IFA Highlight 2016
August 25, 2016
Concept study: beyerdynamic and Astell&Kern show high-end headphones with Bluetooth transmission in high-resolution audio quality
Heilbronn, August 2016: A Bluetooth headphone that sounds as good as the best wired models? This is what HiFi enthusiasts have been dreaming about for a long time. Now this dream will be tangible – and above all audible – for the first time at IFA 2016: beyerdynamic will present a fully featured concept study in Berlin, which was created in cooperation with Astell&Kern.
The audio specialist from Heilbronn, Germany, and the Korean expert in high-resolution players are thus set to continue their successful cooperation. The uncompromising separation from the cable now follows on from the high-end headphones AK T5p, AK T1p and the in-ear Tesla AK T8iE of last year.
First Tesla headphones with Qualcomm® aptX™ HD audio
Two world premières at the same time add up to optimum sound quality. Firstly there's the exclusive transducer technology: the wireless headphone is the very first Bluetooth model to use Tesla drivers from beyerdynamic. The delicate voice coils respond especially quickly and can convert high-resolution audio signals faithfully into sound waves. Their high level of efficiency conserves the battery of the wireless headphone at the same time, without sacrificing precision dynamics and volume.
The second innovation resolves a basic weakness of the Bluetooth standard: even with high-quality audio codecs, only CD quality could be transmitted at best to date. The superior sound of high-resolution audio files fell by the wayside. This restriction now no longer applies with the new aptX HD codec from Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd. It transmits the full resolution of 24-bit signals. The greater dynamic range and lower background noise make even the smallest details in sound audible.
beyerdynamic is one of the first manufacturers to integrate aptX HD in an over-ear headphone. The playback device is a modified variant of the Astell&Kern AK 380, which already supports this new transmission protocol. Other players from the high-resolution specialist will follow gradually. But even top-of-the-range Android smartphones are potential music sources. There are no changes when it comes to the actual connection setup. Both devices are paired via Bluetooth as usual. The enhanced sound tunes in automatically as soon as transmitter and receiver are equipped with aptX HD.
Innovative handling with touch gestures
Wireless transmission is not the only innovative feature however. Together with the cable, the engineers have also broken some old habits in terms of handling. Thus there are no buttons any more. Playback is controlled instead by a sensor surface on the headphone housing: swiping downwards reduces the volume while swiping upwards increases it. And as the user moves a finger forward or back on the housing shell, the player skips to the beginning of the required title – in exactly the same way as with a touchpad on the computer. Even if the acoustic tuning is not yet quite ready, the intuitive handling already lures the user to explore the potential of the wireless miracle of sound.
IFA in Berlin provides ample opportunity to do just this. Listen out for the concept study at beyerdynamic's booth (Hall 1.2, Stand 204) from 2 to 7 September 2016.
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More than 90 years' experience developing audio electronics
beyerdynamic GmbH & Co. KG, Heilbronn, stands for innovative audio products with the highest sound quality and pioneering technology.
Two business divisions – Headphones and Audio Systems – provide tailored solutions for professional and private users. All products are developed in Germany and primarily manufactured by hand – from hi fi headphones to stage microphones and conference and interpretation systems.
Launched in October 2012, Astell&Kern is the high-end audiophile brand by iriver. The current Astell&Kern line includes the second generation AK100 II, AK120 II ,AK240, and AK380 high-resolution portable audio players, capable of playing 32-bit/384 kHz Mastering Quality Sound (MQS) files including DSD. Astell&Kern’s lineup has recently expanded to include accessories such as a full line of In-Ear monitors and headphones, Astell&Kern portable player docking stations, Bluetooth remote controls and line of home audio products. For more information about Astell&Kern, please visit www.AstellnKern.com or the Astell&Kern Facebook page and Twitter feed.
Qualcomm is a trademark of Qualcomm Incorporated, registered in the United States and other countries. aptX is a trademark of Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd., registered in the United States and other countries. Qualcomm aptX is a product of Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd.