PM-3by OPPO Digital

  • PM-3
  • PM-3
  • PM-3
  • PM-3
  • PM-3
TECHWALLA
VERDICT
Clearly above average. Only a couple of issues keep this from being best in class.
85%
TECHWALLA SCORE
based on the following sites

PROS

  • As planar magnetic headphones go, this good-looking set of cans is affordable and well built.
  • For a closed-back unit, the PM-3's sound is spacious and rich in detail; plus, you can expect a punchy yet controlled bass.
  • Thanks to the bonus cable for cell phone use, these headphones work great with mobile devices, too.

CONS

  • Depending on how large your noggin is, the PM-3s may feel a touch too snug--especially when you're breaking them in.
  • Some reviewers were turned off by the faux leather ear pads.
  • If you're big on the highs, you might like more sparkle in the treble.
The PM-3 over-ear headphones from OPPO Digital use planar magnetic technology--unlike the more ubiquitous moving coil or dynamic drivers. Planar magnetic headphones are designed to deliver a super-spacious and natural sound with a big impact and minimal distortion. The headphones are constructed of strong metal and plush padding materials. On the portability front, the PM-3 headphones fold down for storage in the included denim carrying case.. The unit ships with a 3-meter main cable and an extra 1.2-meter portable cable. Owners of Apple devices--and Android and Windows phone users--need to choose the dedicated cable with inline controls for their device when ordering. The PM-3 is available in black, white, steel blue, and cherry red.
NamePM-3EL-8 HeadphonesHE400iBowers & Wilkins P7Torque t402v
ManufacturerOPPO DigitalAudezeHiFiManBowers & WilkinsTorque Audio
Techwalla Score
85%
89%
89%
88%
78%
List Price$399$700$499$399$400
100%

The Oppo PM-3 are not particularly light, but among planar headphones they are very light indeed. As headphone nerds may agree, it’s remarka…

The Oppo PM-3 are not particularly light, but among planar headphones they are very light indeed. As headphone nerds may agree, it’s remarkable enough that you can wear these headphones without even realising they have planar drivers, which require much larger magnets than a standard dynamic driver set.

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100%

On various piano pieces by Yann Tiersen, the tonality of the Oppo PM-3 is brilliant. Voiced a touch on the warmer side, the tuning of the Op…

On various piano pieces by Yann Tiersen, the tonality of the Oppo PM-3 is brilliant. Voiced a touch on the warmer side, the tuning of the Oppo PM-3 is exactly what my ear gravitates to.

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100%

They're the best headphones we've ever tested at this price point. They deliver everything you'd expect from headphones that cost this much,…

They're the best headphones we've ever tested at this price point. They deliver everything you'd expect from headphones that cost this much, and make many inferior rivals look amateurish and overpriced.

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90%

One of the world’s greatest jazz recordings — “So What” from Miles Davis — showed just how clear the PM-3 headphones could be, offering up c…

One of the world’s greatest jazz recordings — “So What” from Miles Davis — showed just how clear the PM-3 headphones could be, offering up clarity in spades even as the song began, with the bits normally lost out to other headphones coming to the fore.

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90%

The great news is that the critical midrange, which frankly is where most music 'lives' is wonderfully resolved and natural sounding.

The great news is that the critical midrange, which frankly is where most music 'lives' is wonderfully resolved and natural sounding.

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90%

From my non-aesthetic point of view, the denim zipped bag, with its accompanying soft draw-string pouch for the leads, does its designated j…

From my non-aesthetic point of view, the denim zipped bag, with its accompanying soft draw-string pouch for the leads, does its designated job of protecting the PM-3 headphones, which can be folded flat to save on space, when travelling.

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85%

The ear cups are extremely comfortable and fit exquisitely snug on my head.

The ear cups are extremely comfortable and fit exquisitely snug on my head.

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83%

The lower midrange on the PM-3 stays largely linear with the bass but there is a specific emphasis in the vocal presence which starts rising…

The lower midrange on the PM-3 stays largely linear with the bass but there is a specific emphasis in the vocal presence which starts rising around 1-3k in upper midrange before dropping off a little as it hits the lower treble. Vocals on the PM-3 as a result sound bigger, fuller and more engaging.

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82%

The PM-3 is one of those headphones that makes well-recorded tracks sound even better than you thought they could.

