Jason Cosper

Semper fudge.

Review: Nixon Nomadic Headphones

I told myself that I was going to wait for the reviews before I rushed out and bought myself a pair of Nixon Nomadic headphones. Sure, the product page made them look dead sexy — but could they possibly live up to the marketing hype?

2 weeks on, my patience was wearing thin. Not a single word had surfaced and I was getting antsy. No. I wasn’t going to give in. If they were good, I’d hear about it eventually. Patience is a virtue, and I was going to stick to my original plan.

A week later, I had them in my grubby paws. Fuck patience. My want overruled any plans I might have had. And while I might be weak, at least I had a shiny new way to listen to music.

So how are they? Surprisingly good, actually. The first handful of tracks that I listened to had the right amount of punch along with just enough nuance. Even the audiobook that I’m currently consuming sounded great.

On top of that, they’re solidly built. The ball and socket joints manage to swivel freely while not getting too squirrelly and the memory foam ear pads contour quite nicely. The fact that the headphone cable detaches for easy packing and the right ear has an independent volume control built-in are just icing on the cake.

Oh, did I mention these were iPhone compatible? No? Well, they are. And the mic, I’ve been told, sounds fantastic. Like a heavy one-inch button, there’s really no fumbling for it to change tracks or answer calls. Your hand just sort of gravitates to it.

Other than feeling just a little tight on my Charlie Brown sized head, these are pretty much flawless. They’re seriously my new favorite headphones — and well worth the $120 I shelled out for them. If you’ve got the cash to burn, I highly recommend them.

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18 Comments

  1. Did you pick them up local or order them?

    JM

  2. I ordered them directly from Nixon with the cheapest shipping option. And since they’re in SoCal, they got delivered about a day after shipping.

  3. Astral

    Hey, nice review.

    I’m interested in getting a pair of these, but before I do I was just wondering about their size. Been trawling the net for an image shot of someone wearing a pair for ages, came across a flickr account with the image above, I presume it was yours.

    Any chance you could post a few pics of you wearing them, so as I can get an idea of their relative size? Would be very grateful, also if you could confirm the cord length, nixon’s site says 1.5m, but the site i wanna purchase from in the UK says 3m?

    Would really appreciate the help, cheers.

    Astral

  4. teddy

    just ordered the Nixon Master Blaster Headphones from “socal style online” or something. The nixon website was sold out of the awesome brown leather variant. They shipped from portland ( I live in Oregon) real quick and I am expecting them any day now… Can’t’ wait. I’d be interested to compare the difference between the nomad headphones and the master blaster kind. Thanks for the review!

  5. teddy

    Update: Got my Nixon Master Blaster headphones today! They are surprisingly big and the ear-cans are less comfortable than they could be but the sound is absolutely one hundred percent crystal clear. No distortion at any volume. Took me a second to find the SICK volume control where you just twist part of the headphone. The bass is DEEP but not the same as what you’d get with an in-ear shure headphone (my previous babies). They are not going to be as loud as an in-ear headphone but the sound quality cannot be beat. Period. By anything. Stunning. You will hear every note of every song. Ever.

  6. Jomar

    How comfortable are the headphones? I own a pair of WeSC Premium Headphones and after an hour of wearing them my ears start to hurt from being squished for an extended period of time.

  7. Devin

    These headphones are very interesting but I have some questions. Do these leak sound (will others around you be able to hear the music that is playing?) and how about the durability? Are they sturdy and do the ear pads get dirty easily? Im stuck between these and some WEsc Bongo Headphones.

  8. b something, something.

    i just trekked into your blog to ask how they’re holding up? I’m really, really contemplating on purchasing the exact same ones.

  9. A

    Are they noise reducing? I’m thinking of purchasing them, and I was looking at similar noise reducing models

  10. Christian

    nice review. i bought a pair of these headphones and i heard the quality of them and was pretty disappointed. i guess my expectations of them were much different. when i wore them, i thought i looked totally ridiculous. i couldn’t really imagine walking through campus with them on. i returned the headphones and bought bose triport over-ear (very cliche, i know) and in my opinion, they are much better than the nomadic headphones.

  11. Jim

    I ordered the nomadics in black, as pictured above. As I was going to save them for my birthday I have not unpacked the cord and been playing them so I can only comment on the style aspect.

