Category Archives: Headphone

Bose Quietcomfort 35 II Wireless Headphones Review – The new headphones from Bose with Google Assistant

Welcome to my review of the Bose Quietcomfort 35 II headphones.

These are the new flagship headphones from Bose which feature Google Assistant.

Key Features

– QuietComfort 35 wireless headphones II are engineered with world-class noise cancellation.
– With the Google Assistant built in, you can play music, receive texts and get answers without glancing at your phone.
– If you’re not a Google user, don’t worry. You can use the Action button to adjust your level of noise cancellation between three settings.
– You can still use Siri or Bixby via the traditional control button on the other headphone cup.
– 20 hours battery life.
– 15 min charge gives 2.5 hours use.
– Voice prompts
– Clear Calls
– Volume optimised EQ

The are one of the first headphones to feature Google Assistant built-in. With a dedicated action button you can literally control your phone without ever looking at the screen. I tested this extensively and it worked well. A WhatsApp message arrived. A voice inside the headphones announces a new WhatsApp message. You then have the option to hear the message read out, and then have the option to reply. Your dictated reply is read out to you. You confirm its ok to send.

Now if you are on iOS, you can change the action button to control the 3 levels of noise cancellation. High, low or off. You can also change this setting in the Bose Connect app. The Bose Connect app also updates the firmware, and gives you access to the instructions, Google Assistant setup and other options.

The noise cancellation is phenomenal. The best. I really like the easy to use controls on the headphone cups. The music quality is good too. Voices are clear in calls. Just one negative. I noticed on YouTube videos the lips were marginally out of sync with the audio. This issue didn’t impact other services I tried like Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Now TV. 

These are mega comfortable to wear too.

Video Review

Conclusion

Another quality product from Bose. Recommended.

More info and latest pricing on Amazon UK – Click HERE.

PS. I have the new Beats 3 Wireless headphones review coming next along with the new Sennheiser HD 4.30, and then a 3 way comparison.

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Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Bone Conduction Bluetooth Headphones Review by Martyn

The Aftershohz Trekz Titanium Bone Conduction Bluetooth Sports Headphones with Microphone review by Martyn Dix.

I have been a keen weekend cyclist for around 10 years now and for all of that time I have used BT ‘in ear’ earphones of different makes.

However this is (quite rightly) frowned upon by most as you cannot hear all that is going on around you. I had a near miss a week or so back, and although it wasn’t my fault, it wasn’t helped by the fact I wasn’t fully aware of my suroundings.

Then after a buying trip to my local Bike shop, I found they were selling ‘Bone Conductive Headphones’. The make they had in stock was the Aftershokx Trekz Titanium although there are a few other brands available too.

Key Features

– Bone conduction technology delivers music through your cheekbones, ensuring ears remain completely open to hear ambient sounds
– Titanium wraparound headband is lightweight and flexible for durability and portability
– OpenFit™ design ensures maximum situational awareness and comfort during long-term wear
– PremiumPitch+™ guarantees a premium audio experience, including wide dynamic range and rich bass
– Wireless Bluetooth® 4.1 connectivity and convenient multipoint pairing
– LeakSlayer™ technology significantly reduces natural sound leakage
– IP55 certified to repel sweat, dust and moisture, from workouts to wicked weather
– Enjoy six hours of continuous music + calls on a single charge
– EQ presets boost bass and reduce vibration on the go
– Dual noise canceling microphones exclude surrounding noise, effectively enhancing speech
– Audrey Says™ voice prompts guide users through power, pair, play and talk
– Frequency response: 20Hz~20KHz
– Sensitivity: 100 ± 3dB
– Microphone: -40dB ± 3dB
– Bluetooth version: v4.1
– Compatible profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HSP, HFP
– Wireless range: 33 ft (10m)
– Battery: rechargeable lithium ion, Continuous play: 6 hours,Standby time: 10 days
– Charge in: 1.5 hours
– Weight: 1.27 oz (36g)

Research seemed to say that this make was the best, so I paid the £110 which seems to be the average price.

One week on and the odd feeling of being able to hear Podcasts AND the normal sounds around me has become normal. It did take me a few hours to get used to the feeling of the headset being worn as it sort of clamps around the back of the head with the bone condutive speaker part sitting just forward of the ear.

