Klipsch Status review

Klipsch’s Status offer superb style, roughneck durability, and a smooth, well-balanced sound signature that we’d be happy to take with us on our next journey abroad, or just down the street.
Klipsch’s Status offer superb style, roughneck durability, and a smooth, well-balanced sound signature that we’d be happy to take with us on our next journey abroad, or just down the street.
Klipsch’s Status offer superb style, roughneck durability, and a smooth, well-balanced sound signature that we’d be happy to take with us on our next journey abroad, or just down the street.

Highs

  • Rich, well-balanced sound
  • Powerful low end
  • Accurate center image
  • Cool, ergonomic styling
  • Tough as nails exterior

Lows

  • A little tight on the ears
  • Could offer more instrumental definition and resonance

Klipsch’s latest offering to the headphone game, the Status, is a step into a new direction for the storied audio company. A gorgeous blend of glitz and grit, the $250 Status offer a near indestructible Grilamid TR shell fashioned into an elegant, collapsible frame, and capped with tight-seal memory foam ear cups. We took a quick look at the Status when they were first unveiled by Klipsch last month, and now we’re back for a hands-on exploration to see how much of that famous Klipsch sound was bundled into these sleek, travel-friendly cans.

Hands on video

Out of the box

Getting to know the Status up close is something of a microcosm of Klipsch’s undeterred attention to detail. The ‘phones come in a compact, two-piece box with a glossy, criss-crossed design across the exterior. Opening the box revealed a collection of accessories sunken in foam, with a black half moon case at the center. We unzipped the case to find the Status folded up in a familiar travel design, with what looked like a plain white layer of plastic armor across the exterior. As we unfolded the headphones and raised them into the light, however, a glittering layer beneath the Grilamid sparkled in a rainbow of colors like fresh snow in the morning sun.

…the design does a nice job of pushing the gaudy boundary without quite crossing it.

Perusing the rest of the design revealed an inner layer of solid plastic, smooth leather pads on the ear cups, and a rubberized skin along the underside of the headband. The arms that hold the ear cups are kicked back at a slight angle, each of them rattling on a 360-degree adjustable axis.

Accessories inside the box included two tangle-resistant cables covered in soft nylon – one of which offered an iOS control microphone – along with gold plated ¼-inch and airline adapters, a small black case, and some marketing material and instructions.

Features and design

With a name like Status, you know you’re not getting a boring pair of studio headphones, but the design does a nice job of pushing the gaudy boundary without quite crossing it. While the silver accents, glossy armor, and new-age shape are a little flamboyant for our taste, the subdued sparkle only shows its face in the brightest light, and the black version are much more conservative than our eggshell-white test model.

The ‘phones are a little big, and at over 300 grams, fairly heavy as well. But the memory foam padding on the band is just enough to lighten the load up top, and the rotating pads adjust well to almost any head size. Collapsing the ear cups reveals thick cut slabs of metal extending from the collapsing hinges, upon which the ear cups slide easily to adjust for size. The leather-cloaked ear pads are shaped into slim rings of memory foam as well, and encircle 40mm dynamic drivers that claim an impressive frequency range of 16Hz-23kHz.

On the left ear cup is an input to connect one of the two provided removable cables. Both cloth cables are woven with strands of silver, and terminate with solid metal capsules bearing gold plated jacks. The iOS cable bears a slim plastic mic-piece with three beaded silver keys in the standard arrangement. We have to say, of all the cables we’ve gotten our hands on, we like the cloth style that the Status utilizes best. The material feels comfortable in your hands, the cable is easy to manipulate, and holds true to its tangle-free claim.

Comfort

The Status’ supple leather pads feel extremely comfy against the ears, and the ergonomic ear cup axes allow for an extremely tight seal. In fact the seal was a bit too tight for our taste, and the force with which the cups clamped down took some getting used to. However, that tight seal paid off in sonic benefits that made it worth a bit of discomfort.

Audio performance

While the Status may offer a touch less detail than some over-ears we’ve test driven, these hard shell beauties delivered some serious sonic goodness. The cans poured out a sound signature that was clear, balanced, and expertly spread out. The tight seal of the ear cups provided a rich dimension of space in which the music could expand, served up with powerful bass, and a smooth and defined midrange.

Klipsch’s website loudly spells out the words “NO DISTORTION” in aggressive capital letters, and our ears agreed wholeheartedly.

It took a little while for the Status to open up, sounding a shade bland before they were broken in. But once they were, they began to reveal a keen touch to electronic tracks, and a warm blush to acoustic and instrumental tunes. Vocals were extremely clear, coming from dead center, and while we wished for a little more precision there, we were surprised at how well the ‘phones revealed diction, allowing us to make-out even Thom Yorke’s muddled ramblings in songs like “A Punchup at a Wedding” from Hail to the Thief.

