LATEST ADDITIONS

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 22, 2011  |  25 comments

Just a year and a half ago I walked into the CanJam area of RMAF, and right smack-dab in the middle was Fang Bian, head of Head Direct and the HiFiMAN brand of headphone gadgetry. Fang always has something new going on; I wondered what it would be this time. He smiled, stood, and cheerfully greeted me, then pointed towards center-stage on one of his tables.

"Would you like to hear my new planar magnetic headphones?"

You’ve got to be kidding me, I thought.

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 19, 2011  |  28 comments

In preparing my article “How Planar Magnetic Headphones Work” I became enamored of the work being done by DIYers building their own Orthodynamic cans over in the "Orthodynamic Roundup thread on Head-Fi. The blood, sweat, and tears invested in building and modifying vintage Yamaha Orthodynamics, and cans like the Fostex T50RP is simply stunning, but more striking is the sense of fun and camaraderie so clearly evident in their headphone play that I simply can’t resist trying to find a way to enter into the party in some way.

I think I’ve figured out what I can do.

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 16, 2011  |  11 comments

There is a story in Headphonedom that will not go away … ever: The Dangers of Headphone Listening. Studies show significant increases in hearing damage … especially to youngsters who tend to listen very loud. Other than the iPod’s new ability for parents to set a volume limit on the device, little has come along to mitigate the problem other than draconian legislative measures trying to control volume limits on devices. (Which is ridiculous in my view both from a personal liberty standpoint, and from the fact that it makes portable devices less able to drive a variety of aftermarket headphones.)

Well, Stephen Ambrose claims to have solved the problem ...

... and my skeptomometer has been beeping like crazy. Let’s have a look …

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 14, 2011  |  2 comments

From the “Beats by Dre” website:

“Attention sound engineers, DJs, musicians, and hard core music lovers: Beats Pro is the reference headphone designed by audio professionals for audio professionals.”

Well, one and a half out of four ain’t bad.

You’ll know if you’ve seen my Beat Solo headphone youtube video that I would be perfectly happy to dis these cans. Well, I guess you can’t be happy all the time, because there were quite a few things these headphones did surprisingly well. But I’m not perfectly unhappy, the Beats Pro didn’t fail to disappoint in some ways too.

Life in balance I guess … Dre has his place.

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 11, 2011  |  13 comments

They've been around since the 70's and never really caught on, but all of a sudden a couple small headphone makers have entered the fray with new planar magnetic headphones and ... Oh. My. Gosh. ... they're very good.

Before reviewing some of these headphones, I thought it would be a good idea to write an article describing how this "what once was old is new again" technology works. So come along for a ride as I describe how planar magnetic headphones work ... and how I busted mine all to pieces.

Tyll Hertsens  |  May 05, 2011  |  15 comments

By now, most folks are aware of the potential for hearing loss by playing music too loud on headphones. I won’t bother you with it yet again. I’m going to try to take another approach. If you are turning the volume up to loud levels, you’re just throwing all that money you spent on great sound out the window. Here’s why.
Tyll Hertsens  |  May 04, 2011  |  52 comments

Evolution is not like a car wash; it's not some process with a beginning, a middle, and an end. It's messy; it makes mistakes; sometimes it moves in a particular direction; sometimes it just goes in circles refining things. Evolution doesn't really know where it's going until it gets there.

Since 1997 Shure has been evolving its line of in-ear headphones. It seems to me they've both run in circles on the ergonomics, and made a bee-line for good sound. Let me explain.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Apr 30, 2011  |  17 comments
I've been doing quite a bit of clean-up and re-organizing with the measurement datasheets. The main objective was to sort the headphones into various types: Full-size open; full-size sealed; earpad open; earpad sealed; in-ear; ear bud; noise cancelling; and wireless.

I've also added a goodly number of new headphone measurements. All measurements can be seen one page at a time on the Headphone Datasheet Download Page, or all measurements can be downloaded at once in the Headphone Measurement Datasheet .pdf booklet.

Tyll Hertsens  |  Apr 28, 2011  |  0 comments

I'll be traveling to the sunny climes of southern California to attend The Home Entertainment Show Newport, co-hosted by the Los Angeles/ Orange County Audiophile Society. I'll be talking on a panel Saturday morning at 11AM along with my good buddy Jorge Cervera, the Sales Manager at HeadRoom. I assume we'll be talking about headphones. :)

Tyll Hertsens  |  Apr 28, 2011  |  62 comments

Yes, historic. The Beyerdynamic DT 48 model has been in continuous production in a variety of forms since 1937. That's pretty historic ... I can't even remotely think of another headphone like that.

Let's take a look ...

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