Christmas is right around the corner, and now its time for everyone’s favorite brain teaser…What to put under the tree this year? Of course you can go to the old standbys, but why not make this year different - something you will be able to enjoy over and over again for years to come? To this end, here are some suggestions (in no particular order) that might make this Christmas season stand out among the memories you and your family are building together.
In a world where everyone’s iPhone ear-buds are hanging out of their back pocket, its easy to forget that there was a time when manufacturers strove to make headphones that provided a serene audio experience you could lose yourself it, and ALSO comfortable to wear. Well, KEF- Porsche Design Labs still holds to those values and makes a complete line of such high quality headphones, and we have taken a look at some of them for your benefit.
KEF - Porsche Design Labs Motion One Earbuds
Today, we want to bring our music with us everywhere. On a quick trip to the store, jogging through the neighborhood, on the daily commute, even on long distance family vacations. But just because we are on the go, doesn’t mean that we want to sacrifice high fidelity sound. The KEF Motion One Earbuds offer all of this in a tiny, comfortable to wear, high-style package that you will be proud to wear.
To achieve this masterpiece of miniaturization, KEF combines precision engineering with high-grade materials. The stylish silicone neckband allows for delivery of exactly the audio balance you are looking for, whether its rich base, precision treble, or wide open midtones. The high-powered embedded antenna ensures accurate transmission of every digital sound.
You can broadcast from your smartphone, tablet, or computer to these headphones via Bluetooth Qualcom aptX, or connect directly with the included high-quality wired connection. Afraid of getting caught in the rain while jogging? No problem. The KEF Motion One earbuds are certified water resistant. We aren’t saying to go swimming in them, but getting rained on or splashed with water won’t cause any problems.
The advantages of these beauties over other earbuds on the market are substantial and complete - going all the way down to storage and ergonomics. They have a pivoting earpiece that helps you comfortably move with the earbuds in, and the backs of the buds are magnetized so they will stick together when not in use for easy storage. The shells are ergonomically designed to fit comfortably in the ears so that the wearer may actually forget they are wearing them after a while. This is due to the ultra-soft tipped silicone covers embedded on the tips of each piece.
These headphones are powered, so they will need to recharge, but they can offer up to 10 hours of play time between charges. Charging can be performed through any USB port, and can be performed while in operation if you wish.
These handy items can work as a wrapped gift or a stocking stuffer, depending on your mode of operation. They may be the last set of headphones you every need. They have set the standard for premium in-ear headphones in 2017, winning the RedDot Design Award, and earning the moniker of “Flawless” from BBC Music Magazine.
KEF - Porsche Design Labs Space One Headphones
First of all, lets get past the initial impressions. These Headphones just look cool. Sort of like the kind of headphones you would expect a Bond villain to wear. But despite their appearance, the Space One headphones are no movie prop. They really work. KEF uses a specially tuned Active Noice Cancellation process that eliminates external noise without compromising the quality or detail of the audio being delivered.
The crispness and vibrance of the sound that comes through is truly amazing delivering solid, spacious, and full sound in every register. If you close your eyes, you might think you are listening to live music - if it weren’t for the lack of mistakes being made by the band. The actual ear cups are remarkably comfortable using a soft, semi-porous memory foam that somehow doesn’t have the usual “gradual heating” effect that is usually associated with memory foam.
The key to the success of these spot-on headphones is the engineering. Each sports a 20mm neodymium magnet, a 40mm precision tuned driver, and a light weight CCAW voice coil for optimum performance. What does all that mean to you when you sit back on the couch to listen? It means you are going to get the full range of sound that was recorded when you plug in!
Unlike other active noise cancelling headphones, the Space One allows the user to switch off that function in the event that you might need to actually hear things going on around you. Of course, to achieve all of this, the phones need to be powered, and this is accomplished in the Space One with one triple A battery. All in all, this is a first class set of powered headphones that would be at home in any music studio in the world.
KEF - Porsche Design Labs M100 Earphones
So, we led off with the Motion One earbuds, but what if you want that kind of high fidelity sound without spending quite as much money? What if you don’t need a neckband, you are just looking to replace the buds that came with your smartphone or laptop? In this case, you might want to look at KEF’s M100 Hi-Fi Earphones.
These earphones are designed with all the same attention to detail and precision audio technology as the Motion One, but without some of the extra features. The M100 gives a full range of high resolution sound, with a fuller, crisper, and accurate response that is expected to come from the live performance.
From a style standpoint, they are sleek and elegant, and come in a variety of colors (blue, orange, black, and white-with-champagne-highlights). The cord is plenty long enough to get the job done (1.3m) and of course, these earphones are unpowered for maximum portability.
Ergonomically speaking these are a great deal more comfortable than the standard iPhone headphones, and while they are lacking some of the Motion One’s features (no pivoting earpiece for instance), at the price, there might not be a better set of headphones on the market.
So in short, our first recommendation for a great 2017 Christmas Present, is a nice set of KEF Headphones.