Sennheiser unveiled the Orpheus headphones about 25 years ago and were considered to be the leading edge of headphone quality and design with a price tag of $16,000. The engineers at Sennheiser have spent the last 10 years trying to improve on the original design and have successfully created a successor. The new Orpheus headphones as per the company are the best headphones in the world and are priced at $55,100.
Before you complain about how furiously high-priced these headphones are, we advise you to go through the features that they offer and then pass your judgement. This is a set of hand-crafted headphones that come equipped with their own separate amplifier. Each set sports more than 6,000 components along with the amplifier making use of vacuum tube and transistor technology within a handcrafted glass and sculpted Carrera marble casing.
The powering up of the headphone is quite mesmerizing and a masterpiece of art. The control knobs and internal amplifier components are retracted inside the glass and marble housing when the system is inactive. However, giving the on/off-volume control a slight push brings the system to life; the control knobs that have been crafted from a single piece of chrome-plated brass extend from their marble housing with the quartz glass vacuum tubes rising from the base. A raised glass cover will allow you to remove the headphones that sport ear cups made from precision-machined solid aluminum and covered in leather and an allergy-free velour microfiber.
According to Sennheiser, these are the first electrostatic headphones that feature a metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOS-FET) high voltage amplifier that has been integrated into the ear cups. Sound is created thanks to a platinum-vaporized diaphragm placed between two gold-vaporized ceramic electrodes. The resulting diaphragm is merely 2.4 microns thick. The headphones are capable of delivering a claimed audio range from 8Hz to more than 100kHz. The distortion rate is only 0.01 percent at 1 kHz.
They will be hand-crafted in Germany from 2016 and whether they fulfill the claims or not yet remains to be seen by those who can afford them.