Sennheiser revives a legend – introducing the HE 1060/ HEV 1060
The legendary Orpheus headphones created by Sennheiser in 1991 came with their own dedicated tube amplifier and were said to be the best headphones ever created, with a range of 7Hz to 100kHz, way beyond the limits of human hearing. Only 300 were ever made, and they now sell for upwards of US$30,000 on eBay – if you can find them.
So, audiophiles around the world should be pleased to hear that Sennheiser has just announced the launch of a new generation of Orpheus – the HE 1060/HEV 1060. Crafted using specially selected luxury materials, the high-end headphones will be handcrafted in Germany and will again come with its own dedicated amp for optimal performance.
The amplifier sits on a housing crafted of glass and a solid high density Carrara marble which is suspended to protect the vacuum tubes both from structure-borne noise and the noise and vibration of the outside world. Speaking of which, the housing is actually spring-loaded so the eight vacuum tubes rise out from the base when commencing operation and sink back down for protection after the set has been shut off.
This gives the tubes the time they need to reach the optimum temperature for operation. The system is said to have an audio range from 8Hz to more than 100kHz, and the entire design from the high quality quartz bulbs that protect the vacuum tubes to the Cool Class A MOS-FET high voltage amplifier integrated into the ear cups has been done to reduce distortion to an ultra-low level of just 0.01 percent at 100 dB SPL, ensuring an ultra-high fidelity feed throughout the system.
The amplifiers are said to have the lowest harmonic distortion ever measured in a sound reproduction system, and the circuit design combines the best of tube amplifiers and transistor amplifiers using a special circuit design that’s heavily guarded against interference. The amplifier also uses the high-end ESS Sabre ES9018 chip for digital-analogue conversion so you’ll get optimal audio, no matter what your source.
The headphones themselves feature the same iconic design as the original Orpheus, but with updated materials such as silver-plated copper cables for optimum conductivity and hand-made, hypoallergenic, breathable ear cups of genuine leather for the best possible comfort and passive noise cancelling.
These high-end headphones will be sold for around €50,000 and they will be hand-crafted in Germany from next year onwards, so if you want the best audio money can buy, you know just where to go.