UPDATED: Since the introduction of the lower case “i” at the beginning of a device name it seems the sound reproduction world has been solely delivering tiny little chunks of plastic and other material to shove into your eardrum. For some however, we still need something more traditional, something that fits snugly over the ears, not in them.
When searching for a new set of headphones I could use while working both in the field as well as here in my little makeshift production studio I received a press release from a PR firm extolling some cool new devices that also mix in a bit of nostalgia including one of the biggest names in rock and roll history.
Marshall Headphones is a company based out of Sweden that has introduced a set of headphones – The Major – and earphones – The Minor – designed to deliver legendary sound quality in a package reminiscent of the iconic guitar amps so loved my musicians over the past decades.
As I said, I was looking for a decent replacement set of headphones so I received The Major and I will have to say (“pun”ishingly) that they were a major hit. I was surprised at their size as I was expecting something that looked like a set of bookshelf speakers connected to some wires but the unit is deceptively and comfortably small. And as has been said (especially around gift-giving time) good things come in small packages.
The Major features a design similar to that of the stage and studio amplifiers Jim Marshall made famous years ago while The Minor takes styling cues from the amps’ controls. No sooner did the package arrive that I had them out and on the job editing a couple of multimedia packages for work and running around doing a bit of field production.
First thing I noticed is just how comfortable they are. They don’t squeeze or squish and they did not make the sides of my head sweat as other units I have tested in the past have. The tension on the headband is just right, tight enough to not fall off while working yet loose enough so as to not make me feel like I am in a medieval torture chamber.
And the biggie, the sound. Damn good. No notes out of whack, no weird resonances, every instrument as it should be.
Are these the new standard of the industry? Probably not (not yet anyway), but for those needing a set that works well in the field and in the studio these are worth serious consideration.
Now if Marshall Headphones comes up with a pair that feature noise canceling technology in them …
The Major is available directly from Marshall Headphone.
Likes: Lightweight, comfortable, great sound quality.
Dislikes: Doesn’t come with a groupie
THIS JUST IN!
No sooner do I get my review posted than Marshall Headphones sends me this little tidbit of juicy info:
MARSHALL MAJOR NOW WITH MIC & REMOTE
Marshall Headphones Major with microphone and remote functionality is now here, giving you the freedom to switch between your phone calls and your music without having to change your headphones. The new Marshall Major is available for purchase at your local retailer and online at Marshallheadphones.com.
Using the remote is simple. Click once to play and pause music as well as receive and end phone calls. Click twice to forward your music, and click three times to go back. The microphone and remote are compatible with most mobile phones featuring a 3.5mm plug*.
The heavy sound of Marshall has been carried over the world for nearly 50 years. Breathless roadies and roaring trucks have struggled to make it heard all across the globe. Now the time has come for you to carry this magnificent burden of rock ‘n’ roll all by yourself.
*The manufacturer of this product makes no claims of compatibility of the microphone and remote with any mobile device.
I also notice that now on their website, MSRP is up to $119.
The Major encloses vast amounts of the massive Marshall legacy. The exterior of the headband is made out of the same vinyl used in Marshall amplifiers and it bears the original Marshall texture. The coil cord refers to vintage style guitar cables and the plug is a beautiful 3.5 millimetre replica of a classic tele plug, which can be used with the included 6.3 mm adapter for plugging in to your guitar amp or stereo. Besides being straight up dazzling, The Major is a solid workhorse with great stamina, designed with non-stop, all-day listening in mind. No matter how hard and heavy the music, the super soft cushions will rest lightly upon your ears and if you by chance would like to take The Major off of your head, they are foldable for easy storage and transportation.
• TRANSDUCER: 40MM MOVING COIL DYNAMIC SPEAKER
• IMPEDANCE: 32 Ω ± 15% AT 1kHz
• SENSITIVITY: 121 ± 3dB AT 1kHz 1mW (SINGLE SPEAKER)
• FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 20Hz ~ 20kHz
• RATED INPUT POWER: 15mW
• MAXIMUM INPUT POWER: 20mW