BT pairing was as easy as any other headphone I have used, and so far I have not had any drop outs or disconnections in one weeks heavy use.

Battery life is well up to what is claimed of 6 hours Music + Calls.
There is the usual BT controls for taking calls and skipping music etc via the button on the left speaker.

Volume controls are by two buttons on the underside of the right battery case. They too have extra control functions if pressed in different ways.

Comfort is fine. They do take some getting used to but after the 1st few hours I had a job to remember they were on my head esspecialy as you dont loose all sounds around you.

Sound quality is obviously not HiFi but for voice calls and listening to podcasts they are fine. I spend long hours taking and making voice calls and no one said they knoticed a great difference in hearing me.

Music is ‘okay’ not fantasic but fine for back ground listening while out and about. If they are at full volume there is a thump thump on the bones in your head that they sit on. This is rather annoying and a discomfort. There are two equalising settings which are there to allow for adjusting the sound should you wish to use them in an area such as a plane or train and earplugs are supplied for you to use. This effectivly turns them into ‘in ear’ type listening headphones. This is not something I would personaly use them for but the option is offered.

The box comes with a usb to mini usb charge lead and full easy to understand instructions. So if you work in an office, run, cycle or require to be able to hear whats going on around you then these are great.

They are not a gimic and need to be tried out properly before dismissing them. Helpfully most stockists have a purpose demo display where you can try wearing them out.

I would definitely recommend them and at £110 they are a bit pricey for some, but they are very well made with a serious quality feel to them. They come in two sizes Adult and Child. As the unit is flexable it should always fit.

Go and try them out. I found them for sale at a Motorway services phone accesories shop for the same price which I guess is because you are no longer allowed to use ‘in ear’ phones while driving.If anyone wishes to ask me any questions then contact Gavin to pass on.

——————

My thanks to Martyn Dix for his review on the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Bone Conduction Bluetooth Headphones.

For more information and the latest pricing on Amazon – click HERE.

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Optoma NuForce BE2 Wireless Earphones Review – IPX5 and with patented SpinFit Eartips

Optoma NuForce BE2 Wireless Earphones Review. These are the latest earphones from Optoma that feature patented SpinFit eartips and are IPX5.

Key Features

– 10 hour continuous playback
– Charge time 2.5 hours
– IPX5 – weather resistant, ensuring protection from rain and sweat
– Bluetooth magnetic headphones
– Patented Spinfit Twin Blade ear pads for better support and quality
– AAC support for iPhone, iPad and Mac
– Built in mic – for calls, Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant

The Optoma NuForce BE2 is everything you would want in a wireless earphone. Lightweight, comfortable and ideal for using whilst working out. The cable is great as it is slightly weighted to stop it bouncing all over the place during workouts. The SpinFit eartips stay in your ears. I even tried shaking my head and they stayed in place.

The biggest surprise was the sound quality. The BE2’s are not bass heavy, in fact they are slightly bass light but in a good way as the midrange and treble shine with these. They had good clarity in the mid and treble range and with a reasonable amount of separation. The BE2’s are really enjoyable to listen to your music.

All the other controls worked as expected and being IPX5 adds to the attraction and usefulness.

Video Review

Conclusion

The Optoma NuForce BE2 is a great sounding, IPX5 wireless earphone that are highly recommended. Available from Amazon

LG V20 vs ZTE Axon 7 – Audio Comparison – With guest Steve Litchfield 


Earlier today, Steve Litchfield from The Phones Show compared the audio quality from the ZTE Axon 7 and LG V20. 

So without further ado, see what we both had to say about the audio centric phones. 

Video Review

You can find links to all of Steve’s websites and , podcasts and YouTube channel, by clicking HERE.

VE Monk Plus Headphones Review – Audiophile Grade for less than £10

Welcome to my review of the VE Monk Plus Headphones. The Monk Plus headphones cost currently on Amazon just £8.49. 

Yet these are causing a stir amongst audiophiles due to their incredible audio quality versus unbelievable price. They are 64 ohms and have a sensitivity of 116db. So these will work well from an iPhone, Samsung or other android phone to a dedicated DAP. 

