Disclaimer: The stars of this weeks’ picture Sunday are a few B-Frame shots from a recent magazine shoot I did, like the Michelle in the main picture. This post is a part of our Picture Sunday series.
It was a grueling two weeks that should have been over in a few days. Last Friday, having uploaded around a hundred hasty studio snaps of newly de-dusted headphones and amps, I finished. The ra-ra excitement for me was less than it should be, and considering that I had hands on a great range of stuff for hours on end, pitifully so.
A few items really clicked for me though. They are the shiny, the well made, the good fitting, and the beautiful.
Let’s start off with Astell&Kern’s Michelle Limited a seriously sexy and somewhat economically priced beast. It was the last thing I shot, meaning that I had a bit more time with it than usual- meaning that I was able to do things I don’t usually bother with for magazines. Those are: properly hanging, counter-weighting, and lighting it almost to the level of a low-cost boutique advertising photo.
Unfortunately properly shooting it meant that I hadn’t time to listen. It’s Jerry Harvey and Astell&Kern- I’m sure it sounds good.
The other truly sexy beast was Final’s D8000. The right textured ear pads with the right amount of soft memory foam, the right amount of headband pressure, the right machine punch. It’s a right fabulous design. Because I hadn’t time to properly shoot it, I snapped it and then put it on my head whilst shooting other phones. And I liked what I heard. In fact, of all Final’s headphones, to date, this is my favourite.
A lot of people asked me about Audio Technica’s ADX5000. It fits well. It’s got that super tight mid to upper gel that most good Audio Technicas have. It’s machining is great though the stodgy brand really need to revamp their image, as next to the Final this thing is about as exciting as a cheese grater.
Back to Final, the E3000, inexpensive and undaunting as its market position may be, is brilliantly designed. Simple, with push-pull ergonomics, good cable protection, and shiny exterior without ruining Final’s premium look and feel. Previous economical Final earphones rubbed me the wrong way. If the E3000 is any indication, those days are gone.
Finally – and speaking again of stodgy – Sennheiser’s HD660S is king. It’s as unsalty a design as exists, making the HD600 and 650 looks positively exciting. That said, Sennheiser deserve kudos fo retaining the same great shape, plugs, and basic sound signature. The HD660S’s got it where it counts.
The above photos being B frames don’t do justice to the headphones that made it into today’s article. And because I’m a stodgy nub of a guy myself, I refrained from effusing over Azla and Noble and a few other, nimble and exciting brands. Had I the dosh, I’d dish out right now for the Final