Review: Verisonix N500 – Selected

Disclaimer: Verisonix provided a well-used N500 for the purposes of this review, free of charge. The N500 has an MSRP of 549$. You can find out more about it here: Verisonix N500.

I would love to begin and end this review with the following four words: these are good phones. When I popped these over my wife’s ears, she immediately bopped her head and burst out wow! The Verisonix N500 boasts one of the most well thought-out sound signatures I’ve chanced upon in about a year. It’s got the big, feather-edged bass of the Grado PS1000, followed by a rich, and neutral-leaning midrange, and a clear, extended high end. It is perfect for trance, and rich enough for vocal genres. It is speedy, airy, and packs in a good deal of 3D detail. It’s neither hot, nor heavy.

I’d like the review to end right there. And by rights, it should. It’s just that there’s this one hitch, endemic to companies apparently solely focused on sound, signatures, and bopping heads.

Not Sound

That hitch is fit and comfort – not that the N500 fits bad. Hardly. But hiccups pop up here and there. The Verisonix N501 droops low around the ears on narrow heads. The N500’s self-adjusting headband is no-nonsense and comfy. And its wood shells are pretty. But the metal chassis is rickety. It snaps and crackles and pops when you adjust it, or when you pop your ears or move your jaw. It’s sturdy and I expect it to hold together really well. But it makes loads of noise – much of which gets transferred to the wooden cups.

Verisonix N500 (6 of 11)

It would be great to have dampening material at the joints and fulcrums.

The N501 isolates more than the N500. The Verisonix N500 lets in the gentle constructions sounds of a solar panel installation 200 metres away with little more attenuation than a DT880.

It also comes with the same practical, semi-hard carrying case. The same tough, unlabelled cable, and 3,5mm to 6,3mm step up adapter we saw in the N501 fit in there. Which illustrates one of Verisonix’s strong points: compatibility across the line. Every model sports the same driver, but chosen based on tolerances for the model into which it will be installed. 3,5mm-terminated L/R connectors, being almost ubiquitous, are a great choice for home or professional HiFi.

Verisonix N500 (11 of 11)

Personally, I think the square-hewn N501’s wooden cups are prettier than the N500’s. Which leads me to my final point: while the N500 sits lighter on the head, its marginally isolating cups, and rattly chassis are serious points to consider. The N501 should fit the commute, and the studio better.

Both headphones fold up pretty tightly. What the N500 does that the N501 does not is swivel to the front and back. I suppose this helps you keep track of the mix and the crowd – if only was damped well enough to isolate the music from the crowd, and didn’t click clack when you moved, it would be the sleeper hit of the year.

Verisonix N500 (10 of 11)

Sound and more after the jump:

Review: Verisonix N500 – Selected
4.2 (83.53%) 17 votes

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Back before he became the main photographer for bunches of audio magazines and stuff, Nathan was fiddling with pretty cool audio gear all day long at TouchMyApps. He loves Depeche Mode, trance, colonial hip-hop, and raisins. Sometimes, he gets to listening. Sometimes, he gets to shooting. Usually he's got a smile on his face. Always, he's got a whisky in his prehensile grip.

8 Comments

  • Reply March 17, 2016

    Kristian Lindecrantz

    Maybe the kickstarter Mitchell and Johnson which is more or less a rebrand of the Verisonics will fit better, I sure hope so as I pledged for them. Will know in about a month, I hope.

    • Reply March 18, 2016

      ohm image

      This one is comfy to fit, but doesn’t isolate well and makes crackly sounds when the metal and wood rub. Those two things are its only faults. Beautiful, super clear sound.

  • Reply March 18, 2016

    Barun C

    Nice one Nathan. If N500 & N501 had a baby, the Pros will overlap the Cons and we might have a perfect headphone in our hands.

    • Reply March 18, 2016

      ohm image

      Absolutely. A smaller headband for the N501 and more isolation for the N500 along with less headband rattle. The N500’s signature is nearly perfect (for me). So clear, but with that slightly warm, soft-edged bass that hooked me on the PS1000. Great sounding phones.

  • Reply March 18, 2016

    GrizzlybEast

    I will hear these one day.. great review. Wish I could get a pair at our meet.

    • Reply March 21, 2016

      ohm image

      Thanks always for the support. I hope that when you find a problem with it – when I need to correct something, or when you disagree with my opinion that you won’t hesitate to call it bullocks.

  • Reply April 2, 2016

    Tim

    Hello, great review! These sound like my kind of headphones, but I was just wondering how I can find authorized retailers in the US, or online that will ship to the US. Also, what cables, specifically, would you recommend to replace the stock ones? Thanks much!

  • Reply July 20, 2016

    Edward Lau

    Perhaps add some lubricant between the joints and see if it still makes noise?

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