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Philips O’Neill SHO9561/28 Over-Ear Headphones Review

Editor rating – 4.5/5


  • Very comfortable
  • Surprisingly lightweight

  • Affordable

  • Stylish

  • Removable cable


  • Limited availability


Philips has nailed it with the Philips O’Neill SHO9561/28 Over-Ear Headphones. Their unique stretchy headband makes any potential issues with fit and comfort disappear, and the way the SHO9561/28 headphones let you use any cable you want is something we would like to see more often. The only problem is their limited availability in certain regions around the world. But if you can find them, don’t hesitate even a second and grab them while you can.

Most customers don’t place Philips in the same category as companies such as Shure, Sennheiser, or Audio-Technica, when it comes to audio equipment. They mostly associate the Dutch technology company headquartered in Amsterdam with domestic appliances and personal care products. But the company’s Consumer Electronics division deservers a lot of attention, and the Philips O’Neill SHO9561/28 Over-Ear Headphones are a great example of why that’s the case.

Build and Design

The main selling-point of the Philips O’Neill SHO9561/28 Over-Ear Headphones is their wetsuit-inspired super-stretch headband that was designed specifically for maximum durability and a flawless fit. The goal here was to create highly durable headphones that would fit anyone and survive everything. The O’Neill SHO9561/28 are made from a durable, temperature-resistant material, making the headphones impact-resistant and stress-crack resistant even in extremely low or high temperatures.

Another advantage of the unique, durable material is its lightness. Coupled with a pair of soft ear cushions, the O’Neill SHO9561/28 are supremely comfortable to wear even for very long periods of time.

The headphones have a detachable cable terminated with a female 3.5mm connector. If you are familiar with the Superlux HD668B, you’ll know exactly what we mean. The advantage of this design is a much higher durability of the cable in the place where it connects to the headphones. Also, you can just order any 3.5mm extension cable online and use it instead of the one the headphones come with. Finally, if you happen to snag the cable, it will just disconnect, instead of getting damaged.

But given the high quality of the supplied cable, we see little to no reason why you would do that. The tangle-free fabric cable has aluminum reinforced connectors and proper stress reliefs.

Sound Quality

The O’ Neill SHO9561/28’s sound is well-balanced, even if it has a slight tendency to put more emphasis on the lower end of the sound spectrum. Fortunately, it never overpowers the remarkably clear and dynamic mids, making the headphones great for both music and movie listening as well as gaming.

We were also pleasantly surprised by how well the headphones respond to equalization. With just a few simple tweaks, we successfully managed to tame the wild bass and bring forward the crystal-clear highs. If you like to tinker with your audio gear like we do, these headphones will put a smile on your face.

What’s in the Box?

Included in the well-designed box are the headphones and the detachable cable. Unlike with most other headphones, the cable doesn’t end with a “male” plug on both ends. Instead, a female 3.5mm connector attaches to a very short 3.5mm cable that’s permanently fixed to the headphones. In turn, you can go online and purchase any 3.5mm extension cable and use it instead of the one that ships with the O’ Neill SHO9561/28.

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