CES 2014 Stax is on the Move!

In searching for headphone makers at this year's CES the Edifier brand showed up. Hm, could this be Stax exhibiting at CES? I went to the smaller of the two Edifier booths and sure enough, Stax was here! Man, I can't remember the last time I saw Stax at CES...how cool is that?

Two years ago I reports on the acquisition of Stax by giant Chinese speaker maker firm Edifier. Two years is about the amount of time it takes from deciding to move a brand forward, so now is about the time we should see something new from Stax. And here it is!

First up are two new prototype portable headphone amp models designe to partner with the SR-002 portable electrostatic headphones. One amp is analog input only, the other provide digital inputs for USB and iOS devices. The SR-002 is quite an unusual electrostatic headphone having relatively small diaphragms and nozzles that insert into your ear canals. My past experiences with these headphones is that they sound very good, but the coupling of the tip in my ear canals was somewhat unreliable and awkward. Tats Yamanashi, President of Yama's Enterprise (Stax's US distributor), informed me that in addition to the new amps, Stax will also be redesigning the tips for the SR-002 so as to allow for customizable ear tips. Welcome news indeed.

Also in the booth was a prototype transistor electrostatic amp for home use slated to fill a slot above the current $450 SRM-252. The new unit (as yet unnamed) will have unbalanced analog, and USB and iOS digital inputs.

Pricing difficulties have plagued Stax distribution over the years, and in many cases the only way to fix these kinds of problems is to slowly replace the entire product line with a sharp eye out on margins and well controlled distribution. It's nice to see that process being started...it's a long slog, but Stax is a great brand and well worth the effort.

eggil's picture

Use them quite often at the office and home. The new portables look great, although would like to see them a little smaller in size.
These headphones are under loved because of their somewhat difficult fit, but their open and clear sound will reward those who persevere. The new changes to allow a better fit are a welcome development.

eggil's picture

and I though it was the 2015 CES
It fooled me!