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10 Earphones Under $100

Sennheiser PX 100: Efficient Little Classic

The PX100 is part of the PX series, which includes some very good models I tested in the past. The PX series is a set of traditional headband-type earphones, with a foldable band designed for on-the-go use. It comes with a strong carrying case and is not at all bulky, making it easy to carry around without risk of breakage. Light and fairly pleasant to wear, it sits on top of your ears, and achieves good coupling without difficulty. Unlike other models in the PX series I've tested, these earphones are of the open type, and so provide very little sonic isolation.

Technical Characteristics

  • Type: open supraaural with headband
  • Frequency response: 15 Hz - 27 kHz
  • Nominal impedance: 32 ohms
  • Sensitivity: 114 dB
  • Cable length: 1.4 m (57 in.)
  • Plug type: 3.5 mm miniplug
  • Weight: 60 g (2.12 oz)

Serious And Balanced

The response of the PX100s was fairly characteristic of good open supra-aural earphones - very good overall balance, limited blips in amplitude, but a gradual drop-off in the low bass. In short, a very successful set of phones for its class.

Very good response, especially for a model this affordable. The gradual attenuation of the low bass goes with the territory for this type of set.

The efficiency is high and the impedance is keyed to suit many portable players. In practice, the PX100 provided a comfortable sound level. No problem in that department.

Efficiency: approximately 102 dB/V

Listening Test

Actually a small set of traditional earphones, the Sennheiser PX100s are almost as much at home in sedentary use, due to their open design, as in portable use, due to their folding headband and carrying case. Their only limitation is the lack of acoustic isolation. The fine balance is immediately appealing, with a nicely ample lower end for this style of earphone. The bass response extends well down even if it's less present that with larger earphones. The midrange showed very good precision and accurate timbres, making the listening experience quite pleasant. On the other hand, you shouldn't expect the PX 100 to deliver very high volume levels, which can produce peaks of distortion. But that limitation is quite acceptable for most uses.

Conclusions

The Good

  • quality listening experience
  • carrying case

The Not So Good

  • distortion at high volume