Headroom Total BitHead Review

Two months ago I purchased the Headroom Total BitHead with the intention of both enjoying the sonic benefits it would provide me and to review right here. It is a device I have been dying to play with for years. That being said, unless you found this post by Googling the gadget, chances are you have no idea what this $149 device is or does.

HeadRoom Total BitHead digital audio converter and headphone amplifier

The Headroom Total BitHead is a portable headphone amplifier and digital audio converter. It plugs into your portable music device using a headphone jack or into your computer via USB to provide you with a superior audio experience.

When plugged into a computer it uses the USB port for power, otherwise it runs on three AAA batteries. It’s important not to use rechargeable batteries or cheap batteries. That is covered in the Clipping section.

So you ask yourself, “Why would I need or want one of these?”

  • You have some fancy, high-impedance headphones that can’t quite get to the level of loudness or fullness you’d like and expect after spending hundreds.
  • Your portable music player’s audio output is weak and you want more oomph.
  • You listen to audio through your computer but hear interference from things like the hard drive or motherboard and need something to rid you of this annoyance.

This audio gadget resolves these issues. The high quality Burr-Brown digital audio converter (DAC) bypasses the noisy sound card in your computer. Onboard sound cards (like those found in cheap computers and laptops) are the most prolific offenders. Meanwhile, the (also Burr-Brown) amplifier boosts output signal; helpful for bigger headphones like my Sennheiser HD600s which simply can’t run off an iPhone with much gusto.

For those of you who want a quick answer on whether they should buy the Total BitHead. Yes, it is worth purchasing, especially if you have any of the three problems listed above. In some cases, however, it is a waste of money. To learn if it meets all its claims of magically better audio, my pet peeves on its design, when it is a waste of money and why it’s worth every penny, I suggest you keep reading. Continue reading

A Timbuk2 Bag Full of Gadget Reviews

Life has been pretty busy for me over the last few weeks. I’m sure has been similarly busy for all of you as well, so you understand. For me it’s been travelling for work to pitch new business, renew contracts with current clients and work with new clients on how to best make things happen for them.

One of the clients that has kept me busy is Southern Living magazine’s Idea House and the Escondido Golf and Lake Resort in Texas

Most people don’t know what I do for a living. In short I do marketing and public relations for companies and organizations. The majority of the people I work with are non-profits while others are luxury resorts. That’s not what this post is about though.

I wanted to give you guys an update on the gadgets and gizmos I have been playing around with for a while with intentions to review. In no particular order:

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Klipsch Image One Review

I cannot believe it has taken me this long to write a review of the Klipsch Image One headphones. It was last November that I first posted about these over ear headphones, the first on-ear headphones made by Klipsch. And yes, one of these days, I will write a review that doesn’t take an hour to read. Brevity is not my strength.

I’ve decided to edit the introduction to this review with a summary of my thoughts. The full review is posted below, but if you’re in a rush, digest the following. Continue reading

Klipsch Image X10i Headphone Review

If you read my wordy review of the Klipsch S4i headphones back in July, you already know how impressed I’ve been with Klipsch’s headphones.   Sadly, after around 800 hours of use, I managed to short out the left channel.  Legendary for their customer service, Klipsch of course was ready to send me out a replacement pair.  However, I had another idea.  Instead of replacing my Image S4i headphones with another pair, I decided to upgrade to the Klipsch Image X10i, the S4i’s big brother only, some how, much MUCH smaller.

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Koss PortaPro, 25 Years of Excellence

After twenty-five years in production, and five years of absence of ownership, the Koss PortaPro headphones still kick ass. I’ve encountered no headphone in their price range that unseats them from their highest of pedestals. The Sennheiser PX100s come very close with superior comfort and a more streamlined design but simply don’t have the same passion in their reproduction of music.

Before I had my Sennheiser HD600s, my Grado SR60s, any of my Shure, UltimateEars, EtymoticResearch or Klipsch headphones, I had these Koss PortaPros, until their untimely loss while moving from California, back to Missouri.

My new set arrived today with only a change in packaging from when I bought mine my junior year in high school.  There’s a sort of comfort in that, just as the Klipsch Heresy speakers I have still sold today have changed very little since mine came off the assembly line around 1984.

If you are in the market for a sub $100 on-the-ear, open-air headphone, this is the one I’d recommend.  I got mine from Amazon.com with free shipping for under $35.  It’s a steal and it feels oh so good to have them back.

Griffin TuneBuds Mobile Review

These are great iPhone Headphones.

I own headphones that cost $10 and headphones that cost $500. Sennheiser, Klipsch, Grado, Koss, Yamaha, Sony, AKG, UltimateEars, Apple, Klipsch, Audio Technica, Shure, Etymotic Research

I own a lot of headphones and I of course have my favorites and they aren’t always the expensive ones. And when it comes to headphones for a mobile device, you really don’t want something too expensive.

Expensive headphones that are going to be thrown into your bag as you run out to the gym or as you go through security at the airport are just a bad idea.

Now, I do own a $300 pair of super portable headphones and every time I travel with them I’m constantly checking my pockets and bag to make sure I haven’t lost them.

So far I haven’t.

I say these headphones are the best iPhone headphones for several reasons.

  • Price. Shipped price was $29.99 from Amazon.com
  • Performance. Beats any, yes ANY, headphone from Apple. Even their new dual driver headphones.
  • The bass is thumping but not messy. The lower end, while not bottomless goes deep enough for anyone less the bass heads out there.
  • The highs are just fine, not as refined as say the UltimateEars 5 Pros but 1/10 the price so…
  • Integrated iPhone mic and button, no more fooling around with the phone to pause, advance or answer a call.
  • Fantastic isolation. Dare I some of the best isolation I’ve ever had from an in-ear headphone? (results will vary on each person’s ear canal of course)

If you have an iPhone, get these headphones. Toss out the stock headphones. Save the Shure SE310’s for at listening at home or at work.

These are better than the Shure SE110’s and the Ultimate Ears-Metro.fi iPhone headsets. The mic is better than the Apple version and the button easier to push.

I find myself leaving my Sennheiser HD600’s and Ultimate Ears 5 Pros collecting dust more and more often now that I have these cans. Though, I might venture out to try Griffin’s TuneBuds FIT headphones. If they are any bit better than the TuneBud Mobile headsets, and at such a price. Another must buy!

Even at full retail, they are cheaper and better than anything from V-Moda, Maximo, Skullcandy or JBuds.