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Several Firms Launch Headphones

12/05/2011 12:04:00 AM Eastern
New York - The headphones category showed no signs of slowing in the fourth quarter, with new models and upgrades being announced in the final weeks of 2011 as manufacturers hoped to get a piece of the holiday selling season pie. What follows is a roundup of products announced in just the last few weeks, and see the Nov. 21 issue of TWICE for even more fourth-quarter introductions.

V-Moda updated its Crossfade headphones line with the LP2 Metal headphones. They feature 50mm dual-diaphragm drivers and V-Port 3D staging, which the company said can recreate the sound of multiple drivers with the quality and consistency of a single driver.

"The driver's diaphragm is constructed of a harder inner ring for mids and highs and a soft outer ring dedicated to deep bass extension so you can actually feel the music, even with low powered sources," it noted.

They also have a 31-band EQ and are tested under MIL-STD-810G military testing, as well as the company's own guidelines. As a result, the LP2 can reportedly survive more than 70 drops on concrete from six feet, and its Kevlar-reinforced detachable cables and 45-degree plug strain relief are said to be able to each bend more than 1 million times.

The headband can bend flat more than 10 times without breaking, V-Moda said.

Other features of the LP2 include replaceable memory foam ear cushions; two fabric cables, one with a three-button remote; a two-year warranty; and inclusion in the company's Immortal Life Program, which provides a 50 percent lifetime discount to replace consumer-damaged headphones.

They're currently available for $199. Customizable color shields are available for an additional $45.

Urbanears launched its first model into its new Editions line of headphones. The Quilted Plattan features a padded headband and ear cushions wrapped in an all-over quilted stitching. They have 40mm drivers, a frequency Response of 20Hz to 20kHz, impedance 60 ohms, sensitivity of 115dB and a max input power of 40mW.

 They're currently available for $80.

Sennheiser introduced its first Xbox gaming headsets with the X 320 and X 2.

The X 320 ($149) has a noise-canceling microphone, dual volume control and automatic mic mute by raising the boom.  

At $29.95, the single-sided X 2 headset is billed as the more budget-friendly headset. It also features a noise-canceling microphone.

Both are currently available and come with a two-year warranty.

Velodyne, a manufacturer of high-end subwoofers based in Morgan Hill, Calif., has entered the headphones market.

The vPulse in-ear headphones feature aluminum driver housings, 10mm drivers, a tangle-resistant cable and built-in controls. According to the company, the vPulse have a pressure-relief system that reduces air pressure within the ear canal for safer and more comfortable listening.

Frequency range is listed at 20Hz to 20kHz, with a sensitivity of 98.8dB/1 mW, and an impedance of 16 ohms.

They're currently available for $89.00.

SOL Republic said its Tracks and Trcks HD headphones can now be customized with Coloware, allowing consumers to personalize the devices with various color schemes, designs, artwork or messages.

Finally, the House of Marley announced it was embarking on a Satisfy Your Soul tour throughout Southern California, including a stop at the Los Angeles Ski Show and Snowboard Expo.

The tour will allow consumers to look at the Marley products, engage in music mash-ups, and record a video singing their own version of a classic Marley song, all from a fully restored Marley-inspired 1958 VW van, the company said.

The tour will run through December and will reportedly help provide funding for Little Kids Rock through 1Love.org, the non-profit started by the Marley family. Little Kids Rock is a non-profit that provides children with free instruments and music lessons.
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