So are these truly unbelievable or is this a load of nonsense. Find out below in my review. 

Video Review 


The Best Headphones to use with the LG V30, LG V20 & LG G6 Quad DAC Smartphones 

So what are the best headphones  to use with the LG V20 and LG G6 Quad DAC that don’t cost a fortune?

Well check out my video below for more insights. 

Video Review 




More information on all the headphones discussed along with the latest deals –

Sennheiser Momentum In Ear – http://amzn.to/2wcj56O

Sony MDR-100 AAP – http://amzn.to/2vcpHot

Sennheiser HD598 – http://amzn.to/2uOBDuc

Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250 ohm – http://amzn.to/2wchLk2

Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro 250 ohm – http://amzn.to/2wc7JQb

Beats Studio Wireless Headphones Review 2017


The Beats Studio Wireless Headphones are the flagship headphone from Beats and Apple. 

Key Features 

– Beats Acoustic Engine uses precision sound to deliver music the way artists want it to be heard.

– Rechargeable battery lasts 12 hours whilst connected through Bluetooth and up to 20 hours when plugged into your device.

– Adaptive Noise Cancelling blocks out the world in two modes.

– Battery fuel gauge lets you know how much power is left.

– Available in 8 colours. 

– Mic and controls built into ear cup gives you solid playback control, plus crystal-clear hands-free calling on your iPhone.

– Folds to a compact size and then fits in hard case which is included. 

Available from Amazon UK.

Video Review 

Even E1 – In Ear Headphones Review – The headphone with a hearing test built in for the bespoke sound EQ


Even E1 in ear headphones review. Welcome to my review of the unique Even E1 in ear headphones. The headphones perform a short hearing test to create a bespoke EarPrint sound EQ just for your ears. 
Key Features 

– EarPrint Technology – quick and easy hearing test that tunes music to fit your hearing, so you never skip a beat or miss a note again. Stored on your device, you can enjoy music from any source – any time. 
– Beautifully Made and Comfortable Enough to Wear All Day, Anytime. 
– Interchangeable earphone tips for a perfect fit; Two-toned cables to easily differentiate left from right; Tangle-resistant, lightweight nylon cords.
– 10mm dynamic drivers and a unique acoustic shell design
– Headphone Jack: 3.5mm
– Impedance: 32 Ohms
– Microphone
– Battery: Lithium Ion
– 12 hours continuous play
– Weight: 22g
– Frequency Range: 20-20,000 Hz
– Total Harmonic Distortion: <3%
– Sound Pressure Level: 110+/-2db
– Controls: Volume, Play, Pause, Call Controls
– Remote: Inline

Video Review 

Main Review 

When you first turn in the headphones, a voice assistant takes you through a hearing test to create your own EarPrint. This bespoke sound EQ can be turned in or off. It also means the module needs charging but this does provide over 10 hours usage. The EarPrint EQ created for my ears provided more bass, clear vocals and midrange. The difference was dramatic but it was noticeable. 

Conclusion 

The Even E1 are a unique pair of headphones. The bespoke sound EQ will ensure you get the best sound for your ears. Available from Selfridges.

Aukey Bluetooth Wireless Headphones – £25 budget – My Review

Aukey Bluetooth Wireless Headphones review. Just under £25 and a pair of wireless headphones. So just how good are these. Well let’s take a look at the key features.

Key Features 

– Comfortable, noise-isolating in-ear headphones with APT-X technology. 3 EQ sound settings. – Magnetically clip together for convenient and secure carry around your neck.
– Bluetooth 4.1, two devices simultaneous connections
– Built in remote for managing audio playback & calls, volume controls, multi-function button, and built-in 6th generation cVc noise-cancelling microphone
– Comfortable ear-tips (in three sizes) provide a smooth seal for your ears, isolating you from external noise
– Package Contents: AUKEY EP-B40 Magnetic Wireless Earbuds, Micro-USB Cable, Three Pairs of Ear-Tips, Three Pairs of In-Ear Ear-hooks, Carrying Pouch, User Manual, 24-Month Warranty Card
– BT 4.1, A2DP, AVRCP, HSP, HFP, aptX
– Charging Time: 1.5 hours
– Up to 8 hours playback
– Battery Type: Li-Polymer (2 x 60mAh)
– Operating Range: Up to 10m / 33ft
– Weight: 13g

Video Review 

Main Review 

£25, yes £25 for these headphones. Surely they won’t sound good. Well actually they punch above their price easily and have a reasonable bass punch, with clear mids and vocals. With the included ear clips these also become ideal for using while moving around. Personally, I was happy wearing them without ear clips.  These are really enjoyable to use. They are not the ultimate in audio quality but definitely as good as many headphones costing twice as much.

