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Polk Audio UltraFocus™ 8000

Noise-canceling headphones with built-in remote and in-line microphone

18 Reviews

Item # 107UF8000

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Our take on the Polk Audio UltraFocus™ 8000

The engineers at Polk Audio know great sound. They should, they've been building high-performance home and car speakers for demanding listeners for decades. Now they've taken that experience and expertise and created a headphone designed from the ground up to match the clarity and detail of their famous speakers. The Polk UltraFocus 8000 with active noise-canceling technology reproduces your music with audiophile-grade sound quality, while isolating you from the noisy environment around you. Enjoy a private concert in peace, without distractions from the outside world.

Less noise, more music

The engineers at Polk Audio know great sound. They should, they've been building high-performance home and car speakers for demanding listeners for decades. Now they've taken that experience and expertise and created a headphone designed from the ground up to match the clarity and detail of their famous speakers. The Polk UltraFocus 8000 with active noise-canceling technology reproduces your music with audiophile-grade sound quality, while isolating you from the noisy environment around you. Enjoy a private concert in peace, without distractions from the outside world.

Switch between your calls and music with ease

The UltraFocus 8000's three-button remote and in-line microphone make it easy to answer and end calls, control the volume of your calls or music, and pause, play, or skip through your songs on your iPhone®, iPad® or iPod®. The controls are even built right into the earcup for convenient operation. For travel, the supplied airline adapter lets you easily plug in to in-flight entertainment. And a handy push-to-hear control lets you mute the audio and amplify outside sounds to carry on a conversation with those around you without removing your headphones.

Engineered for durability and comfort

Along with fantastic sound, a truly great headphone also must provide a comfortable and secure fit. The 8000's soft, generously padded earcups ensure hours of luxurious listening comfort. A lightweight carbon fiber headband insert provides added ruggedness while ensuring a snug-yet-gentle over-ear fit. And the ultra-flexible, ribbon-style cable helps avoid tangles.

From the review Polk Audio UltraFocus 8000 noise-canceling headphones: Innovative extras give these headphones an advantage

"The headphones' noise cancellation technology worked well, and the benefits of the extra processing features Polk built in were noticeable and appreciated. Whether you're flying across the country or just being a desk-jockey all day, the Polk Audio UltraFocus 8000 noise-canceling headphones can make the experience not just bearable, but enjoyable as well."

— Ralph, Crutchfield Blog and Product Review editor

Product Highlights:

  • over-the-ear design
  • closed, padded earcups with adjustable headband
  • active noise-canceling technology to reduce distracting external sounds
  • push-to-hear ambient control lets you pause the noise-canceling feature for brief conversations without removing headphones
  • built-in, three-button earcup controls and in-line microphone for hands-free use with iPod®, iPhone®, and iPad®
  • 40mm Polk Dynamic Balance® drivers for low-distortion and extended, full-range sound
  • 55" tangle-resistant oxygen-free copper headphone cable
  • carbon fiber headband provides a lightweight, secure and comfortable fit
  • frequency response: 8-28,000 Hz
  • sensitivity: 110 dB
  • impedance: 32 ohms
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
Included accessories:
    • detachable headphone cord with in-line mic and miniplug connectors
    • full-size headphone (1/4") and twin-plug airline system adapters
    • protective carrying case and shirt clip
    • two "AAA" batteries

What's in the Box:

  • Noise cancelling over-the-ear headphones
  • 55" Detachable headphone cable (with a straight 2.5mm connector on one end and a right-angle 3.5mm connector on other end)
  • 6.5" Mobile phone adapter (2.5mm-to-3.5mm)
  • 7" Skype adapter (1 female 3.5mm/2 male 3.5mm)Airplane adapter
  • External attenuator adapter
  • Clothing clip
  • Owner's Manual (En/Sp)
  • Quick Fit Guide
  • Online Product Registration

Comfortable to wear and sound great. Polk delivers!!

