Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) has a new headphone, the P5.
B&W is one of the more legendary names in British hi-fi, and its speakers are used in many of the world's top studios, including the Beatles' favorite, Abbey Road.
B&W is also known for its sleek styling, and the P5 is definitely a looker. Its real leather and chunky construction put all of the other $300 headphones on the market to shame. The P5 is a handsome luxury design, on par with B&W's high-end speakers.
Comfort? The P5's thickly padded leather headband and ear pads are soft and comfy. That's great, but the full leather-to-ears contact may promote perspiration. My ears didn't sweat, but they sure felt hot when I wore the P5s for extended periods. The upside to the close contact design is that it blocks a fair amount of external noise. Not as effectively as noise-canceling headphones, but the P5 doesn't need batteries.
The P5 is being marketed as a portable design, so it's smaller than most full-size, over-the-ear headphones. The included quilted carry bag is nicer than what you get with most headphones.
A user-replaceable 48 inch cable is attached to the left earcup. The P5 is supplied with two cables, one of which, the MFI cable with built-in microphone, is for use with the very latest Apple iPod and iPhone models. The removable (magnetically attached) earpads are more squarish than round, about 3 inches high, and they fold flat against your chest when you put the headband on your neck.
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