When it comes to DJ equipment, there are few things more important than finding the right pair of headphones. A DJ’s headphones can be either their best friend or their worst enemy, a faithful companion that travels the world by their side, or a nuisance that fall apart at exactly the wrong moment — or, worse still, make monitoring at a big gig a complete nightmare.
So when selecting a new pair of headphones, it makes sense to choose wisely and invest in a pair of headphones that sound great, will handle a decent volume level without distorting, and will last the distance, as well as being comfortable enough for long mixing sessions behind the decks.
Fortunately for DJs, there have never been more options to choose from, with many new brands emerging in recent years offering cutting-edge designs as well as audio technology. At the forefront of this new skool contingent is V-MODA who have gained quite a reputation for themselves amongst DJs, so their newest flagship headphones the Crossfade M-100 are sure to gain the attention of curious DJs everywhere.
V-MODA cut themselves a niche in the headphone market by introducing their concept of fashion headphones way back in 2004, releasing headphones that not only sounded fantastic but also looked great. Time has proven that their headphones also last the distance, even when subjected to the rigours of life on the road with a DJ.
The Crossfade M-100 headphones carry on this tradition of looking stylish, and are very similar in appearance to V-MODA’s Crossfade LP2 headphones which have won deserving praise from many DJs in recent times. V-MODA have made the Crossfade M-100 available in three colours — Matt Black, Shadow and White-Silver — with further colour combinations made possible thanks to the availability of different coloured cables, ear cushions and shields with the option of having custom graphics engraved on the shields.
Another great improvement over the Crossfade LP2 headphones is the brand-new CliqFold Hinges which allow the Crossfade M-100 to be folded up into the smallest size possible ready to be thrown into a bag. When it comes to build quality and attention to detail there are few companies that can rival V-MODA, and their Crossfade M-100 headphones carry on this tradition with aplomb. These headphones are almost entirely made of steel and aircraft grade metals that have been tested to military specifications, as have the Kevlar reinforced cable and plug bends. Also supplied is an Exoskeleton case for carrying the headphones, which takes up no more room than the unprotected headphones do and also includes two V-Strap pouches for carrying the M-100’s cables — along with room for USB sticks and earplugs.
Another handy feature to be found on the Exoskeleton case is a carabineer safety clip to allow the headphones to be attached to the outside of a bag for easy access in yet another example of V-MODA’s obsessive attention to detail. As far as sound quality is concerned, the Crossfade M-100s are fantastic. The work V-MODA have put into redesigning the 50mm dual diaphragm drivers has clearly paid off. The sound reproduction is loud and very clear, with a huge bass response that will more than satisfy bass junkies with the ability to withstand serious volume levels without distortion — which make them perfect for DJs. In addition to a good bass response, the mid-range frequencies are represented smoothly and the high frequencies are clear and crisp.
While the sound reproduction is excellent, the Crossfade M-100 headphones seem to be orientated towards an audiophile and DJ market and so might not be the best choice for use in the studio. These headphones are extremely comfortable and can be worn for the longest of mixing sessions without discomfort, thanks to the generously-padded headband and ear cushions. Sound leakage is also minimal thanks to V-MODA’s V-PORT airports, which allows air to circulate without leaking sound. Sound isolation is also very good: combined with the comfort levels, this makes them ideal headphones to use while travelling.
Another outstanding feature is the fact that one of the two supplied headphone cables allows another person to plug in their headphones to share music — or even a film — when on a plane, train or automobile travelling to the next gig. As far as premium level headphones are concerned, it is hard to think of a set of cans to recommend over the V-MODA Crossfade M-100s. These headphones are beautifully designed, manufactured to the highest standards, and sound absolutely stunning. Given the exceedingly high standards of craftsmanship, an included travel case and replaceable cables, the Crossfade M-100s are likely to give a huge amount of professional DJs many years of service and are set to become a common sight in DJ booths around the globe.
|Ease of use||9.0|
|Value for money||9.0|
Customisable guards, Kevlar cables with the ability to share audio, military spec components and sound reproduction to die for.
The sound reproduction of these headphones is geared towards DJs and audiophiles, so they might not make the best studio headphones.
V-MODA continue their tradition of making stylish-looking headphones that sound every bit as good as they look, and incorporate some very attractive features.