RS, Arizona


Polk Audio UltraFocus™ 8000 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(18 Reviews)


RS from Arizona on 6/26/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Comfortable to wear and sound great. Polk delivers!!

Pros: comfort and sound, noise canceling better than anticipate.

Cons: No passive mode but knew that going in

Excellent headphones

Garrett from Boston, MA on 6/25/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

No longer must I be subjected to the inanity of the morning commute around me. These headphones not only sound excellent but I find myself enjoying my music more. I even find myself popping them on at night to chill out to. Super comfortable and most days I don't even hear the train coming.

Pros: Great sound, comfortable.

Cons: A bit big on my already huge dome. Worth it though.

Polk Audio Ultrafocus 800

KJJ from Charlton, MA on 12/17/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I have 2 pair of Polk speakers and the headphones have the same high quality sound. The noise reduction seems to be on par with Bose that I have tried. With music playing I can't hear my wife's screeching bird so they should work well for someone who wants these for air travel.

Pros: comfortable, great sound

Cons: none

Polk UltraFocus 8000 vs PSB M4U2

Brendan from NH on 4/4/2013

I have had the privilege to try the PSB headphones, the Bose headphones, and the Polk Audio headphones. I currently own the PSB headphones and the Polk Audio headphones. My favorite of the three is certainly the PSB's. For the Polk Audio headphones since this is supposed to be a review on them I would say come in a close second behind the PSB's. Polks headphones are very comfortable, have outstanding sound quality, and were well built. My only complaint with them is their looks and the strength of the noise cancellation. After a few hours of listening to them I start to develop a headache because the music almost sounds overbearing and slightly fake. The sound quality of these to me is a mix of Bose and Beats. They are very strong on the bass and have crystal clear highs (like beats) but at the same time provide a strong mid section (like Bose). These headphones are able to reach notes in most genres which makes these headphones a great fit for many people. In my PSB headphones I found that they are perfect for me. Their sound quality is by far the best in its class of 300-400 dollar headphones. I have heard headphones several hundred dollars more and they still can compete with them. Some people say that they are heavy (although this is true) I was looking for the best sounding headphones in my price range. It is very convenient to switch between amplified mode/noise-cancellation mode to a mode where you don't need batteries for the headphones to work as well.

Pros: Polk provides superb sound quality, comfort, and adequate noise cancellation.

Cons: Are not the most attractive, some people may find the sound quality annoying after hours of use, and the noise cancellation is on at all times.


Jayjaye from San Diego, CA on 3/27/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Received my ultrafocus 8000 earlier than expected delivery date. Put the batteries and started using them right away. At first there was some kind of electronic ticking noise coming from the right earphone which disappeared after a couple of songs. The sound quality is incredible. I heard details that I didn't know existed. Bass is amazing. I have Bose and Beats, Polk Audio Ultafocus 8000 in my opinion is better than them.

Pros: Sound quality. Polk Audio shrunk down to headphone size.

Cons: Plastic trim holding the head cushion pads.

Polk Sound Quality

Gary D from Boone, NC on 3/15/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Quality sound is foremost with the UltraFocus 8000. Solid bass and clarity make all music more enjoyable. The headset is very good looking and should be cool for most. The build quality is excellant. I really like the control buttons on the side of the headset and the talk feature is great for travel. Comfort is good but may become less so if worn for a long time. Noise reduction is OK but I had hoped for better.

Pros: Sound quality Quality build On-board controls Control features Good looks

Cons: Noise reduction OK but could be better

Sound great but uncomfortable

Simple Man from Jowa on 2/25/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This review is for the Polk Audio ULTRA FOCUS 8000. Other headphones I own are the Bose QuietComfort 2 and the Sennheiser HD-558. The Bose are great for travelling and the active noise cancelling really makes a difference on a plane. The HD-558's are extremely comfortable and sound great but they don't produce any bass to speak of. I wanted a closed headphones that produced some satisfying bass so I looked for an additional pair. I didn't buy these for the noise canceling feature but thought it wouldn't hurt. They sounded great and I really liked the bass. The bass was very satisfying and didn't infringe on the mids and highs. I like my music on the loud side and when connecting directly to an iDevice or a MacBook Air I had to turn the volume up all the way most of the time. For being a portable headphone this is an issue. I found them very uncomfortable though and had to send them back. They suffer the same flaw as many others. The ear pads do not fit around the ear so they sit on the ear and smash them against my head. They also have alot of clamping pressure which multiplies the level of discomfort. I will reiterate though that the sound quality was great. If Polk was to design a true full size headphone that was comfortable to wear for hours at a time I would be very interested.

