Disintegrating Headband Material

A cautionary note to those considering Polk headphones. I purchased the top of the line cans a few years back, the Ultrafocus 8000 noise canceling headphones. The primary use for these cans was to pass the hours away on airline flights. Over the years, I've probably worn these 30 times. The 8000's sound great, look(ed) great like all of the Polk products I've purchased over the years (LS90, FX1000, CS400, RTi6, in walls, car speakers, outdoor speakers, you get the drift). All of my Polk products have worked flawlessly over the years.

Unfortunately, Polk's exemplary streak ended with the 8000's. The material in the headband is disintegrating. I sent CS an inquiry to see if I could purchase replacement parts for the headband. No parts are available. These headphones are not that old for a replacement part to be sold out. It wouldn't even be so bad if the disintegrating band didn't leave random black chunks of plastic in your hair. Oh well, lesson learned.rxdtdoyytkzz.jpg


  • Dennis Gardner
    Mine have held up nicely with probably 30 sets of battery usage. My only issue is the weak seams on the overstuffed ear pads. I might think that your issue is chemical or light exposure.znlwr7xm3s2h.jpeg
    HT Optoma HD25 LV on 80" DIY Screen, Anthem MRX 300 Receiver, Pioneer Elite BDP 51FD Polk CS350LS, Polk SDA1C, Polk FX300, Polk RT55, Dual EBS Adire Shiva 320watt tuned to 17hz, ICs-DIY Twisted Prs, Speaker-Raymond Cable

    2 Channel Thorens TD 318 Grado ZF1, SACD/CD Marantz 8260, Soundstream/Krell DAC1, Audio Mirror PP1, Odyssey Stratos, ADS L-1290, ICs-DIY Twisted , Speaker-Raymond Cable
  • wallstreet
    wallstreet Posts: 1,405
    I'm thinking Sony's headphones might be in order next. I listened to a pair the other day and the audio was better. Hopefully, the durability is as well.
  • codycatalist
    codycatalist Posts: 2,662
    edited January 2019
    While I like Polk, I have never turned to them for headphones. I would employ you to do some research on the Philips L2 or X2s, granted they are semi open back and open back cans but man they sound fantastic.

    I use the L2s at work and amount to around 5 hours of play a day for the last year. They have held up without a SINGLE issue mechanical or cosmetic. The soundstage on them is unreal as it is the placement.

    Being semi open back they don't leak as much noise as you would expect, no one has complained.
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  • Dawgfish
    Dawgfish Posts: 2,554
    Plus one on the Philips Fidelios. Have a set of X1s with upgraded cable and absolutely love them! The soundstage and dynamic slam of these cans are outstanding!
  • zingo
    zingo Posts: 11,258
    edited January 2019
    I have a pair of these on ear, noise canceling, bluetooth or wired headphones and I love them. They cost less than 1/3 the original prices now that they are the old model year, but features, battery life, and music performance are great.