Damaged Gears

Evolve your Gears

Posts Tagged ‘Damage

Splash Damage: MDR-ZX100, MDR-ZX300

with 2 comments

I have with me the low end of the lot, the MDR-ZX100 and MDR-ZX300. In my previous review, I said that the MDR-ZX700 was pretty darn good. And I still stand by that remark.

Now then, for $20 and $30 (respectively), the ZX100 and ZX300 represent the entry level cans, replacing the “venerable” V150 and V300s, which could be best described as garbage and fodder, irrespectively. The ZX100 and ZX300s are a bit more stylized versions of the low end V series cans. From a distance, one could almost think that the users were rocking a set of Beats for instance. And with the low end ZXs, you can indeed to single ear monitoring! Imagine that.

As for the sound? It might be my imagination but the ZX300s sounds noticeably worse than the entry ZX100s. The ZX100s are helped by its low price of a Jackson, and sounds as most $20 cans, with exaggerated bass, almost but not quite piercing trebles, and a rather decent mid-range presence. No, this isn’t some pair of JVC earbuds that outdoes the competition, but then again, you’re not going to regret blowing $20 for these vs. Skullcandies that costs 2x as much.

The ZX300s? Same bass and trebles with more detail towards the treble end of things. The midrange is much more recessed, though. It doesn’t help that it takes a lot of equalization to get it sound semi decent. Yes, there are more detail in the ZX300s vs. the ZX100s. The ZX100s, on the other hand, has a bit of warmth to it (not much) that sounds somewhat more inviting than the 300s, which are bit more clinical. Well, as much as a bassy $30 cans go anyways.

Compared to the Beats that costs 10 times as much, yes, they are quite good. But frankly, I think the money’s better spent on a set of Superlux HD668B. Or better yet, save some dough and get the ZX700s instead.

Grade:
ZX100: C+
ZX300: C

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Written by Damage

06/29/11 at 9:28 pm

Splash Damage: Damage vs. iPod Shuffle (2G)

with one comment

Oops, I did it again.  I’ve broken your heart, and lost in the game.  No, I’m not flashing back to early 2000s, when Britney and Lindsay were nice and pure, a perfect role model for any up and coming teenager idols wannabes. 

However, the iPod Shuffle (2nd Gen, clip on) was intriguing enough to elicit a purchase.  After a month of usage, I have to say that iPod Shuffle is dead simple.  But within that simplicity lies a…  well, a very simple vehicle for playing back your MP3s.  No advanced playlisting, no fancy smart or intelligent shuffle, no videos, no wifi.  Pure and simple MP3 playback.

Sure, the Zen Stone plus had this too.  But it was marred by dumb mistakes here and there (navigation being the key faux pas).  The shuffle is an interesting study of media playback.  Do you let your musical destiny be controled by the fwd button (shuffle), or do you take to predestination (playlist)?  Do you dare let iTunes control your musical discovery like a whimsical muse (autofill) or do you take that predestination concept to the max?

No matter your philosophy, you have a very decent playback device.  Nothing fancy, just you and your music.  And some rather notable hiss, though you do not get any Noise cancellation like you did with other MP3 player (and the only one in the market to do so…  pity).  Aside from that, it’s a serviceable unit.

In a way, it’s more Zen then the “Zen Stone,” if you like to think of it that way.

The Good: Small and compact.  Even a zombie can enjoy it.  While eating brains.
The Bad: No LCD.  Battle with one’s inner self may occur as result of thinking too much about Music and predestination or something.
The Ugly:  The new pastel colors.  Hisses just as loud as a certain Sony unit, but no Noise Cancelling powers like that of said unit.

Grade: B-.  To be honest, there is no way the Shuffle will get anything higher than a B.  The shuffle makes a terrific complementary unit to your main iPod or MP3.  The fact that you can use other programs to sync to it only helps.

Written by Damage

04/22/08 at 9:51 pm

Posted in Soapbox

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