April 2021

Elsewhere, Harman has just announced Roon

Ready status for a number of its models, including the ARCAM AVR10, AVR20, AVR30, AV40, and SA30 intelligent stereo amplifier, as well as the JBL SDP-55 AV processor and the SDR-35 AV receiver. Mr Clarke tells ERT: “This brings seamless

music streaming over numerous protocols and all at hi-res audio levels. Our latest ARCAM models, including even the SA30 two-channel G Class amplifier, come supplied with an external mic and offer Dirac Live for ARCAM room correction, while all of the AV engines and processors embrace Dolby Atmos and IMAX Enhanced.” Blending audio performance with smart

features, Harman Kardon’s Citation line models are equipped with Google Assistant as well as multi-room connectivity.

Growth in headphones So there’s no doubt that premium audio is at the top of everyone’s checklist and the past year has given consumers more time to explore and rediscover their love of music – and many enjoy personal listening. The headphones market remains a solid part

of the audio landscape, with around 10 million pairs sold every year in the UK. The even better news is that the overall value has been steadily growing on the strength of increasing price points, with ever more people prepared to buy above-budget offerings and spend £50-£200 or more on quality products.

Mark Gooday, Founder and Managing Director

of Meters Music, says his teams ensure that all Meters headphones produce a premium experience. “Having been described as an audiophile brand, our flagship Meters Music OV- 1-B-Connect headphones is a good example of providing professional studio quality audio in a consumer lifestyle product. Not only that but it offers zero latency and has a Bluetooth option. “We expect audio technology to develop in the

areas of personalisation and customisation. By integrating features which allow for this will mean appealing to a broader customer base – all by offering the customer choice.” Meters Music is already working towards this;

the latest editions of its headphones, such as the OV-1-B-Connect and Level Up, both offer the option to customise the sound through the EQ settings via a paired mobile app. Want more bass? Simply boost it up on the app. Mr Gooday continues: “Also, talking about

customisation, a new feature is the ability to change the backlight illumination colour to the VU meters, choosing a colour from a full RGB sweep, again via the paired mobile app.”

A missed opportunity Meanwhile, James Attfield, Managing Director of Turnstone AV, the distributor for Ausounds, believes high street retailers have been missing out on what has become the fastest-growing sector of the headphone market – True Wireless.

Here, Level Up headphones from Meters Music. Right, top & bottom: Ausounds AU-Frequency ANC headphones. Right, middle: Meters Music's OV-1-B-Connect.


“The category was near single-handedly

created by Apple’s Airpods, and customers soon realised that having earphones without even link wires between the two buds is very slick,” Mr Attfield explains to ERT. “Add in a charger with its own battery and you have a super-convenient way of listening to music entirely without wires. “Yet Apple’s entry into this market had the effect

of lumping True Wireless into the mobile phone and accessories retail channel, rather than audio!” Earlier this month, Los Angeles-based

Ausounds unveiled its third active noise cancelling (ANC) True Wireless earbud style headphones to its UK range, called the AU- Frequency ANC. Abundant with features, they come with Ausounds’ 10mm AU PEEK+PU driver technology designed to reproduce a full-range frequency response; the result is a natural and expansive sound with solid bass reproduction combining ultra-deep bass response with exceptional dynamic attack.


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