* Prices may differ from that shown
Crikey these headphones are expensive. You're looking at at least £80-£90 quid for a pair but they are admittedly both durable and extremely well made. The speakers themselves are connected to a solid metal frame, and they come with hinged 'hooks' which go around the earlobes, thsu allowing the speakers to be firmly attached to each side of your head.
Or at least that's how they are supposed to work. Maybe I just have floppy earlobes, but I find that the hooks tend to pull my ears down a little, whilst the speakers themselves do not fit neatly into my lugholes (again, perhaps I'm some kind of mutant), and instead keep coming loose no matter how tightly I try and fix the hooks around my ears. Also, if you have long hair, you can expect to constantly get the hooks caught up in it, and even aside from this I find the hinged hook design to be extremly faffy and irritating.
The sound quality is superb- crisp and clear even at high volumes and with a very punchy bass sound to boot. The headphones come with a connecting wire with an adapter halfway along its length, meaning that the cable length can easily be shortened or lengthened to suit your taste. They are very durable too, and are unlikely to break unless you take to jumping up and down on them. This durability, along with their compact size, makes them ideal for travel, so long as you dont mind carrying something so expensive around in your bag.
The price is pretty prohibitive though, and is a lot to shell out for something that mightnt even fit you very well. I suppose the headphones are best then for bald/short-haired audiophiles with rigid earlobes, big ear canals and lots of disposable cash.
When it comes to listening to music on the move, there's generally a choice between earbuds and headphones. The advantage of earbuds is they're small and lightweight and can easily be carried around in a pocket. However, they can be uncomfortable and sometimes fall out if you're on the move, they can also suffer from poor sound quality because of their size. Headphones will stay in position and the sound quality is generally superior. However, they're big and cumbersome to carry around, and let's be honest, you look like a bit of an idiot wearing them in the street!
In 2000, the A8 earphones hit the market and offered an alternative to both. The hook design of these earphones means they comfortably fit around the ear like a pair of spectacles. They have three adjustable parts which means they can be quickly adjusted to the size and shape of your ear for a perfect fit over your ear canal. The aluminium construction is both strong and light meaning they're no bother at all to carry around.
Of course, a good fit is one thing, but what about the sound quality? In a word... stunning. I've listened to a few different earphones in my time, comparing the quality, and even after owning these for 10 years, I've not come across any earphones with better audio quality. The high notes are crystal clear. The midrange is great, and the bass... much better than you'd expect from earphones! Bang & Olufsen have achieved this quite cleverly... the hook design means that the actual buds are be bigger than could be achieved from standard in-ear buds, this extra size means that stronger bass notes can be produced and it really makes a difference! All this without any loss of comfort!
Bang & Olufsen isn't just about good sound quality, it's also about style and superb minimalist Scandinavian design. The aluminium earphones with black rubber parts are a joy to look at as well as listen to! They come complete with a leather case to keep them safe and an extension cable which might come in handy if you need to attach them to a hi-fi or desktop computer. An extra set of foam pads is provided in case you lose any.
Of course this premium quality and design comes at a premium price. Currently retailing at around £105, this could send a shock to those used to poor quality earphones. However, the quality workmanship will last for years and you'll never want to replace them! Superb quality music is a joy to listen to and wel;l worth forking out a bit of extra cash for.
One of the most important things for me when training in the gym or out road running is being able to listen to good motivating music to keep pushing me. In the last 10 years of training I have been through countless pairs of earphones which have broken or stopped working for one reason or another. About 18 months ago I decided it was time to invest in a pair of real good quality earphones and decided to give the Bang & Olufsen A8's a go. I was very reluctant to spend over £40 on a pair of earphones due to the amount of pairs that have given up the ghost on me but I parted with my hard earned cash and it turned out to be a shrewd move.
The A8's have the bit that keeps them stuck to your ear whilst running (not sure of the technical term) so they don't fall out. On this pair of earphones it actually works and keeps them in place. I have had a number of cheaper pairs that although they have this feature they won't stay in your when running, which becomes a real pain. I have had to wear a hat to keep many pairs in my ear which is not good in the warmer weather. The sound on these is fantastic and does not start to crackle or get distorted when they start to get sweat in them, another major gripe of mine with the cheaper pairs.
