The trouble with Bluetooth digital headphones is they introduce a delay, so can’t be used for monitoring recording and playing. They are increasingly improving for sound quality, though. Moshi – a company making inroads in the headphone market – has released these wired USB C headphones that connect direct to your digital source and include a high-quality D-A converter to deliver the results.
They are designed to plug into the USB socket of any compatible phone or tablet,
so should make great listening phones for going out and about – they feature a closed-back design for extra isolation – and for mobile music production. Or that’s the theory, anyway.
The Avanti Cs are certainly light enough for an easy mobile experience – in fact, the solid box and case they come in easily outweighs the actual ’phones themselves. The metal headband might not be for everyone, but the earpads sit well and comfort is reasonable to high, although the size of the pads means they don’t offer quite the isolation that Moshi is hoping for on larger ears, nor is the leakage to the outside particularly great.
With a USB C cable included, they will plug directly into those sound sources – it’s a connectivity found increasingly on Android and Google phones – and there’s also a traditional jack cable included, too. Neither helps with newer jackless iOS devices, although you can get a Lightning to USB C adaptor for around £15.
Sound quality is surprisingly forthright and accurate, with tight basses and good mid definition. It’s wide, spacious and relatively colour free, although there’s a free (non iOS) app that will allow you to select other EQ settings (but we’re not sure it’s entirely needed). There’s also a DJ Boost button on the remote control to bring in whatever settings you choose from this.
The Avanti Cs deliver the goods to a flexible user base – though not to Apple users directly. They deliver accurate playback and are comfortable for mobile music-making. Maybe the next ones will add Bluetooth to increase the flexibility even more.
● USB type-C closed-back 24-bit/96kHz headphones
● HD40 neodymium drivers
● Frequency response: 15Hz-22kHz / -10dB@1kHz
● Angled earcup design
● Download free Moshi Digital Audio App to save your favourite EQ presets
● 4-button controls with mic and DJ Boost
● Sensitivity: 109+/-3dB@ 1kHz; Impedance: 32 ohms
● Compatibility: USB type-C phones and tablets
● Weight (g): 160