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New Headphones Block Noise, Not Conversations

Talkthrough technology on new headphones promises to differentiate annoying noise from human conversation.

Unveiled yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the Sennheiser PXC 450 headphone could create big waves with audiophiles worldwide. Although entering a crowded headphone niche filled with competitors promising to cancel out external noise, the PXC 450 headphone adds an interesting new technology to the equation. While reportedly blocking out 90 percent of all exterior ambient noise, the PXC 450 is additionally rigged with external speakers that differentiate droning and obnoxious sounds like a car or airplane from those of a human’s conversational tone. The speakers allow the latter to penetrate the musical bubble of the listener, enabling the user to carry on a conversation without removing the headphones. Set to hit store shelves in March, a pair of Sennheiser PXC 450 headphones will go for about $500.

Do you like what you’re hearing? Here’s what the blogosphere has to say about it:

“Is $500, REALLY worth it?” Esat,

“Finally! Out with the noise!” Jill Clason,

“But…it’s the stupid conversations on the airplane that I don’t want to listen to!!!” KC,

“When I’m listening to music, I don’t want to hear people talking.” Janet,

“Yes, they will be worth it, Sennheiser has never let me down.” Lee,

Talk: A good alternative to the earbud? COMMENT

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Tags: Music News