Located right off the main path through the south hall of CES, Echobox had a killer space filled with plenty of smart content. In addition to the launch of two new headphones the large space held an interesting company called Snugs and a favorite planar magnetic headphone manufacturer Mr. Speakers.
The two new IEMs from Echobox follow hot on the tail of last year’s titanium-shell dynamic driver Finder X1 ($229). In a sharp move, the two new pieces straddle the debut earphone at $99 for the Traveler and $399 for the Nomad. If the line gets any bigger, it is going to get really interesting to see how far they can stretch the model names along the same theme.
The line now expands in proper proportions in either direction. The Nomad offers a slightly more ergonomic shape to the external design, while keeping the interchangeable filter options from the original Finder. Both headphones feature solid titanium housings and German-made drivers constructed from PEEK (Polyetheretherketone) polymers.
The entry level Traveler will be available in 3 colors when they go on sale later this year, with separate models available for Android and iOS platforms.
Just across the way from the display tables of the two new miniature music makers was situated a perfect complement to nearly any universal fit IEM. A company called Snugs was taking ear molds with the same non-invasive scanning technology that Ultimate Ears debuted last year called eFit.
Snugs is authorized to produce molds in the same way UE is, but the application here was only for a universal add-on product. Snugs fits over (and around) the earphone and acts as a giant custom fit tip. The idea could be considered a must-have for any universal fit IEM enthusiast as poor seals can wreak havoc on bass response and outside noise reduction. Having had my ears molded many times via both techniques, I can say that the eFit option is much less intrusive to the ear canal. The application of goop isn’t so bad in practice, however the initial block screen that is used in the process is usually applied fairly deep and can be quite uncomfortable pushed so far into the ear canal.
Located halfway in between Snugs and Echobox was a delightful table inhabited by no other than Mr. Speakers himself, Dan Clark. Showcasing one of his favorite personal setups, Dan brought along is award winning Ether Flow in both open and closed back variants ($1.8k). Paired with the Ether was the Yggdrasil ladder DAC by Schiit ($2.3k) and the Woo Audio WA5 SE ($3.7k) decked out with Sophia Princess 300b tube upgrades. Once again Dan proved that his ears are some of the best in the business, as the sound he put together through the rig was as detailed as it was graceful.
Echobox’s chief commercial officer Sam McKinney was kind enough to walk us through all the new products coming out, you can check it all out from him direct from the show floor via the embed below.