July 2023 editorial

Dyson headphones with air purification system. When is a full-face helmet for listening to music, safely?

[Dyson headphones]

Author: Lucio Cadeddu - TNT Italy
Published: July, 2023

What was the slogan until a few years ago? "We'll be all right, and we'll come out better!" That may be, but it doesn't sound like it to me. In fact, I think the pandemic shock has obnubilated so many minds, including those who still drive around alone, windows closed, wearing FFP2 masks. Media pressure about climate change and pollution, then, also played its part, convincing so many people to believe they were living one step away from the apocalypse. The apocalypse has arrived, but it is that of critical judgment.

And so I would say that Dyson, a leader in high-end vacuum cleaners, has jumped on the right bandwagon, designing a pair of audiophile headphones (they cost 959€, not free) with included “muzzle” - sorry, I can't find a better term - that “purifies” the air we breathe while we are out and about listening to music. Now, it may be that these headphones sound great as well (Rolling Stone voted them Best Headphone of the Year by awarding the Best of Audio Awards 2023) and it is also true that the muzzle can be removed or lowered to talk but, dear friends, I find the whole thing quite creepy, as if straight out of a dystopian novel in full Blade Runner style, set in a city no longer human-sized but replicant-sized.

[Dyson Zone headphones]
They are called Dyson Zone and are headphones with audiophile, ambient noise-canceling ambitions, with a mask that channels air from two compressors located on the earcups to dual-layer filters. There is also a negative electrostatically charged filter that captures ultra-fine particles such as allergens, dust from car brakes etc. Another potassium-enriched carbon filter layer blocks contaminants such as NO2 and SO2. The compressor then takes care of pumping the purified air over the muzzle, which is placed in front of the mouth and nose (but not in contact). Dyson claims the filters capture viruses (listen, could it be otherwise?), gases, and 99 percent of pollutants as small as 0.1 microns. There is also provision for connection to the MyDyson app to monitor air quality and surrounding sounds in real time. Now, the air may be clean, but with the weight of this headset at 635 grams, a headache is absolutely probable.

Will the next step be a full-face helmet so that we can breathe clean air and listen to music without being seen or disturbed? What do you say, do I ask for one on trial?

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Copyright © 2023 Lucio Cadeddu - editor@tnt-audio.com - www.tnt-audio.com