Accessory Review: V-MODA Crossfade LPs

“Your headphones should be as unique as your style and music – they are the most visible product you wear and listen to every day. When you put these headphones on, you feel like you just hit the dance floor of a rocking club in Ibiza.” — Val Kolton, CEO, V-MODA

V-MODA offers a lineup of premium, high-end headphones that are designed to be as equally good looking as they sound. In May 2010, the company released a pair of high definition headphones, known as the Crossfade LPs, after four years of research and development in acoustics and ergonomics. They’re the first pair of over-ear headphones to be released by the company and were spotted at last year’s MTV Movie Awards as part of an extensive marketing ploy after their release.

What’s Included

  • V-MODA Crossfade LP Headphones
  • Two Headphone Cables
    • Stereo Audio Cable (69″)
    • Stereo Audio Cable with iPod Controls & Mic (36″)
  • Exoskeleton Carrying Case
  • Carabiner Clip (this)
  • Microfiber Cleaning Cloth
  • 1/4″ to 1/8″ Adapter

Headphone Specifications

  • Frequency Response: 5 Hz – 30 kHz
  • Impedance: 32 Ohms
  • Speaker Driver: Patent pending 50mm Dual-Diaphragm High-Definition Driver
  • Cables: Kevlar® reinforced, 69” stereo audio cable and 36” remote/mic cable
  • Plug: 45 degree, 24k gold-plated 3.5 mm (1/8″) stereo plug
  • Adapter: 3.5mm (1/8″) to ¼” adapter included
  • Weight: 280g

Design

The packaging of the Crossfade LP headphones is a fashion statement itself. The box is made of a combination of metallic red, silver, and black. It has a snap-to-close clip with a matching handle and square metal beads. Packaging is something that I almost always discard of, but this is certainly an exception.

The design of these headphones is simply outstanding. It would be an understatement to say that these headphones are merely nice-looking, because they are absolutely gorgeous. V-MODA has made these headphones from a combination of matte plastic, lustrous chrome, and soft leather. If you want a good idea of what the chrome looks like, think of the back of the iPod touch. The pair has somewhat of an “old school” design and has some resemblance to the Dr. Dre-endorsed Beats series of headphones.

The pair has a unique “V” design, rather than the typical round appearance, and are available in your choice of White Pearl, Phantom Chrome, Gunmetal Black, and black-and-purple Nero. The headphones have air-cushioned memory foam around the earcups. The earcups can be adjusted in length for better positioning depending on your personal preference.

The Crossfade LPs have a detachable headphone cable with a 45 degree, gold-plated 3.5mm stereo plug. The cable, which is 36 inches long, has a built-in microphone with iPod controls for music playback and volume. I was also able to adjust the iTunes volume on my Mac with these same controls. The pair also works with iChat, Skype, and VoIP. An additional 69″ stereo cable, without a microphone or iPod controls, is also included. The attention to detail in these pair of headphones is very evident, and deserves a lot of recognition.

Design: ★★★★★

Audio Quality

image001The overall audio quality of these headphones is very good. My assessment of the pair’s highs, mids, and bass are based on a one month period of use. It is possible, after burn in, that the dynamic driver used in these headphones may change for the better or for the worse. Please take this into account when reading through each individual aspect of the audio quality.

  • Highs: The highs are very apparent in these pair of headphones, and they sound very rich and warm. The sound quality is very clear and you will immediately pick up on some background audio that you may not have heard as easily with other pairs of headphones. Score: ★★★★½
  • Mids: The mids that these headphones deliver are good, but they are somewhat drowned out by the high level of bass. Songs from the pop or country genre will sound fine, but you’re missing out on the full listening experience that these headphones are designed to deliver. Score: ★★★★
  • Bass: The bass that these headphones produce is arguably the greatest aspect of the pair. With these headphones, you can hear every thump and boom as part of an overall great listening experience. The genres of rap, rock, and hip-hop sound incredible on these headphones. The fact that bass is so prominent comes as no surprise to me, as these headphones were designed with collaboration from world-renowned DJs. Score: ★★★★★
  • Noise Cancellation: The over-ear style of these headphones, combined with the cushioned earcups, isolate almost all outside noises. The canceling out of exterior noises allows for you to listen to your music more enjoyably and at a much lower volume. Score: ★★★★★

Audio Quality: ★★★★½

Build Quality

I have been using these headphones over the past month and I have yet to scratch the chrome surfaces. The chrome is covered by a clear protective film from out of the box that you could also choose not to remove. The film is ugly, however, so I removed it right away.

The headphone cables are braided with fabric to prevent against any tangles. This fabric braiding is known as Kevlar®-reinforcement, as it also makes the cables very durable. In addition, the cables must be plugged into both the audio source and the headphones themselves. This means that if the headphone cables are to break somehow, you won’t be required to fix it yourself or purchase an entirely new pair of headphones. Instead, you can simply buy a new replacement cable, at a fraction of the cost, and your headphones are as good as new.

If you’re worried about the durability of the Crossfade LPs, you shouldn’t be. The pair is very sturdy and I can almost guarantee that they will be working great for many years to come. If they do break on you, however, you’re backed by a 1-year premium warranty and a replacement program that guarantees a lifetime 50% discount.

Build Quality: ★★★★★

Comfort Quality

These headphones are extremely comfortable. The over-ear style that these headphones have is, in my opinion, much better than the in-ear style of headphones. The pair fits nicely on your head with adjustable and cushioned earcups that are well-fitted. The headphones in general are very lightweight and you’ll soon forget that they are on your head.

The only time that these headphones become slightly uncomfortable, for me, is after long periods of use. After listening to lots of music or gaming for a few hours, my ears become somewhat sore and itchy. I often take off the headphones for a few minutes at this point and readjust them to my liking. This shouldn’t be the case for everyone, however, as I predict that my ears are slightly larger than the average person.

Comfort Quality: ★★★★½

Value For Money

You can get your own pair of V-MODA Crossfade LP headphones for $199.99† from the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Store, or directly from V-MODA. At this price, these headphones are definitely much more expensive than a lot of other pairs, but it’s an investment that you won’t regret anytime soon. If you are looking for a pair of headphones that are less expensive, I strongly recommend that you hold off until you’re able to purchase these headphones.

You are paying for exceptional audio quality, design, and durability. The included carrying case and other accessories only add to the value of these headphones. The pair were originally introduced at a price of $249.99, which remains the manufacturer-suggested retail price (MSRP). Free shipping within the contiguous United States is available on both V-MODA’s website and the Apple Online Store.

Value For Money: ★★★★★

Final Thoughts

The extensive work that went into these headphones has resulted in a fantastic product that delivers all that you can ask for. With exceptional sound quality, an elegant design, and a bundle of accessories, V-MODA’s Crossfade LP headphones receive a very strong recommendation. You can try the headphones for yourself by using one of the in-store demo pairs at your local Apple Retail Store.

Apple recommends these headphones to music fans who want stylish over-ear headphones that deliver incredible sound from their iPod, iPhone, or Mac. At the time of this writing, the pair has received an average rating of 4½ stars out of five based on reviews written on its official Apple product page.

Overall Score:

† All prices are in US currency unless stated otherwise.
This review was written by the iFans.com Review Team. Overall scores are rounded to the nearest half or full star.
Thanks to Pedro at Max Borges Agency for the review sample.

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