Pros: Sound great

Cons: Very uncomfortable

Exceeded my expectations!

Cliff C from Pleasanton, CA on 2/10/2013

I tried numerous NC headphones and was just not satisfied enough to keep any until I tried these. Superb comfort, look great, small enough to travel with when in the case, and sound stellar! I have had the Bose QC3 and QC15, PSB M4U 2, Monster Inspirations. I do quite a bit of flying and these headphones cancel engine noise just as good if not better than the PSB's and Monsters. The Bose cancel the engine noise a little better but nothing to write home about. The sounds is very well balanced and articulate for the type of music I listen to, mostly rock/alternative/jazz. No overwhelming bass but not lacking either. The controls on the earpiece are very usable, especially the passthrough noise feature which allows you to hear outside noise very well without taking off the headphones. I really liked the PSB's I tried but I simply couldn't get past the bulkiness and they felt like they were constantly falling off my head. They sounded great but I actually prefer the Polk's to the PSB's even in the sound department. Close call but the Polk's just sound fabulous. I am really surprised these don't get more visibility. One other thing....I was very hesitant to spend this much money on a pair of NC headphones that required batteries to output sound (no passive feature). However, I took the plunge and haven't looked back. Highly recommend giving these a try!

Pros: Comfort, Style, Usable Controls on Headset, Superb Sound!

Cons: No passive mode (even though I would rarely use it anyway)

Excellent Headphones

JohnM from Woodbury, MN on 1/1/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

As others have stated, these headphones have excellent sound quality, and they are very comfortable. The noise reduction is decent, and I think they are comparable to my Bose QC15s. I highly recommend these headphones.

Pros: Sound quality, comfort

Cons: none

Awesome, hardly noise canceling

John W from Bozeman, MT on 9/6/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

They do have some level of Noise Cancelation with a static hum when no music is played. In comparison to my high-end headphones, they don't noise cancel anything. But wait a sec, what happens if you run the Inception soundtrack through them? HOLY COW, I cannot believe headphones have drivers that throw like that! Once you are tuned into the most beautiful soundstage you have ever put onto your ears, I can guarantee you do not pickup on the outside world.

Pros: Highs, Mids, Lows; you name it, these babies can produce it and in perfect balance Tight Bass YOU WON'T STOP SMILING

Cons: Noise Cancelation

can't replace Bose

Anonymous from Malvern, AR on 8/27/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

In an effort to replace the poor quality Bose quiet comfort 15 headphones I tried these Polk 8000. Much better build quality but can't say is that's true for long term use. Problem is the discomfort. They are heavy! Some people review that they are very comfortable. I think those people would feel comfortable with a 50 gal drum on their head as long as it was padded. I get a headache with the Polks within a few minutes due to the weight pressing down on my head. Bose will sit on the ears without the need for top bar sitting on your head. The Polks rely upon the top bar to hold the cups on your ears due to the weight. I find myself reaching for the Bose daily and letting the Polks just sit and collect dust.

Pros: The ear cups adjust by pivoting which is nice for fit. Sound quality is equal to Bose and Klipsch. (ALL head phones sound better than Beats brand.) Build quality and design is nice.

Cons: Too heavy. Pressure on top of head regardless of adjustment.

Great sounding headphones for the price!

