Category Archives: Audio

Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro True Wireless Earphones Review – Redefining Bass

Welcome to my review of the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro True Wireless earphones. These has a recommended retail price of £139.99, although if you use the link at the bottom, these are currently available for £119.99.

Key Features

– Astria Coaxial Acoustic Architecture: A state-of-the-art design which integrates a customised Knowles balanced armature and an 11mm dynamic driver into a single body. Aligned direct-to-ear, Astria completely eliminates interference while producing harmonised treble and bass for jaw-dropping sound.
– In-Ear Studio Performance: Liberty 2 Pro is recommended by 10 Grammy Award winning producers. Sound is delivered at stadium-scale with impeccable depth and nuance.
– HearID Custom Sound: To ensure everyone gets a perfect listening experience, HearID intelligently analyses your unique hearing profile and creates a tailor-made sound setup just for your ears. Or take complete control of the sound with an adjustable EQ or 22 preset sound profiles.
– 32-Hour Playtime: Get 8 hours from a single charge and then another 4 full recharges from the charging case. The charging case recharges via fast-charge USB-C or wireless charging, and provides the earbuds with 2 hours of listening from a 10-minute charge.
– Quad-Microphone Calls: With 4 microphones and cVc 8.0 noise reduction, your voice is isolated and transmitted in high-clarity for a seamless hands-free experience.

Time Index for Video Review

0:00s Intro
0:54s What’s in The Box
2:08s Close-up on the Earphones
3:46s Companion App
5:01s Call Quality
6:16s Connectivity
6:37s Sound Quality
9:44s Latency
9:54s Conclusion

Video Review

Conclusion

One of the most dramatic wireless earphones I have heard for bass impact without ruining the treble and midrange. Highly recommended.

Useful Links

Latest pricing on the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro on Amazon

Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones review vs Razer Opus

Welcome to my review of the new Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones versus the Razer Opus Headphones. The Surface 2 retail for £239 and the Razer Opus £199.

The video below provides a detailed look at both. The time index is as follows –

0:00s Intro
0:45s Hard cases comparisons
1:19s Headphones folding comparison
1:48s In the case
3:10s Headphone design differences
4:36s Headphone functions & differences
9:42s Sound quality
13:48s Companion apps
16:12s Conclusion

Video Review

Useful Links

Razer Opus headphones on Amazon
Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones

HiFiMan Ananda-BT Bluetooth Headphones review – Wireless Headphones from the Future!

Welcome to my review of the HiFiMan Ananda-BT headphones that retail for $999.

HiFiMan claim that these are the best sounding bluetooth headphones in the world. I would say they are the headphones from the future!

Key Specifications

– Open back headphone design
– Planar Magnetic Drivers
– Impedance: 35 Ω
– Sensitivity: 103 dB
– Frequency range: 8 Hz – 55 kHz
– Weight: 495g with microphone, 460g without mic
– Charging time: 2:40 hours.
– Bluetooth Life: 10 hours

The HIFIMAN Ananda-BT is the bluetooth version of the successful Ananda. Inside the Ananda BT there is a balanced amplifier and an integrated 24-bit DAC. The connection between the receiver and source can be made via Bluetooth with the codecs SBC / AAC / AptX / AptX-HD or LDAC. You can also connect via USB-C cable with support of 24 bit and 192 kHz sampling frequency.

For communications, a microphone is included which makes the Ananda BT a high-end gaming solution as well as using it for conversations with your mobile phone. The headphone will last around 10 hours with charged battery when connected to Bluetooth and takes about 2.7 hours to fully charge. Connected to the USB-C cable, you can either only stream data, for example, to protect the battery of your laptop or smartphone, only charge when the Bluetooth connection is at the same time, or both at the same time.

Sound, the Ananda BT is astonishing. Find out more from my video review below.

Video Review

Conclusion

A stunning sounding headphone of top notch audio grade, and its bluetooth. Highly recommended.

