I'm in two minds about the Dyson Zone. These unusual headphones are designed to deliver clean, purified air to your nose, as well as good sound to your ears. And while the Zone works as advertised, the weight makes it uncomfortable to wear for long, and the air purifier visor feels clunky to stow away when not in use. But it does have pretty good noise cancelling, and I kinda like the clean smelling air it puts out.
- Up to 50 hours of audio with ANC
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Comes with braided USB-C cable, flight adapter kit, two extra filters, pouch, sleeve
- Smart real-time air monitoring with MyDyson app
At a whopping S$1,399, the Dyson Zone is just way too expensive for a pair of consumer headphones. Even Apple's AirPod Max is just S$800. Of course, higher-end cans will cost even more, but those are audiophile-grade headphones that a typical consumer won't pay for. But the Zone does feel like a thousand dollars — premium, and really well-made. The soft velvet lining of the ear cups and the headband are comfortable, but are fur magnets if you have pets. If you have a Dyson V15, it will help keep it clean, at least.
Audio quality is fantastic. The ear cups are great at blocking noise, while the active noise cancelling is excellent at keeping out the wind, fan, and most of the outside world. It won't, however, keep out the hum of the air purifiers during operation. While you won't hear them with the air purification set to the lowest level, anything above that is audible. Mids and highs are clear, and the bass is well defined. But the 670g Zone is tiring to use after a while. I have a relatively fat neck, so the headphones don't sit nicely on my neck either. While you can fold the ear cups flat, they are still too uncomfortable to wear. Transparency mode is crystal clear, and you can tap twice on the side of the headphones to activate it. Otherwise, the volume and play controls are on a joystick on the right ear cup.
The air purifier visor makes you the odd duck out. People will stare. It made me terribly self-conscious while using it in public. The visor doesn't cover or seal your mouth, which means while you're getting a stream of clean air, it doesn't quite stop germs from getting in. Or if you're contagious, it doesn't prevent you from spreading viruses, too. It will help in blocking out odours, but not the stronger ones. I like that you can just swing the visor down to instantly turn on Transparency mode and pause the music so you can talk to someone. The MyDyson app is pretty cool, with real-time air quality monitoring and the ability to adjust the Zone's EQ, as well.
The Dyson Zone is honestly an odd product. As headphones, they sound great, and offer good noise cancelling. But they are heavy, and the visor makes you stand out like a sore thumb. Battery life is rated at 50 hours with ANC, but is drastically reduced with the air purifier on — just four hours. I managed to go around three days of infrequent use with, and without the visor before I needed to charge it again. But do I really need air purifier headphones? Probably not. Is it cool? Well, maybe? I honestly won't go out of my way to get this, and I doubt many will. It's available directly from Dyson.
Note: Review unit provided by Dyson.
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