Audiolab’s first headphones – the M-EAR 2D and M-EAR 4D – are in-ear monitors that use multiple balanced armature drivers. Audiolab and ACS, have teamed up to deliver a range of British-made, multi-driver in-ear monitors called Audiolab M-EAR.

The M-EAR 2D (first image) (£429.95) is a two-way, two-driver design, with one driver handling mid/high frequencies and the other dedicated to bass. The M-EAR 4D (£699.95) is a three-way design, sporting four drivers, one for high frequencies, another for midrange and two for bass. Both M-EAR models incorporate balanced armature drivers which use an electronic signal to vibrate a tiny reed suspended between two magnets; this movement is transferred to an aluminium diaphragm, thus generating soundwaves.

Audiolab is best known for its DACs (digital-to-analogue converters), CD players and amplifiers, so the development of in-ear monitors (IEMs) is something of a departure for the brand. To meet the challenge, Audiolab approached ACS who design and manufacture of in-ear monitors with a reputation in the pro-audio world. Both M-EAR models feature ACS’s patent-pending IRIS (Intelligent Resonance In Silicone) technology, Additionally, the M-EAR 4D incorporates a ported balanced armature design for the bass drivers, with a cavity in the silicone that is precisely balanced to the driver. Another ACS feature integrated in both M-EAR models is SSI (Sound Stage Imaging) – a tuning technique derived from ACS’s purpose-designed manifold technology. Both M-EARs are supplied with a detachable cable, 1.45m in length. Left and right conductors are individually sheathed in aramid and twisted together to create a tough, tangle-resistant cable, which attaches to the IEMs via a five-pin connector. An in-line microphone is included for hands-free calls, it is a Knowles SiSonic MEMS-based microphone, selected as a result of ACS’s pro-audio experience. M-EARs come with six pairs of ear tips in three different sizes, developed by ACS and made from memory foam.

Speaking about his company’s collaboration with Audiolab, Andy Shiach said: “Our goal at ACS has always been to find the perfect balance between science and emotion. Musicians know what music should sound like, and our deep and broad experience of working across the music industry has enabled us to become the preferred manufacturer of in-ear monitors for many famous names. Having created Audiolab’s first-ever headphones in the form of the M-EAR in-ear monitors, we hope you agree that we have done this great British audio brand justice.”

The M-EAR 2D and M-EAR 4D are hand-made for Audiolab at ACS’s facility in Banbury, Oxfordshire. Both models are available from June and come with a zip-up carrying case and accessories.

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