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Meet the world's most expensive in-ear Bluetooth headphone

Beyerdynamic bills its upcoming Xelento Wireless as "the first wireless in-ear headphone for audiophiles." It ain't cheap.

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David Carnoy
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David Carnoy Executive Editor / Reviews

Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.

Expertise Mobile accessories and portable audio, including headphones, earbuds and speakers Credentials Maggie Award for Best Regularly Featured Web Column/Consumer

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The Xelento Wireless will retail for $1,200.

Beyerdynamic

Audiophiles tend to prefer to listen to wired headphones, but they might make an exception for Beyerdynamic's upcoming Xelento Wireless, which will retail for $1,200 (£1,000) when it's released later this year. That converts into about AU$1,625.

I haven't tried the wired Xelento Remote, which costs a mere $1,000, but I've heard from others that it sounds terrific. The Xelento Wireless has the same Tesla drivers but terminates in a Bluetooth transceiver with a built-in battery that delivers up to 5.5 hours of battery life (which isn't great). You clip the transceiver to your shirt.

Beyerdynamic Xelento Wireless is the world's most expensive in-ear Bluetooth headphone

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If you want to listen in wired mode, a cable is included that plugs into the transceiver.

Beyerdynamic, a German company, is debuting the Xelento Wireless at the High End 2017 show in Munich, which takes place from May 18 to 21. We'll let you know how the headphone sounds -- and whether it's worth its high price -- as soon as we get our hands on our review sample.

Technical data

Transducer type Dynamic, Tesla
Operating principle Closed
Frequency response 8 - 48,000Hz (cabled use)
Nominal impedance 16 ohms
Nominal SPL 110 dB (1 mW / 500Hz)
Transmission Bluetooth
Codecs aptX HD, aptX, AAC, SBC
Transmission rate 48kHz / 24-bit
Remote control & microphone Universal 3-button
Sound coupling to the ear In-ear
Playing time Up to 5.5 hours
Weight (without cable) 7g
Supplied accessories Bluetooth connection cable, detachable (MMCX) with remote control, microphone and rechargeable battery pack. 1.3m headphone cable with remote control and microphone (for wired connection), micro-USB charging cable, 7 pairs of silicone eartips, 3 pairs of Comply eartips, 1 pair of replacement protective grilles. Carrying case, clip for rechargeable battery pack, cable clip.
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