Coby CV163 Review

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Coby CV163
Brief: Rather odd-looking low-budget entry from Coby that fails to compete with the similarly-priced CV185 model on any level

MSRP: $10.95 (discontinued)
Current Price: $11 from amazon.com

 

Build Quality (4.5/10): The headband of the CV163 is made out of a cheap-feeling black plastic; the glossy white cups look and feel much nicer. The only moving part aside from the tilting cups is the single hinge in the center of the headband. The headband also retracts very, very far. As a result, they really don’t take up too much space when folded despite not being truly collapsible and can still accommodate truly gigantic heads when fully extended. The single-sided cable is not properly relieved at the exit point but has a sturdy-feeling L-plug at the other end. A volume pot is present about halfway down the cord.

Comfort (7/10): Probably the best aspect of the headphones, the fit of the CV163 is quite decent due to them being very light and having low clamping force. The oval-shaped cups are supraaural and seal well due to the good range of motion and large amount of flex in the headband. They never feel particularly secure but I usually manage to forget that I’m wearing them after a while.

Isolation (5/10): Relatively low due to the negligible clamping force and vented cups.

Sound (2.25/10): After the excellent CV185, I expected the larger and more serious-looking CV163 to sound at least half decent for the asking price. Sadly, however, the CV163 deserves no better than the $9 I paid for them. The bass is big and bloated – impactful, but quite muddy and lacking resolution. Extension is decent but the deep bass is not informative. The bass bloat also affects the midrange, which is overpowered and somewhat muffled as a result. The treble is smooth and relatively inoffensive but rolls off early and lacks articulation. In fact, detail and clarity are sub-par across the range. The best thing I can say about the CV163 is that the tonal character is quite realistic and they don’t sound too congested when it comes to positioning.

Value (3.5/10): Though quite comfortable and seemingly designed to accommodate every possible hat size, the Coby CV163 is not a brilliant performer in any way. It really isn’t that difficult to find a better headphone for ~$10 – the JVC Flats, Kanen KM-95, and even Coby’s own CV185 all make for a more satisfying listening experience than the bulky and somewhat unsightly CV163. My verdict: avoid.

Manufacturer Specs:
Frequency Response: 20 – 20,000 Hz
Impedance: 32 Ω
Sensitivity: 91 dB SPL/1mW
Cord: 3.94ft (1.2m), single-sided w/in-line volume control; Angled Plug
Space-Saving Mechanism: Headband hinge


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About Author

Living in the fast-paced city of Los Angeles, ljokerl has been using portable audio gear to deal with lengthy commutes for the better part of a decade. He spends much of his time listening to music and occasionally writes portable audio reviews across several enthusiast sites, focusing mostly on in-ear earphones.

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