The revival of over-ear headphones is one of the odder off-shoots of modern digital culture; just as every other device got smaller and smaller, audiophiles suddenly took to strapping sizeable speakers to the side of their head to capture every bleep, beat and subtle nuance of their music libraries, shutting out the busy world in the process.
What better way to enhance this zone of personal freedom than by doing away with wires altogether? The P5 Wireless is Bowers & Wilkins’ first foray into the wireless world. Best known for their elaborate speaker systems and collaboration with the legendary designer Kenneth Grange, as well as their current partnership with Maserati, B&W is a British company with a passion for innovation and craftsmanship.
The P5s build on B&W’s established line of headphones but with integrated Bluetooth and microphones for hands-free calling. Battery life is around 19 hours and the device is functional, purist and beautifully made, with modestly sized soft leather ear pads. It also sounds spectacular, exacting and warm, wrapping you up in the music – unless you stop to take a call, of course.
P5 Wireless, £329.99. For more information visit Bowers & Wilkins’ website (opens in new tab)
Jonathan Bell has written for Wallpaper* magazine since 1999, covering everything from architecture and transport design to books, tech and graphic design. He is now the magazine’s Transport and Technology Editor. Jonathan has written and edited 15 books, including Concept Car Design, 21st Century House, and The New Modern House. He is also the host of Wallpaper’s first podcast.
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