Beyerdynamic’s New $99 Headphone And The FOX – NAMM 2018

Beyerdynamic was on full display mode at both CES and NAMM this year, but we saved our coverage for NAMM with a little more wiggle room, time, and mental space left over for the maker of some of our favorite headphones. The big news this year? A one-two punch for the podcasters and mobile producers, but the ripple effect for budget audiophiles is one that will not be overlooked! We are talking of course, about the new $99 DT240 PRO and the FOX USB Mic ($149).

The new budget headphone is the first into the low-cost shelf in quite some time. It has the look and feel of a production-oriented pair of cans, and works itself nicely into the fray with solid build and the promise of a linear response that is sure to appeal to the audiophile crowd. The market surrounding this pricepoint might surprise some high end enthusiasts, comments and questions regarding the few well-known contenders are often hotly debated on forums and comment sections.

The DT240 sports a dynamic transducer in a closed back setting and specs out at 34 ohms. The TRS connected removable cable can be attached to either the left or the right earcup, which we thought was a pretty nice feature. The cable itself is coiled, with about 2 ft of straight wire from the headphone connection. Its appears well-thought out for its intended use, and fits the part with “a lot of headphone for the money” according to Beyer representative Pete Carini.

The FOX USB Microphone is intended to cut off a piece of the large market share that self-producers currently spend on all-in-one microphones like the Yeti from Blue. For those who may not be aware, ever since the explosion of high production podcasts like Serial a few years ago, many listeners and (more importantly to Beyerdynamic) many show makers are flocking to the distribution platform. This is in addition to all the gaming “streamers” that have already been at it for several years on broadcast platforms like Twitch. Its a big market and everyone involved is looking for better sound. The FOX hopes to do this through 24/96 A/D and a large diaphragm condensor capsule. A base is included – but removable for attaching the piece to any standard mic mount. Although not pictured, the FOX will also ship with a metal pop screen for keeping down those pesky plosives.

The DT 240 PRO headphone is available now and the FOX will start shipping in late February.

Not to be overlooked was Beyer’s new wireless headphone with customizable sound. We first ran into the  Aventho Wireless at Rocky Mountain Audiofest a few months back, here is our excerpt from that coverage:

The new Aventho Wireless ($449) headphone partners with Mimi Hearing Technologies to deliver a listening experience that is customized to the listeners hearing capabilities. A corresponding app delivers a hearing test which is then used to create a custom sound profile which can be stored permanently into the headphone (without being connected to the app).

The headphone is a fully wireless design with an internal battery that claims playback up to 20 hours. The usual built in microphone gives the product a more flushed out portable classification. What pushes “mobile” to the next level is the interactive touchpad that covers the right ear cup. The interface can be utilized for picking up calls, volume control, track selection and can be further customized through the app for even more dedicated functionality. Bluetooth connectivity includes aptX HD and support for Apple’s AAC. 

Its a pretty interesting proposal that fits well within the changing times of portable listening. Custom listening was a hot topic at CES this year, with many companies offering up a wide array of solutions and directions to pursue. Its an area to keep on eye on in the next few years to be sure.

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