Hifiman Sundara is a 499$ planar magnetic headphone considered as one of the best price to performance ratio in the headphone market.
The Sundara comes in a medium size box. From the graphics perspective, it looks good, but it’s quality falls a bit short.
Inside, you’ll find some paperwork, a detachable, 1,4m cable terminated in 3,5mm jack and the headphones themselves.
The cable is rather underwhelming. It is 1,4m long, terminated in 3,5mm jack. It has a rubbery finish which is quite pleasant to the touch, but it’s not very flexible. The cable provided with Sendy Audio Aiva beats it by miles.
Sundara is not really a great built pair of headphones. It feels a bit cheap in the hands, and it has a design flaw – the headband adjustment work’s way too stiff and it scratches the metal of the earcups wings.
As stated previously, the build quality is far from being impressive, but Sundara is one of the lightest planar magnetic headphones on the market. Thanks to that, it’s a very comfortable pair of cans and one can use them for a couple of hours with ease.
The Sundara is a very neutral, transparent and reveiling sounding headphone. For the price it offers top-class resolution, detail and a quite flat frequency response.
The bass is well articulated, it goes quite deep and has a good texture. However, it lacks slam and impact of some competitors like Sendy Audio Aiva, Meze 99 Classics or the Brainwavz Alara, having the best resolution of the bunch though.
The midrange is very flat and neutral, focusing on the detail retrieval, rather than creating musical and engaging sound. It lacks the warmth, color and body in male-vocal tracks, making it sound quite uninvolving.
Treble is a bit bright with an excellent detail and crispiness, making it by far the most stand-out frequency of the Sundara. While being well pronounced, it isn’t prone to sibilance, being on the edge of being too crispy yet never feels sharp or overpowered.
The best part of the Sundara is it’s soundstage creating capability. It’s wide, deep and excruciatingly (for it’s price) accurate. Imaging is excellent, as is the sense of airiness and separation. Class leading, no doubts about it.
The Sundara is a very polarizing product. While being underwhelmingly built and falling short in terms of looks and overall feel, it delivers a superbly competitive sound quality. This fact in itself has to earn our recommendation, as you’d have a problem finding a better sounding pair of headphones in the 500$ price market.