Useful Links

HiFiMan Ananda-BT on Amazon

Razer Opus Headphones review – THX Certified ANC Bluetooth Headphones

Welcome to my review of the Razer Opus Headphones. These are THX Certified headphones with active noise cancellation and retail for £199.

Key Features

– THX® Certified Headphones
– Advanced active noise cancellation (ANC) technology
– Engineered for comfort
– Quick Attention Mode
– Auto Pause/Auto Play
– Drivers: 2 x 40mm dynamic drivers
– Weight: 265g
– Frequency response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz
– Microphones: 4 for hybrid active noise cancellation technology, 2 for voice chat
– Wearing style: Circumaural
– What’s inside: Headset, premium carry case, airplane adapter, 1.5m length 3.5mm analog cable, 30cm length USB-C to USB-C cable, USB-A to USB-C adapter
– Battery life: Up to 25 hours
– Bluetooth® Codecs: AAC & APTX, 4.2, A2DP, AVRCP, HFP

THX has created a headphone certification program to further define premium sound quality in the personal entertainment space. Developed to provide a reference headphone listening experience, the THX Headphone Certification Program gives special attention to frequency response, low distortion, and exceptional noise isolation.

Headphones are tuned to ensure high frequencies, vocals, and bass levels are well balanced. This ensures dialogue in movies and vocals in music are clear, while maintaining deep, impactful bass output that doesn’t overpower the listening experience.

THX makes sure your headphones can easily playback high-resolution content at increased volumes without introducing unwanted distortion artifacts.

Video Review

Conclusion

A surprising pair of headphones from Razer. Lovely balanced sound, good looking and reasonably priced.

Useful Links

Razer Opus headphones on Amazon

HiFiMan Deva Headphones Review – Bluetooth, Wired or USB

Welcome to my review of the HiFiMan Deva. The headphones retail for £299.

The HiFiMan Deva are a terrific value headphone. Featuring HiFiMan’s legendary planar magnetic drivers, with a 3.5mm balanced cable as the traditional way of connecting these to your amp or portable music player.

Then there is the bluetooth “Bluemini” module that clips on to the Deva headphones that enables connection over bluetooth with all the Hi-Res bluetooth codecs from APT-X HD and LDAC. If that wasn’t enough, you can use the BlueMini and connect via USB. To find out more of my thoughts on the HiFiMan Deva watch my video review below.

Video Review

Conclusion

A versatile headphone with super sounds. 3 different ways to connect to your music is a winner.

Useful Links

HiFiMan on Amazon

Fiio K5 Pro – Desktop Amp/DAC Review

Welcome to my review of the Fiio K5 Pro which retails for £149.

The Key Features

– High-performance DAC AK4493
– Gain control switch with gain levels: Low 0dB, Medium +6dB and High +10dB
– USB DAC: 768K/32Bit and native DSD decoding | USB decoding chip: XMOS XUF208
– Variety of inputs: Coaxial / Optical / RCA line-in
– Variety of outputs: 6.35mm (1/4 in.) headphone out / RCA line-out
– Extremely powerful headphone amplification for a total power output of up to 1.5 W under a 32Ω load, and up to 20Vpp at 300Ω

Video Review

Conclusion

A fantastic value desktop amp. Dynamic, punch with great clarity that can drive nearly all headphones available.

Useful Links

Fiio K5 Pro on Amazon

Razer Opus Wireless Headphones – THX Certified and Active Noise Cancelletion – Full Details

IMMERSE YOURSELF IN SOUND AND FORGET THE NOISE WITH THE RAZER OPUS.

Razer have just announced the launch of their Razer Opus Wireless THX ANC Headphones. The details include –

Escape into a world of THX® Certified audio with advanced active noise cancellation for a pure, uninterrupted listening experience.

“IRVINE, USA – Razer™, the leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, today announced the launch of the Razer Opus wireless headphones. With stunning THX® Certified audio and advanced hybrid Active Noise Cancellation, the Razer Opus delivers sound as the artists intended – pure, crisp and clear, without the background noise of daily life interfering with the experience.

