It’s really the first closed back option, but comes in second because I do think overall the 9500 is a slightly better buy. It’s about the closest photo finish you can have though. That said, if you’re looking for a closed back neutral headphone, this is what you’ll want to consider first. The reasons are fairly obvious, but if you’re new to the hobby, the V6 has been around since the 80’s. It’s a studio staple, and should have a place in every engineers cabinet.
Build and comfort are both extremely solid, but one reason it can’t take top honors is because of those flaky pads. They will start to crack and peel after a year or two, and it’s really, really annoying. Lol. Luckily, they are replaceable so that’s a plus. The other thing that holds these back is the propensity for the coiled chord to tangle. Both the M40x and CB 1 improved on this by making the actual coil portion of the cable a bit shorter and more compact. That said, I think the overall sound signature of these is a bit better than those, and thus it’s placed higher.
What I will bring you in this review
Who these headphones benefit?
Now without further ado, let’s get rolling!
Longevity through the roof. This headphone has been around since the mid 1980’s. Folks have reported having these puppies anywhere from 10-30 years!
A+ Price to Performance Ratio. I consider these just about the best purchase you could possibly make when starting out. There isn’t much these don’t do for the price. They are an absolute steal, and you would be hard pressed to find a headphone that delivers like this one.
Overall incredible sound for the price point. Never mind what they cost, these compete with headphones way out of their price range. I was absolutely floored when I first put them on. They could easily go for $200-300.
Ridiculous build quality. There’s a reason people have had these for years and years. They just don’t break. Go ahead, toss ’em around and try to justify spending money to get a different brand. The V6 will be sad, but it still won’t break just to appease you! Lol.
Amazing tonal balance and instrument separation.Tired of cluttered instruments? Wish you could hear all the intricacies of the music that you’ve been missing for years? The V6 is the solution.
Works as a critical listening headphone as well as a fun headphone. I can sit back and analyze the music in an enjoyable way, because listening with the V6 never becomes a chore. The sound somehow works in both ways, which makes it all the more versatile.
Hybrid wonder. Can be used in studio or on the go. They are small and compact enough to travel with. I have no issues carrying these around because they fold up nicely and the coiled chord works pretty well for travel.
Genre happy. Good with nearly anything you pair it with. I’ve yet to come across a genre that the V6 is bad with. It’s an all around phenomenal studio solution!
The Sony MDR V6 is a highly regarded, closed back audiophile headphone that is at it’s best in a studio environment. Though it’s flat and balanced overall, it doesn’t cease to really impress. It’s a mixing/reference can that proves to be very honest and neutral in it’s sound signature & presentation. It boasts a pristine clarity, but isn’t bass heavy. What the V6’s will give you is a tight, clear, controlled bass but nothing overpowering. It’s nothing like Beats by Dre, as these aren’t really made for bass-heads.
What’s startling to me about the MDR V6’s is that they have been around since the early 80’s, and maybe even late 70’s. If you look closely enough, you will see these around everywhere. They will last you a LONG time, and are about as reliable as it gets for studio monitoring. The sound spectrum is flawlessly represented here, although there may be a slight grain in the mid-range at first. You will start to hear things in recordings that you previously thought absent.
They are very closely related to their younger brother, the Sony MDR 7506. The only real differences are that the 7506 is said to have a bit more bass, but the treble end is compromised. Consumers wanted a top end with more clarity, and trust me it’s clear as crystal. But it’s also a bit harsh/shrill/sibilant. What does sibilant mean?
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Click to see the V6!
These don’t need an amp, and will sound plenty loud enough with any of your portable devices. There were a few reviewers who mentioned that the sound and bass is boosted a bit overall with an amp like: The FiiO E10K
One reviewer in particular said that he had previously owned them years back, loved them, but was not as impressed with the sound after he bought them years later. Only when he added a portable Amp/DAC combo did he recall that amazing sound again.
I would say you can always add an amp later if need be, given how impressed I was with them right out of the box. They are more than sensitive enough in my view. 🙂 What is Sensitivity in Headphones?
People looking for a flat neutral sound, conducive to mixing. Critical listeners.
Casual listeners looking for a crispy, uncolored sound.
They do great with:
A very neutral, flat, and even sounding set of headphones. The bass is crispy, articulate, tight, and controlled. Overall they give you a pristine clarity and are some of the longest lasting cans in existence. Main gripe is the ear-cup issue. Other less common complaints are:
somewhat loose construction
left or right side of ear going out
folds when you don’t want them to fold; i.e. a bit flimsy
I should note again that these are true monitor/reference headphones that work wonderful as a casual listening can. If the mix is bad you will know right away. You will also be able to decipher a good mix pretty easily as well.
These are still around after 30+ years for a reason. They are solid, reliable, flat, and true to mixing. If you had to choose a set to last you the rest of your life, the V6 should be in your top 3 for sure!
Stu is determined to help you make sound decisions, and strives to deliver the best and most in depth content on the internet! In his spare time, he likes to fish, paint, play guitar, pray, rap, make beats, take photos, record videos, graphic design, and more. His sense of humour, coupled with a knack for excellence and strict attention to detail are what allow him to stand out in an crowded industry.