Surprise: These cans aren’t quite the flashy, youthful boombasts their outward appearance suggest (yes, that’s a good thing). And, surprise: There’s much more here than simply a nod at the term “active noise cancellation.”
SMS, which is helmed by Rapper 50 Cent, jumped into the headphone game just shy of three years ago. At that time the lion’s share of attention was directed toward their wireless Sync cans, which stream music via the somewhat uncommon Kleer technology. But that doesn’t mean the rest of SMS’s broad, diverse lineup should be ignored, and that assertion is well-supported by the performance — and, yes, dash of flash – of the wired, active noise-canceling Street by 50 ANC headphones.
The news from Sony this week was dominated by its stunning new iDevice-compatible QX lenses (and the blogger leaks that revealed the lenses before Sony wanted the lenses revealed).
But there’s also news from Sony’s audio corner; it’s evolutionary rather than revolutionary, but still exciting: Three new models have been added to the company’s midrange MDR-10 line of headphones, including one with what looks like class-busting noise-canceling abilities and another equipped with Bluetooth and NFC.
It has the technological sophistication of a sonic screwdriver. Its design elements look as if pulled straight out of another dimension. And there may not be another set of headphones on this planet — or any other — baked with as many ingredients as the Parrot Zik.
But we were curious — would all this tech work? And how would the Ziks sound? So we poked them with a stick, and here’s what we discovered. Allons-y!
Zik by Parrot Category: Bluetooth Headphones, Circumaural Works With: Phones, MP3 players Price: $399
Noise-cancelling headphones are suddenly all the rage. It certainly seems as if every big player in the audio game has at least one model that features active noise-canceling, usually accompanied by other luxury features — and with a corresponding luxury pricetag. Even manufacturers who’ve only recently begun making cans, like Logitech UE and Klipsch, prominently feature active noise-canceling in their model lineups.
It may even seem as if the technology has been added to some models simply because it’s become the feature du jour — an impression strengthened by the fact that not all noise canceling is the same. Not even remotely.
Like the Plantronics Voyager Legend we reviewed a few months ago, Jabra’s new folding-boom Motion series incorporates motion sensors — so they can do things like automatically answer calls when you place the headset to your ear, and even automatically adjust the volume.
For anyone who spends a lot of time in trains and planes, noise-canceling headphones are pretty much essential. But if you’re walking the streets, then noise canceling can be a pain or even a hazard, isolating you a little too much from your environment.
Luckily, the Able Planet Linx Audio Clear Harmony headphones sound pretty good with noise cancelation both on and off. And they’re also comfy enough to keep on throughout a long journey.
The Diamond Tears in black (they'll also be available in white)
LAS VEGAS, CES 2012 – Or maybe it’s that they’re pretending even less. The amount of bling at the Monster “booth” — it was actually more of a compound, complete with a super-secret inner sanctum — would make Snooki (who was at the show) blush. Their three newly released headphones seemed far more focused on fashion than sound; even Monster founder Nole Lee’s Segway (was it a Segway?) rolled around on gold-rimmed wheels. Then there were the booth fashion shows…
What’s got a folding boom, Jabra’s most-advanced noise-canceling and wind noise-reduction technology and a massive ear cushion even that princess in the pea story would be comfortable with? You guessed it (probably because it’s in the headline) — the just-announced Jabra Supreme Bluetooth headset.