I've tested this system extensively before writing this review. Let's answer the most asked question first, can this replace the Sony MDR-HW700DS? The answer for me is YES. I've tried the Sony MDR-HW700DS for a few weeks as well, and unfortunately my house has very crowded wireless networks so the Sony pair's signal drops every few minutes and I had to give them up. For the surround sound aspect, I do feel that the JVC Exofield has a wider sound stage and does give you a better immersive experience than the Sony pair. Regarding the volume and sound quality, I would give the Sony pair a slight advantage there. Regarding upmixing from stereo or 5.1 to atmos, I believe it depends on the content that you're watching. I've recently watched the movie Outpost, which was only DTS 5.1, and in the last scenes, I did feel the sound effects of raining bullets coming from above and around; I was very impressed. For the dialog echoing issue, JVC may have fixed it with the latest software update. The last question I may help to answer is: does this replace a 7.1.4 speaker setup? The answer is no. However, these headphones are the only choice for me in the market now; they serve a very niche market for movie lovers who want to keep the house quiet at night when being able to watch movie with surround sound effects.
Pros: good surround effects for the right sources
Cons: slightly weak bass, and high price
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I was impressed with the Atmos playback, including the LFE effects. There is no sense of being in a virtual room, the sound basically swirls around your head. Soundtracks that contain their own room sound were impressive. I was less impressed with the upmixer from 5.1 to 7.1.4, but that's easy to turn on and off from the app. The app worked fine. I find the headphones comfortable but my ears get hot after about an hour and I need to take a break. One thing I'm not very happy with is the configuration. The instructions say to install it before the AV Receiver and use the JVC console for input switching. I wanted to use my Onkyo TX-NR656 for input switching since that's what all my remotes are programmed for, but putting the JVC between the Onkyo and the TV didn't work because the Onkyo doesn't pass through bitstream - all you get is LPCM2.0 according to the JVC app. So I put the JVC console ahead of the Onkyo. When the JVC is in auto-standby the bitstream is passed through OK. But when the JVC is on, like I wanted to use the headphones and the speakers, the JVC HDMI audio output is either 3.1 or muted, still experimenting with that. There's no IR control of the JVC input selection, so when using the receiver and I want to change the input, I have to turn it on at the console or the headphones, and then select the input with the app, console, or headphones. To get around this I'm using HDMI splitters to duplicate my sources to both the JVC console and the
Pros: App works well. Atmos is impressive.
Cons: No IR control of input selection. No bitstream passthrough when on. Can't change input in auto-standby.
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I have been looking for an accurate Dolby Surround for Headphones. This works. When played on an 11.1 or 11.2 Dolby Atmos UHD Disc with proper equipment it really shines.
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Sound is really great, but connectivity issues make this a poor choice for $1000. Should be $450-$500 max. Low rating for the system can't do what it says. Set-up: -2017 Vizio M-series 4K TV w/ Dolby Vision -Sony UBP UBP- X800 4K Blu-Ray -Apple TV 4K -Bose Cinemate Series II 1) Unable to pass 4K Dolby Vision through included Exofield receiver box via TV's ARC connection to 4K Apple TV box. -Can only pass Dolby Vision at 1080p. 2) Unable to ouput 4K video from 4K Blu-Ray through receiver box without video signal intermittently dropping every 5 to 60 seconds. 3) Dolby Atmos functionality did not work (Atmos light never went on). My 4K Blu Ray player supports Atmos and 4K Atmos Disc was tested (Cabin In The Woods). 4) Getting external speakers to work with any device passing through the receiver box could not be accomplished. Only accomplished when using optical or having 4K devices (apple tv / UHD blu ray player) still connected directly to TV and not thru receiver box. Customer Service: Upside- Crutchfield advisor helped (sending complimentary optical cord) and contacted JVC on my behalf, even though no solution achieved. Downside- never heard back from JVC nor did Crutchfield advisor respond to my detailed follow-up email and I had to call back a second time to have advisor send follow-up email. Frustrating experience.
Pros: -Top notch sound -App functionality -Sound options
Cons: -Pass through functionality does not work as advertised for Dolby Vision and 4K video. -Could not get Atmos to work. -Receiver build quality feels flimsy. -Poor user manual for understanding sound options. -Headphones not as comfortable as Bose or Sony over ear headphones I own (I have a fairly large head - 7 5/8 hat size) -Headphones charge via USB and not USB-C.
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