Final Audio Design  - Final Audio Design Sonorous III

Final Audio Design

Final Audio Design Sonorous III: a "low-cost" version that makes sacrifices

Aprox. 315€ - see price -

Final Audio is not the most accessible manufacturer in terms of price. To attract new customers, the brand makes a small departure from its policy and markets two new, more affordable headsets, including this Sonorous III which would use the same technologies as the flagship Sonorous X. The sacrifices necessary for this price reduction will they not too important? This is what we will discover right away ...

Our review


The Final Audio designers clearly did not want to change the recipe in terms of design. The Sonorous III resembles all the headsets offered by the Japanese manufacturer. On closer inspection, however, we can see some differences in the choice of materials and finishes.

The set is quite solid, thanks in particular to the aluminum headband and the plastic of the thick ear cups, but which sounds a little hollow. The finishes are far from discreet. We can see a few assembly marks and the granular paint effect may not be to everyone's taste. We also clearly feel the assembly through the soft pad of the arch, composed of an aluminum base and a flexible sheet on the upper part, probably plastic.

The comfort provided is correct overall. The helmet is easy to adjust and position and is suitable for small heads as well as very very large (32 cm to 48 cm approximately, measuring from ear to ear through the skull). The ball joint system allows the ear cups to position themselves properly on the head.

In some people, however, there may be less pressure down the ear and they may touch the tissue a bit in front of the transducers. The removable ear cushions are relatively soft, like the headband, but they keep warm quickly, which can be problematic during long listening sessions. In addition, the weight is not really well balanced and is more felt on the ear cups.

In terms of connectivity, the Sonorous III comes with a very thick and removable mini-jack cable. An adapter to 6.35 mm jack is provided, but we would have preferred another cable with control for possible nomadic desires. More annoying, no case is provided to store the helmet and protect it.



The sound rendering of the Sonorous III is certainly precise, but it remains nevertheless colored by focusing on the low-midrange / midrange.

The bass tends to be warm, but it really lacks depth. Even for fans of discreet bass, the decline in the extreme low is felt in most songs as the sources that operate in this register (large percussion, piano, bass / double bass ...) lack foundation. With its fairly weak passive insulation, you must also be in a quiet room to have a chance to perceive them. The warm side is amplified by the recoil of high mids which gives the whole a well blunt perception, especially on electric guitars (attack of the strings, grain of the distortion, etc.).

The voices are not doing too badly in terms of intelligibility, but they are still a little too warm and not clear enough. Almost cottony, it is the male voices that are most affected by this sound color. The treble is far from being well represented and they focus on a small area above all to enhance the brilliance of the voice. Without being very annoying, it is unfortunately the sibilants that stand out a little more. The treble extremes are not at the party either and we would have clearly appreciated a little more air and definition on the effects of parts, for example. In the vast majority of cases, the scene remains wide and the sources that compose it are easy to replace. This is less the case when it comes to decrypting the different layers of a mix in terms of depth.

The Sonorous III shows very good sensitivity and can be powered without any problem by most devices. Indeed, 60 mV is enough to reach 94 dB, against 352 mV for a Hifiman HE-400s or even 81 mV for a Technics T700. The distortion remains very discrete across the spectrum.



The Final Audio Sonorous III leaves a mixed impression, especially for sedentary headphones whose comfort and audio quality must come first. In either case, it does not stand out from the competition and remains rather difficult to recommend, especially in view of its launch price.