The length of the the chord is ample compared with many pairs I have had which is a bit short. I am pleased to say that after 18 months of heavy use the earphones are still in perfect working order and are proving to be a sound investment. This is the first pair of sports earphones I have had where one or both earphones have stopped working (due to getting sweat in them I guess), I hope I have not cursed myself here. I am sure they won't go on forever so if anybody knows of another good, durable pair of sports headphones which are more modestly priced I would be interested to hear?
A few other nice little extra that comes with these are a carry pouch, In-Flight adaptor and a 2 metre extension cord if you want to use them indoors for any reason. I would certainly recommend these to anybody who is look for a durable pair of earphones for sport although they are a bit expensive you get what you pay for. Would I spend this much for a day to day pair of earphones? Probably not.
I have owned a pair of these for well over 18 months now and I must say that I think that these do have to be the best headphones I have ever owned.
However as the headphones I have previously used have been the free ones that came with what ever personal musc player was the fad at the time, Walkman, MD (whoops), and IPOD (although I never got a personal CD player). I must say that I have been consistently impressed with their quality and warmth of sound. I was told in the shop that they encapsulate the sound into your ear better which seems true as immediately after plugging them into your ipod I lowered the volume substantially (which is nice as the charge on it lasts much longer now). Sounds out of these are fantastic, I adore listening to music and am so pleased at the investment I made with these. Unfortunately my ear isn't as discerning as thehard core HIFI officionado's but they sound pretty damn good to me!
As a design they are similar to a other products on the market at a glance however they are clever at fitting themselves to your ear. Whenever people borrow them to listen they always look rather perplexed at how they work but a very quick demo and they're away! These would prove awkward for small children (although I would never let a small child find out) and possibly if you had impaired dexterity then they coud prove a problem, although if people can get an ear bud into their ear then these shouldn't prove a challenge.
One thing that did happen with mine is that they broke....arggghhhhhhhh! Out of the blue for no reason, left ear bud, kaput! Here's where B&O are great, most headphones would be destined for the bin, with these a 9 days stay in the B&O shop and hey presto they were fixed and working lovely. The damaged occured after 6 months so B&O weren't keen for a free repair so it did cost. This they said was due to the destructable nature of headphones.
The service I experienced was exceptional. I picked these up whilst living over in Auckland, New Zealand. Having had a pretty bad experience trying to buy some Bose headphones I rocked up to B&O. Well two hours later I walked out of the shop. Exceptionally helpful shop owner. He had managed to sell me the item within 10 mins after plenty of help and allowing me to use the headphones with my own player (shame on you Bose) then asked if I was in a rush. I said no. Following a shop wide tour I now possess a very expensive wish list for electricals and knowing the quality of service from B&O am seriously considering it too!
All in all the headphones sound great, offer a great clarity with their sound and come with the B&O ability to repair them and the offering of great service. I have had no further problems with the product failing on me so I feel it was probably down to bad luck, I would say that they are normally durable and they have had a massive amount of use from me!
My husband and I live in Canary Wharf, and it's hard to pass ten people and not see at least four of them sporting these headphones. With a Bang & Olufsen store just down the road from us, the hubby decided to pick up a pair to use with his iPod Nano. At the time, I was still using the bog standard white buds that came with the iPod, but was looking for headphones that I could wear to the gym without fear of them falling out. He offered to let me borrow them for the express purpose of seeing if these could be "the ones".
Before I say anything else, it has to be mentioned that these do offer exquisite sound quality when used properly. Listening to, for instance, Let It Be...Naked using these earphones as you sit on the Tube is like listening to a completely different album, for all the nuances you can finally pick up. So if you're a music fiend, then I would definitely recommend at least trying them out.
Alternately, I'm not a massive fan of the actual physical design of the earphones. I've had to become accustomed to it as I received the Serenata as a present last year and its hands-free set is essentially this set with a microphone attached. However, when I first tried my husband's out on the treadmill, and today, I find them difficult to fit exactly into my ear - often, the running motion jiggles the bud out, so there's quite a lot of space between it and my ear, making any fine improvement of the sound useless because I can't hear it! It's also difficult to work out how exactly it fits best on your ear - the top part actually moves up and down, so you get the sense that it COULD fit very well, if only you could figure out how to make it!! My ears are quite small, so I found this even more problematic than most.
These ear phones are perfect for the commute home, as when you're sat relatively still, the sound quality, like I said, is great. They're even good during a brisk walk. However, any more intense cardiovascular activity and they're liable to pop out - and after paying so much for them, the last thing you want to do is let them fall under a treadmill or worse.