RobP from NY on 8/22/2012

I've tried beats and bose and I was very dissapointed with the Beats considering all the hype they have (plus the price is way high for what they are). The bose sounded okay, but I gave these a shot and these things have the best sound quality for this price range The noise reduction does its job and cancels out all constant drones and most other noises. The only time you can faintly here something is if you have nothing playing through the headphones. Usually if you're listening to something, you can't hear anything else but what you're listening unless someone comes up and is talking extremely loud or screaming right next to you. The build quality is very good and they look very slick. The buttons on the side are a big plus. just put your iphone in your pocket and play/pause, next song, volume up/down are right there on the side...and that nice little button that allows you to kick on the external mic to talk to other people who are trying to talk to you (aka bugging you) makes it so much easier than pausing the song and lifting the headphones off your head.

Pros: sound quality, build quality, nice carrying case, detachable cable

Cons: thicker cable, in-line mic would be nice

Best sound, compared to other NC and most wired to 1K

Chip B from Kingsport, TN on 8/22/2012

I gave my Bose to my Daughter and compared though, and rate the NC of Bose at 78% and these at 65%; have now used these on 8 plane trip legs, and the NC is pretty decent. My opinion when comparing these to Beyer, Grado and Senns, the sound is equal, when compared to Bose, Parrot, MU 40, Beats, PSB, Able Planet, AT, Sony, the sound is way better; heard a hiss from electronics one time in a Hotel that was obviously a feedback, but otherwise none.

Pros: Excellent Build, Fit, Finish. Ear-cups are removable and replaceable. Very comfortable, stay on with various head movements without difficulty. Great cord, doesn't tangle, and great quality. Strong case, protect well and convenient with travel.

Cons: None

Bad headphones

KenL from Bethesda, MD on 7/28/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Don't buy these headphones. I love polk speakers and buy these phones thinking they would be the same combination of value/sound quality that make the polk speakers such a good buy. Stick with the speakers. I have several other pair of noise cancelling headphones at the same price level or lower and the these polks have the worst sound quality of all of them. In fact, the sound quality of the sport headphones produce better sound than the noise cancelling phones. Big dissapointment.

Pros: None

Cons: Overpriced, bad sound

Awesome sound quality

Terry from Waynesboro, MS on 7/14/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

These are some awesome cans I tried Bose and souls before these neither can compare to these I really liked these better everything compared to Bose and souls the souls come close but Polk has more clarity for all types of music other cans I've tried come up short when not playing digital music but not Polk they sound great

Pros: Sound Quality

Cons: None


DAVID from CALIFORNIA on 7/7/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Amazing headphones,excellent sound quality(highs,mids,bass,high fidelity),you can hear every detail of music clearly,low or high volume they sound great,very,very comfortable,every day I listen about 3 hours of music and sometimes I just forget I got them on top of my head.Battery life is great,very easy to remove and install the batteries(just a quick twist with two fiingers to remove the cover), the earcup controls works great and are very convenient,I don't have to remove them when somebody wants to talk to me, I just press a bottom on the earcup and I can hear conversations perfectly.The noise reduction works very well, you hardly hear any outside noise( of course, if you use them next to a turned on blender,you're going to still listen to the blender's motor ;), just not as loud ).The build quality is excellent and the design of this headphones is very,very nice,they look nice and sound great.

Pros: Sound quality,comfort,built quality.

Cons: Nothing,nada,0.

Pleasantly surprised

billyp7718 from philadelphia pa on 7/2/2012

I was looking to replace my Bose QC15 (since they had gotten damaged) with something a bit different. I was never really satisfied with the sound quality of the Bose compared to my Grado or Sennheiser cans so I thought I would give these a try. The Polk headphones not only sound better, but are better built than the Bose. There still is a slight tradeoff of sound quality as compared to my higher end, purpose built cans BUT these will be my mainstay for air and train travel!

