Panasonic has been around since the year 1918 when its founder began making and selling electric lamp sockets and plugs. Although the company has been known for reliable and durable products, its line of 12 headphone products is not without its share of problems.
We will discuss the possible causes and solutions for the 5 most common problems with Panasonic headphones.
Panasonic headphones crack and crumble just above the ear cups
When you’re trying to avoid tiny earbuds either because they are easily lost or just uncomfortable, Panasonic over-ear headphones are a good choice. They come as regular over-ear headphones, as wireless pieces, or with active noise-cancellation.
But many customers are peeved about the tendency of these over-ear headphones to crack and ultimately break. As if this weren’t bad enough, when the plastic above the ear cups breaks, noise cancellation and sound quality may decline too.
Some complaints hover around one year of use; others were reported to happen as early as five months or even after a couple of uses!
Let’s explore why Panasonic over-ear headphones are breaking, and what we can do to help prevent it.
Rough use by the consumer may not always be a factor, but it should be considered.
Most customers believe they are applying normal force to a product. If the headphones don’t fall, the general opinion is that they were not abused. It often seems as if they are breaking for no reason at all.
A closer and more honest investigation might reveal destructive truths.
- not using the case provided
When a case or protective bag is provided for your headphones, there’s probably a good reason for it. A case will help to protect your Panasonic headphones if you’re transporting them often. Imagine all the tossing and banging force your poor Panasonic headphones have to endure while being moved around.
Keeping your headphones in a case will help to cushion them from all that impact that you may not be noticing.
And if you lost the original Panasonic headphone case, get a generic case that will work for any kind of headphone.
- sleeping with your headphones on
It’s the easiest thing to do without meaning to. Other times you probably put on your favorite music with the intent of falling asleep. But sleeping with your headphones on is not always a good idea – the wrong volume for too long is bad for your hearing and for your headphones too!
If you tend to fall asleep while wearing your Panasonic headphones, or if you do it on purpose, try changing your sleep routine.
Instead of using headphones, try using an external speaker to take the pressure off your ears, and off of your Panasonic headphones.
You might also use devices and technology that allow you to use your voice for turning on and off music.
You can also set timers for certain devices to shut off. That way, you limit your listening to the moments just before you fall into a deep sleep, and should have enough consciousness to take off the headphones!
Be sure not to place the removed headphones directly on the bed you’ll be using. Rolling over them while you sleep is also a sure way for breaking them.
- wearing your headphones even when you’re not using them
The cracks that happen in Panasonic headphones will definitely be less likely if you reduce wear and tear on them.
One way to minimize wear and tear is to put away the headphones when you are not using them. Remember: the headband will be under tension while it’s stretched over your head.
The bigger your head, the more pressure the headband will be under.
Giving it a break will help to prevent the plastic from cracking and ultimately breaking.
Panasonic headphones have a hissing noise that might ruin the listening experience
Some Panasonic headphones offer active noise-cancellation (ANC).
It’s very handy when you are commuting, working from home or need to relax in any noisy environment.
Panasonic noise-canceling headphones help with these situations and offer all of three noise-canceling levels. But that convenience is sometimes offset by something that users find annoying.
Some users have observed a light audible hiss when noise canceling is on high. Other users describe it as background noise when noise-canceling is at the highest level.
Even worse, it can be heard as a hum that starts when a phone call is made, and that’s when noise-cancellation is off! For some users, the noise gives the feeling of tinnitus – now that’s annoying!
To be fair, the hissing is not something horrible, but it is noticeable enough to detract from the listening experience.
So what is causing this irritating sound in Panasonic headphones, and what can be done to overcome it?
The Panasonic headphones manual acknowledges that a hissing noise is normal
This is probably not what most users want to hear, but the Panasonic company states in its headphones user manual:
“While using the noise canceling function, a very small amount of noise which is generated from the circuit that reduces noise may be heard, but this is normal and not indicative of any trouble. (This very-low-level noise may be heard in quiet places or in the blank parts between tracks.)”
Their user manual further states:
“Howling may occur if you push the earpads too strongly into your ears.”
In other words, all that annoyance and subjective tinnitus is pretty much a done deal.
