I am a hearty fan of the Monster Turbine, a great-sounding earphone from the cable giant. Monster say the Turbine Pro will deliver a few things to their already great formula including: a better cable (needed), driver, and higher quality parts. I say bring it on. Look for pre order of the the Turbine Pro in early October.
If you want to check out the headphone Monster will be one-upping, take a look at my Monster Turbine review.
While it is still to early to reliably suss the future, there is definitely something clever about a partnership between three major audio companies. Started in April of this year, ACS and Etymotic joined forces to create force a bit of audiophile air into UK Apple Stores. Apple, undisputedly an audio company, happily obliged, and the HF2 + ACS custom sleeve was born.
More exciting is the buzz this product has created. Apple’s ubiquitous retail presence has led to inadvertent audiophiles who, upon asking a few questions at the store, discover a latent desire to upgrade. The excellent combination has earned a well-placed 2009 iPhone Accessory of the Year from Macworld.
I will not get into which sound signature I am more partial to, rather the pictures are merely to illustrate the differences and similarities between both high-end iems. Sensaphonics’ 2X-S is a stodgy contender for the better part of a decade and has survived several cosmetic and build overhauls since its infancy. It is made from soft silicon, a pliable material which stretches with minute changes in the ear’s internal shape. Jerry Harvey’s JH13Pro is made out of the more traditional hard acrylic material that with a perfect fit, feels almost as comfortable as the Sensaphonics 2X-S. Differences in materials do mean a different flavour of sound; the hard acrylic of the JH audio renders extremely clean sound in all frequencies, but both earphones are incredible.
If you would like to read our review of the JH13Pro, please click here.
Last year, Westone released the first true 3-way earphone, the Westone 3. It comes in an overhauled shell, but remains similar in size to the UM2 before it. With a focus on consumers, the Westone 3 has a ‘fun’ sound which is graphically v-shaped in its frequency response with emphasis placed on bass and treble. This year, Westone are releasing the Westone 1, a one-way balanced armature earphone which utilises the same housing and what looks to be the same accessory kit. But, at 199$ versus the 399$ MSRP of the Westone 3, the new headphone will be an easier decision.
In typical Westone fashion, the Westone 1 will utilise the excellent cable which is the industry’s least microphonic and best relieved and bumpered earphone. The suggested street price will likely fall to around 139$, making this a perfect earphone for the active audiophile.
Yeah, it doesn’t get much cooler than today. Companies are doing giveaways left and right. Already, Jays’ c-Jays giveaway is live at their blog and just after waking up, I found out that Monster, too, are playing Santa Claus. The Jamz are a new headphone product from Monster which seems to be debuting with this contest. As for Anjulie, Canadians rejoice! Another home-grown pop star is rising from among our somewhat low-key population. She is a musician from Toronto who has just been nominated for an MTV music award and does seductive pop rather well. The contest convolutes both the Jamz and Anjulie – rather, Anjulie’s signature will accompany the Jamz if you win.
Check out her Myspace page here, or click more below for a few of her videos.
As for Monster – for some they need nearly no introduction. For the others, Monster are a cable company, but have branched out into anything music. We have done a couple of Monster Headphones reviews which are part of our larger headphone section.
The contest takes place at Monster’s webpage and requires you just to fill in your name, date of birth, and acceptance of the terms and conditions – in other words, I joined!
Earsonics, a French producer of professional earphones, have broken into TMA with their SM2 DLX, a dual balanced armature professional in-ear stage monitor which is priced at 280 € in France, or 268€ outside the country . It both feels and performs worthy of its asking price and comes in your choice of the following three attires: black, crystal (clear), and white. Like the UM3X from Westone, Earsonics’ top-tier universal iem has been constructed to exacting standards and utilises the same cable type: a durable, non-microphonic twisted strand design which is a benchmark for cable quality. Also, like its American competitor, the SM2 is plagued by a dearth of accessories.
Want to read the entire 3000-post thread? No? Well I have and it has been a blast, but isn’t something easily summed up in a few words. DaveDerek, a headfi member went through the entire thread looking for hands-on impressions and photos, linking each into one of the best posts for people who are considering purchasing the JH13Pro. My own impressions will join that thread as well as a final review in about a month, but take a delicious look at what has been burning up the portable headphone section at Headfi.org.
If you don’t know, Headfi is largest English-language headphone-dedicated forum in the world. While headphiles (as some call us) are still counted among the geekiest of audiophiles, we get around. TouchMyApps will be reviewing a number of hi-end and bleeding hi-end custom earphones in the next month. Among these is the JH13Pro and the Westone ES3x which was mentioned earlier this morning.
I have picked off the links from Headfi and posted them below, but please check out the entire JH13Pro Appreciation thread.
In what is now absorbed in a flurry of sonic bliss and strange musical poses, yesterday, was a simple cardboard box. Yes, that is right, Felix received the Westone ES3X custom monitor and has been ordered to spend his days listening with renewed vigour (something he wasn’t about to cheat on anyway) to the customs until he can pump out a fitting review. He will be comparing Westone’s top of the range model to that of Jerry Harvey‘s similarly priced 10X3, another triple driver custom with a passive crossover network.
The two American headphones companies’ websites are below.
After 2008′s popular Image X5, which debuted at $100 less than the X10, Klipsch began expanding the affordable line of their inner earphones. In 2009, the S2 and S4 join the Image line at the more reasonable prices of $49.99 and $79.99. When Klipsch designed the new earphones, they utilised brand new drivers which were made specifically for their sound signature. So, the S4 houses a special 8mm dynamic driver which packs dual neodymium magnets and the audio performance for which Klipsch is famous. Happily, Klipsch also introduced the iPhone-friendly S4i which features a mic and remote and is priced at $99.99.
My experience with wooden headphones began five years ago with Audio Technica’s Sovereign W1000, a beautiful lively headphone whose smoothness belies its price. Since then, there have been a few: Darth Beyers and Audio Technica’s ES9, but few companies have gone the extra step of pairing down their beautiful creations to the tiny real estate of an earphone or earbud. Mingo, home of a famous headphone shop in Hong Kong number among that handful. The WM-2 which comes in two flavours: bass (silver) and vocal (gold), is created from Longan wood and is an excellent-sounding debut model from the company.