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Klipsch Image One review

Beautifully finished and pretty much nicely balanced, the Klipsch Image Ones are hampered by an overwhelming amount of bass Tested at £140

Our Verdict

If you love your bass, these are perfect. If not, a long audition is in order

For

  • Lavishly finished
  • generally composed and balanced sound

Against

  • Except in the bass, which threatens to capsize the whole thing

All the Klipsch headphones listed in our Buyer's Guide have one thing in common: they're in-ear designs.

These Image Ones are the first on-ear design we've heard from the American company, and it's used the additional surface area to pile on the perceived value.

Build quality is reassuring, for instance, and the large ear-cups are trimmed in a chrome'n'leather combo that wouldn't shame a Lexus interior.

The padding is so luxuriant it offers quite a degree of noise isolation while keeping the wearer' ears absolutely as warm as is acceptable.

Both ear-cups are wired with fairly hefty cable, the union-point of which features a 360-degree mic and three-button remote for use with the most current iPods, iPads and iPhones.

Authentic poise
Plugged in and playing Common's Like Water For Chocolate, the Image Ones show authentic poise. The treble is beautifully judged, attacking crisply without becoming unduly hard even at volume.

There's an exciting combination of immediacy and integration about the mids, where voices communicate without becoming overbearing. The extreme hip-hop dynamics are dealt with confidently, and the Klipsches create a spacious, detailed soundstage.

No, where ‘overbearing' is concerned, it's the low frequencies that win the prizes. There's no shortage of speed to the Image Ones' bass reproduction, and they're gratifyingly keen to start and stop the low-end stuff promptly but, crikey, there's plenty of it.

The result is a classic squeeze on the rest of the frequency range, which has to play second fiddle.

That sort of thing will be ideal for some, of course, but we can't help hankering after a bit more of an even-handed performance.

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What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, New York and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.


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