This Week In Headphoolia, 3nd Edition

We now have Episode #3 of “This Week in Headphoolia”, a lighthearted round-up of things of potential interest. You can find all previous editions in the Headphoolia Archives.

In this edition, we round-up some of the reactions to the new Monoprice M1060, we take a look at some of the latest news-related action, updates on two popular streaming services, and round-up some of the many reviews posted the last week or so.

2017: A SPACE ODYSSEY – THE MONOLITH DISCOVERS US!

Line up for the new hype train! While the Monoprice M560 continue to fly under the radar, the brand new Monolith M1060 over-ear planar-magnetics have generated enough interest and buzz, so much so that they are now out of stock until Tax Day 2017 (mid-April).

Here is a sampling of the action across the interwebs on these open-back critters:

M1060 Action on YouTube

If you want some help with the math, Target SPL math at AudioBOT.

Into the Forums

OPINIONS

The Verge has some things to say to Apple about their War On The Headphone Jack – it ain’t going anywhere.

The more popular reviewers get, the more people have strong opinions about them. In this Reddit mega-thread they discuss Z-Reviews. #SaveChewbacca

NEWS of the BUSINESS KIND

A couple of weeks ago the Samsung-Harman merger got the green light, now we have another Borg-ification of audio companies. Two different groups have merged and will continue onwards under the name of “Sound United” (a soccer team for audio fans?). This combined company will have these and more brands under one umbrella: Denon, Polk, Marantz, Definitive Technology, Boston Acoustics,

Apple is sitting on mountains of mountains of cash, so half a billion is pocket change for them, but they avoided paying that match to an iTunes patent troll.

The RIIA continues to miss the forest for the trees, now they think ISPs will use their magic dust technology to “filter” pirated content.

NEWSY!

Cancel the headphone jack panic! Leaked pictures of the Samsung Galaxy S8 show that the new hype-train flagship will indeed have a headphone jack.

Lost in the shuffle at the Mobile World Congress was the second generation of Sony’s Xperia Ear “digital assistant” earphones ~ because “wearables” are sooooooo 2015! 🙂 A gallery of pictures of this critter at L’Engadget.

We are getting to the point where almost anything you can think of probably has something already attempted at Kickstarter. For example, headphones that improve your concentration and turn you into a brain ninja. Onkyo is attached to the project for the audio part. Mindset is the company and product that does the “EEG stuff” 🙂 A primer on these at Mashable and their cash-cow at Kickstarter. The “Early Bird” backer price is $229+ to get you a pair of these headphones when they are cooked. Onkyo is not a stranger to partnerships, they even discovered The Number of the Beast.

How come no one makes actual headphone working replicas from the movies? Well, not so fast on the “no one”! $100 is all that separates you from your very own Star Lord bluetooth headset. They still have bluetooth in the future? 🙂

STREAMING SERVICES

The dream of the 90s is alive! Not just in Portland, but also at Spotify. Higher-quality audio is coming, and it will be a “Hi-Fi” option. They appear to be testing different things in their app, so nothing is settled yet in terms of price.

The $10 per month music subscription is getting congested, so SoundCloud is also trying to make some in-roads at the $5 per month price range with the new SoundCloud To Go service. These will have “only” 20 million fewer tracks than their $10/mo service. I’m assuming in those 20 million there will be many well-known known bands and record labels?

REVIEWS – OVER/ON-EARS

These review round-ups are only a sampling of the action, they are not intended to be a comprehensive list of every new review out there 🙂

The Headphone List is back and they are back to share with us their Focal Elear take. I just realized the secret meaning of “Elear” = El + Ear 🙂

Grab your physics calculators! The Super Audio Awesome Friends have posted and are discussing their Beyerdynamic Amiron measurements.

Tyll is back, this time taking a look at a closed-back model, the Audio Technica A2000z.

The Fostex T50RP are a gift that keep on giving if you want to get your hands dirty with “audio” 🙂 In this 14 minute video, Metal571 talks about the Mod House Audio Argon.

If you like A/V print magazine style reviews, here’s the Hifi Plus magazine’s take on the Focal Utopia.

Back to Tyll, hot off the presses, here’s his take on the Beyerdynamic T51i and T51p on-ear headphones.

REVIEWS – EARPHONES

Last summer The Verge caused another hype train wave on the Zero Audio Carbo Tenore. Fast forward to now, here’s another take on these in-ears at Hear Fidelity.

Fostex the people! (sorry, I can’t stop saying this). The TE100 IEMs are now discussed at Headphone Guru.

On the four figure front, the Beyerdynamic Xelento remotes get discussed at Headfonia.

Android Authority may be the more well-known, but one of their sister sites is Sound Guys, and said guys have posted their take on the Bose QC30 wireless (7 minute video).

REVIEWS – EVERYTHING ELSE

The Fiio X5 III Android-powered digital audio player (you can also run it using the basic Fiio OS if/when you want to) got a couple more reviews this week, at two similar-sounding but actually different websites, Headfonics and Headfonia.

If you are a fan of the way The Wirecutter does their buying guides, here’s their take on bluetooth adapters.

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