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The flagship headphone battle is stepping up a gear

OPINION: Sennheiser’s tease of its upcoming Momentum Wi-fi 4 over-ears is yet one more entry within the premium market unveiled in current months. For these of us hoping to avoid wasting cash, I’m sorry to say that simply once you thought you had been out, you’re about to be roped again in.

Sennheiser is conserving its playing cards near its chest, solely disclosing a number of particulars to whet the appetites of audio followers. And the German model definitely piqued our curiosity with its claims of a brand new design, prime quality sound and gargantuan battery life that exceeds the rest we’ve seen from a premium pair of over-ear headphones.

For the reason that pandemic the curiosity in headphones solely appears to have risen. The need to take heed to prime quality music positively performed an element however sitting at house or sharing an area with others has meant extra of a concentrate on particular options: headphones for telephone calls and on-line conferences, headphones for gaming, headphones to go watch movies/TV with, and ANC headphones for after we need some privateness.

Headphones have grow to be a jack of all trades proposition to cater to as large an viewers as potential by guaranteeing there’s the whole lot an individual may need, whether or not it’s noise cancellation, smarts, good name high quality, low latency for gaming and guaranteeing a seamless connection along with your machine. With that in thoughts, the previous yr has seen a number of massive launches within the premium headphone sector.

Yamaha kicked issues off with its YH-L700A, Philips launched its Fidelio L3 and since then we’ve seen the Bose QuietComfort 45, Technics EAH-A800, Sony WH-1000XM5 and the Edifier Stax S3 headphones that launched in Might. Qualcomm leaked Bowers & Wilkins PX7 S2 so we will presume they’re on their approach too. There’s a whole lot of alternative and lots of high-quality choices, and so they’re not all aiming to do the identical factor – no less than not in the identical approach.

Plus, with consciousness in 3D Audio gaining a foothold, whether or not it’s by means of headphones upmixing stereo into 3D, Dolby Atmos Music, Sony’s 360 Actuality Audio or Apple’s Spatial Audio; headphones wish to broaden the experiences they provide. The arrival of Snapdragon Sound and aptX Lossless will present a lift to headphones within the pipeline that help Qualcomm’s chipset, with the promise of upper high quality and bit-lossless sound over a Bluetooth connection, a problem that’s at all times appeared to carry wi-fi headphones again from matching their wired counterparts.

This innovation is resulting in an thrilling tit-for-tat battle between headphone manufacturers that appear to be making an attempt to one-up one another to supply the one headphone you’ll want for the subsequent few years. As you’ll be able to think about nonetheless, a number of of those headphones are coming with an elevated value – the one actual draw back from this push to greater high quality efficiency – however for many who can afford them there are a humiliation of riches to take pleasure in.

So who will win this battle? Is there even a winner available? The race to innovate and supply higher experiences is leading to a number of the greatest headphones but. To paraphrase the tagline for the (mediocre) Aliens vs Predator movies, whoever wins… we win.

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