The Surprisingly Good Logitech UE6000 and UE9000

Logitech UE6000 ($199) and UE9000 ($399)
Amidst the avalanche of new personal audio gear recently released under the Logitech UE brand (InnerFidelity article here), are two full-size, around-the-ear, sealed, noise-canceling headphones. The Logitech UE6000 is wired, while the UE9000 adds wireless Bluetooth capabilities.

Physically, the two headphones are fairly similar. Both are gloss and matte black plastic primarily, with gray and blue accents, and appear to be very well built. The ear-pads are medium density memory foam covered with protein leather, and the ear-cup size is not particularly large, but is fairly deep, providing a cozy but quite comfortable fit.

The headbands are substantially different. The UE6000 is similar to the Beats Solo allowing the earpads to fold inward for compact storage in the included soft case, while the UE9000 ear cups rotate flat for less compact storage in the included hard case. The gimbals and swivel of the UE9000 headband are an all-metal construction, which appears to be very sturdy indeed. Headband padding is more ample on the UE6000, and while the UE9000 padding is a little more sparse and the headphones slightly heavier, I found both headphones to be quite comfortable for fairly long listening sessions. Like many sealed cans, I think these would be uncomfortably warm in hot, humid climates.

Both headphones come with four foot long, Apple compatable, 3-button remote cables, which are terminated with a 90 degree angle mini-plug. Cable entry is on the right earpiece for both headphones. Cable accents on the UE9000 are black, while the UE6000 is blue throughout.

Logitech UE6000 Features
The UE6000 electronic features are simple and straight forward. A button on the bottom of the left earpiece releases the ear piece cover and reveals a compartment in which two AAA batteries are inserted to power the noise canceling circuit. I think using AAA batteries for noise cancelers is a good idea as it permits replacement of dead batteries at airports.

The noise canceling circuit is activated by a sliding switch on the top of the right earpiece. An adjacent led glows green when powered on with good batteries, and red if batteries are low. It does work---and rather well as we'll see shortly---when the batteries run out. Simply turn the switch off, and it works as a passive sealed headphone.

Logitech UE9000 Features
The UE9000 has a nicely thought out set of features. With the power off and cable attached it works as a passive sealed headphone. Turn the power on and the noise canceling circuits are enabled. A small LED to the rear of the switch will glow green when batteries are charged, and red when batteries are low.

To use it as a Bluetooth headphone simply remove the cable and slide the power switch forward and hold until the blue LED (forward of the switch) blinks rapidly to indicate it is ready for pairing. Then go to your host device to complete the pairing. One interesting thing of note is that when pairing with my MacBookPro, and setting the system preferences for sound output, the UE9000 had selections available as both "UE9000 Bluetooth Headset" and "UE9000 Bluetooth Headphones". The sound quality was much, much better with the "headphone" setting. The UE9000 uses the Bluetooth 2.1+EDR protocol, and pairing was straight forward and simple.

When operating wirelessly, volume and tracking controls are on the rear of the right earpiece, and are intuitive and simple to operate. When wired, these controls are disabled in lue of the on-cable three button remote/mike.

A "talk through" button is on the top of the left earpiece. Push it once and the music is muted and mikes are opened to your surroundings. Perfect to hear the stewardess' ask if you'd like peanuts with your soda. The talk through feature is enabled only while wirelessly listening to music, and is unavailable while on a phone call or during wired operation.

Physical Overview
The more time I spent with these cans, the more I liked their physical qualities. It's rather easy to take for granted simple, straight forward industrial design in the world of ever gaudier headphone bling these days, but after a few days I really began to appreciate the handsom, understated looks and very nice build quality of these cans.

With regard to styling, ergonomics, and features, I think Logitech UE have produced a couple of winners here...the remaining question is: How do they sound?

COMPANY INFO
Logitech UE
7600 Gateway Blvd.
Newark, CA 94560
510-795-8500
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COMMENTS
Phos's picture

I dunno if I'm just missing it or something, but does the 9000 allow for non noise canceling opperation over wireless?  

Tyll Hertsens's picture

...no. Noise canceling is active when ever it's "on".

ScaryFatKidGT's picture

Wow! I was going to ask this too. Deal breaker for me. I really like the looks and metal on the 9000's but I guess il save $200 and go with the 6k's if I did.

 

Being how good these sound I really wish they would ditch the noice cancelling gimick and take $50 off the price.

Dinny FitzPatrick's picture

I think the AAAs were a last-minute change because iirc, when I met with them, they were very much pro-rechargeable and anti-alkaline.  I see the pros and cons for both, but I prefer the ease of having AAAs.

Del7a_Kris's picture

Can you give me the name of the stand please? Im looking for a nice stand for my Beyer DT880 Pros, and so far the omega looks very appealing but the one above looks nice too.

Tyll Hertsens's picture

You can find them here:

http://www.klutzdesign.com/CanCans-headphone-stand.html

kixxit's picture

In the article you've referred to the Logitech headphones as being the best "sealed" cans you've heard lately.  If so, how do they compare to the AKG 500's?  You seemed to be pretty impressed with those as well and I believe they are "sealed" cans.

hifi_dude's picture

In the video review he said the UEs sound much better than the K550s.

Tyll, can you elaborate a little on the comparisons? Are they better across the board or in certain aspects like lows/mids/highs/soundstage etc..

I own the Denon D2000s and am looking for a reasonably priced upgrade.

Thanks

Tyll Hertsens's picture

The K550 sounds a little more open, but has a somewhat artificial sounding treble.

