The new Avantone Pro Planar headphones are promoted as a follow-up to the brand's original MP-1 Mixphones multi-mode headphones. The concept is based on Avantone's Vari-Voice technology that allow users to switch between a normal neutrally-voiced stereo field, monaural, and a specially contoured ‘mix’ mode (those a toggled with a tiny switch on one of the earcups). But this time, instead of using large format 50mm dynamic drivers, the Avantone Planar open-back headphones use planar drivers that enable extreme detail and improved comfort during long sessions. A concept that the company designed as an ideal solution for mix engineers, musicians, podcasters, live-streamers, and hi-fi enthusiasts alike.
The Avantone Planar headphones are promoted as the result of the brand's experience in "creating reference-grade monitoring products to meet the demands of modern-day professional end-users." The company understood that planar drivers could be an ideal solution for extreme detail, and supreme comfort during long sessions — certainly intended for studio engineers, music producers and musicians.
The challenge with planar drivers is the size to weight ratio, and the lack of bass response. On the other hand, planar magnetic drivers are much faster, since they are constructed from a precise array of magnets that are evenly spaced across both sides of a thin, electrically-active diaphragm. Due to the nature of this magnetic field’s precision, any force applied to the membrane is distributed in a symmetric fashion that produces a signal with very little harmonic distortion and incredibly fast response times.
The brand says there is far less weight applied to these drivers since Avantone Pro’s Planar headphones use front- and rear-mounted Neodymium N50SH magnets combined with a 21 Micron PET diaphragm, resulting also in a much more natural sound with less distortion, and allowing for hours of fatigue-less listening. Avantone Pro’s Planar headphones also apply an open-back design with a tuned chamber that results in a very flat-frequency environment — all without the typical pressure build-up, acoustic resonance, and frequency curve of closed-back headphones.
And while Planar headphones are a little larger than typical headphones, when comfortably positioned, they are perfectly weighted for long-listening sessions, providing additional comfort with soft and spacious ear pads. Specifications detail a weight of only 480g, while low (32 Ω) impedance and amplifier requirements make for better use with audio interfaces, hi-fi systems, or mobile devices.
Dutifully, Avantone Pro’s Planar package comes complete with a high-grade 3.5mm cable that can be plugged into either side of the headphones, an eco-friendly shoulder bag with room for accessories — and a pouch for the included removable cable. Optional replacement cable and earpads are also available.
Planar headphones are available in both black and red versions through Avantone Pro’s US Dealers (www.avantonepro.com/us-dealers.php) with a MAP (Minimum Advertised Price) of $399.00 USD. (European SSP — Suggested Selling Price — is €399.00 EUR, including VAT, with worldwide Distributors listed by country here).