Blue’s Mo-Fi headphones look and work unlike anything before

What do Shure, Sennheiser, Audio Technica and AKG all have in common? They all make excellent microphones … and headphones. Now, Blue Microphones, a relative newcomer to the world of microphone makers, has followed suit with the debut of its Mo-Fi headphones, a full-size set of cans with a built-in analog amplifier that is meant to lift a heavy load from your device’s shoulders so you can enjoy better sound. But that’s not all that make these headphones unique.

One look at the Mo-Fi, and it’s clear someone at Blue was out to reinvent the headphone. With more joints and hinges than an Amish furniture factory, a dial for adjusting clamping force, and a glossy gunmetal grey exterior, the Mo-Fi are not only one of the most adjustable headphones we’ve ever seen, they also look like they came straight off a page from the steampunk style guide.

Beyond the unique exterior design lay a suite of technologies Blue claims will radically change your listening experience. Built into each ear cup is a super-sized 50mm driver, and each of those drivers is powered by a built-in analog amplifier, which draws its juice from a rechargeable battery with an estimated 12-hour run-time. To help preserve that battery, the Mo-Fi will automatically power down when not in use. Thankfully, the use of the amp (and therefore the battery) isn’t necessary. The headphones work in passive mode just like any other headphone.

The idea behind the Mo-Fi’s built-in amplifier is that, by taking a bunch of the workload off of a device like a smartphone or tablet, the source device is able to deliver a cleaner audio signal to the headphones. The Mo-Fi’s amplifier then takes that signal and amplifies it to be played back through those 50mm drivers we mentioned earlier. In addition to straight-up amplification, Blue does provide an “On+” mode, which is meant to boost bass slightly. Don’t expect a Beats-style head pounding, though. Blue designed the bass boost to be fairly gentle, adding just enough richness to the low end to fill out what might be an otherwise anemic-sounding song.

There isn’t any active noise-cancelling here, either — that’s just not the Mo-Fi’s bag. But the earcups do offer some considerable passive noise isolation so with that, and a little help from your favorite tunes, you should have no problem drowning out your office neighbor, a plane engine, or fellow riders on the bus or train.

We’ve had the Mo-Fi in our offices for several weeks now, and have found that they certainly sound excellent, but we’re a little concerned with how hefty and cumbersome they can be. We’ll have more details coming soon in our full review.

Home Theater

From soundbars to headphones, here are the best last-minute audio deals

Whether you're looking for a great new pair of headphones or a fantastic new soundbar to bolster the sound of your brand-new television, these are the best audio deals to be found this holiday season.
Home Theater

Get the most boom for your buck with the best headphones under $100

Everybody wants a bargain, and this list has a bunch. For those looking for a solid set of headphones without spending a big stack of cash, this list is is your starting point. Check out our picks for the best headphones under $100.
Home Theater

Throw away those EarPods -- we dug up the best headphones in every style

Trolling the internet for hours to find headphones is no way to live. Instead, leverage our expertise and experience to find the best headphones for you. Here are our 10 favorites.
Home Theater

Block the outside world, tune into your own with the best in-ear headphones

Over-the-ear headphones offer top-flight sound, but they're not so easy to take along with you. If you're looking to upgrade your portable sound, check out our favorite in-ear headphones -- there's a model for every user and every budget.
Home Theater

Fluance’s four beautiful new turntables arrive with easy-to-stomach prices

Acclaimed audio brand Fluance launched four new turntables as part of its new Reference series, aiming to offer elegant looks and pristine sound to those who are just getting into the world of high-end analog audio.
Home Theater

What’s new on Amazon Prime Video (January 2019)

Amazon Prime Video adds new titles each month that are available for free to all Prime members. Check out our list to find all the content hitting Amazon Prime Video in December 2018 and January 2019, from new original series to classic…
Home Theater

Google Assistant gets the Marshall treatment with two new smart speakers

Marshall's Voice-series were already some of the most stylish smart speakers on the market, but now they're available as Google Assistant-compatible editions. This makes Marshall one of the few companies to support both Alexa and Google.
Home Theater

From the Roku Ultra to the Fire TV Cube, these are the best streaming devices

There are more options for media streamers than ever, so it’s more difficult to pick the best option. But that’s why we're here. Our curated list of the best streaming devices will get you online in no time.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to endangered cats

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘Twilight Zone’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

Out of movies to binge? Our staff picks the best flicks on Hulu right now

From classics to blockbusters, Hulu offers some great films to its subscribers. Check out the best movies on Hulu, whether you're into charming adventure tales or gruesome horror stories.
Movies & TV

Stay inside this winter with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Killing Eve'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (December 2018)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Music

Bolster your HD music catalog with the best high-res audio sites

Music connoisseurs relish HD audio, but scouring the web for all the best streaming and downloading sites can be a pain. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Check out our list, and let the high-resolution good times roll.