about it – it’s not a product for you.