Sennheiser RS175 -Review
- Very comfortable
- Easy to operate when worn
- Optical or analogue input
- Great sound and soundstage
- Bass boost and 2 virtual settings
- Includes rechargeable AAA batteries
- Can get slightly cluttered in midrange
- Some may prefer velour earpads
Even while being used to the excellent forerunner, the RS170, the Sennheiser RS175 impresses. Time marches on of course, and Sennheiser has marched along with some even more amazing wireless headphones which have left a right impression with everyone here. We feel that to parade around the house with these headphones would be an ideal use for them. We know the drill!
Following the popular RS170 closed-back model, Sennheiser have had their work cut out. However they’ve improved functionality and have added some useful features too.
Flawless and lossless wireless transfer allows for uninterrupted and interference-free enjoyment of TV and music. Buttons on the headphones alter volume, enable bass boost and control virtual surround. Also, switching the headphones on or off will issue the same instruction to the transmitter, for convenient operation anywhere within the transmission range. The included AAA batteries can be recharged within the headphones while sitting on the transmitter which doubles as a stylish headphone stand.
Both analogue an optical cables can be connected; a switch on the back of the transmitter selects the input source. Working on a 2.4GHz frequency, they are free of interference; even when being used with Wi-Fi signals in close proximity, for instance wireless internet routers.
Once out of the box, the headphones feel lighter than they appear to be, and once on the head they are very comfortable – even when glasses are also worn. The ears are fully enclosed; there’s a generous amount of space within the earcups.
The positions of the buttons are intuitively placed; altering volume and enabling bass boost/virtual surround is a doddle. The Sennheiser RS175 promises to give hours of comfortable and trouble-free operation, allowing the user to concentate on the audio.
The audio quality itself is certainly comparable to many similarly priced wired headphones; with the standard unaltered settings, bass is well controlled and has plenty of impact. Midrange is more prominent than the older RS170 model, improving speech intelligability with video and harmonics with music. There is a slight danger of clutter here if a lot is going on within the audio however. Treble is crisp and clear, but without getting overbearing. Soundstage is fantastic and separation is as good as any closed back at this price level.
Bass boost is more subtle than the name of the feature implies; it gives a gentle lift to the lower end of the bass without causing any bloating or muddying. It is just as well controlled, allowing the midrange and treble space through without being overpowered.
Virtual surround is a big improvement over the older RS170 model; audio which belongs in the centre of the soundstage stays there, while instruments/voices panned towards the left/right move further out. There are two levels of virtual surround and on the higher setting the presentation is truly immersive! Perfect for TV and films.
The new Sennheiser RS175 is a far cry from the image of the crackly and noisy wireless headphones of years ago. Sennheiser have hit the right spot with the RS175, and the new range of wireless models, the RS165, RS175, RS185 and RS195 promises to dominate the high quality TV headphones market for some time to come.