Pros: Sound quality, build quality, comfort

Cons: noise reduction could be a tad bit better

wasn't entirely satisfied

rob from barrington rhode island on 5/17/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I have tinnitus and am a landscaper. I wanted noise cancelling headphones for mowing, trimming hedges... I wear Bose AE 2s now. I got the Polks. Note... They do not work unless switched on and they are in noise cancelling mode all the time. The noise cancelling only works for low frequencies and not completely. Definitely not going to make the lawn mower quiet. I listen to soft music and there is a high pitched hum from the noise cancelling. I was not impressed at all with the audio quality at low volume. Mostly mid range. Very little bass. They made James Taylor sould like a bit like a squirrel. My Bose are much brighter and have better base. I bought another very high quality set of Sennheiser noise cancelling headphones that were the same. I think audio quality may be a trade off for the noise cancelling features. I'm trying the PSB's and that's it. Giving up after that if not impressed. Another thing I might add. I had a hard time twisting the battery cover back on, and in the process twisted off and dropped the ear pad. I expected a lot more for the price. I keep headphones on a good portion of the day with low music, white noise, nature sounds... so I don't have to listen to my ears ring. I am distracted by background noises so I thought these would be the ticket, but not for me.

Pros: they look solid, well built and are comfortable. They also sound good with the volume turned up. The noise cancelling works. You definitely notice the low frequencies drop off when you switch them on. I just can't listen to loud music and wanted more fidelity out of them.

Cons: I did not like the range of the headphones at low volume. I also didn't like the hum of the noise cancelling circuitry and the battery cover. I could never justify the price when I have cheaper headphones that sound better. I'm going to try the PSB's though before I'm done.


Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Fit Style Over-the-ear
Earcup Type Closed
Earcup Width x Height 3.5 x 3.6875
Noise-canceling Yes
Bluetooth No
Mic For Taking Calls Yes
iPhone Control ---
Lightning Connector No
Android Control ---
Frequency Response 8-28k Hz
Sensitivity 110 dB
Impedance 32 Ohms
Weight N/A ounces
Cord Length 55"
1/4-inch Adapter Included Yes
Volume Control Yes
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year

Product Research


Active Dynamic Balance Drivers: Dynamic Balance is Polk Audio's patented advanced analysis of a speaker's entire electro-acoustic and mechanical system. It helps Polk to select better materials and more efficient geometry. With deep analysis, Polk engineers can pinpoint and eliminate things that reduce performance before they become a part of the finished product. The miniature polymer drivers in UltraFocus Series headphones are specially tuned to produce a flat, uncolored frequency response. This true transparency reveals a wide dynamic range, with sharp details, and no hint of strain. The UltraFocus 8000 employs Active Dynamic Balance drivers made of lightweight, durable PET material, in a sealed micro-enclosure, tuned and fitted to eliminate resonances with optimized damping. Active Dynamic Balance technology is an exclusive combination of ANC (Active Noise Cancelling) and Polk's patented Dynamic Balance material tuning process.

Optimized Active Noise Canceling: Active Noise Canceling technology uses sophisticated audio algorithms to silence distracting outside noise. Polk goes one step further with UltraFocus headphones. They use Optimized Active Tuning to work in tandem with the ANC technology, enhancing audio performance beyond that of ordinary headphones. Whether you're traveling by airplane, train, or bus; walking along a busy street; or working out in the gym Polk's new UltraFocus Active Noise Canceling Headphones give you a refuge from all the noise. They deliver the kind of audio performance you expect from a home audio system; expansive, detailed, engrossing, with deep bass response. Polk ANC technology is capable of up to 15dB of extraneous noise cancellation.

Push-to-Hear Ambient Control: You can instantly mute audio and amplify outside sounds so you can experience the outside world without removing the headphones. The "Push-to-Hear Ambient Control" is found on the Right ear-cup. 