The UE6000 sounds better balanced and a bit cleaner, but it's also a bit boring sounding.

In the end I preferred the UE6000 because of the balance, and the isolation is a bit better, too.

ulogin's picture

Hi Tyll,

How would you compare the SQ of UE6000 with Sennheiser Amperior, which is also on your wall of fame?

Thanks.

Tyll Hertsens's picture

I'd say the overall balance may be better on the UE6000, but the Amperior is more articulate and punchy...though a tad bright.

wilzc's picture

They look ...  rather similar to the Ultrasone Edition 8s!!1

 

HMMMMMM

 

Especially the 9000

hifi_dude's picture

Yeah, those were my first thoughts.

I love the Ed8 design so I don't mind them copying that at all!

Qwasd's picture

Hi,

I'm planning to buy the UE 9000 for use on public transport so I would like to know how the isolation of over the ear design and ANC compares to basic in-ears? Also another important thing that I would like know is how good/bad is the noice leakage on these?

Tyll Hertsens's picture

I think the UE9000 probably doesn't leak too much sound---the seal is pretty good. 

In-ear headphones have far more isolation and less leakage than other types.

lubczyk's picture

This UE9000 being preferred over the AKG K550 purprized me. Is the soundstage bigger with better imaging than the AKG K550?

Tyll Hertsens's picture

Yes, I think the imaging is better on the UE.  Actually, that was one of the big surprises on these cans: Usually, really good imaging cans have really fast and transparent treble.  The UEs treble seemed pretty ho-hum, but the imaging seemed quite good to me. Go figure.

ssoedi's picture

Hi. I am currently looking for a pair of good headphones. I am not an audiophile, but I appreciate well balanced, well build headphones that can last for a while (3 years or more) without any problem.

I am interested in Sennheiser Amperior and V-Moda Crossfade M-80 until I read this post. I like the look of both UE 6000 and 9000. I do not have the money to purchase the UE 9000, though. I, however, do not like batteries (that is why I am interested in Amperior and V-Moda).

I am a student, so I want to listen to my music without interupting others. I also do not want to be completely oblivious to my surroundings. I listen mostly to rock, jazz, blues, soul, and acoustic. I do listen to R&B sometimes, but I am not fond of thumping bass.

After knowing about UE 6000, I am considering noise canceling headphones (unlike Bose, the music is still on when the battery is off.)

Do you have any recommendations for me?

Thank you in advance.

~ssoedi

Tyll Hertsens's picture

They're all up to the task, but this statement "I am a student, so I want to listen to my music without interupting others. I also do not want to be completely oblivious to my surroundings" makes me think the M-80 might be the way to go.

ssoedi's picture

but now the question is: Does the M-80 leak? How bad is the leakage? Is the M-80 cheaper than the UE6000?

Tyll Hertsens's picture

They're about the same price.  

The M-80 leaks a bit more than the UE6000.  The thing is you say you want no leakage but want to remain somewhat aware of your surroundings.  You can't really have both. Isolation and leakage are essentially the same thing. More isolation=less leakage. The M-80 is a decent compromise. But if you don't want any leakage, the UE6000 is better.

ssoedi's picture

I wonder which one you would personally get/prefer. M-80 or UE6000?

Thank you for answering my questions, Tyll. I never really know whom to ask.

USAudio's picture

It's all subjective and one man's (expert) opinion, which I value and visit here often.

As there are no real expensive headphones here in the full-size sealed category, so I assume the UE's are judged to be as good sounding as the vastly more expensive higher-end cans like the Ultrasone Edition 8's and Signature Pro's?

I wish there was a UE version available that didn't have all that bluetooth, active noise cancelling, etc. stuff and was just a pure, closed, quality headphone.

Dinny FitzPatrick's picture

FWIW, one of the reps at the launch party asked me, "ok but what do you guys (meaning headphone geeks) really want to see next?"  I said something non-noise canceling for certain.  Then look to the high end offerings from Senn, like the 800, give it some more bass, and undercut it on price.

Tyll Hertsens's picture

The Monkey wins.

John Grandberg's picture

As a user of sealed cans (by necessity) I am still not quite clear - are these to be considered top sealed headphones? Or just better than most of the failures like Sony Z1000? 

I already have most of the important high end models: Thunderpants, Signature Pro, Lawton modded Denon D7000, top Audio Technica Woodies, Edition 8, etc. Should I bother with these?

Tyll Hertsens's picture

It's probably worth you having a listen at an Apple store, John. I'm still a bit stunned, and to be truthful, am looking forward to other's impressions. I'd prefer them over the Ed8, SigPro, and prolly the ATs (they tend to be a little bright to me). TP and Lawton D7000 are probably better. 

The thing to me is these seem so nicely balanced and clean...not as resolving as I'd like, though.

peterroumian's picture

there's a new definition of stupidity
buying solos over these

one question Tyll
how do you compare these to the HD598 ignoring the sound isolation of course

Tyll Hertsens's picture

...but I remember the 598 as a bit thicker sounding than these. Again, not as well balanced. But I might be off on that comment. Been too long.

aznmage27's picture

I already have a pair of DJ1 pro's but i feel like the s-logic is a bit hollow sounding and it was too bulky for portable use, was looking for something different.

Finally, I narrowed it down to the HM5, the M50's and the UE6000. The price difference doesn't bother me that much, but which one would be better sounding. I care a lot about soundstage, clarity, instrument separation. Bass would come second.

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