As circumaural DJ headphones, the new Ultrasone Signature Pulse delivers an impressive sound with high transparency. And that’s not least because the manufacturer has come up with a third edition of its well-known S-Logic technology.
Reference sound “Made in Germany” – the company based in Wielenbach, Bavaria, has been following this guiding principle for years and always tries to raise the bar a little higher. This has recently happened with the latest edition of the Signature series, whose three models are all equipped with the new S-Logic 3 technology (go to the manufacturer’s website). The most affordable of this trio, the Ultrasone Signature Pulse, particularly aims to impress DJs.
Design and optics
With the bracket design of the Signature Pulse, Ultrasone is not reinventing the wheel. After all, in terms of shape, functionality and material, it hardly differs from the popular Ultrasone DJ1.
The extremely firmly padded headband, covered in black vegan leather, takes up two-thirds of the frame and is bordered by two cuffs with S-Logic 3 emblems. The extendable extensions snap into place in eleven stages. A combination joint serves as the link between them and the capsule suspension. The capsules fold into the bracket in a protective and space-saving way and can also be turned outwards by 90 degrees. The suspension, which can be rotated by 180 degrees, ensures that the slightly oval, circumaural capsules are optimally aligned with your ears.
Looks-wise, these headphones are particularly striking due to the large copper-coloured badges with the company logo and model designation. Otherwise, these headphones keep a low profile with their black and dark grey mix.
Comfort and functionality
The Ultrasone Signature Pulse weigh approx. 319 grams without the cable. In this league, the headphones could be lighter; after all, their size does not make them the largest DJ headphones on the market. Although the headband and the replaceable earpads are neatly lined with foam and covered with robust imitation leather, in my opinion, they could cushion the powerful tension of the headband a little more. However, the noticeable pressure lends security, especially during violent head movements, which is what is required of DJ headphones. Thanks to the extendable struts and the joints, the headphones also adapt well to head size, ear position and listening habits. As DJ headphones, Ultrasone also equip the Signature Pulse with a swivel joint, but this is not suitable for one-sided monitoring. The idea here is simply to put the capsule behind your ear. Thanks to the taut headband, the headphones hold on in this slightly twisted position.
The oval, circumaural capsules offer sufficient space even for larger-than-average ears.
A jewel as expensive as the Signature Pulse naturally demands appropriate protection, which the included case provides. However, it is too bulky for on-the-go use, so I would have prefered an additional, smaller case.
That this is a very high-quality product is also demonstrated by the packaging, a very classy black box with partial lacquering and relief, with the hard case embedded in it. The case, which is covered in black imitation leather, is adorned with a copper plaque that is also mounted on the headphones, as well as a Signature badge and embossed logo. Inside, the Ultrasone Signature Pulse are prominently placed, along with a coiled cable with a 6.3 mm jack plug and a straight cable with a 3.5 mm jack connection. These can be optionally plugged into the small mini-jack socket with a bayonet catch on the left capsule.
The Pulse are the only ones in the new Signature series to benefit from 50-millimetre Mylar drivers, which are primarily responsible for the low-frequency bass up to 5 hertz. But the treble also shines at 32,000 hertz. With 97.91decibels of sound pressure level and a low 33.6 ohms of impedance, they should deliver a punchy sound even with lower-power headphone amplifiers.
The sound of the Ultrasone Signature Pulse
With the new edition of the Signature series, Ultrasone once again revised its S-Logic technology, which incorporates the shape of the capsule into the sound image with a supposedly even better fine-tuning.
Generally, the Signature Pulse provide a very homogeneous and tidy sound that delivers the bass that DJs love. It is not overdone, yet remains rich and very well emphasised, so that the drivers serve it up crisp and to the point.
Bass-dominated intros like in the very funky Daft Punk “Lose Yourself to Dance” or Massive Attack’s “Protection” are played by these drivers with bravura and without flinching. The vocals reveal the headphone’s interpretation of treble, well regulated and not overdone so that even S-sounds are very pleasing to the ear. The mids are also persistently harmonious to the overall context, meaning melody-bearing instruments like guitars or keyboards receive their well-deserved attention.
The acoustics of these headphones, however, also benefit from S-Logic 3, and the drivers do not blow the sound directly into the ear, but instead gain spatiality through indirect sound reinforcement and protect the hearing to a degree. Because of the already good shielding provided by the capsules, it is not necessary to have them at full blast, but they could certainly deliver this with their sound pressure level and impedance.
Nevertheless, the final question is, to what extent it should be worth it for a DJ to invest in this exclusive technology. After all, in the heat of a “DJ battle”, DJ headphones are subject to a tough time, and it would be a pity to subject these jewel-like headphones to such a battering. For this reason, these headphones are recommended as an alternative audiophile device for private listening sessions.
With the Pulse, Ultrasone’s new Signature series primarily appeals to DJs who attach great importance to juicy bass, crystal-clear highs and powerful levels. The Ultrasone Signature Pulse excels in all these disciplines, with its homogeneous and high-resolution sound characteristics being particularly noteworthy. Thanks to the built-in S-Logic 3 technology, these headphones are superior to other headphones in terms of their spatial imaging and simultaneous protection of the ear. Unfortunately, both the headband and the capsules press noticeably, even though the padding is extremely generous. But that also gives a sense of security that you’d expect from DJ headphones. 549 euros may not be a bargain, but it should be well worth it if cheaper models do not meet your sonic demands.
- Ear couplingOver-ear
- Transducer principledynamic
- Frequency response (headphones)5 - 32.000 Hz
- Impedance33,6 ohms
- Sound pressure level (SPL)97,91 dB
- Pressure averaged from big and small head800 g
- Weight with cable346 g
- Weight without cable319 g
- Cable length120 cm
What's in the box
- 3 m coiled cable
- 1,2 m connection cable
- Hard Case