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The firm hold does, however, make these headphones very secure, especially compared to some on-ear designs we've seen and, along with the closed back design, this provides a degree of noise-isolation. Obviously they don't compare to active noise-cancelling headphones or noise-isolating canalphones but they're better than completely open-backed designs.
An initial 50cm length of cable runs down from the left earpiece and a further 105cm extension is also provided. No adapters or converters are bundled in the box but considering that headphones such as these will most likely find use with MP3 players (rather than aeroplane entertainment systems or Hi-Fi's), the standard stereo 3.5mm jack plug is fine - it's even 1st gen iPhone compatible.
All told, then, there are a few compromises on the comfort front but as an overall package they seem reasonable, assuming the sound quality can hold up to scrutiny, which for the most part it does. Certainly these don't compete with true audiophile headphones and at sixty pounds they are coming up against a lot of competition from the low price products from high-end manufacturers like Grado (the iGrado's use very similar drivers and are much more comfortable), Sennheiser, Shure, and AKG, to name but a few. However, they do actually hold there own at this price point.
For a start, bass response is plentiful, especially if you crank up the volume - and these headphones do get loud! It's not a forced bass level, either. It sounds natural and never comes at the expensive of the rest of the music. Indeed the overall sound is pleasantly even with mids and highs equally well balanced along with the bass. Actual clarity at the top end isn't spectacular, which makes music sound a little flat, especially acoustic, jazz, and classical stuff but for £60 we can find little reason to complain about. Certainly if all you want is something with which to blast your punk/rock/dance "choons" out with while careering down a snowy slope at breakneck speeds then these should be right up your street.
We Are The Superlative Conspiracy may be a silly name for a company and these Bongo headphones may well look ridiculous to many people but don't let that deceive you. While they're not the most comfortable headphones we've ever worn they produce surprisingly good quality sound that's on a par with anything else you'd get for the money and, with so many different designs on offer, there's probably a pair of Bongos to suit everyone.
Scores In Detail
- Sound Quality