CanJam at RMAF 2014: Koss SP330, SP540, and Pro4S

As an audiophile I sometimes find myself slipping into some rather over-simplified assumptions when I come to the Koss booth. "Aren't they the folks that make a lot of the Radio Shack headphones?" Meh, goes my mental interest meter, and I tend to want to walk past.

Well, wait a minute, aren't these the folks that make the classic low-cost Porta-Pro ($49.99) and KSC75 ($19.99)—a favorite recommendation amongst headphone geeks. Or the ESP950 ($999) a long time favorite as an excellent entry-level electrostatic headphone system. And the Koss ProDJ100 ($79) enjoyes a solid fan-base in the headphone world. No, just like Sennheiser, or Beyerdynamic, or even Beats, I think it's a good idea to keep an open mind about Koss—they've made some very good headphones before, I'm quite sure they'll do it again.

New from Koss at CanJam this year was the SP330 on-ear ($130) and SP540 over-ear ($150) headphones with 30mm and 40mm drivers respectively. These handsome D-shaped driver housing cans will be available in just a few weeks. Also being introduced at RMAF is the Koss Pro4S over-ear ($150). On quick listen I thought the SP330 and Pro4S were quite good, the SP540 seemed a little thick in the upper-bass/low-mids.

Koss' new wireless headset, the BT540i ($199), is also mentioned in the video. I've got a pair here at home and am listening to them as I type. Though possibly a tad bass heavy, these too sound quite good.

It's really good to see Koss chugging along, doing what they do best: modestly price headphones from Americas first stereophone company. Here's a little link to a recent interview with CEO Michael J. Koss where he talks about Koss' direction and future. Sounds pretty level-headed to me.


Seth195208's picture

Ha! Pretty ironic.

Impulse's picture

I thought that BSN interview was refreshingly honest until the Leica analogy... He was probably alluding to the fact that Leicas are viewed as classic throwbacks, but Leica as a company is like the antithesis of Koss.

Koss makes high value stuff, including a few classics, and puts function over form... Leica these days makes overpriced camera bodies that cater to hipsters and those that want a camera as jewelry, largely trading on their lens legacy to keep pushing said camera bodies.

Anyway, my photo/audio geek sensibilities aside, I thought it was interesting he mentioned they'd have to do a PortaPro refresh at some point. The BT540i being based on the DJ100/200 is also kinda cool, tho if they're in the same level they're kinda overpriced at $200 (like, virtually any headphone with Bluetooth built in).