Bang & Olufsen BeoPlay H2 Headphones
Hands-on with the premium audio-maker's new texture-centric on-ear offering
Bang & Olufsen products come with a certain amount of expectation. The Danish audio-maker has established and maintained a reputation for excellence in performance, aesthetic and dependability since its humble beginnings in an attic in the north of Denmark. With the launch of the H2 headphones—part of the BeoPlay line—the brand continues to expand its appeal to customers looking for high-quality audio in a more casual package. Available in three bold colorways, the H2s rely on textile materials on the cup and band for a more rugged look and feel compared to the listening room vibe of the brand's other personal audio accessories. Despite the shift in materials, what matters is the audio quality, and one listen with the H2s and it's clear that the B&O DNA remains intact.
At first glance, the size of the H2s is a bit worrisome. Both the band and cups appear smaller than average, suggesting comfort might be an issue. However B&O's commissioned designer Jakob Wagner (designer of the BeoPlay H6 and H3) equipped the band with adaptive wear technology—whereby the headphones form with each user over time, allowing for comfortable longterm wear. After just a minute, the initially too-tight H2s felt custom-molded. After taking them off, the headphones resume their original shape, accommodating multiple users. The fit remains snug but comfortable, making the H2s perfect for desk and active use.
Thanks to a built-in remote and volume control, managing the rich sound from the custom 40mm driver and bass port is convenient and intuitive. We cycled through D'Angelo's new release Black Messiah (more than) a few times to put the H2s range though the ringer. The sound is balanced yet rich—with bass lush and not over-emphasized to the point of distraction. While not technically noise-canceling, the lambskin cups eliminate audio overflow and create a tight seal, making the H2s feel bigger and more all-encompassing of one's audio space. Whether you're on a crowded subway or looking to focus in a noisy coffee shop, it's just you and your music.
Pick up the H2 for $200 in Feldspar Green, Silver Cloud and Carbon Blue from Amazon.
Images by Cool Hunting