Pioneer is better known for its prowess in the DJ booth, but its SE range aims its sights squarely at the mobile music market. The MJ51s (we’re sure the presence in this moniker of Michael Jackson’s initials and his age at the time of his death is purely a coincidence) certainly look good, with brushed-aluminium earpieces that shine like brass, but the cable looks very thin and fragile, especially at the earpiece end.
Sound-wise, the MJ51s are quite notched in the mids, with a restrained high end and somewhat hyped bass. It’s a mismatched sound, especially when listening to genres where mid-range frequencies are important, such as rock and pop.
The MJ51s perform best on dance music, but it’s a very closed sound that only really appeals at lower levels. As soon as you pump anything loud into these headphones, it’s compressed into a flat wall of mid-range frequencies. They’re fine for DJing, but not much else.