Headphone Reviews

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Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 17, 2012  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

One look at the Sennheiser HD 800 and it's quite obvious that this headphone is in a class of one. Seemingly as much architecture and structural engineering as it is audio, this headphone is a technological marvel and delivers incredibly accurate audio fidelity.

It's nearly perfect ... nearly.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 13, 2012  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Generally speaking, my teenage daughter couldn't care less about headphones. But when I brought home a pair of purple Philips Citiscape Downtown headphones, she was almost breathless as she said, "Oh dad! Purple is my favorite color. Those are so cool!" Later, I peeked into her room; she was laying on her bed, knees up with legs crossed, one foot happily tapping the air.

It was with both pleasure and dismay that I realized I had just more fully enabled her connection to Justin Bieber.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 08, 2012  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Like most people upon first hearing the Audez'e LCD-3 at last year's CanJam at RMAF, I was struck by the quicker sound of the new planar magnetic headphone over its predecessor, the LCD-2 Rev. 2. Definitely a step in the right direction. Then they started shipping ...

... and all hell seemed to break loose.

John Marks  |  Dec 20, 2011  |  5 comments
I've been reading a fascinating book, Leonard Shlain's The Alphabet Versus the Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image (New York: Viking, 1998). Shlain's thesis is that the invention of the alphabet was the cause of immense changes in primitive society, upsetting previously widespread norms of gender equality and horizontal (rather than hierarchical) social relations in general.
Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 11, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Seems like every other day a new celebrity headphone comes out. And they're not cheap! Three hundred dollars used to buy you near-world class headphones. How come there's so much bling in headphones these days? How come they're so expensive? How the heck did we get here?

And more importantly, do these headphones sound any good?

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 05, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

With about 27% of the population over age 50, and roughly 30% of all headphone purchases influenced by celebrity endorsement, I can understand why Koss turned away from the heavy competition for the younger generation's wallet and focussed their attention on the baby boomers with the introduction of their Tony Bennett headphones. Personally I prefer Tony Bennett to Dr. Dre, Ludacris, and 50 Cent, but I'm not sure the geriatric headphone buyers are really part of the 30% of purchasers who are influenced by celebrity endorsement.

Let's see how they sound.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 27, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Call me out of touch with pop-culture, but I had no idea what the "True Blood" referred to on V-MODA's V-80 True Blood headphone. A quick Google and I know we have a new kind of celebrity headphone, one endorsed by a T.V. show about vampires. Fine with me because ...

... these headphones are AWESOME!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 20, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

When I first saw the Monster Beats by Dr. Dre Solo ($199 MSRP) I thought they might be the most beautiful headphones I’d ever seen. The fit and finish is stellar; the styling superb; they fold beautifully; the cable is pure sex; they’re comfortable … the Solos are just gorgeous. At the time I thought, “These may be the headphone of the year!”

Except for one little thing …

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 18, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

I've got an open invitation to visit Skullcandy's headphone R&D labs in Park City Utah ... and I'll be taking them up on it sometime soon. Why? Because I want to see what they're doing that let them build a few darn good sounding headphones lately.

The Mix Master is one of them.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 15, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Quincy Jones has it going on, and I liked their higher-end Quincy Jones Q701 when I reviewed it a while ago. But now we come to a very small, sealed portable headphone, the Quincy Jones Q460.

Let's see how it does.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 11, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Bob Marley's "Exodus" ... wow, what a great album. I must have heard it a thousand times. It's a total classic. Prior to receiving these, I wondered skeptically if Bob Marley "Exodus" the headphone would be a classic. Time will tell ...

... but I think they're off to a good start.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 07, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

At the bottom end of the Soul by Ludacris headphone line is the SL100. I was impressed by the more expensive SL150, and hopeful for another good showing here.

Um ... didn't quite work out.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 03, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

After spending time with the Beats by Dre Solo HD (high definition or heavily distorted, I'm not sure) it was a real pleasure to acquaint myself with the Soul by Ludacris SL150.

Surprisingly satisfying!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Oct 11, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

I'm making ready to head off to RMAF, but I certainly didn't want to shirk my duties measuring Stax headphones, and getting them back to their rightful owners.

Here we go ...

Tyll Hertsens  |  Oct 06, 2011  |  0 comments
This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

Editor's Note: This article was nearly complete when I read of Steve Jobs's death last night. I think the conclusions herein are telling of his passion for making "insanely great" products ... right down to the last detail.

A couple of weeks ago, Steve Guttenberg wrote an article on his Audiophiliac blog entitled, "The Worst-Sounding Audio Product." In it he "aimed [his] sights on the worst sounding product regularly used by millions of people:" the stock Apple iPod ear-bud headphones. There may be some truth in that, but he also said, "Apple is an amazingly innovative company, but it's incapable of selling a decent set of headphones under its own name."

With this, I'm going to have to disagree ...

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