Funky Sound Studio Debuts Debussy Headphones

Claude Debussy composed some of the most sublime music ever written. Clair de Lune, Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune, La mer, Pelléas et Mélisande - all are impressionist masterpieces. The maestro may thus be surprised to learn that his name has become a brand of a start-up company incongruently named Funky Sound Studio.

But what's in a name? The important point is the introduction of the Debussy Nathaniel and Claire de Lune (pictured) headphones. The very deluxe, top-of-the-line Nathaniel model is equipped with smart capabilities, 4G connectivity and a built-in touchscreen. A Wi-Fi connection lets users access music from various internet sources. Alternatively, a SIM card can enable 4G service. And, there is always Bluetooth. Finally, when you are off the grid, the headphones offer up to 32G of internal storage for local playback.

Voice command lets you control the headphones; you can even add an assistant like Siri to expand the capability into tasks such as email reading, etc. Think of it as a smart watch kind of headphone. There is also a color touchscreen built into one ear cup. When they are not on your head, you can use the touchscreen to navigate contents, build a playlist, etc. When being worn, the touchscreen can be used to control volume with gesture controls. As if that wasn't enough, the touchscreen can be customized with your own graphics.

Interestingly, the headphones have a binaural stereo recording feature; you can record the ambient environment around you, complete with a head tracking feature. At the show, it wasn't possible to audition the sound quality, but hopefully it is commiserate with its luxury features. The fact that Dolby Laboratories is a partner to Funky Sound Studios is encouraging in this respect.

In terms of availability a pre-order campaign is being put together for March. Nathaniel will be priced at $4990 and Clair de Lune at $1390 to $2990. In addition, a lower-end Prelude model will be priced from $590 to $1390.