One of the more irritating first-world problems that many audio engineers and music-lovers face on a daily basis – especially in the Pacific Northwest – has to be the dreaded over-ear headphone vs. hoodie quandary. Will you put your cans on first and hood up second, transforming your dome piece into a monstrously misshapen lump? Or will you take the road less traveled and wear the ‘phones on top, sacrificing that crystal-clear audio you shelled out $200-plus for? San Francisco-based Betabrand hopes to eliminate this annoyance by creating a special type of hoodie, made of a speaker-like fabric that allows the wearer to put over-ear ‘phones outside the hood without compromising audio quality. It calls its new sonically sound garb the Audio Engineer Hoodie.
The Audio Engineer Hoodie is more than just a standard piece of clothing with acoustic hood panels. It’s designed as a sort of audio engineer version of a wizard’s cloak. The hoodie is comprised of a water-resistant polyester/cotton blend to resist the elements, and sports a cassette-themed interior lining. Additional features include twin kangaroo pockets with headphone pass-through holes, an external and internal chest pocket, a loop in the left pocket to clip your keys/flashlight/multi-tool/drum key, etc., and even an internal pull-out wiring diagram to aid engineers working in the field that run in to wiring quandaries.
Currently this audio engineer’s wardrobe essential is gathering funds via Betabrand’s own crowdfunding/think tank community. The hoodie has already reached 162 percent of its original goal with 25 days left of funding, and you can pre-order your very own for about $140 (10 percent down from the eventual $160 price-point). The garment is slated to ship in late October.