    They look great out the box, however they are very large, so much so I am considering returning them. It is not the diameter of the cans that bothers me, or the size of the band, it’s the width of the earpice foam. It is an inch or so thick which is great for comfort, however the band stands off the side of the head by 2 inches or more above the ear pieces. I have an average size haid and crop of hair, however they still look really oversized.

    If you want a pair of stylish headphones that look like you have just walked out the dj booth then these are great, you might just have to consider if that’s the look you are going for. The case is great as is the folding design, however they will not wrap around you head in the shape pictured above, unless you are Homer Simpson.

  12. Jim

    After the initial shockof just how large found my nomadics, I have tried them out a few times and love them.

    The dimensions are pretty over sized but if you don’t mind the odd sideways glance on the train or strolling through town then I definitley reccomend them. The fold away design and carry case make them perfect for the long train, plane or automobile journey and will prove an invaluable and stylish holiday companion.

    I would say they are not as loud as I thought they might be, but the sound quality is brilliant. I listen to mostly hip/hop and drum and bass but also have rock and classical on my ipod which also sound crystal clear.

    Regarding the length of the cable, it is definitly not 3 metres. This may relate to the plug size which is 3.5 ml and will fit all ipods (or walkmans, minidiscs etc). It’s an average length and is detachable at both ends which is versatile and will also mean it could be replaceable (if Nixon sold the cable seperately).

    If you are thinking about buying a pair and are prepared for the size, then I would say they are a ‘must have’ whether you collect Nixon accessories or just want a great pair of headphones

  13. G

    Dont waste your time here ….
    Go buy them !! Really impressed !

  14. Gabe

    I recently bought a pair of the Nomadic’s in gunmetal, and have been using them everyday for two weeks.

    Nixon had the headphones designed by Fuseproject here in San Francisco, which is why they looking f–ing rad. I tried on the MasterBlasters and they are ridiculously huge, so I opted for the Nomadics. They still are large for what they are, and the memory foam isn’t as soft as you think. It’s kind of a rough foam, nothing like a soft memory foam pillow. They do squeeze into your head, so you will notice discomfort about after and hr on your ears. As thin as the Nomadics look, the arc is like a huge halo over your head, so can’t reallly snowboard with them on.

    Sound was a disappointment as well. The sound seems like its muffled through, and only certain songs sound nice. Go to the Apple store and try those BEAT’s by Dre headphones to have something to compare to. Those headphones are insanely clear, as if someone was singing in your ear. They’re not cheap though, and not as stylish as the Nixon’s. I will keep these headphones since I can’t return them anymore, but try them out for yourself if you have the chance. They just look cool, that’s about it.

  15. Thanks, also to the people commenting. Been thinking about buying the Master Blaster, and since you guys seem happy with it, they can’t be bad. And they look insane aswell.
    Buying ’em.
    Peace

  16. So, quick story: was DJing for my sister’s wedding reception and setting up when someone knocked my backpack off the table and gave me a heart attack. Quickly checked my laptop, external HDD and USB decks and all was gravy until I reached in to pull out my headphones and they had snapped in half from taking the brunt of the fall. The next day I started my search for new headphones…

    Walking into Marshall’s I didn’t expect to find anything useful, but I happened to spot a box with lime green headphones on it. Price: $39.99. I bought them and took them home to try them out since I’d already gone through 4 other sets and returned them all. At this point, I’m pretty happy with them.

    Nice balance of sound, although the low end could have a little more oomph – but I attribute that to my being a DJ and having become accustomed to bass-heavy headphones. They feel solidly built – the travel case is very welcome, too – and I like the memory foam, which could be a touch softer but is still more comfortable than any other earpieces I’ve had pressing against my head. Tonight will be the real test as I take them with me to a gig…we’ll see how they sound amidst all the other noise. *fingers crossed*

  17. Tina

    Hey just wondering if this has happened to you guys but do fin that when you plug in your headphones you have to hold the mic button for it to sound clear? Is this just me or is this the way their supposed to be because I’m now considering returning them unless theres a way they can be fixed. Thnx -Tina

    • Jesse

      I have the issue with mine also. I just bought the nomadic with mic tonight and found I have to hold the mic button to hear them in stereo. Anyone else have this issue?

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