The Drop THX Panda wireless headphones are a pair of wireless Audiophile headphones that feature Phases Correct Planar ribbon drivers and a zero distortion THX Triple-A amplifier.
The result is that these are a pair of headphones that don’t understand the meaning of distortion. They have very neutral bass and extremely crisp vocals.
Now, these headphones will make one group of people very happy and could disappoint another group. So I will have to say that the Panda is a pair of very niche headphones.
If you are looking for a pair of full-featured headphones with active noise cancellation, an ambient mode, and maybe even an adjustable EQ.
The Drop THX Panda wireless headphones review’s main priority is sound. Nonetheless, we are still going to compare these headphones to mainstream options where it applies.
Drop THX Panda Wireless Headphones Review
The Panda comes included with a hardshell case. Now it is not my favourite cause this thing is huge. It is bigger than the Surface Headphone 2 case, and it just dwarfs both the Sony WH-1000XM4 and Bose NC 700 case. So the Panda case wouldn’t be my first choice for commuting. However, at least this case isn’t as large as the Shure Aonic 50 case.
I feel the build quality of the Panda is very good. These headphones have a mostly plastic body construction. There is nothing wrong with that, but this build doesn’t compete with more mainstream options.
The ear cups are semi-smooth and semi-textured, and this hinge swivels with very little resistance. We are all good here, but when it comes to the headband, that’s a whole other story.
This headband takes a lot of effort to extend and retract, and the sound this headband makes isn’t the greatest. Up to the top, we have silicon with minimal padding, which untimely does adversely affect comfort.
Now, I want to focus on the flexibility of this headband. This thing likes to twist a lot. I wouldn’t say that is a bad thing, but I want to be cautious cause maybe there could be a headband cracking issue, as we saw with the earlier Sony WH-1000XM4.
I am not saying that it will happen, but it’s something I would look out for. Finally, there is the leatherette on these headphones.
It’s decent, but it doesn’t feel as good as the leatherette that you’ll find on either the Bose NC 700 or Surface Headphones. It certainly doesn’t feel as good as the sheepskin leather you will find on the Momentum 3.
Let us talk about comfort foremost. We will have to address the Panda weight cause it is something that I recently harped on with the AirPods Max. The Panda weighs in at 378 grams, which is a lot for a pair of wireless headphones.
Now the AirPods Max is still king weighing in at 385 grams, but the Panda is a pair of very heavy headphones that you won’t forget that you have on.
You will constantly notice them if you are sitting still at your desk working or in your bed watching a movie, and you will notice these headphones swinging around when you are walking with them on.
For comparison’s sake, all of these other more mainstream options are considerably lighter than the Panda. The Momentum 3 weighs 305, which is still a little on the heftier side, but they are way more manageable than the Panda.
There is the Bose NC 700, which weighs 264 grams. The Sony 1000XM4 weighs in at 254 grams meaning that these headphones are very easy to forget that you have on, and you don’t notice them when you are walking around with them on.
If you are looking for maximum comfort, you will want to look into either the Bose QC35, which weighs 240 grams, or the Sennheiser PCX 550 II, which weighs 227 grams.
But weight aside, the Panda isn’t my favourite fitting headphones for two main reasons. There is clamping force the Panda fits very tight. They have more clamping force than the AirPods Max.
I have tried stretching these headphones out and leaving them stretched out overnight, but no luck. So I am going to have to say that these headphones are not big-head-approved.
But another problem that I have with the fit of these headphones is their lack of padding underneath their headband. As I mentioned earlier, this headband has minimal padding and is combined with these headphones’ weight and clamping force.
I have noticed that this headband likes to create a hot spot on the top of your head fairly quickly. At like the 20-minute mark, you start to feel some discomfort, and at the 40 minutes, I have to take a break.
So weight, clamping force, and very minimal padding underneath their headband are the main reasons I’m not a fan of the Panda’s comfort. But when it comes to the ear pads, they are decent.
The Panda earpads are nowhere near as spacious as either the Bose NC 700 earpads on Sennheiser PCX 550 II earpads. So if you have got larger ears or ears that stick out a lot, you will still want to go with either of those.
But the Panda earpads are very similar to the Sony 1000XM4 and Momentum 3 ear pads in diameter, but they are a little more shallow. Cause the pandas do press down on my ears just a little bit, whereas these other two don’t.
So overall, when it comes to building quality, the Panda certainly gets the job done. When it comes to fit, I must say that these are my least favourite-fitting headphones here cause of their weight, clamping force, and minimal headband padding.
