Review: Audeze Sine – Spot On

Disclaimer: The Audeze Sine was sent to us by the Audeze press Agency and has to be returned. Audeze isn’t a site advertizer.

The Sine

I am not one to real get too hung up on the way a headphone looks, but hot damn are these some sharp looking cans.  For $449, Audeze has produced a set of headphones that blows away, in appearance, their LCD-3 that costs over 5 times as much.  The headband is real leather and pretty well padded.  Then there is the solid, aluminum construction.  The classy, all black color scheme that just sort of sits there shimmering in the light… ummm, oh, uhhh, yeah… huh?  Oh, sorry, I will wait till I am alone.

Anyway, this is the SINE, the latest planar magnetic offering from Audeze.  This model is unique in that it is the first planar ON-ear model.  Up to this point, they have all been over-ear headphones.  I also want to take a second here, and mention that I am happy to see what I hope continues to be the trend with headphone manufactures like Audeze and Hifiman.  Although they continue to make cans that are getting more and more expensive (the $4000 LCD-4 and the $3000 HE-1000 respectively), they are also making headphones that stretch into a more “budget” direction.  The SINE is a great example of this, being a headphone that looks and feels incredible solid, all the while being considerably less expensive than anything else in their lineup.

Features

  • Planar magnetic drivers for better dynamics and frequency response
  • Premium leather for style and durability
  • Sleek contemporary design by DesignWorksUSA a BMW group company
  • Light weight and folds flat for ultimate portability

Audeze Technology

  • Fazor elements
  • Fluxor magnetic arrays
  • Uniforce diaphragms

Specifications

Style On-ear, closed-back
Transducer type Planar magnetic
Magnetic arrays Single-sided Fluxor
Magnet type Neodymium
Diaphragm type Uniforce
Transducer size 80 x 70mm
Max power handling 6W
Sound pressure level >120dB
Frequency response 10Hz – 50kHz
THD <1% full spectrum @ 100dB
Impedance 20 ohms
Optimal power requirement 500mW – 1W
Weight 230g

 

I’m not going to talk about the technology behind the SINE, because most of that stuff goes over my head, and I don’t see the purpose in me regurgitating information that I only half understand.  For those interested, this link should give you a start.

Now, I already mentioned that the build quality was first rate, but it actually goes beyond just a solid build.  The cable connectors on the SINE are, by far, my favorite on any headphone I have yet seen.  The EL-8 models small chip connectors got some criticism for being too frail and too easy to accidentally pull out of the earpiece.  This will never be a problem with the SINE.  It uses a 3.5 inch connector to plug into the ear cup.  The connector is at a 30 degree angle, and when plugged into the headphone, the part of the connector that sticks out runs flush along the ear cup, making it virtually impossible to pull out accidentally.  When plugged in, at a quick glance, it looks like the cable is hardwired to the headphone.  This is a great design and I applaud Audeze for it.  I hope to see other headphone manufacturers follow suit.  The cable itself is flat, but flexible, and it terminates into 1/8 plug (of course a ¼ inch adapter is included).  As a quick side note, again comparing the SINE to the EL-8, the flat cable on the SINE feels slightly thicker and more durable than the cable on the EL-8.  Another win for the SINE.

As far as accessories go, there isn’t much to talk about.  The ¼ inch adapter, a cloth carrying bag, and that’s it.  A small, hard-shelled case would have been welcome here, but maybe they just didn’t think it fit at this price point.  It’s a nitpick, but I would like to have seen it.

SINE SIDE-42574

Comfort on the SINE is pretty good.  It isn’t too heavy (230g) and the headband is decently padded.  The only downside is that it does have a bit of a death grip.  It clamps pretty hard, and depending on the size of your head, you will want to stretch it out a little bit, lest it crush your skull.  The upside is that it most certainly will not fall off your head!

And it sounds pretty damn good!  There are certainly issues, but, although they don’t necessary read that way, they are very minor in terms of overall enjoyment.  First, you have the bass.  It is clean, tight, good impact.  I am kind of on the fence about the body.  I would say it has just enough, but I could see how someone might find it a little on the lite side.  This isn’t for the basshead, or those looking for a bottom up sound.  If you insist on a little extra bass, it responds well to a bit of EQ.