And if it’s a wireless headphone, it’s important to know that using wireless headphones makes you more likely to hear static or buzzing sounds. This is because of interferences from other items or electronic devices in your vicinity.
But isn’t there anything at all you can do to help?
Perhaps you can try these:
- Do not continuously push on the ear cups while using them. As mentioned in the user manual, doing this can create a howling sound. If that’s your style, train your arms to relax at your sides, or find creative ways to keep them busy!
- If you use wireless Panasonic headphones, make sure there are no barriers between them and the device you get audio from. Anything like a wall, metal desk, flat-screen tv – anything – that lies in the path of your wireless headphone connection, can interfere with that connection and affect the overall sound quality.
Panasonic headphones can feel a little tight on the head
Comfort is a big deal for most people when it comes to wearing headphones.
The reasons are obvious – if you can’t wear your headphones long without your ears becoming sore, that will not be awesome. So why does this happen, and what can you do about headphones that create annoying pressure on your head?
If your Panasonic headphones feel too tight, it’s because of strong clamping force and poor padding
The clamping force is what allows your headphones to cling to your head without falling off. Although the clamping force is important, too much of it gives excess tension on your head.
You can try and loosen up the tension:
This problem particularly applies to over-ear and on-ear headphones.
If your headband feels like it’s pressing right on the peak of your skull, you’ll need to add some extra padding.
So what can you do about poor cushioning? The most practical solution is to purchase extra padding. The prices of extra cushioning can vary widely, but the great benefit is that they are all removable if they get uncomfortable too.
If your headphone problem is too much clamping force, then roll up your DIY sleeves for this one:
- Stack some books side-by-side until they’re about the width of your head, or a little bit wider.
- Place your headphones over the stack of books whenever they are not being used.
- After a few days, there should be less discomfort.
- A word of caution: don’t be too hasty about this DIY project – you won’t be happy if you stretch them out too much either!
Panasonic headphone controls are a little hard to figure out
When it comes to buttons and controls, easier is always better. Unfortunately, Panasonic headphone users have complained about the learning curve for its over-ear headphone buttons.
The button controls are close to each other and many of them perform multiple functions.
Users end up having to take off the headphones to look for the buttons they want.
And even then, the controls can be a bit hard to see because they are the same color as the rest of the headphones.
So what’s the best way to conquer the controls?
(The answers might surprise you)
- Read the manual!
(I told you there might be a surprise!)
The Panasonic headphones user manual is full of instructions to help you know what is where and how to use it. There’s even a diagram with all the parts of the headphone labeled.
- Check the Panasonic website FAQ section.
There’s actually a section called “How to use the Touch actions for Technics and Panasonic Earphones“. It turns out the learning curve may not be so steep after all!
Panasonic headphones don’t breathe very well
Another comfort issue is stickiness and sweating.
This issue affects anyone who works in a warm environment, who wears headphones for hours, or who just naturally sweats a lot. Some users find their ears getting very hot only after a short session.
Simply put, Panasonic headphones do not allow enough air flow.
Why is that so and how can this challenge be overcome?
This issue isn’t unique to Panasonic but affects most closed-back headphones.
The challenge for any closed-back headphones is finding a balance between sound isolation and breathability.
If a very breathable material is used on the earcups, sweating will be minimal. However, you will have lost perfect sound control by allowing more air in and out.
This means the noise-isolating feature will not be as effective.
Materials like leather and pleather are not high on the list of breathability. Velour and velvet are more breathable than leather and pleather. Ultimately, you have to make up your mind about what matters more to you: absolute comfort, or absolute sound isolation.
General Pros and Cons for Panasonic headphones
What people like about Panasonic headphones
- Easy Bluetooth pairing
- Good sound quality for music and phone calls
- Battery life is 20 hours
- Wireless range is 30 ft
- Full charging time is 2.5 hours
5 problems with Panasonic headphones
- Panasonic headphones crack just above the ear cups
- Panasonic headphones have a hissing noise
- Panasonic headphones feel tight on the head
- Panasonic headphone controls have a learning curve
- Panasonic headphones are not breathable