With most streaming services now providing high quality audio, a set of headphones able to produce the detail and nuances of these high definition streams is essential. But the sounds of everyday life, from the background hum of the city to the hectic lifestyle of working from home with others around you, can intrude on the listening experience, spoiling your focus and the enjoyment of high-fidelity recordings.

The Razer Opus uses an Advanced Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) system to cancel out external noise, with four dedicated ANC microphones designed to accurately tune out a broad range of external frequencies, resulting in a cleaner, uninterrupted listening experience.

Whilst filtering out external noise is important, the quality of the audio reproduction is central to delivering rich, flawless sound. With this in mind, the Razer Opus has undergone hundreds of scientifically formulated tests to become THX Certified, ensuring the highest possible audio standards.

“Through close collaboration with the Opus design team, we were able to provide input throughout the development process,” said Peter Vasay, Head of THX Certification. “The result is a high-performance wireless headphone that delivers a rich, balanced soundstage, clear vocals, and deep impactful bass optimized for music, games, and movies.”

To achieve the stringent requirements for THX certification, fine details such as a frequency range and response must be capable of delivering clear, detailed vocals and deep impactful bass with zero distortion at high volumes. The result is a pair of headphones that delivers crystal clear audio with a broad, perfectly balanced soundscape.

“Even with our many years of experience in creating headsets for one of the most demanding audiences in the world, the design of the Razer Opus required us to rethink every detail,” said Alvin Cheung, Senior Vice President of Razer’s Peripherals Business Unit. “With the Razer Opus headphones, we are able to deliver a listening experience that will satisfy even the most discerning audiophile, in any environment.”

The Razer Opus’ low weight and plush leatherette foam ear cushions and headband provide a comfortable, pressure-point free fit for long periods of use. Each battery charge lasts up to 25 hours with ANC on, allowing users to enjoy a continued, uninterrupted high-quality sound experience while in a noisy environment.

With additional useful features such as the Quick Attention Mode when needing to hear the outside world and the optional 3.5mm analogue input for maximum device compatibility, the Razer Opus is one of the most versatile and adaptable ANC headphones available.

ABOUT THE RAZER OPUS:

– THX Certified – For clear vocals & dialog, no distortion, and great noise isolation
– Advanced ANC – Hybrid active noise cancellation with 4 dedicated ANC mics
– Crafted for Comfort – Plush leatherette foam ear cushions and headband
– Opus Mobile App – THX-tuned EQ presets, automatic settings, and battery status
– Quick Attention Mode – For situational awareness whenever you need it
– Auto Pause / Auto Play – For seamless media playback
– On-the-Go Design – Up to 25 hours with ANC on, 3.5mm jack, and carrying case
– Drivers: 2 x 40mm dynamic drivers
– Weight: 265g
– Frequency response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz
– Microphone: 4 for hybrid ANC, 2 for voice chat
– Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.2 & 3.5mm
– Codecs: AAC & APTX, 4.2, A2DP, AVRCP, HFP

PRICE & AVAILABILITY

$199.99 USD / €209.99 MSRP

Available through Razer.com, RazerStores, and authorized online retailers throughout North America, Europe, China, and Asia Pacific.

HiFiMan Jade II Electrostatic Headphones Review

Welcome to my review of the HiFiMan Jade 2 Electrostatic headphones and amp combo. The combined retail price of the headphones and amp are $2,500, but these can be bought separately.

Key Features/Specifications

– Electrostatic speed and details that reach each from the deepest lows all the way to 90KHz
– Nanotech Driver that is less than 0.001mm
– Nano Particle thick dust cover for near perfect sound transmission
– Open-Back Design for an expanded, more intimately enveloping sound stage with natural sonics that place the listener in the best seat in the house.
– Frequency Response : 7Hz-90kHz
– Bias Voltage : 550V-650V
– Weight : 365g (12.9oz)
Amplifier :
– Weight : 6.5kg (14.3lb)

Music tracks used for this review along with my thoughts.