I use these for Tube journeys, but I bought a cute pair of novelty pig in-ear buds to use when exercising instead. To be honest, when I'm running on the treadmill I'm not overly concerned with the delicacies of my trashy work-out music! So it works out great for me.
Oh boy these earphones look good! I had a haircut just so that I could show them off more! These are a stunning set of earphones both visually and audibly, besides looking fantastic they do sound really rather tasty. The sound quality is top notch and they do full justice to ABBA as well as Children Of Bodom.
The adjustability is a feature that works surprisingly well, when I first looked at them I couldn't really see why earphones would need to be that adjustable, after all they just sit in your ear. However after fidling with them a little I found that it was possible to make them exceptionally comfortable. So much so that if it wasn't for the music delicately floating out of them I'd forget they were there.
There are only two real downsides to these beauties: firstly they are quite quiet earphones, the quality can't be heard so well on the train or walking along busy road - but that's only a minor issue. Secondly they seem rather delicate, the wires are really very thin and I've been worried about breaking them a few times. Saying that, I've owned them for 2 years now and the only issue I've actually had was that one of the caps fell of the end of the arm that goes over your ear, and B&O were kind enough to fix it for me!
Oh and also, they sent me a B&O bottle opener with the warranty which is seriously cool.
The sound quality from these headphones is great. They're very well made - I've had my pair for 4 years now with no problems at all, and I throw them around. A lot.
They're great to wear when you go out for a jog. The shape of them and the fact that they hug your ears so well means that you forget that you're wearing them. I've had issues in the past with earphones falling out when I go for a run.
One slightly negative thing is that the metal of the ear piece rubs the top, inside of my ears a bit. It sounds quite minor, but can be a distraction. Then again, I've had them for 4 years and haven't replaced them, which I guess highlights the fact that I still love them , even though they can sometimes be slightly uncomfortable.
All in all, a great investment.
First off, these headphones appear to be very well made. Before, I stuck with the standard apple iPod headphones, and got through 3 or so every year as they all inevitably broke. The B & O headphones are very adjustable, and can probably fit pretty much any ear type. It takes a while to put them on the first time, but after a while it becomes second nature.
The sounds quality is very good and crisp. There's no sign of any distortion when playing music very loud (although I've been told by my wife that they leak quite a lot of sound!). The only problem I have with the sound is that there's a lack of bass - however, this is only natural on headphones like these which aren't in-ear ones. I've used a few other headphones, and they're far superior to the apple ones, and not too far off my wife's £280 Bose QuietComfort ones.
These headphones are pricey (I bought them from the B&O shop in Marbella, where they cost 145 euros (£114), but I think the quality (of both sound and manufacture) more than makes up for it. I expect them to last me many years, and in the long term they should be much cheaper than the £60 I was spending on apple headphones every year. They also come with a few nice leather travelling case.
The sound quality is excellent, the fit is very comfortable and they are extremely durable. I have had mine for 3 years now and there is absolutely no loss in quality and performance. My only gripe with these is that there is no noise-cancelling in-ear bud available to place over the top of the normal earphones. So when using on public transport (especially underground train lines) you get a lot of noise coming in. If you're listening to quiet music, you need to have the volume on your player near enough to MAX to try to cancel out the offending noise. Bang and Olufsen would do well to manufacture such replacement ear buds.
Bang and Olufsen Headphones
I have owned a pair of these for about 6 or 7 years now and they are still as good as new.
I bought them to use with a CD player for holidays and since then take them everywhere I go.
The first thing to pick up on these earphones is the price. They are not cheap. I bought mine for £90 from a B&O shop. These days you can get them on EBAY from £50.
When you take them out of the box you get the immediate impression of high quality. After all they are B&O and at that price they had better be.
The earphones are made of light weight aluminum throughout, making them very light but durable, unlike a lot of plastic earphones. They weigh in at approximately 2 grams for the set.
The earphones have plenty of areas to adjust so that they fit near every ear with ease. On the main leg there are mini sliders, a little like pneumatic pumps which you can adjust for length. There are behind the ear supports to hook the earphones over the back of your ear. These have the added ability of making them more stable when you walk thus they don't fall out or move to much.
Sound quality for the B&O headphones is unsurpassed in my view. Sound is crisp and clear at all times.