Some of our favorite moments came when we turned to some older Muse albums, in which the huge dynamic assault of songs like “Resistance”, and “SuperMassive Black Hole” were handled with an excellent blend of gravitas and delicacy. The hype on Klipsch’s website loudly spells out the words “NO DISTORTION” in aggressive capital letters, and our ears agreed wholeheartedly. Even at the most raucous moments, the Status held all sounds in check, while displaying excellent dynamic balance. Aside from that, the instruments just sounded good, with thick hits from the low percussion, well carved fuzz tones from guitars and bass, and clear ringing piano lines fluttering along the top.

Klipsch Status headphones earcups full

Our only quibbles with the ‘phones were subtle, such as a bit less resonance in a tom drum here, or a quick fade in vocal reverb there. We felt like our recent stint with the KEF M500 offered a bit more color and definition in some of those moments, such as the extremely detailed drum hits in the left channel of Dave Matthews’ “Pay For What You Get.” Mostly, though, the Status impressed, providing great sound that’s also extremely easy to take along with you. 

Conclusion

Klipsch’s Status offer superb style, roughneck durability, and a smooth, well-balanced sound signature that we’d be happy to take with us on our next journey abroad, or just down the street. The tight fit takes some getting used to, but for those eyeing a durable headset that looks and sounds great, the Status are a clear contender.

Highs

  • Rich, well-balanced sound
  • Powerful low end
  • Accurate center image
  • Cool, ergonomic styling
  • Tough as nails exterior

Lows

  • A little tight on the ears
  • Could offer more instrumental definition and resonance
Product Review

Dolby makes the most comfortable headphones ever, and that's only the start

Dolby has taken its first step into product design with the new Dolby Dimension wireless headphones. Offering tons of features, supreme comfort, and a shocking price tag, the Dimension are a unique new take on audio in the home, and out.
Smart Home

How to stream music from Google Home to Bluetooth speakers or headphones

Want to stream music on Google Home, but listen to it through a different speaker or a pair of headphones? Here's how to play streaming music on Google Home through Bluetooth headphones or a Bluetooth speaker.
Home Theater

Throw away those EarPods -- we dug up the best headphones in every style

Trolling the internet for hours to find headphones is no way to live. Instead, leverage our expertise and experience to find the best headphones for you. Here are our 10 favorites.
Home Theater

Get the most boom for your buck with the best headphones under $100

Everybody wants a bargain, and this list has a bunch. For those looking for a solid set of headphones without spending a big stack of cash, this list is is your starting point. Check out our picks for the best headphones under $100.
Home Theater

How to make your TV squeaky clean for not much green

Not sure how to clean the LCD, OLED, or plasma display that's the cornerstone of your living room? You don't need to buy expensive cleaning solutions to clean your TV -- we'll teach you how to do it with simple household items.
Home Theater

If you've got questions about Ultra HD Blu-ray, we've got answers

Ultra HD Blu-ray discs and players are a killer way to beef up your home theater. Here's everything you need to know about one of the most significant advances to hit home entertainment in years.
Product Review

These AirPod look-alikes are better in every way but one

With silicone eartips, water resistance, and a more palatable price tag, Mobvoi’s Ticpods Free are impressive AirPod doppelgangers. But for all the great things they have going for them, there’s one flaw holding them back.
Deals

All the Best Target Black Friday deals for 2018

The mega-retailer opens its doors to the most competitive shoppers at 6 p.m. on Thursday, November 22, and signs indicate that the retailer means business this year. We've sifted through all of the deals, from consumer electronics to small…
Deals

The Best Black Friday Deals from Best Buy in 2018

We've been hard at work assembling all the best Black Friday deals Best Buy offers in 2018 and putting them in one place to save you time and money this holiday season. From laptops to TVs, game consoles to smart speakers and much more…
Home Theater

From game consoles to 4K UHD spinners, these are the best Blu-ray players

Streaming may be popular, but the disc isn't dead yet. To get the very best picture and sound quality from your system, you need to be watching Blu-ray or 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, and these are the best Blu-ray players you can buy.
Home Theater

What’s new on Amazon Prime Video (December 2018)

Amazon Prime Video adds new titles each month that are available for free to all Prime members. Check out our list to find all the content hitting Amazon Prime Video in November and December 2018, from new original series to classic films.
Product Review

Hisense’s new H8E 4K TV serves up a pretty picture at a very nice price

Budget TVs continue to get more attractive and that includes the latest from Chinese TV maker Hisense. The company’s new H8E, which offers 4K resolution, HDR, and a slick design for well under $500.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in November, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to ‘Dracula’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.