The Surprisingly Good Logitech UE6000 and UE9000 Measurements

Measurements in Passive Mode
Logitech UE6000

Click on graphs image to download .pdf for closer inspection.

Logitech UE9000

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As you can see from the charts above, both headphones measure quite similarly. I suspect both headphones share a lot of design effort in common, and the small differences between the two are likely caused by small differences in the capsule geometries due to the changes in electronics and battery compartment. I heard very little difference between cans in listening tests. Only that the UE6000 sounded slightly cleaner than the UE9000.

In raw frequency response measurements, neither can was particularly sensitive to positional changes on the head. I found the foam in the ear cushions and protein leather coverings to be quite effective in forming a good seal to the head.

Compensated frequency response measures show a broad and mildly elevated bass boost, and a slight presence hump at around 1kHz. I've seen this shape before, and typically find it quite satisfying, delivering both a warmth to the sound and a nice sense of vocal presence. Thereafter, the headphones fall about 10dB to 3kHz; I feel this is about right. The UE6000 remains fairly constant at this level until it reaches 10kHz, and then drops off about 8dB. Although measurements at these frequencies are often somewhat unreliable, I do like the overall shape of the curve here with the UE6000, though the top octave could be about 3dB higher. The UE9000 does exhibit a clear peak at 10kHz, which I'd rather not see, but I don't think it was particularly audible in this case.

30Hz square wave response is indicative of a nicely controlled, warm sounding headphone. The low distortion in the lowest octaves of these cans also indicate tight bass and decent power handling.

300Hz square wave response shows a mild and about right overshoot on the leading edge. The UE6000 shows a slight missmatch between channels, which is not really evident on the frequency response plot. The UE9000 shows a slightly noisier waveform top, which can also be seen in the impulse response of these cans. I'm thinking the additional complexity of the enclosure of the UE9000 to accomodate the additional Bluetooth electronics and microphones may contribute here.

The passive isolation of these headphones is quite good, among the best I've seen.

Impedance and phase plots show these these headphones to be nicely behaved. Nominal impedance of the UE6000 is about 52 Ohms, with the UE9000 about 5 Ohms higher. Voltage required to achieve 90dBspl at the ear for both headphones was about 50mVrms, which makes them fairly easy to achieve solid listening levels with portable devices. The isolation and efficiency (not to mention the great sound quality) of these headphones makes them ideal for portable applications.

Measurements in Noise Canceling Mode
Logitech UE6000

Click on graphs image to download .pdf for closer inspection.

Logitech UE9000

Click on graphs image to download .pdf for closer inspection.

Raw frequency response measurements show the UE9000 somewhat more sensitive to positional changes both in the lowest frequencies and in a bump at about 800Hz. The UE6000 had somewhat mismatched channels between 400Hz and 1000Hz. Not sure what's going on here, but noise canceling headphones have microphones inside the ear chamber, and it's possible that slight mismatches due to positioning may be amplified by the noise canceling circuit.

Compensated frequency response shows a clear, and fairly peaked, elevated bass response. Both cans also exhibit a broad, strong dip centered at about 400Hz prior to rising again to the presence peak at 1kHz. Obviously the noise canceling electronics are also providing some EQ changes to these cans. Above 1kHz the response of both headphones are nearly identical to the passive measurements.

In listening tests I did hear the bass as somewhat to strong and loose. The level increase is evident in the frequency response, but the looseness of the sound is clear in the 30Hz square wave top descending below the zero line. Because this is likely a function of phase shift through the electronic EQ and not losses through the earpads, no increase in THD+noise is evident in the lows. THD+noise is only slightly higher in the noise canceling mode when compared to the passive mode.

300Hz square wave shape is somewhat poorer on both cans, but is substantially better than many noise cancelers I've previously measured. In fact, only the Polk Ultrafocus 8000 appears to have better measurements to my eyes.

Impulse response measurements indicate the electronic circuit does invert the signal. The UE6000 continues to ring slightly less than the UE9000, as with the passive measurements.

Isolation measurements show the noise canceling circuit is not particularly effective, generally lowering the noise about 10dB under 500Hz when compared to passive measurements. I think this is an area where Logitech UE will have to make improvements if they want to compete with Bose for a slot in the noise canceling market. Fortunately, they've got a great sounding start on the process.

I think the UE9000 had some sort of glitch in the efficiency measures. Both cans can be easily driven to solid listening levels with portable devices.

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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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