A few weeks ago I purchased the Pioneer CDJ-2000 players and won a HDJ-2000 with my invoice number. That all thanks to the great team of Bax-Shop. A few months back I wrote that me and my Sennheiser HD-25 SP1 are forever. As in, till death do us apart. Or am I going to commit adultery with the new Pioneer HDJ-2000.
With a magnesium alloy and a price that goes through the roof they do have something special at Pioneer. So I did a test and compared it to the Sennheiser HD-25.
The HDJ-2000 isn’t heavy but it is not a light as the Sennheiser, this is not only in respect to the physical weight but also the feel when it’s sitting on my head. If you are used to the almost unnoticeable weight of the HD-25 then the HDJ-2000 becomes very soon a heavy headphone. I use my headphone intensively during a play, especially when there is no good monitor sound I have it sitting on my head almost all night. So 1 point for the Sennheiser.
A big difference between the Pioneer en Sennheiser, are the size and fitting of the ear pads. With the Pioneer they go over your ears while with the Sennheiser they sit on your ears. Both feel ok and neither of them pinches my ears. However, because the HDJ-2000 goes all over my ears they run warm. In just 5 minutes they felt like glowing and that was just at home with normal climate conditions. Imagine during a gig, everyone knows how hot it can get with a dancing crowd. Maybe I have some strange Vulcan ears, but for me it is 1 point for the Sennheiser again.
I try to be gentle with all my gear, but my headphones simply have a rough life. The HD-25 is admired for its build quality and so far it hasn’t let me down. The Pioneer feels more solid the most other headphones but still has hard plastic parts that, once broken, make it unrepairable. I keep my trust with the elastic design of the Sennheiser. Again, 1 point for Sennheiser.
I didn’t do any exact measurements, but with a simple hearing test I couldn’t hear much difference. Both headphones attenuate the environment sound equally, although I was hoping that the HDJ-2000 would do that a little bit better since it wraps around the ears. No points to divide here.
On paper the Pioneer has a wider frequency range, however there is no DJ gear I know of that can reproduce that and even if it could it is far out of the audible range of the human ear.
During the listening test the Pioneer directly stood out for the large amount of bass. It sounds warm and solid at an easy listening volume, but as soon as I raise the volume to a DJ level it is too much bass. Since I use earplugs I need to turn up the volume even a little more. That in combination with the earplugs filtering characteristics gives a no longer clear usable sound.
For me the Sennheiser does a much better job by keeping the bass at a level that leaves room for the rest of the sound. I can imagine that people say that the bass of the HDJ-2000 is better than the bass of the HD-25, but for me it is just again 1 point for the Sennheiser.
I tested both headphones for their maximum volume and it seems that they can compete with each other. Both start to distort when the channel signal rises above 0 dB and the headphone volume on my DJM-800 is wide open. So no points to hand out.
This is personal of course, but I must say that the HDJ-2000 looks better on your head then the HD-25. The metal colored frame and Pioneer logo is better than the rather small Sennheiser print. So, that’s at least 1 point for the Pioneer.
The Pioneer HDJ-2000 costs € 100,- more than the Sennheiser HD-25 which I found to be already insane expensive, but worth it’s price. So this is just simple 289 > 169, so the points go again to the Sennheiser.
Counting the points…
It looks like we have a winner! The score is 1 point for the Pioneer HDJ-2000 against 4 points for the Sennheiser HD-25. I’m just going with my well trusted and beloved Sennheiser.
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