The Sendy Audio Peacock are high-performance, extremely musical headphones with phenomenal room projection, a high-resolution sound image and luxurious appearance. These magnetostatic, open over-ears offered a highly emotional listening experience that had us bursting with superlatives.
The Chinese manufacturer Dongguan SIVGA Electronic Technology Co. Ltd was founded in 2016 by Jian Zhou and Rongchun Pan. Since then, they have been producing high-quality magnetostatic headphones under the Sendy Audio label. Before founding the company, Jian Zhou worked in headphone development for nearly 20 years and brings experience in research, development and design as a technical engineer. So it’s hardly surprising that the company sets a high standard for manufacturing quality. Other distinguishing features include the use of high-quality materials and an exclusive design paired with audiophile sound quality. Available in black and gold, the Peacock is the top model among the manufacturer’s over-ear headphones.
The magnetostatic operating principle is based on a very thin foil that vibrates between permanent magnet rods. A wafer-thin wire is vapour-deposited onto this foil membrane in the form of a helix, through which the sound flows in the form of electricity. The wire is then attracted or repelled by the surrounding magnets according to the pulse voltages and thus sets the membrane vibrating.
Characteristics of this system are the fine resolution of the high frequencies, uncoloured music reproduction and differentiated dynamic range. To this end, the system quickly and accurately translates impulses and transients due to the low weight of the membrane.
Technology and drivers
In the Peacock, Sendy Audio uses a technique that the manufacturer calls “Quad-Former-Technology”. The layer of conductors usually found in magnetostatics is supplemented here by a second layer. Both layers are arranged on top of each other and are located on each side of the headphones. This results in four times the amount of transported current. To add to this, there is a second set of magnets, which increase the drive energy. This symmetrical design with double-sided magnets and a newly developed composite diaphragm with a diameter of 88mm enable the system to achieve an upper cut-off frequency of 40kHz. According to the manufacturer, this system provides low distortion and improved music reproduction.
These headphones arrive in a plain but sturdy cardboard box, which contains a stylish leather hard case. This transport case, specially shaped for this model, contains the headphones and a detachable two-metre connection cable made of braided 6N OCC copper. It is symmetrically designed, separate for the left and right channels, colour-matched to the headphones and conveniently flexible. It features bayonet catches with a four-pin plug on the headphone side and a five-pin 4.4 mm Pentaconn jack for device connection. Adapters for the common 6.3 mm jack format and a four-pin XLR connector are also included. All connections provide good contact reliability while maintaining high transmission quality.
The headphones themselves are tastefully designed. The open design’s ear cups are made of solid zebrawood and have a satin finish. The impeccable finish is no surprise: the exterior of the ear cups, made from a single piece of wood, is CNC-milled to millimetre precision, ensuring a vibration-free working environment for the diaphragms and coils.
The wood is curved and discreetly engraved with the name of the designer and the Quad-Former technology used, opening up to the artistically designed protective grille. The black or gold perforated grid consists of small oval recesses, which, starting from the centre, look like the feather crown of a peacock, which is probably where this model gets its name.
On either side, there are two generously sized, ergonomically shaped ear pads made of fine goatskin with a filling of memory foam, and these effortlessly adapt to any head shape. The insides of the earcups are marked in an appropriate manner with capital letters that allow the user to see which side is which.
The headband is made of leather and features intricately quilted padding. Both the headband’s edges and the frame above are stitched with fine gold thread to accentuate the tasteful design.
As well as the solid-looking wood and upholstery components, the aluminium frame seems light and delicate but sturdy. It has a swivel mechanism that allows individual adjustment to suit the shape of the wearer’s head.
This distinctive, high-quality mixture of materials, along with the texture of the wood, gives these headphones a strong sense of individuality. The overall impression is of class, style and character. For me, it called to mind an English Gentleman’s Club, with interiors made of dark wood and expensive leather. The exterior looks of the Peacock are definitely a matter of taste, but I think these headphones are simply beautiful.
At 580 grams, the Sendy Audio Peacock is not lightweight. But the generous padding all around, the headband’s smooth sliding mechanism and the sensitively responsive swivel joint ensured a good fit. As a result, these headphones were extremely comfortable to wear, and the fit was pleasantly stable; they can be worn effortlessly for several hours.
