Shure SRH840 Professional Over-Ear Monitoring Headphones Review

Editor rating

5/5 on September 7, 2015 Reviewed by: Peter Alexander

User's rating

243 reviews

PROS

  • Great sound with an excellent clarity
  • Very versatile in terms of music genres that sound good with these headphones
  • Build quality is much better than many other headphones in this price range
  • Easily driven for iPod and iPhone
  • Very likable soundstage with good instrument separation

CONS

  • Can lead to headaches since they are very heavy and it takes some time to get used to them

VERDICT

Shure SRH840 are great headphones that can be recommended to everyone who values a clear representation of music and high build quality.

Although they do not produce a distinctly mainstream sound like many other popular headphones in this price range, they know exactly who is their targeted listener and they deliver on all fronts.

If you keep in mind that these are studio headphones and are not meant to be taken with you everywhere you go, then you will not be disappointed.

Their weight can definitely be a problem when you first put them on your head, but it takes just a few weeks before you get completely used to it.

If you are looking for a professional, closed, studio headphones then Shure SRH840 should be high on your list.

Their main selling point is a pair of large 40mm neodymium dynamic drivers that are optimized for studio recording and critical listening. That sounds good in theory, but great headphones are not made out sound alone.

Let us take a closer look at whether Shure SRH840 will earn their place among some of the best over-ear headphones your money can buy.

Design and build quality

These headphones have “Shure” written all over them from the moment you first lay your eyes on them. Their sophisticated design screams a high-quality engineering and materials and this stands true in reality.

There is a nice metallic Shure logo on the left side and on the top of the headband that nicely add to the overall design.

A pair of color indicators helps you identify the position of your headphones so you never have to spend too much time trying to figure out which way you should put them on your head.

The cord is very sturdy and uses a proprietary bayonet clip that securely locks into place.

Shure SRH840 use a generous amount of metal in their construction and even though the hinges are made out of plastic, you definitely do not have to worry about these breaking down on you.

Their soft leather earcups are very comfortable and are coupled with just the right amount of clamping pressure that keeps the headphones securely in place without becoming uncomfortable after a while.

There are only two minor complaints about Shure SRH840 in terms of their build and comfort. The first complaint closely ties to the second and it is about the weight of these headphones. To put it simply – they are heavy.

If you are not used to wearing headphones of this weight then it is quite possible that your neck is going to get tired which can even lead to headaches. On the other hand, if you stick with them, you will get used to it.

The second complaint is about the headband which could use some more padding. Other than these two things, Shure SRH840 excel in every single detail.

Sound

Shure SRH840 feature a large 40mm neodymium drivers compared to ATH-M50. SRH840 sound much more faithful to the original audio source which is the most noticeable in the bass department.

To some, the bass may sound slightly subdued and it must be noted that the overall sound is definitely not mainstream sounding.

These headphones shine in mid ranges where they provide a truly detailed and articulated sound full of little nuances. Highs are equally well articulated a beautifully complement the excellent midranges.

SRH840 are closed headphones and just as with any closed headphones the soundstage cannot really be compared to the best open headphones out there. That being said, these headphones rank pretty high in terms of instrument separation, soundstage size, and presence.

Shure SRH840 have the impedance of 44 Ohm which means that you will not have any problems driving them from your iPod or portable mp3 player.

Frequency range is not something we usually mention in our reviews because it is one of those things that may look great on paper but is easily ignored in blind listening tests.

This time, however, we need to stress just how great their 5 Hz – 25 kHz frequency is in terms of clarity and sound detail. When paired with a high-quality audio source, your music will truly come to live and you will get to fully appreciate every little detail.

When purchasing SRH840, you absolutely have to keep in mind two things.

The first is that they require a long burnout time. What that means is that it takes some time for drivers to reach their full potential after you unpack the headphones from the box. In case of Shure SRH840, it takes about 60 hours before their reach their full potential.

The second thing is that these are design with a realistic audio reproduction in mind. If you are looking after bass-heavy mainstream sound, you will not find it in here.

When compared to other popular headphones in this price range, namely Audio-Technica ATH-M50 and Beats by Dre, SRH-840 clearly show their distinct position on the market and audience they are designed for.

ATH-M50 are honestly not a bad choice if you are looking for a pair of headphones that will make any bass reliant music sound good since they tend to produce more musical sound with mainstream music genres.

Beats by Dre turned out to be at least a class below both SRH840 and ATH-M50 mainly in terms of their build quality but also when it comes to their sound and thus cannot be recommended over SRH-840.

What is in the box?

When you purchases Shure SRH 840 you get the headphones themselves, ¼ inch screw-on adaptor, 10 foot twisted cord, faux leather carrying case, and extra earpads.

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