CanJam at RMAF 2014: Oppo Digital PM-3 Prototype

Having spent quite a bit of time emailing back and forth about my PM-1 review, it was a great pleasure to meet Igor Levitsky in person at RMAF. Igor is the chief designer of Oppo's planar magnetic headphones and, in my view, has done a bang-up job innovating an unusual driver design and producing musical headphones.

This time around, Oppo was showing of a prototype of their upcoming PM-3—a sealed planar magnetic intended for portable use. It's not mentioned in the video, but Igor told me the driver in these cans is slightly smaller than the PM-1/2 driver. Cable entry is single sided, and a remote control is least as an option. No price is set at this time, but product introduction is expected in January 2015.

Maybe I'll get to hear a production version at CES in a few months. 'Til then I'll have to settle for the short listen to the prototypes, which left me feeling these new cans were actually a bit more balanced than the polite (but very appealing) PM-1. This should be very interesting!

Check out the other Oppo Digital headphones here.


Impulse's picture

I'm kinda surprised they'd still call it a prototype so close to launch, is that common?

The gloss finish is kind of a turn off for a portable, I think a few people commented on the same thing at HF.

Outside of that I'm eager to see what price point Oppo will aim for with these.

QuartBernstein's picture

I believe it is more common now. A lot of companies are doing ghost revisions, perhaps, instead of gathering years worth of feedback. I've read speculation that the PM-2 had a slightly altered sound signature, possibly from the couple months feedback between its release and the PM-1.

It's too bad. To me, it makes headphones seem a lot more like other consumer electronics (ultimately disposable/replaceable).
How else is a person going to make a buck in testing though?

Seth195208's picture an avatar? Ha!

amudhen's picture

I listened to the PM-3s for quite a while at Canjam and was very impressed on a wide variety of music, i think they might have a winner here. Music fed by the HA-2. They had a very even balance witb no peaks, very smooth, dynamic, and natural.


bronson's picture

Oppo aren't messing around are they, with quick succession of models of planars!

Yeah, I'd have like to have seen a matt finish to the outer ear cups rather than the hi-gloss but interesting to see for sure.

Also would have been more portable if the headphone arms were collapsable to smaller form rather than just folding flat methinks.

But a portable planar that runs directly from a smartphone is nothing to be sniffed at.