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Neumann NDH20 Review (Headphone)

Andreas007

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Mar 11, 2019
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I feared that the performance of these headphones is not what we would expect from Neumann.
That‘s how you sabotage the Neumann brand.

Manager: Everyone makes $$$ with headphones, lets do some quick and dirty development!
Engineer: Maybe that is not so a good …
Manager: Ok, let’s do it! I need my project KPI in the green zone!
 

acbarn

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I feared that the performance of these headphones is not what we would expect from Neumann.
That‘s how you sabotage the Neumann brand.

Manager: Everyone makes $$$ with headphones, lets do some quick and dirty development!
Engineer: Maybe that is not so a good …
Manager: Ok, let’s do it! I need my project KPI in the green zone!
I agree. You see the Neumann name and expect something great. I was disappointed the first time I heard them, thought maybe it was an bad sample, then tried another and had it confirmed. Now I'd be suspicious of any future offerings.
 

Spkrdctr

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The problem is that most people read that so and so (friend, recording engineers, the Harmon janitor, or their Grandmother all say product x is a great product and sounds awesome. Other than for large differences in bass, treble etc. it is meaningless. You have to listen to a product and make up your own mind. Testing by Amir shows these products to frequency responses to all over the place. Amir keeps us from trying poorly engineered headphones or as a regular guy off the street would say "junk". Then with the decent stuff we can then pick out some and try them. Hopefully through Amazon with a nice return policy if they don't sound good to us. So, the most we can do is give out some options to try. In the end, you pay the money so you need to make the decision!
 

JWAmerica

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Oof. This looks like a money grab banking on brand reputation. Is Neumann hurting for revenue?
 

respice finem

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Anyone is, these days probably even more than in calmer times. Still, I hope it's not a case of "let's go milking our brand reputation".
There are few things as fragile as this...
 
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As someone who owns these headphones I can only say that Amir's findings fully correlate with my impression of them. Since having bought an Audio-Technica ATH-R70x, I have stopped using the Neumanns...
 

oratory1990

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Reviewer
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Mar 1, 2020
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Bummer! Someone please send in the Austrian Audio HI-X55 please :)
I measured that one already - lots of seating variation!

Bass response changes a lot depending on how good of a seal you're getting, more so than on other headphones, even other closed-back headphones.
And there's something very strange going on at 1.5 - 3 kHz, where resonances appear and disappear depending on how exactly you place them on the head.
Below you see ~30 individial measurements (of the same headphone), with just minimal differences on how the headphone was placed on the measurement rig. Just shifted forward/backward/up/down by a few millimeters.
Austrian Audio Hi-X55.png
 

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vkvedam

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I measured that one already - lots of seating variation!

Bass response changes a lot depending on how good of a seal you're getting, more so than on other headphones, even other closed-back headphones.
And there's something very strange going on at 1.5 - 3 kHz, where resonances appear and disappear depending on how exactly you place them on the head.
Below you see ~30 individial measurements (of the same headphone), with just minimal differences on how the headphone was placed on the measurement rig. Just shifted forward/backward/up/down by a few millimeters.
View attachment 158593
Didn't know that you are a member here :), thanks for this. I really wanted to like these, doesn't seem to be the case I suppose.
 

Robbo99999

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Bummer! Someone please send in the Austrian Audio HI-X55 please :)

I measured that one already - lots of seating variation!

Bass response changes a lot depending on how good of a seal you're getting, more so than on other headphones, even other closed-back headphones.
And there's something very strange going on at 1.5 - 3 kHz, where resonances appear and disappear depending on how exactly you place them on the head.
Below you see ~30 individial measurements (of the same headphone), with just minimal differences on how the headphone was placed on the measurement rig. Just shifted forward/backward/up/down by a few millimeters.
View attachment 158593
Sounds like a bit of a nightmare of a headphone to own - erratic! Is it related to the Neumann NDH20, it looks like it has some similar characteristics?
 

oratory1990

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Is it related to the Neumann NDH20, it looks like it has some similar characteristics?
"related" as in: they are both closed headphones, yes :)

The NDH20 is a relatively independent development by Neumann Engineers. They were instructed to use the HD630VB ID, but the driver itself is a new design (by Neumann, not Sennheiser).
Other than reusing parts of the outer earcup and headband, the NDH20 doesn't have a lot in common with the HD630VB.
(or so I've been told by Sennheiser representatives)
 

Robbo99999

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"related" as in: they are both closed headphones, yes :)

The NDH20 is a relatively independent development by Neumann Engineers. They were instructed to use the HD630VB ID, but the driver itself is a new design (by Neumann, not Sennheiser).
Other than reusing parts of the outer earcup and headband, the NDH20 doesn't have a lot in common with the HD630VB.
(or so I've been told by Sennheiser representatives)
Ha, yes, both closed headphones! :D I thought they might be related since @vkvedam was asking about the Austrian Audio headphones, but having looked at some quick pics of each I can see that they don't look related!
 

GimeDsp

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This is the style all the DJs had at raves and clubs in the late 90's early 2000's. Didn't like silver then and don't now, but it did look cool with fog machines and laser light shows!
 

sibi1865

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Mar 2, 2021
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Or maybe Neumann representatives can come here and elaborate on this?
I'd be very interested to hear from Neumann! On another matter, I've been seeking customer support from both their UK and Germany contacts and have been unable to get a meaningful reply in around a month. If anyone has a hotline...
 
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