Audeze's iSine 10 creates a new category of earphones. Most headphones and earphones are minor variations on well-established themes. Audeze's iSine 10 is more "mashup" than "variation." In the iSine 10, Audeze fit an open back planar magnetic driver into an…earphone?
When I reviewed the original HiFiMAN HE1000 Planar Magnetic Headphones about two years ago, I was pretty much bowled over by their performance, looks and sound quality. They were, at the time, the best pair of headphones that I had ever heard and still remain amongst a handful of reference headphones that I would consider as my all-time favorites. Ever the busy little bees that they are, the engineers at HiFiMAN have not seen fit to leave well-enough alone and recently released the HE1000 V2. The updated model is said to incorporate several modifications gleaned from customer feedback along with HiFiMAN’s general desire to keep refining their designs.
Jumping off the success of their top line HE1000, HiFiMAN brings us the Edition X. The X takes much of the goodness of its bigger brother and puts it in a more affordable and easier to drive package.
Touting a number of advancements in both magnet and driver design; the HE1000s are the best sounding headphones that I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. They are the closest I have ever experienced to that "alive" feeling of music reproduction that I look for in speakers, from a headphone product.