The future of headphones
Daisy Scott, Online Deputy Editor, discusses the new headphones being released by Dyson and what this means for headphones of the future.
Dyson has released a set of headphones that are “comfy enough to sleep” in but also make you look like bane. It might seem like they are just one long con from the British manufacturer but, the Dyson Zone air-purifying headphones are real, and then cost £749. But are they worth the massive price tag?
As the worlds urban population grows, the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 90% of people breathe air that exceeds WHO guidelines for pollution levels. At the start of 2022, some Londoners were even told to exercise indoors due to the excessive pollution levels.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 90% of people breathe air that exceeds WHO guidelines for pollution levels
The Dyson Zone is the manufacturers first wearable purifier and is a set of noise cancelling, high fidelity over-ear headphones which simultaneously deliver immersive sound to the ears, and purified airflow to the nose and mouth. Jake Dyson, the Chief Engineer at Dyson has said that it “purifies the air you breathe on the move. And unlike face masks, it delivers a plume of fresh air without touching your face, using high-performance filters and two miniaturised air pumps. After six years in development, we’re excited to deliver pure air and pure audio, anywhere”.
Some may say that the product might seem like a response to the pandemic, but the headphones are the result of just under a decade of air quality research and development.
Each cup houses two motors, compressor fans and an air-purifying dual-layer filter. The compressors pull in the air, filters it and then pipes it through the visor and allows the wearer to breath in fresh air. Dyson says that the K-Carbon, potassium-enriched filters rid the air of 99% of particles as small as 0.1 microns including dust, pollen and gas pollutants. However, it does not seem to have been tested against Covid-19. Within the headphones themselves, 40mm neodymium drivers reproduce frequencies between six Hz and twenty-one kHz – Which is higher than the frequency level of human hearing. There are 11 microphones within the headphones, with eight of them monitoring the surrounding sound 384,000 times a second.
Dyson says that the K-Carbon, potassium-enriched filters rid the air of 99% of particles as small as 0.1 microns including dust, pollen and gas pollutant
Dyson also says that the headphones offer up to 50 hours of audio battery life, comparable to the top performers in the field. However, if you are using the air purifier as well, it drops significantly to just over four hours. Dyson said it engineered the headset to fit comfortably and distribute weight evenly, by drawing inspiration from horse saddles.
There have been mixed reviews about the new product from the tests that have been run by media. The Telegraph and gadget publication Wired calling the product “Bizarre”. The Guardian has also said “It is sure to draw quizzical looks”. Cherlynn Low with Engadget said that “yes, it does look just as ridiculous in real life. But somehow, in spite of its wild appearance, I still really want one”.
Some people say that these headphones are excessively priced with their price point being at £749.
The Dyson Zone will launch in the UK, the US, Ireland, Hong Kong and Singapore in the March, but the product will launch first in January 2023.
I can understand why these headphones appeal to people who live in the most smog filled cities (like Shanghai and Beijing) but we will have to wait and see if they are snapped up around the world and if they live up to the hype of the tech specifications that Dyson have told us about.