Headphones

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Hi-Fi Choice  |  Feb 04, 2019  |  0 comments
Following Apple’s move to drop the headphone jack from the iPhone and the news that Samsung will follow suit with its flagship Galaxy models in 2019, the portable headphone market has gone wireless crazy. Like many brands, 1More has been quick to respond and takes its £100 wired Triple Driver in-ear headphone design – reviewed in HFC 425 – and adds wire-free connectivity and noise-cancelling for just £20 more than its wired counterpart.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Apr 08, 2015  |  0 comments
The ongoing boom in headphone sales has led to a huge number of brands entering the sector to try their luck. The headphones that result are very different in the nature of the components that go into them and the styling varies wildly betweenthe deeply prosaic and extremely elegant. Sitting firmly in the elegant camp is the Aedle Valkyrie VK-1. Although the name Aedle is Scandinavian, it is based in France and the VK-1 is assembled there too.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Oct 08, 2018  |  0 comments
No sooner has Sennheiser’s impressive IE 800 S in-ear headphone (HFC 434) appeared than another high-specification model breaks cover. For AKG though, this isn’t new ground. The company released its £1,000 K3003i in 2012 and the new flagship reviewed here actually sees it positioned a step further down the pricing ladder at £800.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Oct 21, 2015  |  0 comments
All headphones offer a degree of passive noise reduction by simply placing the earpeiceson your ears. Some offer greater background noise reduction than others, and in-ear types cut this more significantly simply by inserting earbuds into the ear canal to block out the interference. With active noise cancelling technology added to an on-ear headphone, ambient sounds can be significantly reduced thanks to the use of built-in microphones that analyse any background noise and regenerate it out of phase so that it is effectively cancelled out in the listeners’ ears. It’s a clever technique, and one that gets more sophisticated with each new generation of noise-cancelling cans.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Nov 21, 2015  |  0 comments
I was lucky enough to attend the launch of AKG’s N90Q headphones back in June 2015, and am also privileged to be among the few to get their hands on one of the first samples of the flagship model. Regular readers will know that the luxury headphone market is big business for audio fans as more and more of us turn to a pair of high-quality cans as our transducer of choice for a good chunk of home listening. This isn’t the first time we’ve looked at high-end headphones in these Exotica pages either, and the AKG follows Final’s Sonorous VIII £2,300 offering, reviewed back in issue 403. Although the AKG costs £1,000 less, there’s plenty here to ensure it meets our Exotica review criteria as it is blessed with high-class credentials in its construction and tech that includes noise cancelling and sound tuning to tailor the sound output to your ears.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Feb 03, 2019  |  0 comments
Since the demise of the iPod Classic and the rise of the smartphone as the portable audio device of choice for the majority of users, the digital audio player market has struggled to flourish. This hasn’t stopped some specialists from carving out a niche, though, and Astell&Kern has been offering a considerable range of high-end players for some time. With an eye on keeping things in the real world, the A&norma SR15 is at A&K’s more affordable end of its extensive product range and is £100 more than the AK70 (HFC 428) that’s more recently been updated to mkII. The specification of the SR15 improves on the AK70 mkII and it’s fitted with 64GB of internal memory, which is supplemented by the inclusion of a microSD card slot for a card up to 400GB.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Jul 21, 2017  |  0 comments
Audeze is best known as manufacturer of full-size headphones that use planar magnetic driver technology to achieve thin and lightweight units with the voice coil printed into them, resulting in a large radiating area with little mass. The iSINE 10 is the first in-ear to make use of such a driver. Making such a design work in an in-ear form is no small undertaking. By the standards of a normal planar magnetic driver, the 30mm unit used here is tiny but still larger than the ear canal utilised by in-ear models.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Oct 08, 2018  |  0 comments
To mark the fact it has been trading for 10 years, Audeze has revised one of its longest-running products. The original LCD2 has been around for some time and continues as before but is now joined by the Classic, which adds some refinements to the design alongside a more affordable price tag.
Ed Selley  |  Oct 22, 2011  |  0 comments
Flexible friend Richard Black finds the new Audio-Technica ATH-ES10 small enough for music on the move and big enough for sound adventures at home Portable is a vague term applied to headphones. Clearly even the chunkiest models are portable if you’ve got a big enough bag handy, while many would baulk at carrying anything bigger than an in-ear model. The ATH-ES10 isn’t quite pocket-sized, but it’s small enough to fit in a small briefcase or handbag; with the earpieces rotated it’s about 25mm-thick. We’ve spotted plenty of cool dudes wearing similar-size models on the street, and for the audiophile (or indeed audio professional) on the move, maybe expecting to spend quite a lot of time in trains, planes and hotels, it looks a practical proposition.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Oct 10, 2018  |  0 comments
Perhaps better known for its full-size headphone models than its in-ear designs, Audio-Technica has been increasing its offerings of late. The ATH-LS70iS is the more expensive of two ‘Live Sound’ models and uses two serially mounted carbon-coated dynamic drivers to reduce its housing size and increase the radiating area.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Jan 14, 2015  |  0 comments
The latest and most expensive Bowers & Wilkins headphones are also the most desirable. The smell of the leather as you open the box, the contrast of chrome and black, it all says luxury. You also get a lot in the box. There are two alternate cables, one for use with Apple portables with inline volume and play/pause control, and another straight wire (without gain) for more discerning listeners.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Oct 08, 2018  |  0 comments
Damson isn’t a well-known name in hi-fi circles, as it largely concentrates on the entry-level end of the consumer audio market. Its new HeadSpace headphone fits into this category, offering Bluetooth wireless hook up and active noise cancellation at a competitive price.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Nov 26, 2018  |  0 comments
A home headphone that strikes a balance between comfort and sound quality is essential for the best listening experience, and the AH-D7200 over-ear offering from Denon aims to deliver on both fronts.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Dec 06, 2018  |  0 comments
Worthing-based Flare Audio already has a number of low-cost in-ear designs, but the Flares Pro is the first model to grab our attention and is aimed at audio aficionados. It can be connected directly to a player using the supplied cable fitted with a 3. 5mm jack plug or wirelessly using the lightweight clip-on Bluetooth DAC/receiver with aptX support, which claims 12 hours battery life when charged via USB. Everything is supplied inside a multi-layered, cube-shaped box with three sizes (small, medium and large) for each of the Earfoams Everyday, Universal and Audiophile ear-tips, plus there’s a fabric carry case that fits neatly into a pocket for life on the road.
Hi-Fi Choice  |  Jan 15, 2015  |  0 comments
Headphones have taken over the audio world for all but the cognoscenti (that’s us, we know about sound). And the well established hi-fi brands have all been scrambling to get on the band wagon too, even brands that have previously not been involved with domestic audio are getting in on the act; I even saw some Marshall branded headphones in a Paul Smith store theother day! Focal got its first headphone to market a couple of years ago, that was the Spirit, late last year it added two more models, the Spirit Pro and Spirit Classic. The latter is an audiophile version of the Classic with higher build and, its claimed, sound quality than the standard Spirit. The two models are very similar in appearance, but when you put them side by side the Classic looks positively deluxe with its leather padding and brushed aluminium metalwork.

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