They also feature an EQ Switch gives you a choice of three sound signatures- treble, bass, and vocals. So if you want to listen to a podcast the vocal mode is ideal.

As these are bluetooth Headphones you don’t need to worry about a headphone jack. So whether you have an Echo Dot, iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Android Phone or Tablet, a Samsung S8, HTC U11, LG G6  or if you’re really unlucky a Windows Phone, these will work just fine.
For iOS users, these also have a Siri Wakeup option.  All you have to do is short press both volume buttons + & – while the earphone is in the standby mode, and siri is activated when a prompt tone is heard. Cool.

Conclusion 

One of the best budget Bluetooth headphones available.

Useful Links

Aukey Bluetooth headphones latest pricing on Amazon

Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT – Review – Best Bluetooth Headphone of 2017

Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT Review. £499 of world class technology providing hi-res bluetooth and USB Audio sound. These are pure digital headphones meaning there is no headphone jack. Actually there isn’t a DAC either.

The ATH-DSR9BT feature an exclusive “Pure Digital Drive” system keeps audio signal completely digital from source to driver for exceptionally pure sound. This is a first. A Dnote chipset controls driver amplitude directly with digital signals – no DAC converter required.

The Key Features / Specification

– Features Qualcomm aptX HD, aptX, AAC and SBC codecs, enabling wireless transmission with a resolution up to 24-bit/48kHz.
– 45mm True Motion Driver, with 4-core twisted OFC-7N voice coil and diaphragm with diamond-like carbon coating.
– Mic and volume/control switch are built into the earcup for convenient control of smartphones and other Bluetooth wireless devices / NFC touch pairing.
– Save up to “eight” Bluetooth wireless devices paired.
– LED indicators display pairing, charging status, battery level, and the codec currently in use.
– Heat-reactive soft foam earpads and an easily adjustable leather headband provide a comfortable fit with outstanding sound isolation
– Internal battery provides approximately 15 hours of continuous use (1000 hours on standby) on a full charge
– Includes a 2.0 m (6.6′) USB cable, for charging and Hi-Res Audio playback, and hard carrying case
Frequency Response – 5 to 45,000 Hz / Sensitivity – 97 ohms / Impedance – 38 ohms / Weight – 310g
– Microphone -condenser/Sensitivity -44 dB (1V/Pa a 1 kHz)/Frequency Response 50 – 4,000Hz /omnidirectional
– Input Jack: Micro USB Type B
– Communication System: Bluetooth Version 4.2 / Bluetooth Specification Power Class 2
– Maximum Communication Range: Line of sight – approx. 10 m (33′) / Profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP

As you can see from the key features and specifications noted above, these ATH-DSR9BT are certainly something special and in terms of absolute sound quality are the best so far in 2017. However, I personally did not like them, so check out my review below to find out the incredible highs and disappointing lows.

The headphones were tested using an iPhone 7 Plus (bluetooth AAC), LG G6 (APT-X HD, USB Audio using USB Audio Player Pro & Tidal), MacBook Pro (USB Audio and APT-X).

The Audio Review

Useful Links

More information on the Audio Technica DSR9BT Headphone and latest deals on Amazon UK
More information and the latest deals on Audio Technica headphones on Amazon UK.
Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT – First Impressions and Unboxing

Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT – 24bit Hi-Res Bluetooth & USB Headphones – First Impressions


Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT First Impressions and Unboxing. The ATH-DSR9BT are over-ear wireless headphones that feature a lot of crazy bluetooth technology to deliver 24bit hi resolution sound. Plus they connect via USB for a true digital connection. No headphone jack required! Actually there isn’t a headphone jack. These are true digital headphones through and through.

