by Sheena Ribeiro October 11, 2016

Kwel, kwel, kwel, the iPhone 7 has got the world drooling and we can’t begin to understand why. Why is every second person willing to queue up for this new iPhone?

We’re not one to call people out on the reg, but the #3.5mmDrop may have not been the most prudent move Apple’s ever made in their years of innovation. If, like us, you also believe that there was enough room for Jack, you’re not alone.

Let’s walk you through some of the coolest audio gear that you can splurge your hard earned money on. If only money grew on trees, I’m sure everyone in India would have tickets to Coldplay’s concert next month.

Without further ado here’s presenting to you a list of pretty amazing audio devices that you can be a proud owner of.  And yes, they won’t burn as big a hole in your pocket as the iPhone 7 would.

 



Audeze LCD 2


USA-Made Audeze handcrafts the world’s most accurate sounding headphones. Talk about world class performance, and the Audeze LCD 2 open-back planar magnetic headphones stands right up there.  Dressed in a box we can best describe as a bombcase, walking around with an Audeze is sure to grab a bunch of eyeballs. Of all the headphones we’ve had the luck of auditioning, we’ve never heard one with as high efficiency or as much sound detailing as in the LCD-2s. They do one hell of a job.  Detailed bass, highs and mids, you can hear it all. Audeze painstakingly test and measure each LCD headphone and upon product registration, Audeze will grant you access to their privileged LCD Owners’ Private Lounge. Now how about that?



JH Audio Rosie

JH Audio Rosie

Jerry Harvey has come a long way from designing custom IEMs for Van Halen to creating some beautiful hybrid IEMS, most of which are named after famous rock songs about women!  The Rosie comes from the beautiful Universal fit Siren Series and derives its name from the track “Whole Lotta Rosie” and is bound to transport you to an ACDC concert in an instant.  Collaboration between Jerry Harvey Audio and Astell&Kern, the Rosie is truly a piece of art. The Rosie’s SoundrIVe technology allows for an immersive listen across the entire expanse of the frequency range.  The rock-solid housing has been machined from a block of aluminium with a carbon fiber insert. The Rosie has a ridiculous 8 custom-made proprietary balanced armature drivers in each earpiece. Furthermore, the cables even allow you to adjust the bass output. The most luxury your ears will ever experience, the JH Audio Rosie is a splurge we’d happily sign off on.



Astell&Kern AK300

Astell&Kern AK300

If your music listening far transcends the usual carpool ride or the long commute to and from work, the Astell&Kern AK300 is a superbly capable digital audio player that you need to get your hands on. Astell&Kern, specialist world leader of DAPs, is probably one of the best things to have happened to South Korea in recent times. With an integrated AKM AK4490 DAC that will lend you exemplary sound, the AK300 features a 4.0” WVGA touch screen.  Oozing style in every sense, it flaunts a diamond edged black body.  What’s more? It conveniently supports Bluetooth and WiFi, so you can download your music hassle-free from your PC via WiFi. Load up Tidal on the AK300 and stream lossless music everywhere you go. High fidelity audio has never sounded this good.



Schiit Gungnir

Schiit Gungnir

Schiit’s got their Schiit together with the Schiit Gungnir, a Digital Audio Convertor (DAC) that’s sure to change the way you look at music.  Sporting a slightly bigger than usual body, the Gungnir may make you wonder what’s this Schiit about. (Excuse the endless Schiit puns, it really can’t be helped!) Like the AK300, Schiit also has not one, but two AKM AK4399 32-bit D /A converters. Featuring Schiit’s proprietary Adapticlock system, it delivers your music with exceptional jitter-free performance and solid glitch free connectivity. Providing you the comfort of a complete modular design, you are in for a treat.  While we’re in the dark when it comes to figuring out where the iPhone 7 is really manufactured, this Schiit is truly ‘Made in USA’.



Meze 99 Classic

Meze 99 Classics

Meze is a Romanian boutique headphone brand that handcrafts some of the world’s most beautiful wooden headphones.  It’s hard not to fall in love with the Meze 99 Classics’ vintage appeal.  This beauty is crafted with evident effort and what makes these truly remarkable is that the book reads as well as the cover looks. It promises to deliver sound that is astoundingly accurate opening up a new dimension of audio bliss. The wood itself lends a special kind of warmth for a purely natural signature. The 99 classics are not just a pair of headphones, but a pair that you will love to call an heirloom.  How amazing is that?



Chord Mojo

Chord Mojo

We’re shamelessly obsessed with the Chord Mojo. Ask us what’s the easiest way to get the best of your music and we will evangelize the Mojo with a side serving of three choral Hail Marys just to be safe. Mojo can effortlessly drive headphones with impedance ranging from as little as 8 Ohms to 800 Ohms. Isn’t that just great? It’s the perfect solution to all your spiritual music cravings. It can be conveniently paired with every conceivable device. Don’t be fooled by the size of the little Mojo. With a footprint barely larger then a wallet, it perfectly fits into your pocket.



RHA CL1 Ceramic

RHA CL1 Ceramic

Scotland based headphone company, RHA specializes in making premium IEMs with great design and precision. The highly anticipated CL 1s are the world’s first earphones that have been handcrafted from ceramic. The curtain raiser for this product was held at the grand RHA booth at the IFA 2016 Show in Berlin. We can’t wait to get our hands on these, and word is, that they should be available in India sometime in November. RHA believes in true-to-life sound and that is what makes these IEMs a masterpiece.  Looking for comfort and style? The mouldable ear hooks fit wonderfully. What sets the CL 1 apart from the other RHAs is its immaculate ceramic build. The CL 1 Ceramic has 150 Ohms of impedance. This means that you really would need a amp/DAC to drive the best out of them. Guess what? RHA’s also releasing their first amp/DAC simply called DACAMP, specifically to be paired with the CL 1 Ceramic. The cherry on the cake is their remarkable 3 year warranty.  The RHA CL1 Ceramic is priced at Rs.  39,990.


Still thinking you should waste your money on the over glorified iPhone 7? Don’t. Especially when now, more than ever, there are so many great products out there that can get you melodiously high and that won’t break the bank.


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Sheena Ribeiro
Sheena Ribeiro


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