Sennheiser PX 100-IIi Headset (Black) review: Sennheiser PX 100-IIi Headset (Black)

The headphone remote doubles as a microphone for hands-free calling on a compatible smartphone, and similar to most headphone remotes, you can also double-click the middle button to advance a track on your music player--we should also note that the two volume buttons won't work on any iPhone released before the 3GS, a symptom of Apple's hardware, not Sennheiser. We also had off-and-on success using it with an Android-powered smartphone, so your mileage may vary with non-iOS devices. If you don't own an Apple iPhone, however, you can save $20 buying the remoteless version instead, called the PX 100-II.

Having tested and owned the PX-100 headphones, we're thankful Sennheiser didn't stray too far from the original's sound quality. The sub-$100 price point seems to be the limit for what most consumers are willing to spend on aftermarket headphones, and the PX-100IIi's won't disappoint.

The headphones employ dynamic drivers and neodymium magnets to actuate the audio current and create a warm sound profile that sways heavily toward the low end. Light jazz and classical listeners may want to consider an alternative over-ear headphone, perhaps the Koss Porta Pros. The majority of listeners, but especially rock, R&B, and hip-hop fans, will find the extra bass push a welcome addition to the sonic profile, adding a sprinkling of richness to the already detailed definition.

We compared the PX 100-IIis with the Koss Porta Pros, an even cheaper over-ear headphone that began production in 1984 and have since become a favorite among audiophiles for their range and depth. We used Michael Jackson's seminal "Off the Wall" album produced by Quincy Jones as a litmus test, and the Koss PortaPro represents a more natural, brighter sound with a longer frequency range from 15,000-25,000 Hz for clearer instrument separation than that of the PX 100-IIis.

That said, the Sennheiser PX100-Iii is no slouch--not even a bit. They just provide more resounding bass, whereas the Porta-Pros are crisper and slightly more defined. You won't feel shortchanged no matter which model you choose, so the buying decision may come down to a matter of aesthetics or price, as the Porta-Pros can be had for as low as $30 online with a lifetime warranty.

The Sennheiser PX-100IIi is an ideal fit for nearly any type of music lover, and its beefed-up acoustics add another dimension to music with a heavy bass track. Their simple, fold-up design makes for easy, safe transportation, and the new remote adds even more functionality to an already compelling offering. Finally, the two-year warranty is generous for a headphone manufacturer, and although it doesn't outshine Koss' lifetime support policy, the PX-100IIis stand head to head with the PortaPros and may appeal even more to those who favor a modern aesthetic.

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Quick Specifications See All

  • Weight 3 oz
  • Sound Output Mode stereo
  • Additional Features foldable
  • Type headset
  • Headphones Form Factor on-ear
  • Connector Type mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm
About The Author

Justin Yu covers headphones and peripherals for CNET. When he's not wading through Web gulch or challenging colleagues to typing tests, you can find him making fun of technology with Jeff Bakalar every afternoon on The 404 show.