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Earphones

Dr Dre, Jay-Z and Ludacris aren't the only rappers to have given their names to audio headgear. Record producer, actor, entrepreneur and philanthropist 50 Cent has also released some cans through SMS Audio. Earlier this year the existing wired and wireless over-ear headphones were joined by the STREET by 50 in-ear wired headphones and Gizmag has spent some time getting to grips with a pair. SMS Audio says that the main focus when developing the earbud-type earphones "was to create a sound signature that is suitable for many genres of music and not just rap/hip-hop." So how did they shape up? Read More
Not to be overshadowed amongst the cameras, tablets and “phablets” unveiled at this year’s IFA, German audio technology vendor Sennheiser has stepped up to the plate and unveiled three new earphone designs: the CX 890i, CX 985 and MX 985. The CX 890i headset sports a glass-like finish and metal detailing in a clear bid to catch the eye of audiophiles who like their music hardware on the minimalist side, while the CX 985 and MX 985 feature a less unusual but still rather striking metal alloy finish. Read More

Griffin Technologies has just released some new eye- and ear-pleasing earbud-type earphones that come with a slice of eco-friendliness, too. The outer housing of the WoodTones Earbuds is made from bits of exotic scrapwoods rescued from the workshop floors of furniture and cabinet makers, which is said to add volume without distortion or coloring while also bringing mid-range frequencies to the fore and delivering even, solid bass. Read More

While it can be nice to listen to motivating music while riding your bike, riding on the streets while wearing earbuds is ... well, crazy. In many places, it’s also illegal. One option is to wear non-sealing earHero earphones, which are claimed to allow both outside noise and music into the user’s ear canal. Another, however, is to attach some Otus Mini-Speakers to your helmet. Read More

Conventional earphones can become a liability you are out and about on city streets by limiting your ability to hear approaching vehicles or other potential hazards. That’s where the earHero comes into play. It’s an earphone system designed not to block the ear canal so that users are still be able to hear what’s going on around them. Read More

The L and R labels on your headphones serve a purpose, and it isn't just about fit. The audio source - whether it's a receiver, PC or MP3 player - sends left- and right-channel sounds to the appropriate earbud. While it might seem minor, this can be a difference between a disjointed experience listening to music, movies and other video, to a fuller experience that connects sight (in the case of video) and sound - with sound coming from the direction it's intended. There's no chance of a mix-up with the Universal Earphones being developed by Igarashi Design Interfaces Project in Tokyo - the headphones decide for themselves which ear they are in, and send sound to the each channel accordingly. Read More
Undoubtedly, one of the biggest things to happen with in-ear earphones in recent years is customized fitting. Products such as those made by Ultimate Ears, for instance, are made to fit precisely into each user's unique ear structure. The catch is that said users must first pay a visit to an audiologist and get an ear imprint made, send that imprint away to the company, and then wait to receive their custom-molded earbuds in the mail. Canada's Sonomax Technologies, however, has come up with an alternative - earphones that you can mold to your ears by yourself, at home. Read More
Working from the premise that very few people use drawstrings on their hoodies, HB3Labs has developed Hoodiebuddie - a lineup of garments that integrates earbuds into the end of the drawstrings and a 3.5 mm headphone jack in front pocket. Read More
Since the dawn of the Sony Walkman back in the 80s, audiologists have noted an increase in hearing loss among young people. With the current popularity of iPods and MP3 players, that trend shows no signs of abating. Although concerned parents can tell their children to keep the volume down on their personal music devices, such a rule can be difficult to enforce – particularly when childrens’ and parents’ ideas of “too loud” could differ significantly. Etymotic’s ETY Kids Safe-Listening Earphones, however, limit the volume to safe levels, even when cranked all the way up. Read More
You like listening to music while you work out, but you don't like snagging your personal music player's cord with your arms, nor do you like ruining your earphones by getting them all sweated up. Yep, we know how it is. One solution could be to use a pair of JF3 Freedom Bluetooth Buds, that wirelessly receive music from your mobile phone, and are moisture-resistant. You could also get yourself a similar device made by a little Japanese company called Sony, however, as of next month. That's when the latest version of the W Series Walkman MP3 player for sports enthusiasts will be hitting the stores, in a smaller, lighter format. Read More
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