So as an example with my Mac or PC they connect via a USB cable with a huge frequency range as shown below. With my LG G6 they can also connect via the USB connection or via Bluetooth APT-X HD (24bit/96) Hi Resolution bluetooth.

The Key Features / Specification

– The ATH-DSR9BT feature an exclusive “Pure Digital Drive” system keeps audio signal completely digital from source to driver for exceptionally pure sound. This is a first.

– Dnote chipset controls driver amplitude directly with digital signals – no D/A converter required.

– Features Qualcomm aptX HD, aptX, AAC and SBC codecs, enabling wireless transmission with a resolution up to 24-bit/48kHz.

– 45mm True Motion Driver, with 4-core twisted OFC-7N voice coil and diaphragm with diamond-like carbon coating.

– Mic and volume/control switch are built into the earcup for convenient control of smartphones and other Bluetooth wireless devices / NFC touch pairing.

– Save up to “eight” Bluetooth wireless devices paired.

– LED indicators display pairing, charging status, battery level, and the codec currently in use.

– Heat-reactive soft foam earpads and an easily adjustable leather headband provide a comfortable fit with outstanding sound isolation

– Internal battery provides approximately 15 hours of continuous use (1000 hours on standby) on a full charge

– Includes a 2.0 m (6.6′) USB cable, for charging and Hi-Res Audio playback, and hard carrying case

Frequency Response – 5 to 45,000 Hz / Sensitivity – 97 ohms / Impedance – 38 ohms / Weight – 310g

– Microphone -condenser/Sensitivity -44 dB (1V/Pa a 1 kHz)/Frequency Response 50 – 4,000Hz /omnidirectional

– Input Jack: Micro USB Type B

– Communication System: Bluetooth Version 4.2 / Bluetooth Specification Power Class 2

– Maximum Communication Range: Line of sight – approx. 10 m (33′) / Profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP

First Impressions and Unboxing

As you can see from the key features and specifications noted above, these ATH-DSR9BT are certainly something special and I can’t wait to spend more time with these and share my findings both negative and positive. And there are both.

Useful Links

More information on the Audio Technica DSR9BT Headphone and latest deals on Amazon UK
More information and the latest deals on Audio Technica headphones on Amazon UK.

Moshi releases its new Vortex Air Bluetooth Headphones 


Moshi Vortex Air Bluetooth headphones retail for £110. 

With these headphones you can enjoy and share your favourite tunes with Moshi’s Vortex Air wireless earbuds. Compatible with both iOS and Android devices, these high quality earphones give you 8 hours of playtime so you can listen to tracks and answer calls throughout the day, all on a single charge.

 Vortex Air also lets you share good times with a friend thanks to Moshi’s DJ4two™ feature which streams music to a second Moshi headset. Utilising the same drivers and proprietary RigidBody™ steel housing as Vortex, Vortex Air retains the beloved sonic signature of its wired counterpart featuring deep articulate bass without distortion.

 The details:-

· The drive units consist of high-definition Neodymium drivers housed in sintered steel alloy to minimise cavity-induced colouration.

· This design not only vastly improves low frequency extension, but also renders silky smooth highs.

· Vortex Air comes with 3 different sizes of hybrid-injection silicone ear tips as well as a set of memory foam ear tips that can effectively block out external noise while providing hours of comfortable listening.

· Also included is a convenient magnetic clip to secure Vortex Air in place.

Key specification – 

– Sensitivity 100 +/- 3db
– Impedance 18ohm
– Passive noise isolation up to 23db
– 3 Button in Line remote
– Bluetooth 4.1
– Profiles HSP v1.2, HFP v1.6, A2DP v1.3, AVRCP v1.5
– Paired up to 8 devices
– Microphone MEMS
– Microphone sensitivity-39dBV/PA @ 1kHz
– Battery 100mAh
– Talk Time/Music up to 8 hours @ 50% volume
– 100 hours standby time
– 2 hours to charge using micro USB port

Moshi’ products also include a larger range of headphones, the Arcus multi function backpack, Moshi Spatia which is a wireless airplay sound system that looks rather stylish and a range of USB C cables and adapters. 

