There’s a lot of options out there, so we asked some two of the most creative audio companies for their expert insights in finding new and innovative products.
Since the field is developing in such exciting directions, we asked Kokoon, a sleep tech company, and House of Marley, a leader in eco-conscious audio, to share their advice and to also tell us more about their own products.
Here is what they say about the best headphone features to look for and what exciting technologies you should be aware of before making a purchase.
Audio expert advice from Tim Antos, the Founder & CEO of Kokoon Technology
Tim Antos, the founder of Kokoon Technology, a company dedicated to sleep technology, focused on the future of headphones and the big breakthroughs happening with smart headphones.
Want to know how AI in headphones can help you in day-to-day life…and at night? Read on.
“Intelligent or smart headphones are by far the most exciting new technology for headphones.
The potential of this new technology is tremendous and represents a new dawn for the headphone industry where devices move beyond just helping you listen to helping you tackle health issues or achieve better productivity.
Headphones are becoming an interface with the digital world and the power of these connected devices will continually evolve as software, applications and use cases expand.
Kokoon Technology for example have two smart headphone products that provide bio-data to an app which is then able to use AI to intelligently personalised the listening experience in real time (adapting to bodies relaxation or sleep) and is able to offer personalised coaching to help the listener benefit from clinically validated approaches to improve sleep, mental health or manage stress.”
The dedicated Kickstarter campaign reached its goal in just 12 minutes and eventually, through the power of crowdfunding, gathered £677,954 (around $918,000).
Audio expert advice from Josh Poulsen, the Director of Product Development at House of Marley
Josh Poulsen, the Director of Product Development at House of Marley, offers eco-conscious choices in headphones, speakers and turntables, offered some really nice tips and tricks to find the best deal for headphones.
Here’s what he recommends.
“First, what are you looking to use the headphones for? Everyday use for working from home? Travel? Activity/working out? All of the above?
Quality: You want to make the best of your investment so pay attention to the design and build quality. Not all headphones are created equal by nature of the materials and how they are assembled.
Sustainability: If you are looking to make a difference – House of Marley leads in the use of sustainable materials from its core, from the beginning. We are not just catching onto this trend but innovating. Some of our newest innovations include our 100% recyclable, plastic-free packaging.
Comfort: Look for a pair that will fit you well with comfort for those long days working with headphones on to zone out and focus or when you are ready to take that long needed vacation. A comfortable pair that can allow you to relax without fatigue on a long haul.
Isolation and ANC: In-ear headphones with a good fit & seal will give you quite a bit of passive noise isolation. Same with a good fitting over the ear headphones. With advances in BT chipset capabilities, ANC is becoming a standard feature but performance varies considerably.
If good ANC matters – avoid the lower cost options.
Ambient Awareness: If you prefer to not tune out the outside world, you may prefer a non-occluding style of earbuds that will allow some pass through. Other in-ears and over ears will include an ambient awareness/transparency or monitor mode to allow you to hear the outside world only when you want it.
Communication/Voice: Check for headphones that have multiple mics or ENC (Environmental Noise Cancellation) features.
If wireless is not always an option, ensure your headphones include an inline microphone.
Also, most wireless headphones include push-to-talk support for your handset of choice’s standard voice assistant. Don’t pay extra for always listening voice unless you need it – soon this will become standard fare.”
We are particularly impressed by the fact that all the materials used in their headphones are responsibly sourced, recycled and upcycled, and that their donations helped plant more than 223,000 trees so far through the OneTreePlanted initiative.
Want even more expert opinions about the daily tech that makes your life easier?
Drop us a line in the comment section and tell us which type of technology you would like to see us explore next.