How to make your Bluetooth headphone stand out from the pack? If you’re in charge of storied amplifier brand Mark Levinson, you’d start by not dropping behind the likes of Sony, Apple or Bose on its technical smarts. The newly-announced No. 5909 headphone offers: 30 hours of playback time with active noise cancellation engaged (and 34 hours without); advanced Bluetooth audio codecs like AAC, LDAC and aptX; environment-dependent noise cancellation and wind reduction; 6 hours of playtime from a 15-minute quick charge; a hard-shell carrying case; USB-C charging; Android and iOS app control. For these are the table stakes of the Bluetooth headphone game in 2022.
You might then start to make noises about the materials used in your headphone’s construction. From the press release: “This [Red Dot] award-winning design was crafted with luxury comfort in mind, the headphone is constructed with premium materials including core aluminum components, a leather headband and replaceable leather ear cushions that ensure listening solace for years to come.”
And then the driver. For the No. 5909, Mark Levinson has optioned a 4cm dynamic unit and coated it with Beryllium (presumably for speed and rigidity). Not only. The driver’s output has been tuned to the Harman Curve for optimal subjective enjoyment. Wassat? Back to the press release: “…the HARMAN Curve is the acoustic response curve that has achieved the highest subjective scoring in blind listening tests.” In case you’d not pegged it already, Harman owns the Mark Levinson brand.
However, maybe the most effective way to separate your Bluetooth headphone out from the competition is with price. Move over Apple — the Mark Levinson No. 5909 will sell for US$999 when it goes on sale through ‘selected retailers’ this week. Your choice of Pearl Black, Ice Pewter or Radiant Red.
Is this the most expensive Bluetooth headphone available right now? Probably.
Further information: Mark Levinson