My brief take on the Denon AH-NC800 noise cancelling
So i just bought a pair of Denon's shiny new noise cancelling headphones.
Noise cancelling is important to me as I travel a lot and work in data centres which can get pretty dang loud. Ive owned a pair of Bose QC2 headphones for the last 5 yeas which have served me well but Bose has some really shoddy build quality. The plastic frame has cracked in many places and Ive been using a lot of tape to make them useable. But i have to say that the sound and noise cancelling ability has always impressed me.
But it was time for an upgrade so I went ahead and got the Denon's.
First of all, the noise cancelling on these headphones is really special! I mean just crazy good. If noise cancellation is your focus then i would recommend these in a heartbeat.
The build quality is very very good. aluminium frame and very comfy leather cusioning. Feels very Snug.
Few good features over the Bose
- Claimed battery life of 40 hours from a single AAA. Havent verified this yet.
- Can be used without the noice cancelling feature. So if your out of power or dont want the noice cancelling.. Its fine. Huge positive over Bose here.
- Has two settings for Noise cancelling. just noise cancelling and something called "restorer" which is supposed to improve the quality of compressed audio. The restorer settings seems to isolate the sound a bit better. I prefer not having it on.
What i dont like....
- No hi/low setting mode. On the bose, i liked the ability on the headphone connection piece to set the amplification to high or low depending on what device you were connecting to. So if you were plugging into an ipod you would use the high setting.
What about the sound quality?
errrr.. I really expected more. To be honest, it just doesnt sound as good as the Bose. Im not claiming the Bose was all that special, but switching back and forth between the two, the Bose sounds much richer with better bass. I could listen to the bose for a long time but with the Denon, the high's are just too bright and can be quite annoying to listen to for extended periods. Bass heavy tracks lack the punch of the Bose. mark knopflers les paul in brothers in arms doesnt have that beautiful haunting deep sound, it comes off too bright.
Which leads me to my second question... do headphones need to be run in a little? I cant remember the bose needing this so it could be a stupid question.
But all in all, im still happy with my purchase as the noise cancelling circuitry is special. I just really wish it sounded a lot better.