3-Button Remote Control + Mic: The UltraFocus 8000 features a 3-button remote & microphone (located on the Right ear-cup) so you can use your iPod, iPhone, or iPad on the go with in-line controls. The integrated remote lets you initiate play/pause, change tracks, adjust volume, or take a call (iPhone only) without ever touching your player. The built-in microphone supports both voice control (for iPod/iPhone/iPad) and hands-free communication (iPhone only). The UltraFocus 8000 is "Made for iPod/iPhone/iPad" compatible and supports the following models and functions (as of 8/14/2012).

iPod Model Generation Tested Version Audio Output Integrated Remote Built-in Mic
3.5mm Connector Audio Playback Playback Controls Answer/End Call Voice Control Hands-Free Communication
Shuffle 1st n/a Y Y N N N N
2nd n/a Y Y N N N N
3rd n/a Y Y Y N N N
4th n/a Y Y Y N N N
dock connector 3rd 2.0.2 Y Y N N N N
4th 3.1.1 Y Y N N N N
mini 1st 1.4.1 Y Y N N N N
2nd 1.4.1 Y Y N N N N
video 5th 1.3 Y Y N N N N
classic 80GB 1.1.2 Y Y N N N N
120GB 2.0.1 Y Y Y N Y N
160GB 2.0.4 Y Y Y N Y N
nano 1st 1.3.1 Y Y N N N N
2nd 1.1.3 Y Y N N N N
3rd 1.1.3 Y Y N N N N
4th 1.0.4 Y Y Y N Y N
5th 1.0.2 Y Y Y N Y N
6th 1.1 PC Y Y Y N Y N
touch 1st 2.2.1 Y Y N N N N
2nd 4.2.1 Y Y Y N Y N
3rd 5.1.1 Y Y Y N Y N
4th 5.1.1 Y Y Y N Y N
iPhone 2G 3.1.3 Y Y N N N N
3G 4.2.1 Y Y N N N N
3GS 4.3.5 Y Y Y Y Y Y
4 5.1.1 Y Y Y Y Y Y
4S 5.1.1 Y Y Y Y Y Y
iPhone 1 5.1.1 Y Y Y N Y N
2 5.1.1 Y Y Y N Y N

Note: Apple iPod/iPhone software updates may change functionality results. If you download a newer software version, you may need to reset your iPod/iPhone to regain functionality. If this doesn't work, you may need to wait until a newer software update is available.

Battery Powered: Two AAA batteries (included) provide between 40-60 hours of listening time. The batteries are inserted into the Left ear-cup.

Over-the-Ear Cushioned Ear Cups: The UltraFocus 8000 headphones features soft-cushioned over-the-ear pads with a soft-cushioned adjustable headband for comfortable listening.

Detachable 55" Headphone Cable: One cable, rather than two, connects directly to the UltraFocus 8000 headphones. One detachable cable connection means less tangle and less hassle. The detachable 55" headphone cable features a tangle-free planar design and StrainGuard technology. The detachable headphone cable plugs into the Left ear cup.

  • Ultra Flexible, Tangle-Free Planar Audio Cable Design: Standard round headphone cables always coil up and twist; and are a constant source of annoyance, because they get in the way of your workout. Eventually repetitive twisting means the cable will break or pull out at the end. The cable's planar design (with oxygen-free wire for better conductivity) completely eliminates coiling, so the headphone cables won't tangle up during a workout, or when stored away. The planar design also eliminates micro-phonics, the tendency of an electronic device to turn a mechanical vibration into "noise," which you would hear, in this case, through the headphones.
  • StrainGuard Technology: Headphones get a lot of abuse. The UltraFocus Headphones have been designed with this in mind. StrainGuard is a protective system that addresses the areas where many headphones fail most often. A Kevlar core that houses the speaker wire provides extra tensile strength to prevent the wire from being pulled apart at common failure points. The other points of common failure in headphones are at transitional points between cable lengths and at connection points. In the UltraFocus Series, all transitional connections are computer designed to strengthen the points where they fail most.

Connectors & Adapters: The UltraFocus Series headphones employ a gold-plated 3.5mm connector and come with a 1/4" adapter. A 2.5mm adapter is also included for select mobile devices, such as Nokia. In addition, a Skype adapter is included. There is an airplane adaptor included to use during your next flight.

Carrying Case: The Polk UF8000 comes with a convenient travel case for storage and transportation.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.