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gadgets | departures GADGETS: HEADPHONES Sound advice Chris Beanland checks out the latest headphones for traveling audiophiles PRODUCT


PRICE WEBSITE


FIRST IMPRESSIONS


SKULLCANDY CRUSHER


$99.99 skullcandy.com


Big and brash headphones (white, red or black), designed for huge bass sounds. Slightly off-putting name, but not as gaudy- looking as some of the brand’s other models.


LOVE


Comfortably padded and reasonably priced for its big sound output — the subwoofer has got users very excited.


HATE


Perhaps a bit too bass- heavy for certain audio, while an AA battery is required for the bass slider to work.


VITAL STATS


Height: 6 inches. Weight: 1.1lbs. Impedance: 32 ohms.


VERDICT


Cool-colored phones with an adjustable bass level, offering a range of sound signatures, from thin to ridiculously bass-heavy.


RATING summer 2014 | ASTAnetwork | 133


BEATS BY DR DRE BEATS STUDIO


From $329.99 beatsbydre.com


A now iconic listening device, which came out of nowhere to dominate the audio market and become a showstopper. Delivers powerful audio, with deep bass and crisp highs.


The popular Studio headphones have been redesigned to be lighter and stronger while still being very comfortable.


Expensive and bulky, while the polarizing in-your-face branding will likely draw stares of approval or disdain.


Height: 8 inches. Weight: 0.56lbs. Impedance: 45 ohms.


The product that kicked off the celebrity- endorsed headphone craze gets an update, but still a bit too much style over substance.


SENNHEISER HD7


$329.99 sennhesier.com


Sennheiser is a very well-trusted name in top-end headphones and these new HD7s look the part — sober and stylish and chosen by real audio connoisseurs.


Sharp quality and good noise cancellation, while a long 9ft cord makes it ideal for working and moving around.


Expensive and a tiny bit boring to look at, but these aren’t supposed to be toys — they’re serious listening tools.


Height: 7.2 inches. Weight: 0.57lbs. Impedance: 95 ohms.


One of the best-quality audio products around. Professional quality and with the reassurance and trusted reputation of Sennheiser.


SONY MDR-ZX750BN


$199.99 sony.com


Bright white, solid and slightly retro looking, Sony’s brand new noise cancelling, over-the-ear Bluetooth headphones offer great wireless convenience for music and phone calls.


A more compelling price point for such a premium product, with 13 hours of playback and Bluetooth.


Some users have complained that while comfortable fitting, they’re prone to slip out of position.


Height: 7.5 inches. Weight: 0.375lbs. Impedance: 50 ohms.


Solid noise-cancelling for audiophiles, and with long battery life and Bluetooth capability they’re also ideal for smartphone users.


MONSTER DNA


$229.95 monsterproducts.com


A rather odd-shaped triangular build, but likely appealing to young music aficionados. Comes in colors such as rose and gold for a little extra glam.


Distinctive, eye-catching and with an impressive output, with engineering by the guys behind Beats By Dr Dre.


Not overly comfortable for long periods, while the sound is prone to distort on deep bass at high volumes.


Height: 10 inches. Weight: 1.7lbs. Impedance: 18 ohms.


Unique looking, while performing well at moderate levels, but there’s better sounding products out there for a less hefty price tag.


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