B&O Play Beoplay H6 (2nd Gen)
"Though pricey, the B&O Play Beoplay H6 offers a winning combination of stylish looks and great sound"
Earlier this year, B&O Play, the more consumer-friendly arm of Bang & Olufsen, quietly updated its H6 over-ear headphones. From the outside, you would be hardpressed to tell the difference, as the design of the second generation H6 remains unchanged. The only way to tell is from the subtle color changes in the driver cover cloth; it now matches the color of the aluminum finish on the ear cups. This means the updated H6 retains its portability
and comfort. The ear cups swivel to fold flat, making it one of the most portable over-ear headphones around. The lambskin leather ear pads feel soft on the skin and the clamping force is just right - tight enough to ensure that it doesn’t move about unintentionally and to provide enough isolation, but not so much that it hurts. What has changed is the sound. The first generation Beoplay H6 was not a terrible headphone by any means, but it did sound a little too polite and soft, especially in the bass department. The new H6 corrects this and is noticeably bassier. Fortunately, the bass isn’t overwhelming and is actually very well-judged. It is clean, punchy, and served up in just the right amounts. The end result is that the new second generation H6 is much more fun and engaging to listen to. Beoplay has not messed about with the rest of the frequency spectrum either, and the second generation H6 retains its predecessor’s airiness and impressively smooth midrange and competent treble performance. Hook the new H6 headphones up to a headphone amplifier and its performance improves with better clarity and sharper, punchier bass. This means the H6’s performance is scalable and will sound even better if you have got the right equipment. At $449, the Beoplay H6 is a premium set of headphones, and it certainly has no shortage of competitors. Sony’s MDR-1A and Audio- Technica’s ATH-MSR7 are arguably just as good and are even more affordable to boot. However, the new second generation Beoplay H6 edges them out in my books and sounds the most impressive.
AT A GLANCE.
Headphone type Circumaural, closed back
Drivers 40mm electro-dynamic driver
Frequency range 20Hz to 22,000Hz
PICTURES B&O PLAY