Tuesday, June 14, 2011

B&W MM-1's


B&W is an old-school speaker manufacturer, and they've applied the same skills and history to computer speakers - the MM-1's.


These have been extensively reviewed, so here are the salient points;


  • externally powered
  • USB sound input (which utilises the on-board DSP)
  • cabled output in case you want to run headphones
  • a remote control (which integrates into iTunes)


They are phenomenally clear, with powerful bass which is amazing given the lack of a satellite sub-woofer. They're also attractive and fit in well if you're running any Mac.


A good purchase indeed.

Klipsch Image Audio X10i in-ear headphones


In-ear headphones are great; they're discrete, sound is generally good because its right there (no dispersion loss), and your skull is an awesome natural amplifier. Problem is, there are so many different varieties out there, its hard to tell which ones are decent.


I had a pair of Sennheiser CX-300's for a long time, and they were awesome. I had an opportunity to try something different, and ordered a pair of Klipsch's. These headphones are bar none the best in-ear headphones I've tried. They're ridiculously priced, but the audio quality is unparalleled. The controls on the cable are also very convenient, esp. when you can't reach your device to control pause, increase volume, etc.


Due to their design, they do attract quite a bit of gunk quite quickly (ew), but they include a fancy paper clip to clean them, so guess I'm not the only one.


Highly recommended!


PS. The provided case, while very pretty, isn't very durable and certainly won't last in a backpack filled with other stuff.

Sennheiser RS-180 wireless headphones

RS 180 ProductImage

I'm a little fussy about the headphones I use; I've always been a fan of Sennheiser, and bought my first pair of over-ears from them - the PX200's. Besides for coming with the most ridiculous case, they are pretty good, and currently serve use as the resident bedside headphones.


They're light, relatively inexpensive and let enough noise in without affecting audio quality - useful for night-time listening. I had a pair of canal-ear style CX300's (excellent value for money) and CX400's (not worth the price difference and far too short a cable), but needed something for the office (see here for the current portable cans). I bought a pair of HD515's, but found the cord a real PITA on a desk; wires everywhere, too long, too short, etc, etc.


So I bought a pair of RS-180's for use at home; its sat on the shelf for a year, but the cord hassles at work forced me to try this out; I am truly amazed! These headphones are not only comfortable and attractive, but the cradle looks like a piece of art, and thanks to the Kleer technology in use, audio reproduction and quality is amazing.


Range is pretty good too; I can go for about 50m line of sight before encountering artifacts. Highly recommended!


PS. Price wise, they're outrageous. But so are good hearing aids ;-)