In New York City, it isn’t only Broadway that’s back. CanJam, the (nearly) all-headphones show, made a successful reappearance at the Marriott Marquis Times Square in late February, after a two-year coronavirus hiatus – echoing the refreshed resilience of the passel of musicals and dramas that play in the surrounding Manhattan Theater District. And the timing was perfect – it arrived just as indoor mask mandates were lifted due to New York’s receding COVID hospitalization rates.
Following are some of the products that caught our attention at CanJam NYC 2022:
Audeze’s offerings at CanJam included some novel products representing the company’s reach beyond consumer headphones – including a headset developed for medical use in MRI testing that funnels high-quality music signals to the patient while considerably tamping down the acoustic noises the machine makes during that diagnostic test. But its main focus at CanJam was on a speakerphone – the company’s first non-headphone product – that can be configured to optimize the audio on Zoom and Teams calls. The Audeze Filter wireless conference speaker ($249), about the size of a smartphone, features Neural network noise cancellation that discriminates between desired and undesirable signals and eliminates the latter. A half-million noise samples were factored into its engineering, so barking dogs and crying kids would no longer be a distraction while working from home.
HIFIMAN brought its Topology Diaphragm technology, which optimizes high-frequency response to 35Hz and was introduced in its reference R10D model, into the more affordably priced new HE-R9 ($599) closed-back dynamic driver headphone. The R9s can be adopted for wireless listening when used with the company’s Bluemini R2R dongle (bringing the package price to $749).
Soundcore by Anker’s Liberty 3 Pro true wireless noise-canceling earbuds ($169.99) carry a novel feature called HearID, enabling the listener to personalize the sound beyond standard adjustment parameters. HearID automatically monitors external noise and analyzes in-ear pressure to fine-tune noise cancellation depending upon ambient circumstances. The listener can also proactively switch between different EQ preset modes and noise cancellation protocols. Battery life without noise cancelling enabled is eight hours on a single charge and 32 hours (three full charges) of total playtime from the charging case; a fast-charging feature gets three hours of playtime from a 15-minute charge.
The New York City-based Audio46 headphone destination store demo’ed multiple models at its stand. One of the newest products it carries that was on display was the Strauss & Wagner EM8C wired earbuds ($49.95), which feature a USB-C plug connection for use with desktop and mobile devices. Also part of the design are a three-button remote offering volume and playback adjustment capability, and an integrated mic with a sensitivity of 43dB, to allow the listener to take calls and issue voice commands to the connected device.
Included among the exhibited products at the Final Audio stand was the jewelry-like A8000 in-ear headphone – at $2,000, the flagship of its A Series in-ear models. The A8000 features a pure Beryllium diaphragm dynamic driver the company says is notable for its lightness and high sound speed characteristics, while showcasing Final’s brand of engineering expertise that fully measures up to its design aesthetics.
Italian headphone maker Spirit Torino, with its selection of headphones, highlighted its attention to design sensibilities as well as to superior sound quality at CanJam. Among models demo’ed was the Titano semi-closed circumaural headphone. This headphone’s semi-closed design is said to provide the acoustic advantages of an open system while emitting 50 percent less sound to the outside. Its earpads, developed with Dekoni Audio, incorporate what has been dubbed the VPS (Ventilation Pad System), a variable front ventilation system which is adaptable to different types of amplification.
Nancy is a contributing editor for Dealerscope.