Podcast 91: Tyll Hertsens, Part 1

Tyll Hertsens, editor of our sibling site InnerFidelity.com, talks about his recently posted "Celebrity Headphone Deathmatch," in which he evaluates some 15 celebrity-endorsed headphones, finding some to be superb and others, well, not so much. Tyll also discusses how the headphone market has changed over the last 10 years, including the surprising trend toward higher prices as everything else in consumer electronics gets cheaper. Plus, answers to chat room questions and more.

Run Time: 1:00:53

Click here to listen to this podcast.

As the son of two ballet dancers, Tyll Hertsens has been exposed to music all his life. Fortunately for headphone listeners, his two left feet and a penchant for gadgetry kept him out of the theater. Tyll discovered headphone listening in high school with a pair of Koss Pro-4AA headphones and spent countless hours listening to Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, and the like. Later in life, as a scanning electron microscope repairman, he improved his listening with a DIY headphone amp with a crude crossfeed circuit.

In 1992, Tyll took his idea for a portable headphone amp to heart and started HeadRoom, introducing the world to the pleasures of well-amplified personal listening. HeadRoom went on to create the first commercially available portable headphone amplifier and the first balanced-drive headphone amp. Tyll also spent countless hours promoting the hobby of headphone listening, and today a thriving activity exists much to his credit.

After 17 years of operation, Tyll decided to leave HeadRoom and put his full attention on promoting headphone listening to a wider audience. To that end, he has recently joined Source Interlink Media's Home Tech group (which includes Stereophile, Home Theater, and AudioStream.com) to create a website dedicated to personal audio: InnerFidelity.com. The site focuses on headphones, headphone amplifiers, portable players, internet radios, and all manner of personal audio devices.

Here's the video of this podcast: