One good thing I can say about the Klipsch Reference Over-Ear is due to its neutral-warm tuning, you’ll not have a hard time finding a suitable source. The fact ROE is also super easy to drive helps matters all the more. The Opus #1, Opus #2, Shanling M2s, Shanling M3s, Cayin i5, Cayin N3, and of course my desktop DAC&Amp, the Audio-GD NFB-28. Klipsch sounded as good as you can expect from all of them. No pairing was too warm, or too bright. ROE’s tuning kept everything in good balance.
This was a negative review. I’ll admit that. I was as fair as I could manage, but I can’t deny, the Klipsch Reference Over-Ear set my teeth on edge. Not with the traditional fatiguing nature of bright treble, but with nothing more complicated than bad sound. With vocals that sounded as if they’re distorting out of an under-powered megaphone, funneled down a cardboard tube. Just… gross.
Okay. That might be an exaggeration. But not much of one! I feel I’ve captured the spirit of these headphones well enough. Thank God I have such positive things to say about the X12 Neckband. There’s at least some hope Klipsch will speak to me again.