When I saw the 808 Audio Performer series, I though it would be another overly-designed, poor-sounding headphone (akin to something like the Beats). After putting them on, I was impressed with the sound quality. Then I saw Voxx owned it… The company that also owns a number of other audio manufactures, like Klipsch.
When I received the 808, I was interested in the unique design that looked great. The bungee cord wrapped around the housings and the machine-cut aluminum gave it a very distinct look.
I have to say that it is on the flashy side of things, though the brushed texturing and matted color choices do keep it toned down overall. They are definitely a looker though.
As I stated, the sound of the 808 Performer BT actually sounds great. It is a bass-focused signature, but it’s not overly done and has a wide soundstage and provides great imaging. A classic V-shaped signature is what is used on the 808, and it works very well. I should note, however, that the 808 does fit a little loose on my head (which decreases bass) but still achieves a seal.
In the low end, there is a strong, powerful, and thick impact that can be felt. It isn’t boomy, but will come close to it overall. Texturing is more on the solid side, as one would imagine, due to the thicker sound with a hint of fluidity. This provides excellent texture in the sub-bass regions while the mid-bass isn’t the tightest, but also not too thick; it’s well controlled.
As we move up to the midrange, we find that clarity isn’t hurt overall with the way the Performer render the songs it’s thrown despite the fact that it is recessed. Detailing does take a slight back seat however and could be stronger. Vocals still hold a nice range to them. Thick lushness provides emotion while the upper harmonics give energy. All this leads to good dynamics that are inviting and beautifully rendered.
As we go into the treble, we do find there is a stronger focus on the upper treble. The splashes sizzle beautifully without becoming edgy or harsh. Detailing is beautiful and they give the headphones a bit of pizzazz and energy over the mainly warm and lush signature. The lower treble offers OK detailing but good presence. Extension and energy could be improved in the lower highs though.
The 808 Performer BT comes packaged as is. So there is no supplied case with the headphones. I feel they really don’t need it, they’ll survive on their own due to their rugged construction, from the housings to the headband. I should note that one of the caps on my headphones is loose (it came like that). It’s an aesthetic thing, and doesn’t affect functionality, though is there (hopefully I received a lemon).
The housings on the 808 BT are constructed mainly out of plastic. The plastic does have a matted finish to it and doesn’t feel cheap. It will easily protect the housings in the majority of situations it’s put through. The precision cut aluminum is about 1/8 of an inch thick and quite strong overall. It provides a nice backbone for the arm that connects the housings to the headband.
As we go through the headband, the metal framework is visible throughout and provides a strong, solid platform for the headband. It offers great flexibility while the slab of metal should be able to withstand a large force load. The rubber trimmings on the headband are there for design purposes, but also do a good job with absorbing impacts as well.
With BT headphones, I almost never incorporate the cabling into the review (they are BT after all, you’ll rarely be using them wired). However, with the 808 Performer, they actually provide a good quality cable. It’s a fabricated cable that doesn’t tangle easily and offers good flexibility. The headphone jack is angled at 90-degrees and gold plated.
I have one minor complaint when it comes to these headphones, they aren’t tight enough on my head and can cause the seal to not be strong enough. Fit issues will result in an alteration in sound quality (normally lower). It took me quite a bit of fidgeting to get the proper fit. However, once that’s done, the headphones are very comfortable. The pads are thick enough for most heads to provide ample comfort while the wide headband supports quite well and distributes pressure.