Overview and testing of planar-magnetic headphones MrSpeakers Ether and Ether C Flow, reviews after use

Company MrSpeakers founded American engineer Dan Clark (Dan Clark), who has more than 20 years of experience in the world of Hi-End, including the development of electronic equipment, the creation of dynamic heads Platinum Audio in the 90 years of XX century. All MrSpeakers headphones are developed, manufactured and tested in San Diego, California.

MrSpeakers Ether

Dan Clark spent many years on improving the existing planar-magnetic headphones and came to create his own models, where everything was developed anew – as they say, from scratch. That’s how the Ether headphones were born. In the photo they are with a red rim.

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

A little later, at the request of users, a closed modification of Ether C Flow with a C attachment was released – in the photo this is a black model with a carbon fiber pattern on the cups.

The word “Ether” means “the uppermost layer of the sky, the dwelling place of the gods”. This word also means a physical term, “a hypothetical environment that fills the universe.” In modern physics is not used. It is interesting that Albert Einstein in his work “Ether and Relativity Theory” (1920) “walked” well on the hypothesis of the existence of ether and rejected the idea of ​​Lorentz about his mechanical movement. “Flow” means “flow”. MrSpeakers, obviously use this terminology in sublime poetic sense, metaphorically appealing to the emotional perception of the listener. I remember from Pushkin: “The night marshmallows the ether”. (Zephyr – in ancient Greek mythology, the god of the west wind, gave the name of a famous confectionery, which makes curls in the form of wind.)

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow


In the heart of the Ether series headphones are V-Planar emitters and TrueFlow waveguides. V-Planar forms a special form of the surface of the radiator in the form of the letter V for increasing rigidity, improving the accuracy of sound and expanding the frequency range.

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

Dan Clarke analyzed the design and nature of the sound of electrostatic headphones and decided to transfer all the good things into the world of magneto planar. In headphones with the prefix Flow is applied technology TrueFlow, which allows you to translate the flow of magnets by air from turbulent mode to laminar, that is, smooth, without twists. For this, there are no sharp edges and obstacles in the path of the air, only smooth contours and expanding tubes.

MrSpeakers Ether

MrSpeakers Ether and Ether C Flow – price. Where is the best place to buy?

The recommended retail price for the MrSpeakers Ether in the US is about $ 1 299,00 and for the Ether C Flow is about $ 1 700,00. At this cost, you can order it on Amazon. Plus Shipping, so the total cost of MrSpeakers Ether when ordering on Amazon will be about $ 1 340 and $ 1 720 for Ether C Flow. I would not recommend ordering anywhere else except on Amazon. Since you are less likely to find cheaper, and if you do not take into account the fact that Amazon is probably the most reliable online store, it still very often provides free shipping.

Specifications

  • Emitter: 2.75 “× 1.75” MrSpeakers, one-sided, planar-magnetic with V-Planar membrane
  • Aluminum components for precision machining
  • Nitinol (NiTi, nickel and titanium alloy) headband with memory effect
  • Italian leather with micromachine in the headband material
  • Lamb leather cushions (the most expensive type of skin)
  • Selected radiators: ± 1.5 dB in the range 30-5000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 96 dB / mW (open), 92 dB / mW (closed)
  • Weight: 370 g (open), 390 g (closed)
  • Impedance: 23 Ohm

From the technical characteristics it is clear that very much attention is paid to materials and finishing. Also, great attention is given to the user’s comfort when listening to music.

MrSpeakers Ether

Comes with a hard cover with a soft coating inside. To fold the headphones into the case, you must disconnect the cable. An interesting 4-pin connector with a spring allows you to do this in a second.

MrSpeakers Ether

In addition to the cover, a 1.2 m cable is included. The customer is offered a choice of a cable with one of the types of connection: balanced XLR, unbalanced 1/4 “, unbalanced 3.5 mm, balanced 2.5 mm.

The branded cable, specially designed, is called DUM (Distinctly-un-magical, precisely-non-magical). The thickness of each conductor is 24AWG (0.5 mm), the material is oxygen-free copper. A separately prepared cable with another connector can be bought for $ 200.

