Admittedly, Apple’s new In-ear Harphones are inexpensive in comparison to many other dual-driver models; and especially considering their functionality with the remote and mic, they may be a good deal. But, this white wonder is simply not an engineering marvel. For some, it is the cable which goes first, and for others, the filters get lost or strip the corkscrew. For 80$, they are one of the best options available for a balance of sound and features, but with the failure rate so high, it might be time for Apple to invest in engineers rather than just-graduated metrosexual designers with a penchant for ‘cute’.
Check after the gap for Apple Discussion information.
Jerry Harvey Audio, the world’s current custom inner earphone technology leader, have taken a major step in rearing their new business in opening an online store. If you have forgotten who JHA are and why they are important, let me remind you: founder Jerry Harvey began the in-ear professional monitor business back when he mixed for Van Halen. Since then, he has been pushing the limits of the technology, and now at the helm of his new company, reshaping the hi-end earphone world. Jerry Harvey Audio is his second major hi-end business; the first, Ultimate Ears is still hands down the market leader, but has since been sold to Logitech and subsequently, renamed to Logitech Ears.
Still looking for more? Try TMA’s review of Jerry Harvey Audio’s top of the line custom earphone, the JH13Pro (below), a six balanced-armature driver beast which really sizzles. They are earphone for the serious professional, or the outright insane audiophile.
Jerry Harvey Audio Store — accessories coming soon!
Many Japanese audio companies don’t distribute headphones (let alone other audio equipment) overseas. It is is a flying shame since brilliant products such as the Victor/JVC FX500 can’t be sampled by international buyers unless at extravagant importer prices. The Japanese exporter, Seyo-Shop, manage to supply eager international hands with Japanese headphone gems which otherwise would cost an arm, leg and part of your jaw to buy.
Buying from Seyo has a few strong advantages
- selection: there are dozens of domestic releases which cannot be found elsewhere under one roof.
- price: Seyo serve up great prices for international buyers: from headphone deals to excellent international shipping rates, they are ahead of the curve.
- shipping: Seyo ship via the world’s defacto express postal service, EMS who are unrivalled for cost, speed, and ensuring the safe and reliable delivery of your product.
- guarantee: if your product suffers manufacturer’s defect, purchases from Seyo are guaranteed for up to one year.
Look below for some good deals from Seyo Shop.
Last year, the Monster Turbine rocketed the cable manufacturer into the realm of hifi portable audio. Great sound and a sturdy housing set the Turbine aside in its price range, and like other ‘grabbed’ headphones at TMA, cemented its spot as a great buy. Its weakness, however, was cable design which has no stress relief, comes in a straight-jack, and has a wishy-washy y-split.
Apparently, things have changed: Monster are listening to customer requests and the feedback from reviewers.
The Monster Turbine Pro (while not in these hands), looks to change a lot of that. The new earphones retain the same sturdy housing design, but enter the market with strain relief, a right angle plug, a better y-split, and according to Monster, better sound. The MSRP is a stiff 250$, but if Monster pull all of the punches listed above, the new earphone should be worth it.
Additional Monster literature, spec, and pictures after the gap.
Every month of every year, enterprising audio designers create new gadgets which achieve some paragon of aural nirvana. Jerry Harvey founded Ultimate Ears to support the rockers, Van Halen with products which would both protect their hearing and relate greater production value to their fans. For 1099$, the JH13Pro stands with a 50$ cheaper price tag than its older — and now estranged — brother, the Ultimate Ears UE11Pro, but lacks a few of its amenities. What it doesn’t lack, however, is beautiful sound.
INC have a great article detailing Jerry Harvey’s moves which changed the stage performance industry.
My parents, like most parents, always said that if I listen to loud music, I will go deaf. Well, now it’s official. The iPod, as well as other portal music players, can lead to deafness, says the European Commission. With their latest act they decided to limit the maximum sound level of music devices at 80db. What do you know, my momma was right about something for a change!
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.
Among mainstream electronic companies, Victor (JVC) have quietly shed traditional speaker manufacturing techniques in creating driver diaphragms from wood rather than synthetic materials. Several of their small cabinet systems utilise wood driver technology, and the FX500 inner earphone also benefits from wood. In 2008, it was the world’s first earphone to employ wood in both its housing and driver diaphragm and is still the only production earphone whose driver is made from wood. Wood has the potential of fielding vastly more natural echo characteristics in comparison to plastic or metal.
The original Shure E500 set the inner earphone industry ablaze. It was the first consumer-oriented triple-driver balanced armature earphone, and in 2006, it stormed into many eager audio-lover’s hands. Today, the the venerable earphone has been overhauled and re-badged. The SE530 retains its glorious mid-oriented signature sound which is one of the most stunningly presented among all inner earphones. Smoothly detailed, it twists and turns in time with any musical genre, paying homage to all, but favouring none. Today, there are many other triple-driver consumer earphones, but Shure’s striking debut is still one of the best.
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.