The connection sockets in the headphone cups, somewhat unusually, are routed out to the front. However, after wearing them several times, I learned to appreciate their function: This design guides the connection cable away from the shoulders, thus reducing contact noise from the cable.
A wireless MTX monitor with integrated headphone amplifier, a Cambridge Audio CXN V2, a CD player (NAD 512), a smartphone (Samsung Galaxy S7) and an iBasso DX240 Reference DAP served as playout devices for our review. Models from Stax, HiFiman Edition XS, Focal Spirit Pro and Sennheiser HD 25 MKII were used as comparison headphones. At the same time, a dedicated headphone preamplifier from Burson (Soloist 3X Grand Tourer – Model R-120X) was available to me so that a series of tests with an appropriate sound partner were possible.
With an impedance of 50 ohms and an efficiency of 103dB, the Peacock is suitable for everyday use even with the weak outputs of a Galaxy S7 smartphone. Quiet music passages can be amplified loudly enough so that the overall performance does not suffer from dwindling dynamics. This is a problem that can certainly occur with magnetostatics with a low selected impedance. The Peacock, however, coped perfectly with each of the headphone amplifiers cited above.
The Peacock delivered an excellently balanced sound image with punchy deep basses, excellent high-resolution fine detail in the mids, and precise, warm highs that were open to the top. The fast transient reproduction and the differentiated dynamics, in combination with a huge but by no means overstretched virtual stage with phenomenal room projection, led to a musical sound that overall was simply thrilling.
To begin, I played my favourite reference track, “Celestial Echo” by Boris Blank and Malia (Convergence, 2014). The piece features a wide frequency band with massive basses, differentiated mids, and finely resolving highs. Furthermore, the music contains various echo chambers with different depths. The headphones we tested impressed us with precise reproduction of the deep basses without ever sounding spongy. On the contrary, the Peacock laid down a tight but warm foundation of low frequencies.
In a direct comparison with the less expensive Hifiman Edition XS magnetostatic, the Peacock revealed more voluminous pressure coupled with clearer bass reproduction. Amazingly, there was still room for expansion in the bottom end. Malia’s voice was well balanced and free-floating in the midrange. Detached from the surrounding instruments, the reproduction was characterised by clear articulation and intimacy that, in comparison, the Hifiman Edition XS could not offer. The vocal seemed more plastic and three-dimensional.
In contrast, the production of Donald Fagen’s “Miss Marlene” (Sunken Condos, Reprise Records, 2012) came across as flat and dry as dust with the first listening impression. Thanks to the Peacock’s nuanced presentation, not only did the fine resolution of the instruments open up but so did the natural spatiality of Elliot Scheiner’s mix. Donald Fagen’s soulful voice is projected directly in front of the listener and gets right under the skin. The crisp rhythm section really makes you move your feet.
Impulsive signals were reproduced at lightning speed and dynamically differentiated so that the whole lively diversity of the musicians’ playing was felt. The spirit of the music takes hold of your whole body. The music came alive and demonstrated the masterpiece of this mix, where all the instruments fan out on the large virtual stage in front of you and present themselves as a homogeneous musical group playing together. In short, listening with the Peacock was a highly emotional event.
The Sendy Audio Peacock are headphones with a luxurious appearance in addition to first-class workmanship. The manufacturer proves that the finish is not just a means to an end but an essential element of style – after all, you eat with your eyes. On the technical side, this model impresses with a symmetrical design and high wearing comfort, despite the rather high weight.
The highlight, however, is the sound, which is beyond reproach – very balanced, fast-responding, dynamically powerful and spatial. With this outstanding result, the Peacock is a real dream for the audiophile music connoisseur. It is also quite suitable for professional use in the studio for mixing and mastering. For such outstanding performance, the price of around 1,600 euros is fully justified and receives an unqualified recommendation from us!
- Ear couplingOver-ear
- Transducer principlemagnetostatic
- Frequency response (headphones)20 - 40.000 Hz
- Impedance49,3 ohms
- Sound pressure level (SPL)97,14 dB
- Pressure averaged from big and small head865 g
- Weight with cable700 g
- Weight without cable583 g
- Cable length220 cm
What's in the box
- Cable with 4.4 mm Pentaconn plug
- Pentaconn socket to 4-pin XLR adapter
- Pentaconn socket to 6.3 mm adapter
- Fabric pouch
- Leather case