Tyll Hertsens Blog

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Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 27, 2013  |  8 comments
Today, February 27, 1PM to 5PM EST, I will be posting an "Ask Me Anything" thread. Please feel free to join me in the fray!

You can find the thread here.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 25, 2013  |  65 comments
Alrighty then, I've listened for hours and hours, read dozens of threads, talked with experts on the phone, and I'm now ready to wrap this thing up.

Don't expect a miracle.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 19, 2013  |  37 comments

Wanting to spend a lot of time listening to headphone cables, I decided to return to the task of programming my amp measurement routine. Damn, can't listen and program at the same time.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 08, 2013  |  50 comments

I've been avoiding this for quite a while now. I knew it wouldn't show a damn thing. Puts me in a pickle because I can hear differences between cables...I'm pretty sure. Ah well, you gotta throw the objectivists a bone every now and then.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Feb 06, 2013  |  27 comments

It's the middle of winter here in Montana. I can tell because the deer come out of the mountains and start living in the neighborhood. There's a whole herd that live in the neighbor's back yard under two large Fir trees. Fortunately they're quiet, so there's no problems measuring headphones.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Dec 05, 2012  |  57 comments

Not much in the way of amp measurements this month, but got a fair few headphones on the list. And a bit of a tease on some upcoming reviews.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 27, 2012  |  9 comments

I've raised teenagers. It's not an easy time. First jobs; getting a driver's license; romance; challenging schoolwork--a heady mix indeed. Teens try to exercise control of the world they find themselves in...but often aren't quite well enough positioned or equipped. The magic bullet, it seems to me, is finding an engaging project that teens can throw themselves into and call their own. One that can make a few bucks is a big bonus.

Here's one such success story...

Tyll Hertsens  |  Nov 05, 2012  |  39 comments

The update is a little late this month because I just had to get something done. And it's very, very cool!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Oct 14, 2012  |  9 comments
Your thoughts in the comments of on the future of headphones were great, and opened my mind to new ideas. The panel conversation, however, went in another very interesting direction.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Oct 11, 2012  |  29 comments

I'm in Riverton, WY having just motorcycled half way to Denver from Bozeman, and I've got a puzzling question that's been rattling around inside my helmet today. Jude asked me to participate in a panel discussion Sunday, the topic: "What is the future of headphones?"

I've got some thoughts, but I'd love for you to pitch in as well.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Oct 02, 2012  |  31 comments

Holy moly, it's October already. Some interesting stuff from the lab this month, and a little preview of some things to come!

Tyll Hertsens  |  Sep 11, 2012  |  169 comments

It's a funny thing how people organize themselves. Put a big bunch of us together, and we'll splinter off into smaller groups of like-minded people...who sometimes war against each other. While Head-Fi has remained the central square, it, too, contains sub-groups, and numerous factions have wholly split off into other forums.

And now, it seems, we have pirates in our midst.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Aug 26, 2012  |  36 comments

Woot! Good progress this month on the headphone amplifier measurement program. Lots of amps in, and the first glimpse of what the data will look like on paper. Not so many headphone measurements this time, but one maker's new headphones were quite disappointing.

And a secret revealed!

Steve Guttenberg  |  Aug 16, 2012  |  7 comments

Editors Note: Especially at this time when The Beatles music is beginning to be heard in public again, I find Steve Guttenberg's article on an important moment in John Lennon's personal audio experience touching and evocative. My ears will be listening to The Beatles music more richly as a result.

Let's hear about John's portable rig ...

Tyll Hertsens  |  Aug 07, 2012  |  22 comments
HeadRoom recently opened a retail storefront area in their Bozeman, Montana headquarters. It's not really an optimal city for drumming up a booming business selling headphones. I think they did it mostly because they want to figure exactly how to do a good job of selling headphones in a brick and mortar shop. You know, the physical layout, how to make displays people can easily use to demo headphones, what headphones sell well in that way, what sales people may need to know that's different from the phone and web sales they already know how to do quite well. I'm excited to see them exploring this direction ... but I've also heard of a couple of U.S. brick and mortar headphone stores that didn't work out.

Another Montana company (Vanns) recently opened a brick and mortar electronics store called "The ON Store", which is roughly modeled on Apple stores and sells headphones and personal audio stuff, as well as various other computers and electronics. Their idea is to go into the mid-size markets where Apple doesn't have a brick and mortar presence. Their first store is in the Missoula mall, and by the look of it, it seems like it might work. We all know Apple stores are doing fine, but they're another thing all together.

I'm pretty sure the InMotion personal gadget store in airports are doing quite well. I talked to the sales people at a few of these on my recent trip to New York and they all claimed to sell $300 headphones (Beats Studio) quite regularly. But an airport is a captive audience, and the imperative to buy a pair of headphones after sitting next to a screaming baby on the last flight may be higher than normal.

The question, it seems to me, is do people think they have a problem buying headphones on-line that can be solved by going to a store at which they can hear the headphones? Will people easily understand why they want and need a headphone store? If a headphone store is to be successful, people have to "get it" easily.

There are other questions as well: Will they listen in the store, and then go shop on-line for the cheapest price? Is the category "Headphone Store" too narrow? Besides headphones and headphone amps, what other products should be carried in such a store? I'm curious about your thoughts on these thing as well as the poll results, feel free to vote and comment!

Will brick and mortar headphone stores work in the U.S.?
Heck yeah! People will come in droves. Put the cans on their heads and they'll buy.
17% (192 votes)
People need headphones and curiosity will bring them, but demos, sales training, and product hygiene may be too costly.
25% (271 votes)
Lots of folks will come, but most will go away and buy on-line.
44% (487 votes)
No matter how compact you make the store, headphones and closely related items just won't bring enough customers.
14% (154 votes)
Total votes: 1104