The PM-3 is one of those headphones that makes well-recorded tracks sound even better than you thought they could.

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80%

You can use [the acoustic isolation] on the streets without losing too much fidelity to background noise. Of course, these are not isolating…

You can use [the acoustic isolation] on the streets without losing too much fidelity to background noise. Of course, these are not isolating headphones so you’ll be safe enough crossing the road to hear a car.

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80%

Listening to jazz tracks from Weather Report, there’s supreme separation of all of the individual instrumentation and yet instruments such a…

Listening to jazz tracks from Weather Report, there’s supreme separation of all of the individual instrumentation and yet instruments such as the upright bass pluck their way through without any distortion or roll off.

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80%

This is comfortably the most sensitive planar headphone I've ever seen and the first that can be legitimately run off a portable device with…

This is comfortably the most sensitive planar headphone I've ever seen and the first that can be legitimately run off a portable device with any degree of headroom.

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80%

[T]he Oppo PM-3 headphones are a sight to behold. Titanium arms, leather ear-cups, and gorgeous milled hinges – what’s not to like? The visu…

[T]he Oppo PM-3 headphones are a sight to behold. Titanium arms, leather ear-cups, and gorgeous milled hinges – what’s not to like? The visual appeal of these headphones is instantly evident.

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78%

iPhone with Spotify app played almost as good as a desktop system, which proves that the PM-3 actually are portable headphones.

iPhone with Spotify app played almost as good as a desktop system, which proves that the PM-3 actually are portable headphones.

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60%

The PM-3 sound acceptably detailed and have relatively clear sounding highs, but next to the Audio Technica ATH-M50x - highs aren't as polis…

The PM-3 sound acceptably detailed and have relatively clear sounding highs, but next to the Audio Technica ATH-M50x - highs aren't as polished, bass lacks definition, deep lows are non-existent, and the midrange sounds cramped and dark.

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Dynamic impact is a stronger suite for the PM-3; bass it tight and undistorted and they've got plenty of snap when called for...The PM-3 als…

Dynamic impact is a stronger suite for the PM-3; bass it tight and undistorted and they've got plenty of snap when called for...The PM-3 also does a very nice job of remaining clean sounding at loud levels.

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[Y]ou’ll hear the quick thump from a kick drum, or the airy pop of a snare drum. Cymbals you didn’t know were previously part of the track …

[Y]ou’ll hear the quick thump from a kick drum, or the airy pop of a snare drum. Cymbals you didn’t know were previously part of the track will present themselves. Best of all, voices were silky smooth.

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The PM-3s are highly responsive with quick attack and decay on sounds. They’re very natural sounding, with a flat response across all freque…

The PM-3s are highly responsive with quick attack and decay on sounds. They’re very natural sounding, with a flat response across all frequency ranges—no one aspect of the sound overpowers another.

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So the PM-3s are far more suitable for commuting, open offices, and anywhere else where people will stab you with a pen if they’re forced to…

So the PM-3s are far more suitable for commuting, open offices, and anywhere else where people will stab you with a pen if they’re forced to listen to your One Direction playlist one more time.

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During my casual listening, the PM-3s struck me as having a detailed, vivid sound with adequate if perhaps somewhat lightweight bass -- more…

During my casual listening, the PM-3s struck me as having a detailed, vivid sound with adequate if perhaps somewhat lightweight bass -- more a tilted tonal balance than an outright coloration.

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[I]f the PM-3 sound great out of an iPhone headphone jack, they are phenomenal with an amp.

[I]f the PM-3 sound great out of an iPhone headphone jack, they are phenomenal with an amp.

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Both the ear pads and headband are über comfy. But they are synthetic. When the temperature goes up, they become sweaty, nasty things on you…

Both the ear pads and headband are über comfy. But they are synthetic. When the temperature goes up, they become sweaty, nasty things on your ears. And they can’t be hot-swapped.

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Our only gripe is with the PM-3 clamping force, which seems a little bit excessive. Those with wider noggins may find them a little tight, b…

Our only gripe is with the PM-3 clamping force, which seems a little bit excessive. Those with wider noggins may find them a little tight, but between the exceptional sound quality and extremely comfortable earpads and headband, it is easy to excuse.

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WOULD YOU BUY THIS AGAIN?
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