It continues on Page 2, right after THE CLICK

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Review: Audeze Sine – Spot On
4.3 (85.33%) 30 votes

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18 Comments

  • Reply May 23, 2016

    Zephyrus

    Earpads on that headphone are horrible. Try to change them from Senn Momentum.

    And sorry for my poor english. :,D

    • Reply May 23, 2016

      Headfonia_L.

      it isn’t poor. The only problem I had with the pads is that they touch my ears. That’s only normal for an onear but the Sine cups are pretty big and well bugged me

  • Reply May 23, 2016

    Tronco

    I’m thinking of getting an on-ear headphone. How does it compare to the Sennheiser HD-25-1 or the Beyer T51p?

    • Reply May 23, 2016

      Headfonia_L.

      It is FAR better than the HD25 and it sounds warmer and more bodied than the excellent T51P (one of my fav on ear)

      • Reply May 23, 2016

        dalethorn

        The HD25 is one of my favorites, even better than Philips X2. So that’s a pretty good recommendation.

        • Reply May 24, 2016

          Dave Ulrich

          I am really sorry to see the SINE go.

          • Reply May 24, 2016

            dalethorn

            Yeah, you should be able to have it around for a couple of months to round out the comparisons and fill in a few blanks. Something always comes up later, just when you have one or the other (the product or some free time), but not both at the same time.

            • Reply May 24, 2016

              Headfonia_L.

              Audeze is now working with a press agency, so unfortunately that means short loan periods :/

  • Reply May 23, 2016

    TheOneInYellow

    Just to add, this review is pretty awesome; thank you!

    However, I am concerned about the comparisons with the Audeze EL-8 and EL-8 CB.
    In short, I think you are comparing the Sine with the now discontinued 2015 EL-8 series.
    Audeze massively overhauled, re-voiced and updated their entire headphone line, all of which was released after Nov Nov 2015 and now are known (unofficially, and probably due to me…sos…ish) as the 2016 series.
    Only two headphones were not updated, the Sine and EL-8 Titanium, as they are new and had updates as standard.

    Thus, all reviews of Audeze headphones that have a certificate of authenticity dated prior to Nov 2015 are not on the production line any longer.
    With the exception of the 2015 LCD-4 100 Ohm, which gets a free upgrade to 2016 LCD-4 200 Ohm

  • Reply May 24, 2016

    Barun C

    Nice review. I have almost stopped using on-ear portables these days for the convenience of IEMs. I still have the Aedle VK-1s with me, which I use once in a while and to me it is the best sounding on-ear portables. (Not heard the Sine)

    I have used the DT 1350, T51P and Nad Viso 50 in the past. T51P was the most fun sounding headphone of them all, but DT 1350 was unparalleled when it came to isolation, head-stage and linear bass presentation.

    • Reply May 24, 2016

      dalethorn

      If you have the chance, get new T51p earpads and put them on the DT1350. I love ’em.

      • Reply May 25, 2016

        Barun C

        I will definitely try that. Thanks.

  • Reply May 26, 2016

    Andy

    I tried Sine. Overall, planar sound isn’t my cup of tea (LCD-4 was the only acceptable one). The treble is somewhat weird, not natural. I’d pick HD800’s treble over any planar. Nevertheless, the bass was magical & the midrange was good.

  • Reply June 9, 2016

    msd525

    “looks like an orgasm” isn’t really objectively speaking

    • Reply July 13, 2016

      Darío

      No way sine sounds better than EL8 open or HE400i.

      • Reply July 18, 2016

        Dave

        I would easily take it over the EL8, but I might still give the edge to the HE400i

      • Reply January 25, 2017

        GEORGE

        I have el8O and C lcd 2 lcd 3

        400i and 560i

        There are better headphones over there

        But for portable use it use only my audeze sine and hifiman edition X

        Player is ak380 balance cables only

        Noting to beat them in portable use

  • Reply September 8, 2016

    Krit

    I would be really interested in reviews by the same person of both the Sine and the Grado RS2e.

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