Back in 1991, German audio electronics company Sennheiser released what they claimed were the ‘best headphones in the world’. They were called the Sennheiser Orpheus HE90 and audio experts around the world verified them as being the best around at that time. The Sennheiser Orpheus HE90, a set of electrostatic over-the-ear headphones cost $16,000 back in 1991 and had a limited edition run. They came with their very own state-of-the-art tube amplifier system and were the best in analogue audio of the day.
Now Sennheiser are back in 2016 with their most ground-breaking audiophile headphones release yet. The Orpheus HE90 over-the-ear headphones and its tube amplifier system have had a massive overhaul over a 10 year development period. Introducing the SENNHEISER HE 1 headphones and amplifier system, the world’s best and most expensive audiophile headphones – Retailing at a whopping $55,000.
The Sennheiser Orpheus HE 1 external Amp
Assembled from approximately 6,000 components, The Sennheiser HE 1 amplifier comes with its very own ivory stand consisting of solid Carrara marble. This hybrid transistor/tube amp has 8 quartz-glass vacuum tubes that rise up from the marble base in a futuristic and high-quality way when you switch it on. The marble stand itself is a great aesthetic touch, but technically it is also allowing for decoupling of the tubes which in turn reduces any structure-born noise.
The Sennheiser Orpheus HE 1 Cans
The ear cups of the Sennheiser Orpheus HE 1s are the first electrostatic headphone that has a Cool Class A MOS-FET high voltage amplifier that’s completely integrated into the cups. This then eliminates completely the capacitive reactance inside the cable, and thus delivers an ultra-high impulse fidelity that’s more than double as efficient as any other audiophile headphones solution on the market today. An overall breathtaking electrical and acoustical audio performance is achieved by using its gold-vaporized ceramic transducers. And the conductivity of the Sennheiser HE 1s is at its most optimal due to the use of 99.9 % silver-plated OFC.
How many units are being manufactured?
Sennheiser have revealed that the Sennheiser Orpheus HE 1 headphones are in production from 2016 and that production isn’t limited over a single production run. They will be producing a maximum of 250 units per year. As mentioned earlier, the HE 1s will be retailing at approximately $55,000. If you are like most people and can’t afford that price, but want the next best thing, check out the Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference system headphones.