The quintessential companion for any audio connoisseur.
I remember the advent of digital audio. My father and I would have endless discussions concerning analogue versus digital. I would argue that cassette tape sounded just fine and he would try to sway me to his way of digital is better thinking. I slowly saw reason – especially after I heard Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band played on a CD player (the first CD played in our house). At the time, CDs were not commonplace in households. We had one because it was an essential piece of equipment for my dad’s business. So, CDs were not cheap by any means. There are still people today who will say that good ole vinyl records sound the best. Purists, they are called. Well, the same can be said about different types of headphones. Wireless headphones give is a wonderful convenience, but there is something to be said about the wired headphones experience.
Premium accessory designer, Moshi, has a beautiful set of headphones called Avanti. They are wired, which is a bit of departure from the norm these days, but Moshi was out to provide a quality, experience no matter the listening device. I have had a lot of experiences using headphones in recent days. My favorites are the on-ear style, so I was excited to test out Avanti. In fact, Nick was origianlly supposed to write this review, but after he let me try them, I wouldn’t give them back and so I ended up writing this article. The word ‘avanti’ means to
The word ‘avanti’ means to move forward in Italian. I don’t believe that it’s a coincidence that Moshi selected this word for the name of these mobile-driven headphones. They are meant for people who are on the go. They come packaged with a lovely headphone case. The headphones fold up quite nicely to fit into the crevasse of the case. There is also a nice mesh pocket that is ideal for the storage of the detachable headphone cable. The case is compact enough to fit into a laptop bag or small sling pack.
To me, comfort is of vital importance when I select headphones. I typically use them for hours on end while I’m working. They help me tune out the world around me so that I can focus on the task at hand. I know that many people do the same thing and so, comfort becomes one of the deciding factors for headphone selection. Avanti was designed with ergonomics and comfort for the user in mind. There are two awesome design features that really contribute to the high comfort level of these headphones. First, the curved headband. At first, I didn’t really think anything of it, but then I put the headphones on. The headband is engineered to position the earcups in the perfect spot so that you have a noise-isolating seal over your ears, but not the extra pressure that some headphones create. Avanti is very lightweight and you almost don’t even know that you are wearing them. The headphones are made mainly from stainless steel and soft leatherette material. The leatherette material really makes for a gentle resting place for your ears. I didn’t experience any fatigue or soreness from using Avanti for a long period of time.
Even though I talked about comfort first, sound really is the most important factor when it comes to headphones. And, there is a big difference between some Bluetooth headphones and high quality wired ones. Avanti is the best possible example of this. Underneath the surface, Avanti is backed by high-resolution HD40 neodymium drivers (15 Hz-22kHz / -10dB@1kHz) that really push out the premium sound. When I test out headphones and am considering their sound quality, I do three main things. I play streaming music through Pandora and choose two stations that are rich in highs and lows (one is an instrumentally based station, and the other is a 90s hip-hop station). The third listening sensation I look for is the mix from a TV show or movie. For this test, I turn to Netflix, which can provide me with a wide variety of options for listening.
So for the music test, I listened to my soundtrack station, which provided me with many different instruments full of high pitches and rich lows. Avanti really did a nice job of pushing their sound through as an ensemble. Then, I pulled up my 90s hip-hop station, which played Salt-N-Pepa’s Push It and Avanti again impressed with a punchy bass sound.
While the music was beautiful and full sounding, Avanti really shines when it comes to a mix in a movie. There are a lot of headphones out there that just blend it all together as if it were a mono track. When that happens you miss the subtle nuances that were intended as an additional character in the movie. For my movie track test, I pulled up Jurassic Park on Netflix. This movie won the Academy Award in 1994 for Best Sound Editing AND Best Sound Mixing. It’s been an inspiration to me for years and trained me to listen carefully to every single sound in a movie.
When I started it playing, I was in awe of how Avanti made the sound brilliant. I honestly heard sounds that I hadn’t heard before. There is a scene near the beginning of the film where Dr. Grant played by Sam Neill is explaining his theory of how dinosaurs have more in common with modern birds than reptiles. During this scene, there is a child that mocks the explanation and Dr. Grant scares the kid by explaining how the Velociraptor is a skilled, pack hunter. If you watch that scene again while listening through Avanti headphones, you will hear the distinct sound of a screeching bird of prey in the distance. I HAD NEVER HEARD THAT BEFORE! And I’ve seen this movie a hundred times! The mix is just astounding when you use Avanti as a listening companion. I guarantee you will swear you are seeing the movie again for the first time.
Moshi did a beautiful job designing these headphones and the engineers spared no expense with the superior HD quality technology that truly makes the Avanti a one-of-a-kind listening experience.