B&O PLAY Beoplay H8i and H9i headphones – CES 2018
B&O PLAY has expanded its Beoplay product portoflio with three new releases. These are special editions of the E8 earphones and new flagship cans, the Beoplay H8i and H9i.
Firstly, a Special Edition Collection of the E8 earphone. The launch of two limited colors – Beoplay E8 All White and Beoplay E8 All Black. Inspired by the monochromatic aesthetics of an all-white and all-black design, these two versions are built on the success of Beoplay E8, the company’s first truly wireless earphones.
Secondly, the brand announced two new flagship headphones with the introduction of Beoplay H8i and Beoplay H9i.
These two headphones bring new features as well as new streamlined aesthetics with the “latest Bang & Olufsen Signature Sound.”
Beoplay H8i and H9i
B&O Play has updated their H8 on-ear and H9 over-ear wireless headphones. The main difference is that these will last longer. This means that you have more time to enojoy to “overwhelm you with precision, power, and detail.”
The new H9i retains the stitched cowhide leather headband, anodized aluminium ear cups, and lambskin pads with memory foam. However, there are a couple of major improvements.
Firstly, there’s now USB-C for charging. Also it gets four more hours of playtime out of its battery with a new rating of 18 hours. Nice.
In terms of design, the ear cushions have been made a touch slimmer and some of the exterior aesthetics have been updated.
Furthermore, both the H9i and H8i have noise cancelling built in, and this year’s editions have been improved in the particular frequency range of human voices.
So, if you are looking to cancel out people’s chatter, these are the ones for you.
The touch controls on the H9i have also been tweaked. There is a new Transparency Mode that can be accessed with a gesture. This turns off the music and NC to let you hear the world around you. Handy if you’re walking somewhere that you need your whits about you.
A proximity sensor has been added to allow the H9i to automatically pause music when you take the headphones off. There’s also an additional mic in the new model, whose purpose is purely to improve voice call quality.
The on-ear H8i differ in being smaller on the outside but having a bigger battery on the inside.
There’s an 1100mAh cell in the H8i, which is fixed and can’t be replaced, whereas the H9i have a 770mAh battery that can be swapped out by the user.
So B&O Play is giving you the choice: a removable but smaller battery or a fixed and longer-lasting one.
The H8i has double the battery life of their predecessor. This measures out to be an amazing 30 hours of use. Moreover, this figure was attained with active noise cancelling and Bluetooth turned on. Impressive much?
The BeoPlay H8i comes with physical button controls on both ear cups.
The Transparency Mode is present and accessed via a click. The same proximity sensor tech and improved call quality are features of this smaller model too.
Beoplay E8 Special Editions
Finally, there’s the new special-edition colour variations for the E8 wireless earphones, the E8 All White and E8 All Black.
The E8 are full wireless earphones that feature the Transparency mode feature of the H9i/H8i, as well as touch and voice controls.
The earbuds are magnetised and will click into the included charging case. This automatically powers them down and starts to recharge them once inserted.
The E8 are compatible with the Beoplay smartphone app, which allows users to customize the EQ of the earphones for personalized playback and soundstage.
Price and availability
Sales of the BeoPlay H9i and BeoPlay H8i begin on January 25th for a price of £449 for the H9i or £349 for H8i.
You can have them in either black or a natural tan color.
Both the All White and All Black versions of the E8 will be available on February 22nd from £269.
A leather charging case, charging cable, and five ear tips are also included.