Is R770,000 too much to spend on Sennheiser’s Orpheus headphones?


Yes, that headline is correct. No, we didn’t add an extra zero. Sennheiser have updated their Orpheus HE90 headphones to this and with that improvement comes a price increase. To about $55,000 or around R770,000 in South African money.

Sennheiser OrpheusWhy exactly would someone pay the price of a holiday home on the coast (in a bad neighbourhood, but still) for a set of headphones? Well, the original set was born from a quest to develop the best headphones the world had ever seen, with the resulting tech having a limited run of just 300 units.

The new Orpheus cans are ten years in the making and incorporate a Class-A MOS-FET amp in the ear cups, eight digital-to-analogue converters (DACs) and an 8Hz to 100KHz frequency response – way beyond your range of hearing, no matter what audiophiles try to tell you. But it might be enough to justify the cost.

Well, that and the electrostatic design, the eight Carrara marble-encased valves in the included pre-amp (What? You thought it was just a set of headphones?) and that the whole lot is housed behind protective glass or in the marble stand until you turn it on. Because these aren’t Beats – the Orpheus headphones are for experiencing music. And an empty bank account.

Source: Ars Technica


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