Koss ESP-950 Over-Ear Headphones

4.38/5 (13 Reviews) MSRP : $999.00

Product Description

  • Frequency Response: 8-35,000 Hz
  • Includes Electrostatic Sterophone, energizer, battery pack, leather carrying case, connecting cables, and 120 VAC adapter
  • Incorporates state of the art electrostatic transducers that operate on currentless electrostatic charges on push-pull capacitor plates to cause movement of the intervening, low-mass semiconductive diaphragm
  • Soft, vinyl closed ear cushion design for isolation
  • Pivoting ear cups and adjustable, detachable headband for comfort and convenience
  • Straight, dual entry 4 foot cord/6 foot extension

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    Reviews 1 - 5 (13 Reviews Total) | Next 15

    User Reviews

    Overall Rating:3
    Value Rating:3
    Submitted by Reticuli a AudioPhile

    Date Reviewed: January 10, 2006

    Bottom Line:   
    I tried these at CES. They appeared to be designed as a flat response, extremely low distortion headphone for specialized applications, or by some pocket protected engineers who never took the time to listen to them. Maybe they listened to them but have bad taste. Even in speakers you don't want a flat response for enjoyment of commercial product. Headphones are even less flat, since they need to take into account both the expected speaker response and the effects of the room on the tonal balance. These headphones are just flat, kind of like the Etymotic ER4B. There is what we audiophiles like to call a perceived "lift" from the upper mids and beyond with commercial recordins on a flat, high fidelity source. The only way I could see you using the ESP950's as a primary playback device would be as said specialty product (with dummy heads or flat response live mics, including technical applications) or with a very warm preamp, cartridge, or eq in the line somewhere. Otherwise you'd be stuck playing recordings that are either naturally rolled off on top (a lot of acoustic stuff) or mixed/mastered on very bright equipment. Hence all the recommendations in these reviews about needing to use just the right recordings on it. Probably most of the recordings they're refering to are not actually meant to be heard on flat transducers anyway, but aren't necessarily aggressive and unpleasant when presented in such a manner.

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    Used product for:   Less than 1 month

    Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

    Product model year:   2005

    Purchased At:   none

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Max a AudioPhile

    Date Reviewed: November 19, 2003

    Bottom Line:   
    May i just add one important factor with these fantastic cans. Please make an attempt to use all battery power when listening despite having the rca cord I was in cloud 9 and did not want to leave sonic heaven Very thirsty for juice but i use rechargable - right to the end of red light- with no noticeble lack of quality

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    Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

    Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

    Product model year:   2003

    Price Paid:    $60000.00

    Purchased At:   friend

    Overall Rating:4
    Value Rating:4
    Submitted by sjp3003 a Audio Enthusiast

    Date Reviewed: November 1, 2002

    Bottom Line:   
    For comparason's sake, I've got a Headroom amp I use to power Sony MDR V900's, Grado SR200's & my top dynamic choice: Sennheisser 580's. The sound source for all is a desktop Nakamichi CD system that I use on my nightable.

    The Koss 950 compares most closely with the Senn's sound. The Senn's have excellent transparency, but the Koss, with its corresponding driver, has even more. Details on the Koss are more precise-- truly impressive. Each instrument is excruciatingly defined.

    The Koss have very high brightness in the mid & high ranges-- in fact this sounds slightly exaggerated compared to the others. Lows are tight & overall good. On the Senns lows are more pronounced though less defined.

    In sum the sound is very high quality.

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    Used product for:   Less than 1 month

    Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

    Product model year:   1999

    Price Paid:    $399.00

    Purchased At:   EBay

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Shawn5454 a Audio Enthusiast

    Date Reviewed: October 12, 2002

    Bottom Line:   
    First of all, these ESP-950's aren't for your average listener. These awesome headphones produce an accurate, detailed & very transparent sound most audiophiles and many amathur audiophiles (I'm in the later group) will enjoy using. Though I'm still more use to a closed-ear style headset, having been weaned on the original Pro4A's, with the liquid filled headphone ear covers back in the late sixties, I found these lightweight headphone cups quite comfortable with their fixable headset assembly. It takes a while for some users to get use to "open-air" phones. IMHO, these are a step or two above the Sennheiser HD 600 which are a quite popular and excellent sounding headphones.

    Due to the nature of electrostatic drivers, they are very sensitive and quite unforgiving of a poor quality signal source, & many untrained amateur audiophiles may find them disappointing if the user has lower quality equipment. Please allow at least 125 hours to properly break in the drivers. With its simple design made for comfort, the lows are quite tight, deep, and smooth; the mid-range is out of this world with strings sound amazing while imaging and soundstage are first class; the upper frequencies are distortion free, transparent, perfectly crystal clear and won't cause chronic fatigue syndrome. -LOL-

    After a hard day's work, a quiet listening session will give you a whole new attitude about the world. As many of you are already asking yourself: "Are they really worth the money?" YES, they're worth every penny! -smile-

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    Used product for:   More than 1 year

    Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

    Product model year:   1996

    Price Paid:    $600.00

    Purchased At:   J&R Catalog

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by robaudio a AudioPhile

    Date Reviewed: May 28, 2002

    Bottom Line:   
    I cannot believe the inane and ludicrous use of this web site. I though it was to be for honest and impartial evaluations of the product under discussion. To those idiots who don't know what a message board or chat rooms are for get a life.
    Now to my review. In one word STUNNING! These phones have got to be close to being the best phones on the market. Crystal clear highs and subsonic lows. One characteristic that dynamic phones can not do, is the complete lack of coloration and a dynamic range that exhibits absolutly no distortion.
    Bass is below the floor, doing somethig I have never experenced with headphones before, actually feeling the bass not just hearing it. Probably because of the huge size of the transducers.
    Simply, the best phones I have ever had and if that wasn't enough, comfortable to wear.
    Exceptional performance and add to that a LIFETIME WARRANTY! Who could ask for aanything more.
    The E90 energizer/head amp is excceptional. I have used dynamic phones with a Harmon/Kardon 3370 receiver, but this little head amp is exceptional, no noise excellent bandwith and dynamic range. as for the volume control on the unit, I don't use it. I've hooked it up to the pre-amp ouput on the H/K receiver and control the voume via the preamp. In fact, I recommend that this unit be integrated into the stero system for best flexibility.
    These usits a designed for portable use but to me, it is a shame that these mavelous headphones would be hooked up to a crappy portable walkman, Use a Sennheiser HD 570 , 580 or 590.
    as for the guy that prefered Sennheiser HD 500's over the Koss, get your hearing checked.
    I have Sennheiser HD 590 & 600, they pale nex to the Koss ESP/950's. I relagated the Sennheiser to my backup drawer.
    I wish I could review these headphones over and over again to negate the reviews of the idiot that kept crabbing about Koss, who I think showed extreme patience with this customer.

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    Used product for:   Less than 1 month

    Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

    Product model year:   2001

    Price Paid:    $1120.00

    Purchased At:   Logitech (Canadian d

    Reviews 1 - 5 (13 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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