V-Moda Crossfade LP-2 Review
One of the best sets of headphones for smartphones on the market.
Meet the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s, the follow-up to last years’ Crossfade LP headphones by V-Moda. While boasting very similar form factor to the original Crossfade LP, V-Moda took what made the original headphones popular, and added some tweaks here and there to make a newer set of headphones, with an interesting array of customizability and a metal construction that you could drive a tank over, these are a decent option for bass lovers who need a set of cans that can withstand just about anything.
Comfort Design & Features
Insanely durable, customizable, and comfortable to boot
If there’s one thing the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s have, it’s durability. If there’s two things the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s have, it's durability and style. Without launching into a long peek at how headphone design works, just look at the Crossfade LP-2s. While many users will be big fans of the current look, you can also create your own designs on differently-colored plates to be laser-etched by V-Moda, at a price.
As we mentioned before, these headphones are durable to the extreme. With a metal housing, single-piece aluminum band, removable kevlar ensconced cables, replacement cables, a carrying case, and even replacement metal backings, these cans were built to withstand a crazy amount of abuse. While you really shouldn’t subject any pair of headphones to the abject terror that the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s are capable of withstanding, it's good to know that they can take whatever you can throw at them.
Dropping the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2 on your noggin, you won’t notice an overwhelming clamping force, nor will you have any issues with trapped heat or movement. These are pretty comfortable, as many of the high-end over-ears are. Over a period of 6 hours, the comfort level didn’t really change all that much, and none of the test subjects reported additional problems.
Pleasing performance, decent isolation
For starters, the headphones do preserve most of the low and mid tones really well, and only de-emphasize some of the harsher cymbal sounds and shimmer to be about half as loud as the rest of your music. The high end sees a short emphasis before falling off at limits of audibility, but the real important feature here is a huge bass emphasis that will be very prominent in any music you listen to.
What that super-high emphasis on the lowest frequencies does not only includes making you feel like there’s a subwoofer in your head, but it also has the physiological effect of making your inner ear tighten up your tympanic membrane (eardrum) to give the illusion of boosting some of the highest-end sound in a way that we can’t measure with a microphone. So if you like bass-heavy music, these are great, just be careful how high you crank 'em.
With a very low distortion measure and a passable tracking response (meaning you won't hear any shift in volume from ear to ear), there's very little else to take note of in terms of audio performance. With all the pieces combined, the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s have audio tailored to an audience of smartphone users and casual listeners looking for a set of headphones they won't have to replace.
Durable, well-performing headphones for the bass-lover
Overall, the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s are a solid set of headphones if you need to take your cans with you into the outside world. Many people find the cost of having a set of “at home” headphones and “on the go” headphones quite prohibitive unless you’re in the music industry, so if you’re willing to spend a little extra money, you can get a solid set of headphones that will probably need a tank to break.
That being said, there are some minor shortcomings, such as the leakage issue and the minor underemphasis ranges in the frequency response. While these are may not land on a super-hardcore audiophile’s desk, they are a decided step up from many of the popular models out there at the same price point for mass use.
If you’re in the market for a set of cans that dramatically boosts bass, looks great and can withstand most of the abuse you can hurl at it, there probably isn’t anything else quite like the V-Moda Crossfade LP-2s. While they aren’t going to replace a set of open-backed mixing headphones anytime soon, they fit the role of high-end portable consumer headphones to a T.
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