More info & stockist details – Moshi

Moshi products on Amazon UK

Sennheiser Momentum In Ear Headphones – Review

Key Specifications

– Custom machined stainless steel acoustic pipes for more accurate sound
– High quality dynamic speaker system and enhanced attenuation of ambient noise
– Personalised fit directly into the ear canals
– Available in two variants with a three button in-line remote with an integrated mic optimised for either – Apple iOS or Samsung Galaxy smart devices
– Convenient high carrying case included
– Wearing Style Ear canal
– Transducer Principle Dynamic
– Frequency Response 15 – 22,000 Hz
– Impedance 18 Ohm
– Sound Pressure Level (SPL) 118 dB
– Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) < 0.5%
– Cable Length 1.3 m 1.3 m
– Mic Pick-up Pattern Omni-directional
– In the Box – Ear-adapter set (XS, S, M, L) / Premium carrying case

Video Review

Useful Links

Latest pricing & more info on Sennheiser Momentum In Ear Headphones

Optoma NuForce NE800M In Ear Headphones – review

Key Specifications

– Frequency response 10Hz – 40kHz
– Sensitivity 113dB+/-3dB
– Cable length 1.37 M
– Driver unit 8.6mm
– Impedance 16 Ohms
– Maximum input sound level 120dB S.P.L
– Connections input 3.5mm (4-pole stereo)
– Connections output 8.6mm driver Titanium coated diaphragm
– Weight 18g
In the Box – Carry case, 3x pairs of single silicone earbuds (sizes S, M, L), 2x pairs of Comply™ earbuds (sizes M, L)

Video Review

Useful Links

More info & latest pricing on the NuForce NE800M In Ear Headphones

Audeze iSine 20 – In Ear Planar Magnetic headphones – Review of the £599 Hi-Tech Magic

The Audeze iSine 20 are a world first in ear planar magnetic headphones. Audeze has loads of patents on these headphones too. There are also the world’s first headphone to include a lightning cable with an in built 24 bit DAC/Amp for iOS users, apart from the included standard 3.5mm cable.

The iSINE 20 features key specifications –

– Planar magnetic drivers for better dynamics and frequency response
– Premium materials for style and durability
– Sleek contemporary design by DesignWorksUSA a BMW group company
– Ear hooks and Earlocks for long listening comfortability
– Fluxor magnetic arrays
– Uniforce diaphragms
– 1.5m audio cable, 1/8” stereo plug input to 2-pin plug output
– 1.5m Cipher cable, Lightning plug input to 2-pin plug output
– Style In-ear, universal fit
– Transducer type Planar magnetic, semi-open
– Magnetic structure Fluxor
– Magnet type High-grade neodymium
– Diaphragm type Ultra-thin Uniforce
– Transducer size 30mm
– Maximum power handling 3W
– Maximum SPL >120dB
– Frequency response 10Hz – 50kHz
– THD <0.1% @ 100dB
– Impedance 24 ohms
– Cable type non-microphonic
– Dimension 31mm x 35mm
– Weight 20g without cable

The new iSINE Series barely weighs 20 grams, contains Audeze exclusive patented technology including power enhancing Fluxor Magnets that nearly double the magnetic driving force on the large, ultra-thin diaphragms with patented Uniforce voice-coil technology that delivers the most accurate in-ear headphones experience ever. The distortion (THD) is less the 0.1% overall even at high volumes, an amazing achievement for in-ear headphone designs.

For iOS users, there is the world’s first 24-bit Lightning cable for higher-resolution sound. Audeze’s award-winning CIPHER Lightning cable specially optimized for the iSINE Series, delivers 24-bit digital audio from iPhone/iPad/IPod to the headphones. The CIPHER cable contains a high-quality inline amplifier, digital-to-analog converter, and DSP. With the powerful DSP capabilities of the Cipher cable, the iSINE headphones deliver a vivid, almost like-you’re-there experience. Customize the sound in real-time with the Audeze iOS App. It features two presets and a 10-band equalizer that changes EQ in real time. Refine the bass levels and tamp down the highs on peaky recordings you still love to hear. The two EQ presets travel with the cable when switching devices.

So now sit back, enjoy my unboxing and then full review of these beast of a headphone.

Useful Links

More info & latest pricing on the Audeze iSine 10 and Audeze iSine 20