Sennheiser MOMENTUM On Ear (M2) - Sublime Audio Quality

November 25, 2015

Sennheiser launched the original MOMENTUM headphones in 2012 and three years on, this sub-brand is still going strong. Following the success of the first version released in July 2013, the MOMENTUM On Ear 2nd generation, nicknamed the M2 OE, was launched earlier at CES 2015. Let's have a look at how this unit fares. 

And as usual, first things first - the unboxing. Just slide out the black box within, lift the flap and there lies a black carrying case that contain the headphones.
The packaging contents include:
- Headphones
- Audio cable (3.5mm to 2.5mm with in-line remote)
- Carrying case
- Soft pouch
- Quick start and safety guides

There are 6 color variants available namely Ivory, Black, Blue, Red, Pink and Green and 2 device variants - iOS and (Samsung) Galaxy. We received the M2 OEG (short for MOMENTUM 2.0 On Ear - Galaxy) Ivory version for our testing.

Design-wise, it's a looker. It's no wonder why the MOMENTUM series is still evolving using the base look even after 3 years in the market. For the heft, it clocks 190g, sitting between the 153g Bose OE SoundLink and the 260g Master & Dynamic MH30The materials used feel premium - stainless steel is used for the collapsible sliders while the headband / ear cup covers are made of a soft suede-like material called Alcantara. Through a ball joint, the ear cups can be angled to your ears in a more ergonomic manner.

While the carrying case seems to have shed some weight from its predecessor, this could actually have been made even more compact as there was ample space within after the headphones were folded. Interestingly, there's an additional fabric soft pouch thus giving you two storage options.

The 1.4m audio cable connects firmly to the right ear cup through a plug-and-twist mechanism via a 2.5mm jack.

The in-line remote is Samsung Galaxy friendly but if you have an iPhone, the iOS-friendly version (M2 OEi) is available too. As per most remotes, the volume buttons flank a multi-function button that plays / takes calls with a single press or skips tracks with a double press. At the other end of the cable, you get an L-shaped 3.5mm jack that connects to your device. 

The ear cups, which have two layers of foam within, are replaceable. We're currently checking on the cost and availability.

It's always a challenge for a headphone manufacturer to juggle sufficient clamping force vs comfort. These headphones are initially comfortable but after an hour of usage, the discomfort drawn by clamping force starts to creep in. They somehow do not hit the heights I experienced for the pillowy Bose OE SoundLink or the elliptical ear cups of the Klipsch Reference R6i On-Ear. 

The audio quality of the Sennheiser is simply sublime. Sarah Brightman and Fernando Lima's vocals on Ave Maria are at their inspiring best when paired with very good control and delivery in the bass. Sam Smith's enunciation of 'How do I live? How do I breathe' to the piano accompaniment on Writing's on the Wall is distinctly clear, something that its lesser peers could easily bungle by muddying treble and bass together. The MOMENTUM does not give a flat delivery but for commuters, this is the type of sound that gets across to your ears across all the train rumbling and bus engine revs.

Did I mention the clamping force? Well, this combined with sufficient ear padding provide a certain level of noise isolation that take away a few decibels from the surrounding ambient noise.

There's no question that the Sennheiser MOMENTUM On Ear (M2) (SGD 319) is a very competent performer in audio delivery. Apart from the clamping force, its other positives such as the sturdy build, materials used and two year warranty make these headphones a good choice for people on the move.

Audio Sources
Writing's On The Wall (Spectre OST) - Sam Smith (Tidal 1411kbps FLAC) on Samsung Galaxy S4 
Ave Maria (Duet with Fernando Lima) - Sarah Brightman (952kbps FLAC) on Sony NW-ZX100 Walkman

Credit to Sennheiser and Ketchum for an evaluation unit.

You Might Also Like


Related Posts Plugin for Blogger

recent posts