Phiaton MS 400 Moderna Series Premium Headphones
by Mike Richard | January, 2013
We review a ton of headphones here at Vagabondish and frankly every pair starts to look a little too much like the one before it. Which is why we love how much Phiaton’s new flagship MS 400 Moderna Series Premium Headphones stand out.
In Phiaton’s own words, the key to the MS 400s is the carbon fiber construction:
Designed to tease out subtle sonic nuances, the Phiaton MS 400 is constructed with a carbon fiber enclosure. Carbon fiber combines the properties of extreme strength and remarkably light weight, making it the ideal material for the MS 400′s design. This light, durable quality and modern aesthetic appeal explain why carbon fiber can be found in luxury automobiles, watches and other high-end products. Phiaton takes the concept a step further by encasing the carbon in a high-polymer enclosure. This advanced construction also provides an optimized airflow for the 40mm electrostatic drivers. Taken together, these qualities give the listener better resonance, rich bass, full-bodied midrange, and sparkling high notes.
We’ve never tested a pair of headphones that bragged about “teasing out” anything. Sexy. Other key features include:
- Optimized airflow delivers concert hall sound quality
- Closed-ear design promotes greater noise reduction
- Flexible ‘fold and go’ design comes with compact carrying case for easy travel
- 3.5mm standard gold plated & 6.3mm stereo adaptor plug
The Traveler’s Take
Upfront, we love the sophisticated and understated design of the MS 400s, particularly in red. The carbon fiber accents on the exterior add a nice modern touch as well.
Although we’ve never claimed to be audio experts, we found the audio to be exactly as advertised: “deep rich bass, a full-bodied midrange, and sparkling high notes.” Our range of Underworld MP3s sounded full and heavy with audio that envelopes not just the ears, but the entire head. While they’re not billed as “noise-isolating” headphones, they damn near feel like it.
Travelers will dig the included, rigid, fold-and-go carrying case and the fact that, despite looking a bit on the heavy side, they weigh in at just 6.5 ounces. For premium headphones, that puts the MS 400s squarely in the featherweight category. They also feature detachable earpads that can be replaced in the event they are lost or damaged.
Aside from the awesome design, the other thing that stands out is the price. If you’re not David Guetta or a hardcore audiophile, dropping $200 is probably a bit steep for your budget. But if you’re shopping headphones that run north of $100, you’re probably not too concerned with price in the first place.
Pricing & Availability
Available now in black/red or black/black from a variety of retailers including Amazon for around $200 (USD).
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Disclosure: Vagabondish was provided one complimentary pair of Phiaton MS 400 Moderna Series headphones in advance of this review.
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About the Author
Vagabondish founding editor, Mike Richard, is a Rhode Island native, professional web designer and travel junkie with an unhealthy addiction to backpacking, hiking and seeing the world. He enjoys knit hats, small, declarative sentences and speaking in the third person. His professional credits include "Woman's World magazine contributor" and having once been interviewed by Tyra Banks (seriously).