There is minimal sound leakage to the outside so you never need to worry about annoying people next to you. Add to this the in the ear design and you cant hear much going on around you either. I sit in the office next to a couple of test servers and cant hear them when I'm listening to music. I have also had these on the plane a few times and you cant hear al the background noise either. B&O design all headphones with noise reduction in mind. It works well.
Over the years I have owned them the sound quality has never reduced. There are no crackling noises appearing when you move the jack about in the player.
The standard cable is not overly long, I think its about 1m. However, included in the purchase you get an extension cable. This is very useful for sitting at a desk and being able to avoid having a cable strung across your lap or pulling on your ears.
You get a good quality leather carry case that fits the earphones and the extension, plus it looks cool. There are also a couple of extra ear pads made of foam if you don't like the standard finish.
The jack connector is a standard 3.5 mm, so fits all standard walkmans and MP3 players etc.
In short, if you can justify paying over £50 for a set of portable headphones then have a look at these, you wont be disappointed. Whilst they are expensive value for money is very good as they last for decades.
I was slightly apprehensive when decidng on whether to purchase these earphones - after all, the price (about £110 12 months ago, but is extremely variable among shops) is one heck of a lot of money for a pair of earphone, but im an audiophile myself, and i liek to have the best sound reprodiction that i can whilst on the move. Conveniently, i also had a small bonus at work, so i was able to afford them. I purchased my pair at a specialist audio shop near me. My pair were packaged in a pretty innocent looking cardboard box, but extremely well done! First out is the box is the luxury leather case - not some 'cheapo' PVC case like a lot of earphones possess, but a well stitched thick leather semicircular case with a wonderful smell too - like i said my pair are at least 12 months old and i can still smell the leather! The case seals itself with a hefty velcro clasp and does the job pretty well. You also get an exstension lead for the earphones, whilst i havent actually needed to use my lead which is still sealed in its bag, i do believe that it is about 1 metre in length. Then of course the earphones themselves. They follow a simple design rather like a letter 'G', and are fashioned from a very lightweight aluminium / rubber construction. They are fully adjustable for width and height of the ear, the height mechanism moves with a firm but very smooth action. Finally, the soundpiece is able to rotate about its 'axle' smoothly so you can push or pull the soundpiece in or out of your earhole. Im sure that most people will find that the adjustments provided are more than adequate, they were for me. The owner is also provided with two pairs of foam pads with which they can cover the soundpiece with to a) provide a more snug fit b) improve sound quality. I did find that the foam pads were essential for my own ears as over lengthly periods, the bare soundpiece is quite unfortable and 'sharp' shall we say
against the earhole. Once you have used up all of the foam pads, they are easy to purchase again, i bought six from HMV at a very respctable 99p :) The sound quality provded the by earphones is second to none - a crisp reproduction across all the ranges with good low medium and high tones. I did also find that when used with audio playsers which give little output (such as some MP3 players) these were able to cope sufficiently and give excellent sound quality. Sound leakabge is pretty respectable too - i like to listen to music quite loud and when used with the foam pads, sound is filtered out to others pretty well. Perhaps odd to mention, but I think that it is appropriate here: The earphone wire! I have been through plenty of cheaper earphones myself and at some point of heavy use, you get the usual 'sound in one ear syndrome', usually down to a bad grade of wire used, or badly designed / fashioned strain guards on the jack ends. The wire used here is quite pliable and flexible and is easy to fold ready for to be stowed in the case. on a nevative point here, i do think that the strain guard on the end of the jack could be better formed, as it seems rather hollow and non supportive :/ In conclusion, if you can afford these, then get them! You will own an extremely uniquely designed pairs of earphones, and they certainly got a ot of attention from friends, coworkers, etc. They are quite durable and i would thik that mine get given 'a good hammering' shall we say ;). On a negative side, if you want them to keep looking as good as they are in the photos, then you DO need to look after them very well - the 'Bang and Olufsen' transfer written on either earphone stem easily wears off. Finally, being an aluminium construction, they can get easily scratched - hint - don't put them together in your pocket when you have finished with them, put them back in the case! All in all, a stylish and audibly superior p
air of earphones.
Bang & Olufsen A8 Earphones are designed to fit the individual ear and deliver unsurpassed sound quality. Each element can be manoeuvred up or down and side-to-side to ensure the perfect fit. The A8 earphones are crafted from anodised aluminium and hard rubber giving them both flexibility and robust durability. They come with their own specially designed leather carrying case and a 2m extension cord.