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HIFIMAN HE-R10: Tribute to Legendary Sony MDR-R10?

by Justin Wilson August 09, 2020

HIFIMAN HE-R10: Tribute to Legendary Sony MDR-R10?

HIFIMAN Electronics has announced not one, but two HE-R10 headphones that appear very intentionally similar to the legendary Sony MDR-R10 produced from 1989 to the late 1990s at a price of $2,500 USD. The "R10" was a luxurious, organic sounding closed-back headphone from Japan with uniquely shaped wood ear cups. It was known to use natural materials in its dynamic drivers as well, which gave Sony's flagship headphone a limited number of high-performance years. HIFIMAN is capitalizing on the supply and demand imbalance in the R10 used market. Today, used pairs in good condition can fetch more than $8,000 from headphone collectors.

Fang Bian of HIFIMAN Announces HE-R10

Dr. Fang Bian of HIFIMAN reveals the two HE-R10 headphones.

The new HE-R10 will be positioned as HIFIMAN's flagship (and only) closed-back headphone and unlike the Sony MDR-R10 it will use a planar magnetic driver. USA pricing is unknown, but prices in China are exchanging to about $5,000 USD.

HIFIMAN is also be releasing a less expensive version using a dynamic driver with an equivalent price in China of about $1,250 USD, so this headphone is likely to be priced similar to the Arya in HIFIMAN's line up. Right now it appears the dynamic version will be housed in tan colored wood while the planar model receives a more exotic bold red wood.

HIFIMAN HE-R10 with Bluetooth module

HIFIMAN shows both HE-R10 models are compatible with its wireless Bluetooth module, leading us to believe the planar version is unlikely to have the stiff power requirements of the open-back flagship Susvara.

HeadAmp will update on the status of the HE-R10 as soon as more information becomes available. For now, check out HIFIMAN's introductory video, and a response from MEDIAHOUND.



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