Health and Wellness Music

RealLoud heaphones protect your ear from cranked-up tunes

Our parents always warned us about listening to our music too loudly, but the rebels within all of us never listened, preferring to instead crank it up to the max to enjoy our music. Loud music that crackles in your ear and almost hurts is good after all, right? Well, as much as we might have enjoyed the albums of yesteryear, the increased use of earphones due to the MP3 revolution has clearly shown the auditory consequences of these practices. Unfortunately, the headphone industry has responded to this criticism with larger, louder, and bassier headphones that compound the problem.

The increasing number of both teens and adults with mild to severe hearing loss caught audio legend Stephen D. Ambrose’s attention and he, along with his company Asius Technologies, has created RealLoud Technology as a result. The product reduces harmful pressure experienced by wearing ordinary headphones using bio-mimicry, or the imitation of nature through technology, to include a built-in secondary eardrum to absorb them for you. As a result, louder, more complete sound is produced by eliminating the pressures associated with unnecessary noise, even if actual volume is technically quieter overall. This is the crux of the RealLoud Technology, and the key behind the entire series of 1964|Adel headphones.

Three lines of headphones incorporate the RealLoud Technology. The Ambient line is for casual audiophiles and features up to 12 drivers, the U-Series is an over-the-ear headphone with up to eight drivers, and the A-Series feature up to 12 drivers and are custom to your own ear impressions. With price points ranging from $100 to $1,600, there are options for everyone, all estimated to be delivered between February and May of 2015. The campaign has a funding goal of $200,000.

It’s about time solutions are created for the problems caused by the consumer market itself, and although the 1964|Adel headphones have a pretty high cost of entry, their development is a sign that the technology is being thought about. Soon, they’ll trickle down and hopefully become standard across the board. The cheek is too often turned in the name of profits, and although here profits are still had, at least it’s propped up by actual innovation.


Dash wireless earbud headset whispers entertainment, information into your ear

editors-choiceThe Premise. Headphones have come a long way since being a simple wire connecting two hard plastic cups covered in a thin foam. Ergonomic, performance, and technological advancements have slowly evolved the headphone to its current state, but at its best, it is still a device that has to rely on something else to function.

The Product. Bragi LLC’s The Dash Wireless In-Ear Headphones are the first smart earbuds out there. With no cables whatsoever, each pair of headphones inserts into each ear and can be gently pressed or swiped to control playlists, volume, or track fitness performance. The Dash can sync up to a phone for music playback or to take calls, but will also function on its own. However, as one might expect from the tiny size, battery life is limited with three  hours of playback on its battery life and  4 GB of non-expandable space to store music without using any other device. The fitness tracker can report heart rate, body temperature, distance, speed, and altitude among other things.

The Pitch. Designer Nikolaj Hviid introduces us to The Dash as his vision for the future of headphones. A series of clips shows us all the different features available and how seamlessly they work with or without the app. Afterwards, Olympic Triathlete Helle Frederiksen gives her endorsement for the headphones as a companion for fitness, and the design behind The Dash is explained. Pictures that accompany the campaign explain what each Dash comes with, all the specs and features, and what each reward tier includes. Bragi needs $260,000 to order plastic injection tools, develop prototypes, get certifications, and more.

The Perks. Shipping in November of this year, to get your hands on The Dash will cost $179, which is a $120 markdown from the suggested retail price. Developers who which to employ Dash headphone functionality with their app or who want to develop add-ons to the existing app will get a series of prototypes and access to the developer kit in July for $299.

The Potential. We’ve seen MP3 player headphones before, but the Dash is a miniature marvel. If Bragi delivers all of its promises on The Dash, this could be the template that all high-end headphones follow going forward. Fitness enthusiasts, business travelers, and tech junkies alike will want a pair, making the suddenly bulky-looking Bluetooth earpieces of the present obsolete.  While they appear sleek and simple, The Dash might find fast traction as the perfect companion to Google Glass.