SoundMagic HP100 review

A strong first over-ear effort from SoundMagic Tested at £190

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

A strong first over-ear effort from SoundMagic


  • +

    Comfortable fit

  • +

    Good balance

  • +

    Spacious for closed-back cans

  • +

    Lovely high-end


  • -

    Slightly flat midrange

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SoundMagic has a strong back-catalogue of in-ears, so we were looking forward to hearing what the over-ear HP100 headphones would offer – and we aren’t disappointed.

Packing 53mm drivers, they’re big without being overly bulky. The earpads and headband are soft and comfortable in use.

The fit is secure, but never tight. And when you're done, the ear cups swivel and fold away.

Build quality is high: despite featuring a lot of plastic the HP100s never feel flimsy. The headband expands with satisfying clicks, and the removeable (coiled) cable screws into place neatly.

For closed-back cans, they offer a well-balanced, spacious sound.

But their real strength lies in the high-end, with a sparkling treble that makes jazz and classical music shine. Bass isn’t as accomplished, but it’s still deep, detailed and controlled.

Unfortunately, it’s the midrange that suffers, giving a slightly flat, relaxed signature that rounds off some dynamism, particularly in the vocals.

Not perfect, then, but for a first attempt at over-ears we think that SoundMagic has done a good job.

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What Hi-Fi?

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, Reading 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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