MrSpeakers Ether

Ergonomics of headphones deserves all approval. This is one of the most comfortable headphones, if not the most convenient of the number that we have seen. Like all “Americans”, they are designed for a large european man and sit on any head just fine. I would like to have a virtual opportunity to pay for the same quality of performance and thoughtfulness for all the headphones in our collection. In addition, it is one of the lightest planar-magnetic headphones. Weight does not feel at all.

MrSpeakers Ether

As the manufacturer says, all parts of the headphones are made to order, including even the screws.

Although Ethers are considered open-type headphones, they are quite heavily damped. What happens in the room is almost not audible. Pillows of headphones orient the radiators at an angle and provide a quality additional insulation.

MrSpeakers Ether

Measurements of the frequency response of MrSpeakers Ether and Ether C Flow

RightMark Audio Analyzer Pro hardware and software was used for the measurements. The measuring stand Brüel & Kjær 4153 – Artificial Ear / Ear Simulator (IEC 60318-1), manufactured in Denmark, costing about 5000 euros was used.

These changes are given as reference, it is not necessary to guess the sound of the model from them. The Brüel & Kjær stand effectively emulates the acoustic impedance of the ear to a frequency of 16 kHz.

MrSpeakers Ether
frequency response MrSpeakers Ether
MrSpeakers Ether C Flow
frequency response MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

If the listener wants to get a more neutral sound, without accents, the AFC can be used for reference when adjusting the sound with an equalizer. So, you can raise by 2-3 dB the area from 1 kHz and higher. You can slightly pick up a sharp peak around 6 kHz, which is caused by the resonance of the emitters (the wavelength corresponds to one of the linear dimensions of a rectangular radiator). On hearing of special problems with it it is not revealed. High even want to add.

Impressions from listening to MrSpeakers Ether and Ether C Flow

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

We connected headphones to the FiiO X5 III player and to other available equipment. With the newest FiiO X5 III player, based on dual mono AK4490 and with custom operational amplifiers, we’ll get acquainted in a separate review.

Both models of the tested headphones, Ether and Ether C Flow, sound quite similar. Presumably, they use one radiator, and the difference is only in an open or closed acoustic circuit.

MrSpeakers headphone sound is smooth, neutral, without emphasis on bass and high frequencies. In the low frequency range, despite the closed circuit of one of the headphone models, there is even a drop in the area of ​​the deepest bass. But there is no hint of bubbling and resonance, everything is very well damped. The number of low frequencies in both models is about the same, it’s amazing. Open headphones have the properties of closed, and vice versa.

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

The biggest difference between the models lies in the middle range. In the open model, the middle frequencies in the lower region are more timbral reliable, that is, the open ones sound more natural. The detail is good, the headphones play high-class and nice, like the best representatives of full-size headphones. Without a doubt, both models are more than suitable for long listening.

High frequencies are enough, but they are not sharp, do not tink. Most likely, it is a matter of a large number of damping materials between the membrane and the ear. This gives its pros and cons. In principle, you can raise the range above 1 kHz to increase intelligibility and make the sound more vivid. However, those who are looking for a quieter sound, headphones like.

MrSpeakers Ether C Flow

Does the sounding of holes give anything to sound? In Ether it is absent, and in Ether C Flow a special shape of the holes. The differences are minimal, it seemed to us that this is more from the field of marketing. You can safely choose Ether, if you need a sound slightly more free, closer to open models. If you need closed headphones, with high sound insulation, the Ether C Flow is surprisingly very good sound and does not have a perceptible sound of the internal volume of the case.

Conclusions

MrSpeakers Ether and Ether C Flow are very interesting, although not cheap models of planar-magnetic headphones. The approach of the manufacturer is very captivating: everything is thought out to the smallest detail, and the form corresponds to the content. Headphones fall in the middle between the initial level and the zamaterelny Hi-End with a large number of zeros in the price tag, and feel in their niche quite confidently. Open model we liked a little more, because it sounds more free. But the closed sound more equal on the timbre. But the difference between models by sound is not very big.

The tested models will suit fans of high-quality sound and owners including balanced amplifiers, since they have optional balanced cables. Sensitivity of headphones implies connection to a powerful mobile amplifier or to a stationary mid-price category.

Average price
MrSpeakers Ether MrSpeakers Ether C Flow
$ 1400 $ 1500

MrSpeakers Ether video review, a comparison after listening.



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