Expect to pay: $119
We’ve slowly seen the product range from PreSonus grow over the years to include more than just interfaces. The headphone market is one that they have been pushing into, offering a small collection of very modestly priced cans that stand up to the task at hand without breaking the bank.
I finally got to give the HD9 studio headphones a test lap this month and found them to be surprisingly good. It could be time to rethink what you need in a pair of home studio headphones and invest in just what you need, rather than pouring money into a frequency or two that you can’t even hear.
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The PreSonus team has certainly taken inspiration from a range of DJ-focused headphones in the physical build of these cans. They offer plenty of flexibility in positioning, so you can flip the drivers outwards for single ear listening if you don’t want to be totally removed from the work environment while listening to a snippet of audio.
They also offer a range of easy adjustments for any size head too, even my giant noggin. With big, soft full ear encompassing pads, they certainly block out most of the environmental noise around, without having to add any underlying white noise like a set of noise cancelling headphones would.
They’re pretty comfortable, being such big and soft pads, although I did have a bit of an issue finding that sweet spot where they didn’t pinch the ears when wearing glasses. But once in place, they were good for a very long session of listening without any noticeable fatigue and very little heating up around the ears.
Of course, it is difficult to understand just how these sound when reading this. I can’t jump up and down and rant about these being the most amazing sounding headphones I have ever listened to, because they simply are not. But they don’t cost anywhere near that of the best headphones I have ever heard, so that’s worth thinking about.
They certainly offer plenty of bottom end; I picked that up on the first kick drum thump. And there is a defined high frequency response that’s good enough to detail the crackle of the needle from a record. If anything, they are lacking a little in the mid-range definition, but you can’t expect perfection and value to come in one package. Go and have a listen to a pair yourself in your local music store – you’ll know just what I mean. They’re a great sounding pair of cans for the price, and ones that you can use for extended listening periods.