Let us talk about tech specs. The Panda charges via a USB C port as it should in 2021. They have an advertised battery life of 30 hours, which is not bad for a pair of wireless headphones that don’t have active noise cancellation.
These headphones also have decent fast charging, where if you plug them in for 10 minutes from a dead battery, they will get you 3 hours of playback time. Now when it comes to Bluetooth connectivity, the Panda is using Bluetooth 5.0.
They can be connected to two devices simultaneously to swap from one device to another easily could be a big deal for some power users out there. However, I have to point out that it takes these headphones a few seconds to go from playing audio from one source to another.
For example, if I am playing music on my phone and then I start watching a video on my computer for the pandas to switch, I have to pause the audio on my phone and then start my computer.
You have to wait a few seconds for the pandas to switch over. This isn’t a huge deal, but I want to point this out for that power user just looking for an as seamless as possible setup. Cause with these other headphones.
They switch between audio sources much more quickly. But more importantly, when it comes to watching movies or videos on your phone, the Panda has zero latency across the board whether you are using an iPhone or an Android device, which is always good.
When it comes to audio codecs, these headphones give you options. Now obviously, these headphones have SBC and AAC; that’s standard. But they also have APTX, and APTX HD, and they even have APTX Adaptive.
And on top of all of the APTX, they also have Sony’s LDAC. If you want to, you can always use a red connection with these headphones cause they have an easy-to-reach 3.5-millimetre audio jack, and Ould you look at that, they even come included with an audio cable.
You can also use the USB C port on these as a wired connection, which isn’t a super common feature yet. And I like the fact that the drop included a thin and flexible 4-foot USB C cable.
Let us talk about the music for these headphones. For starters, if you are someone that likes to feel their music physically and if you want the bass to rattle your head, then the Panda isn’t for you.
The bass on these headphones does resonate a great deal and sounds great, but it takes many basses to get them there. So if you want to feel their bass physically, you’ll want to go with the Sony 1000XM4 or maybe even the AirPods Max.
Now with that out of the way, the first thing I have to point out about the Panda is that these headphones get extremely loud. The Panda gets significantly louder than the AirPods Max.
Overall I can’t use them anywhere past 85 per cent volume. I feel that anything after that is going to cause hearing damage. Now sound stage and instrument separation wise the Panda easily sounds more open than both the Sony and Bose.
I want to say the Panda sound as open as the AirPods Max, but they don’t sound as open as the Momentum 3. The main reason I want to say the Panda doesn’t sound as open as the Momentum 3’s causes the mids and highs on the Panda are just a little too raised.
Like the AirPods Max, vocalists are front and centre here, but they can get a little ear piercing on rare occasions. But even still, since vocals are getting the most exposure here, sometimes they can outshine the instrumentals.
Nonetheless, the mid on the Panda is phenomenal. Now when it comes to the bass like I have mentioned a few times already, the Panda has very neutral bass, and for the most part, the bass on these headphones isn’t going to rattle your head all that much physically.
The bass on these headphones is mostly on the audible side, similar to what you would find like on the Bose NC 700 or Bowers and Wilkins PX7. Now the bass on the Panda is tighter and resonates deeper and cleaner than the bass on the Bose NC 700, but it doesn’t hit as hard as the bass on the PX7.
The easiest way to describe the Drop Panda sound is by saying that they sound like the AirPods Max but without as much physicality in their bass, which could be good for some people.
The Panda sounds great, and they sound way more open than the Bose NC 700 and Sony 1000XM4. I will have to say that the Panda is better suited for more vocal-focused brighter EQ people.
Cause if you are someone that likes a more neutral EQ than I feel, you might think these sound a little too bright. I am still going to say that I still prefer the Momentum 3 over the Panda.
Unlike the Panda and AirPods Max, the Momentum 3 doesn’t emphasize the vocals, so they sound a little more open, and the instrumentals don’t get outshined by the vocalists.
They do have more resonating and physical bass than both the Panda and AirPods Max. Now I appreciate clarity and balance in my music, but I still want to physically feel my music.
The drop pandas are a pair of very niche wireless headphones for somebody that likes a vocal-focused brighter sound signature. Now, if you are an audiophile, the Panda gives you many options for wireless headphones.
You have got support for multiple flavors of APTX, and you’ve even got LDAC. You can either use the 3.5-millimeter audio jack or USB C port on these headphones to use a wired connection.
Something that Apple would look down on you for. Now, if you’re that niche customer and this list of features intrigues you, by all means, the Drop Panda is a solid pick-up. But I think the Panda has a lot of room for improvement.
They are also not big head approved cause these things have a lot of clamping force. And I wish their headband had more padding. Overall I am a fan of the tech packed inside these headphones.