The Tracks is a set of headphones from AIAIAI with a design reminiscent of the classic Walkman headphones. These cans combine style and performance to create a pair of headphones that don’t try too hard to impress. There’s little wonder these headphones won the Danish Design Prize. Upon opening a box ofT racks, I found out that I had to assemble its three main parts: sliders, earcups and a metal brace. A colored slider is snapped on to each earcup and then slipped into the metal brace. While it might seem unusual to have to assemble a pair of headphones, it’s a fairly simple set of steps. This threepart design is what makes the Tracks a unique set of headphones.
The Tracks makes use of sliders when adjusting the position of the earcups, instead of the conventional preset adjustment you can find in regular headphones. This means you can fully adjust the position of each earcup by simply sliding it on the brace for a customized fit. The sliders also allow the earcups to pivot, which means the cups rest comfortably over your ears no matter what your head shape or size is. A box ofT racks headphones comes with three pairs of different colored sliders so you can customize and change the colors as you wish.
Another feature worth mentioning is the Tracks headband. Unlike the old Walkman design with a thin and flimsy head support, the Tracks’ brace is more similar to a headband with a wider base. What I liked about it is that it was wide enough to rest comfortably on my head while staying in place and remaining light-weight. I was able to easily move around while wearing the Tracks, and I didn’t have to struggle with keeping it on my head even as I commuted. Unless you’re the headbanging type, there shouldn’t be any problem with the Tracks staying on your head while you’re on the go.
These headphones have an in-line mic with a three-button function for play/pause/volume which I was able to use for answering and making calls. The buttons however, were difficult to press, but the omnidirectional mic was able to capture my voice even while I made calls on the go. I used the Tracks for five straight hours as I listened to music and made calls without having to take them off due to discomfort or chafing.
The Tracks delivered very well in terms of audio performance. The Tracks have a relatively wellbalanced sound with equal lows, mids, and highs that allow for good song detail. It has a balanced mixture of frequencies for a smooth and clear sound. It’s safe to say that the Tracks sound good in a wide range of genres including rock, acoustic and pop. I did, however, listen to more pop with the Tracks because I enjoyed how its warm bass is paired with a slight”thump” – complementing the pop genre very well. One major issue I had with the Tracks is the sound leakage. In a quiet environment like an office, turning up the music on high wouldn’t be a very good idea because it’s likely that everyone will hear what you’re listening to. There were times when I had to check if my music was too loud, particularly when I came in for work from my commute, where I set the volume on high to compensate for the city noise. This shouldn’t be a big problem though, as you can opt to ignore everyone else, or turn the volume down a bit to also save your ears from damage.
Overall, the Tracks are sure to please a wide range of listeners, audiophiles and casual listeners alike with its superb sound quality and unique design. Priced at PHP 3,250, these headphones may be pricey for its type, but the Tracks deliver a sound performance that can be nearly as good as the bulky higher-end headphones in the market.
Plug Angled Stereo: Plug 3.Smm
Impedance: 30 Ohm
Speaker Sensitivity 94dB =I= -32dB
Max Input Power: 70mW
Freq Response: 2-=2-KHz
Microphone Directivity Omnidirectional
• Superb audio quality
• Designed for a custom fit
The Tracks combines design,
functionality, and performance that
sound great with a wide range of
Words by Addie Mendoza
First published in Gadgets Magazine March 2013