The Panasonic RP-HC56 are above-average noise cancelling earbuds. Their noise isolation is excellent and the audio profile is relatively balanced and woks well for most music genres. Unfortunately, they distort audio easily at higher volumes and the in-ear fit might not be the most comfortable.
- Great noise isolation performance.
- Good audio reproduction.
- Uncomfortable "in ear" fit.
- High distortion.
- Thin cabling with no adequate audio controls.
The RP-HC56 are stylish-looking earbuds. The well-designed pen shaped control module looks good and is easily portable. The earbuds are also stylish but unfortunately do nothing out of the ordinary to provide a stable fit or additional comfort. The control module also lacks decent control options apart from the volume slider, which is disappointing.
Comfort is average for the RP-HC56. The ear buds are angled but the in-ear design offers nothing out of the ordinary. They're also not as comfortable if you can't find the right fit.
These headphones are moderately stable because of their lightweight design, and tips that fit deeply into the ear canal, which is hard to dislodge. However, they don't offer any special stability tips to prevent them from falling out during physical exercises. The long cable and control module are also prone to get tangled or hooked on something, Which can yank the headphones of you ears.
The RP-HC56 are portable headphones. They don't take too much space and will comfortably fit into your pockets, purse or bag. The control module makes them a little larger than basic in-ear headphones, but it's a long pen-like tube that doesn't add too much additional bulk to the design.
Build quality is quite decent. The stylishly designed control module is thin, portable and feels solid. The battery compartment is well placed and easy to use. The earbuds are not too large and are angled to fit better within the ears. The cable is, however, pretty thin and the length of the control module makes it susceptible to bending if put in a tight pockets.
Audio reproduction for the RP-HC56 is good but flawed. The audio profile is decently balanced and works with most music genres. Unfortunately, a dip in the mid-to-high range and hyped treble makes them sound a little weak with vocals and instruments and too sharp with certain tones. This will cause discomfort for listeners who are sensitive to high frequencies. Distortion is also a concern at moderate and higher volumes, which lessens the overall audio reproduction.
Very good performance. The bass is very extended, if a little hyped. However, unlike most other headphones, the over-emphasis is on low bass, which is less noticeable than if the high-bass had been over-emphasized.
Good performance. The low-mid range is mostly neutral, but the bump at around 600Hz could add a little bit of a honky quality to the sound. The dip in the high mids could affect the clarity and balance of the vocals and lead instruments.
Poor performance. The entire low-treble is underemphasized by about 7dB, significantly affecting the clarity, presence and intelligibility of vocals and lead instruments. The overly hyped treble and high-treble makes these headphones especially sibilant, resulting in piercing and painful treble.
Very odd distortion performance. They do better than average up to 2KHz at both 90 and 100 dB SPL. However, starting at 2KHz, there is a dramatic rise in distortion, peaking at around 20% at 5KHz. We achieved similar results with repeated testing.
Stellar isolation performance from the RP-HC56. The in-ear earbuds provide a great seal as long as they are able to fit comfortably within the ear canal. The active noise cancellation is also top-notch and when combined with the passive in-ear isolation blocks an outstanding amount of ambient noise. The RP-HC56 will not disappoint in the isolation department and would be ideal for use in noisy environments.
One of the best performers for isolation. Isolation starts at 20Hz with more than 10dB of reduction which is great for this range. It passes over the -20dB mark at 100Hz and closes in on -45dB at 15KHz. The weak spot, seemingly typical of in-ear headphones, is the mid-range, where these headphones still achieve a minimum of 11dB of reduction. Passive isolation on these headphones is very good too, outperforming some other headphones with their noise-cancelling engaged. Users should be aware though, with ANC On, touching the headphones in certain areas while trying to push them in the ears could make the headphones produce a high-pitched tone.
Very good leakage performance, typical of in-ear headphones. The profile is very narrow-band too, limited to 3KHz-7Khz.
The Panasonic RP-HC 56 are not the most versatile headphones. They only have noise canceling as an active feature. Hence no wireless or app score. Luckily due to their relatively small size and limited active components, their battery life last quite long at more than 79 hours for a single AAA cell.
The RP-HC56-K have a surprisingly long battery life that will last well over a weekend's worth of continuous play time. So they will be great headphones to take on a camping or road trip where you don't have access to stores to purchase another AAA. Unfortunately, they don't have any battery saving features. They also can't be used passively when the batteries are dead unlike other models in the RP series.
No compatible app.
In the box
- Panasonic RP-HC56-K Headphones
- Airline adapter
- Extra Earbud tips (x2 sizes)
- AAA Battery
- Carrying Pouch