- Mar 18, 2019
- Somerville, MA
I agree. When you look at old hifi, like Japanese turntables in the late 70s, you really get the sense that the best and brightest engineers were working on these products, with significant financial backing, so they could really push the state of the art. I don't get that impression when I look at modern hifi. How many speaker companies are just affluent dilletantes putting expensive drivers in expensive cabinets (I am among them?) Where did the cutting edge engineering go? Purifi makes some cool drivers, but it's a very niche thing, the class D amps have successfully commodified amplification, but who is creating the future? Topping and SMSL make traditional hifi components with crazy precision, Revel and KEF are making very refined passive speakers - but fundamentally it's all old technology. Yamaha was making beryllium tweeters fifty years ago.I agree, and want to stick my several cents in. Perhaps these are simple points that have been missed in this thread.
The basic background noise of a modern home can be quite annoying, In my opinion, and as you mentioned, HVAC, street noise, appliances, wind, cars, aircraft, spouse/children, pets, landscapers, workers, are only some of the many things that contribute to the endless assault of noise we hear daily. It's the main reason I can't enjoy my main hi-fi system: as soon as the vents start blasting air, that's just about it for my tolerance of background noise, not to mention all the rest.
It's incredible. I didn't realize how much noise there was until I bought a pair of these very same headphones in this thread and put them on. It was life-changing. I can even have a fan blowing right on me during these summer months and never hear the thing. Before, it was a choice between audio quality (wearing my HD 600) or being cool. Combine this with the accurate frequency response and it truly is a great product. As @617 mentioned:
And I concur, which is why I voted 'great'. It has almost single-handedly changed my perspective on consumer audio and what audiophiles say about Bose. There is a lot of scientific research going on in these non-traditional hi-fi companies and they are making quality, accurate products for the masses. I like not having to spend a fortune to get accurate audio. I like convenience, too. It's nice to have both.
For those interested, I was listening to Kind of Blue last night with these headphones and the tape hiss was louder than any hiss from the ANC circuit. So if you can stomach tape hiss in old recordings, especially pre Dolby-A, then I don't see how this would bother you.
Where is the real innovation happening in sound reproduction? Sound bars, line array PA systems, homepod speakers and these headphones. These ANC headsets aren't cheap, but I opened one up the other day and started to realize how incredible they were. The WH-1000xm5 has eight microphones pointed in different directions, a battery that lasts 30 hours, and it weighs less than a pair of HD-600.