Florian Christel, Encore– classical genre, great timbre. Piano feels as the keys being pressed in front of you , timing is fast & energetic

Ola Gjeilo , Luminous Night – voices are superb with a beautiful tone.

Bach Sonata for Viola da Gamba & Harpsichord No. 3 in G Minor – loved the entire presentation and instrument separation.

Bee Gees, Heart like Mine , vocals are heavenly, picked up tone of the artists so well.

Sarah McLachlan, Ice – her voice & guitar. again picks up her lovely tone and guitar So moving.

Jewel, Enter from the East – pick up the nuances in the tracks. Little details. I could listen to this track so many times.

Bruce Springsteen, Paradise – the husky vocals/voice really well produced.

Lucinda Williams , You can’t rule me – feels like the amp could do with more power, bit harsh on the vocals.

Dua Lipa , Hallucinate, good mid bass, lacking sub bass.

Video Review

Conclusion

Expressive, delightful sounding electrostatic headphones which would benefit from an even more powerful electrostatic amp.

Useful Links

Jade 2/Amp Combo on Amazon
HiFiMan Website

iFi Audio iSilencer+ v2 review

Welcome to my review of the iFi Audio iSilencer+ that retails for £49.Main features / key specifications– Active Noise Cancellation creates an equal but opposite signal to cancel background noise in the USB audio stream to enhance your audio.
– Reduces jitter and packet errors to provide clear, more dynamic sound. Music will seem clearer, more transparent and bass will be improved.
– Noise, RFI and EMI all reduced
– Re-balance the USB signal for less distortion and better audio.
– Simply plug directly into the USB port of your computer, compatible with high speed USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 devices
– The iSilencer+ is an upgrade from the iSilencer3.0, with upgraded components, better sonic improvement, and comes in 3 versions – USB A to USB A, USB C to USB A, and USB C to USB C.
– In addition to improving the audio quality, the USB C to A iSilencer+ can be used as a converter adaptor.
– Military grade printed circuit with audiophile components.
– Weight 7g.
– Dimensions 50 x 20 x 9mm.The iFi Audio Silencer+ is a clever product that fixes a common problem of noise interference by our computers and phones. When I first received the iSilencer+, I tried it with my Google Pixel 4 XL phone that was nearby. The difference using the adapter was noticeable immediately. It was like a free audio upgrade to my headphones. I then used it on my computer with similar results. It was like a veil was lifted from the music, producing a more engaging, clearer sound. The music was more dynamic, with better phasing and soundstage. Treble, mid range and bass were all improved.Video Review

ConclusionThe difference to the sound by this low cost adapter is staggering. Highly recommended.Useful LinksThe iFi iSilencer comes in three versions. Link to all versions on Amazon – click HERE.

OnePlus 8 Pro review – detailed 19 mins review incl camera, audio & more

Welcome to my OnePlus 8 Pro review. In this review I cover off my thoughts on the phone, how it compares to my iPhone 11 Pro and Pixel 4 XL, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra.

As the video is 19 mins long, I have created a time index as noted below.

0:00 – Introduction
3:17 – Hardware thoughts
9:18 – Camera with sample footage
13:10 – Camera vs Samsung S20 Ultra
13:47 – Front camera & macro
14:37 – Finger print sensor & face unlock
14:50- Audio part 2 loudspeaker
15:11 – TPU case & screen protectors
15:41 – Camera night mode vs iPhone 11 Pro & Pixel 4 XL
17:12 – Camera vs iPhone 11 Pro vs Pixel 4 XL summary
18:35 – Final thoughts & details on next phone

Video Review

Conclusion

The OnePlus 8 Pro is an incredible phone and highly recommended.

Useful links to more info & latest pricing of gear mentioned in the review

OnePlus 8 Pro on Amazon
Babyliss Hair Cutting Kit for Men on Amazon
Fiio BTR5 on Amazon
Fiio FH7 on Amazon
iFi hip dac on Amazon
iBass dc-02 on Amazon