Moshi, one of our favorite mobile/tech accessory companies, has decided to get into the headphone space with their new on-ear Avanti. At first glance, I was immediately reminded of the Bowers and Wilkins aesthetic with the rectangular ear cups and minimalist design. The Avanti is even sleeker than the B&W with some smart design details like the incredibly light and slightly curved headband for a more comfortable fit.
The box, just like the headphones, doesn't fuss with anything that is not necessary. Clean design gets right to the point and infers that you are purchasing something that has been carefully thought out at ever turn.
Flip the top case open and you are greeted with an illustration on the flap that looks like it belongs in a museum and an elegant carrying case that looks like its made out of linen and just slid out of a Hermes bag. It looks stylish, not techy.
A case, a cable, a toilet paper square worth of instructions and that's it. No waste. The headphones are clearly marked Right/Left and fold up for a nice compact unit for travel. The only thing missing from the case itself is a carabiner to hook to your bag, which is nice if you want quick access to your headphones.
The cable and mic work great, although the remote is lacking a bit with no volume control, just stop/reverse/forward track.
How Do They Feel?
When you pull them out of the case you realize just how light these things are, almost flimsy light. When the cable is attached, they weigh in at about 5.85 ounces which are due to the super slim headband gauge (stainless steel), minimal padding, and on-ear sized cups.
Don't let the weight fool you they are pretty solid upon further handling and extremely comfortable. The headband curves back toward your ears just slightly which is a bit odd at first but ends up providing a great fit. The padding on the headband is barely there, just the perfect amount.
The leatherette ear cup padding is comfortable for long sessions and provides an excellent seal for an on-ear headphone. The only issue is that they do get a little hot and don't breathe all that well. I don't love synthetic leather, but they have used a top of the line version, so it's not a huge issue.
How Do They Sound
I was impressed with the Avanti's sound quality and ability to seal in sound. I tested them with all the genres I usually do (Classical, Hip Hop, Electronic Music, Rock, Jazz, Ambient) and they performed well across the board.
The highs and mids have an excellent brightness and balance with one another while the bass is present but never overpowering. It may sound a little prejudiced, but you just expect these headphones to have more sparkle and balance with the highs than fat low end because of their slim and elegant design. I feel the bass will be enough to satisfy the listener that enjoys many genres, including the more acoustic genres like Jazz and Classical. I enjoyed listening to electronic music on these but for some, the low end might not be enough to satisfy, especially Hip Hop and Bass music fans.
If you are looking for a pair of elegant headphones that are comfortable, travel well and will be ideal for multiple genres then the Avanti is a fantastic bet. They are priced a little high at $199.00, but the sound quality nudges up on audiophile standards, and they just look sexy as hell. Most of us are not audiophiles so for your average listener the Avanti's from Moshi will shine bright and satisfy.
There is even a burn in tool that you can download at the app story, more below.
Moshi Burn In Tool - Download Here
Like breaking in a new pair of leather shoes, high-quality headphones perform better once they've been used over time. This process can take several weeks or even months, so Moshi Audio has developed a helpful iOS application to expedite the burn-in process. By playing back a curated list of tones/frequencies, the Moshi Audio Burn-In Tool allows the headphone diaphragms to relax and reach their optimal level of sonic performance. Simply install the burn-in tool on any iOS device and select the headphone and desired burn-in period. The burn-in tool is customized for all Moshi Audio headphones, but also includes support for any third-party audio headsets as well.