CES 2023: new headphones & IEMs


CES 2023 had its share of new headphones and IEMs. Two brands caught our attention during the show: Sennheiser and Audio-Technica. Both manufacturers have just presented their latest innovations: affordable audiophile in-ear monitors, models equipped with a hearing aid for Sennheiser and a gaming version of the legendary Audio-Technica ATH-M50x headphones for Audio-Technica!

Sennheiser IE200 IEMs
At CES 2023, Sennheiser unveiled two new pairs of in-ear monitors: one offering audiophile sound at an affordable price, and the other capable of also providing a hearing aid.

The new Sennheiser IEMs

Sennheiser IE200 IEMs: audiophile sound at an affordable price

The German brand enriches its IE range, which includes the Sennheiser IE 600 and Sennheiser IE 900! At CES, it presented its new Sennheiser IE 200 in-ear monitors. These earbuds are an audiophile solution offering a sound that is similar to that of prestigious Sennheiser models… But at a lower price! Dedicated to a wider audience, these IEMs available for under €150 should therefore have a detailed, clear and deep sound signature.

The Sennheiser IE 200 is an invitation for everyone to enjoy high-end sound. With a balanced, true-to-life audio reproduction, users will be able to hear the details they miss with ordinary earbuds..

said Jermo Koehnke, Audiophile Product Manager at Sennheiser.
Sennheiser IE200 IEMs: lifestyle
With extra-wideband transducers, the Sennheiser IE200 IEMs have almost no harmonic distortion and offer acoustic qualities usually found in more expensive monitors.

The Sennheiser IE200 monitors feature a 7mm extra-wideband transducer. They come with viscoelastic foam and silicone tips in different sizes. These effectively block ambient sounds and provide a good bass presence.

The Sennheiser IE 200 in-ear monitors will be on sale from January 31 at a price of 149.90 euros.

Conversation Clear Plus: True Wireless earbuds with a hearing aid

Another major release unveiled at CES 2023: the Sennheiser Conversation Clear Plus earbuds. Acquired last year by hearing aid specialist Sonova, Sennheiser’s consumer audio division is releasing earbuds that combine these two specialties.

Using special microphones, the Sennheiser True Wireless Conversation Clear Plus IEMs adopt three modes of active noise-cancelling (ANC): Relax, Communication and Streaming. However, these earphones stand out from the competition by the presence of Sonova technology.

Sennheiser True Wireless Conversation Clear Plus: lifestyle
Recently acquired by Sonova, a hearing aid specialist, Sennheiser now offers earbuds that can amplify certain sounds. Ideal for people with hearing problems.

This technology allows people with hearing problems to better understand conversations in noisy environments. To do this, the device analyzes the ambient noise level. Then, it blocks unwanted sounds and improves the clarity of conversations.

Sennheiser Conversation Clear Plus reflects the fast-paced lives of our customers, allowing users to follow every conversation with ease, no matter where they are. […] An independent study showed that 95% of users experienced a significant improvement in speech in noisy situations.

said Daniel Holenstein, Senior Product Manager at Sennheiser.
Sennheiser True Wireless Conversation Clear Plus: two people talking to each other
Although the design of the Sennheiser True Wireless Conversation Clear Plus earphones resembles a conventional model, they offer the ideal aid for hearing other voices perfectly, even in a noisy environment!

The Sennheiser Conversation Clear Plus earbuds have a Bluetooth module to easily connect them with any smartphone. Each earbud has a battery life of 9 hours. Once the battery is flat, they can be recharged using the carrying case, without a cable. The case offers up to 27 hours of additional autonomy.

The German brand will offer the Sennheiser Conversation Clear Plus earbuds from January 20 at a price of €849.

Audio-Technica: headphones for streamers and gamers

Finally, during the show, the Japanese brand revealed the gaming version of its legendary Audio-Technica ATH-M50x headphones. After the Bluetooth version (see the Audio-Technica ATH-M50xBT2 headphones review), this iconic model is available in two versions: the ATH-M50xSTS and ATH-M50xSTS-USB.

These new gaming models use the 45mm transducer from the ATH-M50x. The latter is known for its detailed, open and powerful sound. This sound signature seems ideal for video game enthusiasts.

Truly dedicated to streamers and gamers, these headphones are equipped with a boom microphone. With a lot of experience in microphone design, the brand indicates that it has built on the technical features of the 20 Series, including the cardioid condenser capsule.

Audio-Technica ATH-M50xSTS headphones on streamer
The two new Audio-Technica gaming headphones are variations of the famous ATH-M50x model, with the same 45mm transducers and a new boom microphone.

The two models are differentiated by their connectors. The ATH-M50xSTS has a 3.5mm headphone jack (with 6.3mm adapter) and an XLR microphone output. The ATH-M50xSTS-USB is connected via USB. It also has a high quality A/D converter (sample rate of up to 24-bit/96kHz).

Both headphones will be available at the end of January. They will be priced at €199 for the Audio-Technica ATH-M50xSTS and €229 for the Audio-Technica ATH-M50xSTS-USB.

The gaming selection

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En pleine découverte du monde de la hi-fi et du home-cinéma, Son-Vidéo.com est sans conteste devenu ma caverne d’Ali Baba. Jazz, Rock, Pop, Soul, Rap… Mes goûts musicaux, comme cinématographiques, sont très variés. Pour donner vie à mes playlists préférées, j’ai choisi l’amplificateur Marantz PM-6006, accompagné de la paire d'enceintes colonne Elipson Prestige Facet 14F.

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