JVC is going a right path in head-fi world this year, why? It do produces few really good headphone,but it is extraordinary hot this year, it brings a lot of good stuffs to us,good in term of audio quality and price factor. I can easily named few that make wonders recently, FX40, FXD80,FX1X,FX800,RX900,M5x and,thid JVC HA-S500( WIll named S500 in this entry). Go and search for S500 in headfi community,you can see what kind of hype it had created. Can’t deny, I can’t stop purchase a pair after reading all of the hype.
DESCRIPTION AND SPECIFICATION
This is a budget closed back on ear portable can, most of the countries don’t bring in this JVC S500 to sell, and I wonder why as well,because this is a good headphone with budget price tag. It has a 40mm Carbon Nanotube driver,but the size of the headphone is not big,and surprisingly, is very light.
|Play frequency band||8Hz ~ 25,000 Hz|
|Output sound pressure level||106dB/1mW|
|Maximum permissible input||1000mW (IEC ※)|
|Code||(Type Y) 1.2m, with plated L type stereo mini plug φ3.5mm|
|Mass||(Not including cord)Approximately 168g|
Quoted from wikipedia, “Carbon nanotubes are the strongest and stiffest materials yet discovered in terms of tensile strength and elastic modulus respectively.’,so carbon nanotubes driver do has it strength.
The ear cup is oddly design, when my first time holding this headphone,I asked myself,’is this really that nice sounding as many people saying??’
Packaging and Accessories
Sorry but original box is already incomplete since I lost some of the paper inside, anyway,accessories wise,what you can get is only headphone itself. Nothing more.
Built Quality and Mechanism/Design
S500 built fairly well considering the price tag, built from plastic When you rotate the earcup there is some noticeable noise, but it is nicely built,brilliance JVC!
The earcup itself can be rotated and swivel design, the headphone can be packed and easier for bring,this features make it a portable headphone. Design is okay, it definitely don’t have those eyes catching outlook like some,but the design is not ugly.
Sound Leakage and Isolation
This is closed back design headphone, no problem with isolation,but you still can heard outer noise even when you worn the headphone,but very minimal once you play the music, isolation is unnoticeable as long as you wear it in right way.
Pairing and ease of drive
S500 is very easy to drive, I can easily drive it by MP3 player and computer on board sound card.
No big issue here, it is light and small, on ear type, so it can easily being worn on your head,the synthetic leather will be a bit hot after sometime of use,and will be uncomfortable after some time of use,but nothing get really bad here.
My pair of JVC S500 has been burned in for at least 300 hours,I have actually lost count for so long time ago.
High : High is not a problem for S500,I will not say the treble or high of S500 is sparkling either crisp,but it is not blanketed nor dark, The high is average. If the song’s high is there,it will give you that high,but maybe not sparkling or very nice hearing high,but far from bad. Its high is nothing like those recessed one you can find on bass oriented headphone.
Mid : Mid sound thick,not really recessed type,quite full but yet,the quality of the mid alone is good for this headphone(Especially considered the price), I would love it more if it is more refined and expressive. But not bad sounding.
Low : This is the best part of S500 I can say! The bass of it is good and punchy,you can get good bass impact. The bass is definitely emphasized, bass is fun,and many will love it more or less, especially those time when you need bass to clear those stress, bass is good,not boomy bass,the bass is strong and hard, even with my a bit not that thumping Objective 2 Amplifier. Rumbling with good extension.
Sound Signature : The sound is closed,and sometime you can feel the sound is lacking airiness and being not spacious,but it is a lot,far better and clearer than the Superlux HD631,this is what I can definitely assured you. The sound is more towards thick and mature sounding. It is clear but sounded closed.
Soundstage : Soundstage is only average,not S500’s strength, for fast pace song,who needs big,wide and deep staging, rite? This headphone give you on stage staging I can say. All sound near,lack depth although width is not really bad. S500 play details very well too,has good resolution.
Instrument Seperation : I think S500 done a great Job here,although you can heard each instrument clearly, but they are all blended in a good way as well, sounded enjoyable.
Tested song are all in lossless format unless stated
Someone Like You – Adele (Greatest Hits)
This is a famous song,I guess that everyone should have listened to this song before. When the piano play,it sound weighty, the vocal is weighty as well, thick and sluggish sound,not that kind of spacious and relaxed sounding. This song is really not that nice when played on the S500, but if you don’t care so much or is a easy going listener,S500 performed moderately.
ContraDanza – Vanessa-Mae (The Best of Vanessa-Mae)
This sound good and enjoyable on S500,good instrument seperation, sound focused and keep on with the pace,albeit limited sound stage.
Without Me – Eminem (Curtain call)
Hey,this is what you should played on S500! The bass is thumping and beating, the vocal is clear here,you can hear what Eminem rapping yet, you will shake your head with the music, move your toe along with the rhythm, move your body just how the music called you to! Not that typical headphone that you can only feel overweight bass but nothing more.
Thank you for loving me – Bon Jovi (Crush)
Sounded great,Bon Jovi vocal sound good with this headphone, the weight of it suit this kind of vocal line, and the beginning of this song,the plucking and touching of the guitar, can be heard as well.
Back In Black – AC/DC (Bonfire CD5) – 320kbps
Keeping up with the pace,AC/DC voice is nice here! The music playing strong,and layering is there,seperation is good.
嘿嘿！Taxi – 欧阳菲菲 （畅销金曲专辑）
The rhythm of this song is okay,the vocal of Ou Yang Fei Fei is ok,but not that suitable if compaired with vocal like Bon Jovi and AC/DC.
Good : Good and clear sounding, cheap price, built is excellence considered the price, focus sound (Good for Top 40 music listening), BASS is very good (Punchy and good impact). Foldable,lightweight and small,cable quality is nice,very easy to drive,detailed and good instrument separation
Bad : Not really comfortable to wear on, accessories included is close to none, a bit veiled sounding, soundstage, not available to most of the country (as far as I concerned,only Japan has this), vocal and instrument can sound better.
This headphone is good, never regret after I purchased it, the sound is nice,especially for the price range, I cannot think of any better headphone that I can buy. The bass is enjoyable, what I and other owner get surprised is, how can JVC make this all rounder in a very cheap price. you get nice bass, with nothing really bad high and mid, the implementation of Carbon Nanotube is really impressive, I can see that this driver is vary potential.
This is not a audiophile headphone, for the price, it shouldn’t be as well. But this headphone is not typical audio toys as well, it has nice sound, and along with the friendly price tag. This headphone is not picky, means that you can play all genre of songs of it, and it won’t sound too bad, so you need not worrying the songs on your playlist,you can put shuffle mode and keep enjoying the music. For portable use, I recommended this headphone. nice and cheap, if you need to built a home listening setup, this might not be the most suitable headphone for you,as the sound is fun but not audiophile kind, anyway,around its price range, I doubt that you will get any all rounder performance headphone like this S500.