Hands-on with the world's most expensive headphones: Sennheiser Orpheus HE-90

When I went along to the briefing with Sennehiser at IFA in Berlin this morning, I didnt realise I would get to touch a bit of history.

After being taken though their latest range of headphones, I was ushered into a glass cube that at first sight  did not seem very different to the ones in the PC World/Currys of the World where you get to listen to a speaker then go home with it.

However, there was a spin, I was going to listen to the world's most expensive headphones ever produced. These headphones cost €27,000 (£20,000) and that's not because they are encrusted with diamonds and have been hand-dipped into a vat of gold. IT is all down to sound quality

Sennheiser's Orpheus HE-90 were created in 1991 and there were just 300 of them made. The company only has two left at their HQ that they wheel out to trade shows to reduce visitors to tears. And I dont say this lightly, there are videos on YouTube where people have been know to shed tears when they listen to music on them.

You will be pleased to know that I didnt cry. I have been known to be a brave girl anyway.

However, I digress. 

A turntable was at hand to play tracks and Miles Davis was on... The mahogany and metal headphones went over my ears and one of the most immersive musical experiences of my life began, just like that.

Visible grains on the mahogany blend seamlessly in with the black grille and the ear cups are the softest, most supple black leather. 

The HEV90 tube amplifiers that the headphones plug into are an utterly gorgeous example of mid-century modern design of dark wood and chrome. I didnt know what to be more overwhelmed with, its understated beauty and class or the Miles Davis music that was increasingly making me wobble.

I dont have a background in music journalism to write exactly what went right, but exactly like with everything else in life where you dont need to be an expert to realise you are in the presence of a legend, I took the music in.

Rich, deep, enveloping, I had never heard anything like it in my life, and I dont think I ever will, unless I listen to the Orpheus HE90 again.

THe headphones warm up before you can listen to them and the experience was uplifting.

If you ever get an opportunity to give them a listen, do queue up for it- it is not something you will forget in a rush.

Top Articles

MobileChoice Reviews

Leave a Comment