And you thought you are happy with your Rs. 1000 headphones? See this now! Sennheiser launches headphones that cost more than a car or even an apartment at suburban metropolitans. Over 25 years after Sennheiser created history with its iconic Orpheus HE90, the brand new headturner headphone system complete with a custom amplifier.
The famous audio-maker from Germany brings in India, the limited edition HE 1 with a massive price tag of Rs 45,00,000. The question, however, remains whether India is ready to spend so much on a headphone when the same price can let one afford an apartment! But then, if you are among those music lovers who shop for luxury, quality and exclusivity – HE1 is for you.
The successor to the legendary Orpheus headphones that Sennheiser made in 1991, the HE 1 is, without undoubtedly, the most expensive product sold today by the German headphone manufacturer. And it is a fact that due to the much needed effort that goes into it, Sennheiser’s otherwise modern and efficient production line has the capacity to produce only one HE 1 per day!
So, what actually makes HE1 so pricey? And is it at all a justified value for money? The feel of owning a luxury audio equipment is there alright, you also get a custom-built amplification and storage system for the headphones. The headphone is built out of marble with metal knobs and controls – imagine how magnificent they look! And the pre-amplification system is powered by eight tube amplifiers, and comes with its own remote.
You get the opportunity to customize the system as per your tastes, say – get a gold plating on the knobs or get different stones stud for the casing, depending on your choice and the feasibility. So, isn’t that a reason enough to notch the cost up to a whopping Rs 4,500,000? Justifiable point number 1!
Point number 2 comes with the simple fact as explained by Sennheiser, “In 1991-92, when we launched the original one, it was the pinnacle of what was possible physically at the time. But we also knew what compromises we made at the time. The engineers always had that at the back of their minds and wanted to change things for the better.” Sennheiser HE 1 is not all about the premium price tag (that’s there we agree!). But it’s also about giving people a reason to own the “best and finest headphones in the world” through the added customization option. So the history created nostalgia fact always remains a justifiable point 2.
Coming to the most important fact now, the function and the sound quality. Once the Sennheiser HE 1 and its amplification system are connected to a music source, the knobs extend outwards, the tube amps rise up out of the casing, and the lid of the box opens to reveal the HE 1 headphones. This is to give the tube amps the 25 seconds they need to warm up and prepare the amplification to the headphones.
Now, how does the Sennheiser HE 1 sound? To put it simply, it’s way too impressive. What you get is a truly open, three-dimensional sound that is a pleasure to listen to. Isn’t it an absolute pleasure to detect and feel individual elements of the tracks as if they’re happening in the real surrounding? So that does make it a totally justifiable point number 3.
The headphones go on sale in India this month, but it obviously isn’t as easy to buy a pair as going online and paying by credit card. If you are interested and only if you have a bank balance worth for this kind of luxury, think about giving it a try and fill out the form at Sennheiser India’s website. The Sennheiser team will get in touch with you to take things forward. Good luck!