Headphone Reviews

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Tyll Hertsens  |  Mar 27, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Show impressions are always suspect, but I did like what I heard when I visited the 1More booth at CES early this year. They're well known for their in-ear monitors and last year introduced their first over-ear headphone, the MK801, which I found a bit too thick sounding for my taste.

Generally 1More has been offering headphone in the affordable end of the spectrum. With this new headphone they're making a move into the meaty midsection of the headphone world. And an interesting move it is!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Mar 11, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

For those of you who just stumbled across this InnerFidelity review as you were looking for information about the Skullcandy Crusher Wireless, welcome! InnerFidelity is a website for hard core headphone enthusiasts and it's likely you've never read headphone reviews like the ones here. I'll be going on in some detail about the technicalities of this headphone and that will probably bore you. So, I'll save you some time. I don't think the Crusher is a good sounding headphone, even for bass-heads. Let me recommend you take a look at the InnerFidelity reviews of the comparably priced Sennheiser HD 4.40 BT ($149) and the more expensive but better sounding Beats Solo3 Wireless ($299).

For the rest of you headphone geeks, I'm sure you've not been chomping at the bit for a Crusher audition, but given the haptic (vibration) transducer intended to produce the feeling of low bass response, I think it's a headphone worthy of a little satisfied curiosity. Let's have a look.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Mar 04, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Like pretty much all headphone makers, I've found HiFiMAN planar magnetic headphones a little hit and miss. Some have been a too bright and sizzly, some have not had the build quality I'd like to see at the price. On the other hand there have been some really nice surprises. The HE1000 had an uncannily pleasant, floating in the clouds, sonic character, and the HE-400S was dandy at a very affordable price. One thing has been very consistant though, the folks at HiFiMAN keep trying...and that's turning out to be a very good thing.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 23, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

It was a real treat being able to talk with Paul Barton about the PSB M4U 8 and NAD HP70 at RMAF last year. Paul has lead acoustic design for PSB, NAD, and Bluesound for a long, long time now; he's got a strong understanding of audio and when he designs a product it speaks of this knowledge. In listening to this headphone, I find myself listening to both the headphone and what Paul may be trying to tell us with them. It's been an interesting dialog.

John Atkinson  |  Feb 20, 2018  |  6 comments
I got an e-mail last summer from my colleague Tyll Hertsens, editor of our InnerFidelity website. "Recently reviewed and really liked the new MrSpeakers Æon," he wrote. "They're a little rough-sounding as sealed headphones tend to be, but the tonal balance is superb. I got three in for review to make sure they're consistent. After measurements I asked [MrSpeakers'] Dan Clark if I could forward them to you because I like them so much and thought you should hear them. . . . I really think you may enjoy them."
Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 11, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

It's deja vu all over again. Maybe Audeze decided to reverse the trend for ever more expensive headphones. Maybe they were just aware of so many people longing for the LCD2 of old. But whatever the reson, I do like seeing them breath new life into the more affordable end of the LCD line-up with their newly released LCD2 Classic.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 03, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

One of a nice handfull of $500ish planar magnetic headphones at the show, I was impressed with the Advanced Alpha at CanJam@RMAF last October. In my report I said:

Maybe it was just the show conditions, or maybe I was just in the right mood, but holy smoke these sounded really good to me on first listen. I've been wrong at shows before so don't take this as gospel, but I sure liked these Advanced planar magnetic cans.

Well, time to find out if we can trust my ears at shows.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Jan 27, 2018  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Doing audio production on a budget? Want something that sounds good? Feeling a little overwhelmed worrying about finding that one good sounding and durable needle in the haystack of crappy sounding cheap headphones that's going to break the first time it gets thrown in you backpack? Read on!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 24, 2017  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Headphone manufacturers pay attention: If you want to build a high-end headphone, this is the way to do it.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 16, 2017  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

For now it's sufficient to state that the Sennheiser HD 600 and HD 650 are probably the most highly regarded enthusiast headphone in the world, and I highly recommend both. The HD 650 is a bit too warm sounding for me (just a bit), and the HD 600 is my favorite of the two. Let's see if the HD 660 S can continue the legend!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 08, 2017  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Not long ago I wrote enthusiastically about the Bose SoundWear Companion neck-worn speaker. It was my first experience with such a device and it was, and continues to be, a very pleasant one. Way better than I expected. So, I figured I should look into some of the other options for this new type of device.

JBL was kind enough to send me their Soundgear—a $100 less expensive alternative to the Bose. Having experience only one other device of this type, it's probably best just to compare and contrast the JBL directly with the Bose for this review.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 04, 2017  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

And BOOM! Acoustic Research, a brand long recognised amongst audio enthusiasts, shows up with their new planar magnetic AR-H1 at CanJam at RMAF 2017. Color me surprised!

Herb Reichert  |  Nov 28, 2017  |  8 comments
I spend my days comparing cartridges and speaker stands, arguing about imaging and microphone placement, speculating about DAC filters, and lately, sometimes, very secretly listening to headphones connected not to commercially available headphone amplifiers but directly to the outputs of basic tubed and solid-state power amplifiers. No person in his right mind would or should try this—it's too easy to destroy a pair of delicate, expensive headphones. But for me, it's been worth the risk.
John Atkinson  |  Nov 20, 2017  |  18 comments
Headphone listening has always been an important part of my audiophile life. In recent years I've been using at home Audeze's large, open-back, circumaural LCD-X headphones, which I bought after reviewing them for the March 2014 issue; and a pair of small Ultimate Ears 18 Pro in-ear monitors, which provide much better isolation on my subway commute to Stereophile's offices in Manhattan. I was intrigued by Audeze's iSine in-ear models, which were introduced in November 2016 and are unique in using planar-magnetic drive-units mounted outside the ear. I thought about reviewing a pair of the affordable iSines, but before I could get around to it, I heard that Audeze was to launch a cost-no-object version, the LCDi4, priced at a substantial $2495/pair. Aspiration got the better of frugality, and I asked for a pair to review.
Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 17, 2017  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

I'll admit feeling the MrSpeakers Aeon Flow Closed look a bit alien to my eyes when first I saw it. Now that it's been on my desk for a few months I find it quite appealing. Not so much for it's looks—don't get me wrong, I quite like the look—but more because I've come to appreciate the comfort of them. No surprises when the Aeon Flow Open showed up...they were right at home on my head. Good thing too, they'll be spending a lot of time there.

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