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Review – Ultrasone Pro 550

Professional sound at a professional price

MAinIts’s definitely a paradox of the digital age: we compress music and alter the quality to its detriment and then try and grab back that quality by listening to MP3s on the best headphones we can find. iTunes has bucked this trend by offering music at greater quality levels than offered before, and so if you have a mind for listening to music on your iPod or iPhone at its very best, it’s now easier than ever. What you will need though is a set of great headphones. The Ultrasone 550s are the company’s entry-level professional headphones. Despite their pecking order within the company, they’re likely to be better than most headphones you’ve ever tried. They’re not small, but the excess weight and size is more than made up for in quality hardware and astonishing sound. They use a 50mm heavy-duty driver that produces an imposing sound intensity; the bass is clear, punchy and tight, and the definition in the mid and higher ranges will alert you to whole new sounds in recordings you’ve heard time and again. The 550s use S-Logic Natural Surround Sound technology, which adds space and depth to listening and really helps lift music beyond the realms of normal listening. The big drawback is the size and weight. They aren’t really well suited to use out and about – they’re better for listening at home when you want to really escape into your music collection without blasting a stereo out. If you’re serious about your music and want to hear it at its best then save up for these.

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Price: £199

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