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AudioQuest NightHawk Semi Open Headphone



 
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List Price: $599.00
Our Price: $599.00


Product Code: AQU0000122
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Description
 
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NightHawk is AudioQuest’s full-bore assault on both the state of the headphone art
and on the limits to which quality, innovation, and sustainability can be achieved at
an affordable cost.
When AudioQuest decided to build NightHawk, they knew it had to be something special—
it had to have a real reason to exist—because, after all, no one needs another
ordinary headphone. To that end, they started from the ground and worked their way
up, thoroughly questioning and reevaluating every aspect of headphone design,
gradually optimizing necessities while eliminating excess.
During that process, AudioQuest considered many potential names. Knowing that their first
headphones had to have an appropriately special name—a name that conveyed
power and freedom, inspired ideas of physical and emotional transportation,
complemented the overall look and feel of the product, and still left room for growth.
After careful consideration, NightHawk was chosen to lead what will be a complete
family of headphones that match outstanding performance with extraordinary value.

NightHawk’s earcups are made from a revolutionary new material known as
“Liquid Wood”—actual wood that has been combined with reclaimed plant fiber,
heated, liquefied, and processed in such a way that it can be injection molded.
Compared to ordinary plastic or wood, however, Liquid Wood has far superior acoustic
properties and provides a seemingly endless array of geometric possibilities. In
NightHawk, we use Liquid Wood to shape our earcups to more closely resemble
the human ear, thereby providing a more complete and comfortable fit, reducing
stress on the listener’s head and ears. And, unlike typical plastic, Liquid Wood is
environmentally friendly—more than merely beautiful to behold, it is also sustainable.

Most of today’s headphones use diaphragms made from Mylar—an inexpensive,
lightweight, and technologically mature plastic material. Unfortunately, Mylar is
inherently flimsy and brittle, typically distorting as the audio signal reaches high
frequencies of 6-10kHz and invariably causing listener fatigue. NightHawk takes a
radically different approach. Inspired by the advanced drive-units used in today’s
high-performance loudspeakers, NightHawk’s 50mm high-excursion driver has a
biocellulose pistonic diaphragm and a compliant rubber surround. The biocellulose
material is rigid and self-damping, making it far more accurate and musically pleasing
than Mylar. In addition, NightHawk’s patented split-gap motor design dramatically
reduces intermodulation distortion to provide a clean, well-defined broadband
response and a large, naturally detailed representation of space. Your music sounds
clean, clear, large, and alive.

Many of NightHawk’s design elements are successfully implemented in today’s most
innovative loudspeakers, but have never been used in headphones. Much like the
internal bracing of a beautiful loudspeaker cabinet, NightHawk’s sophisticated
earcup enclosure incorporates support beams that enhance structural integrity and
minimize unwanted resonances and vibrations. An elastomeric coating is carefully
applied to the enclosure’s internal surfaces to further reduce harmful vibrations,
while a damping material comprising a purposeful blend of wool and polyester
enables an extraordinarily smooth, natural frequency response for a deeply immersive
and emotionally compelling listening experience. With NightHawk, vibration-induced
distortion is intelligently minimized, allowing music to breathe freely.

NightHawk is a semi-open headphone with a biomimetic grille inspired by the
underlying structure of butterfly wings—a fascinating diamond cubic latticework that
diffuses light to create iridescence. Visually beautiful, technologically complex, and
built to a much larger scale in NightHawk, the grille’s intricate latticework diffuses
sound and defeats the resonances that ultimately distort and damage our music. Far
too complex to mold or machine, NightHawk’s grille can only be created through 3D
printing via an advanced form of additive manufacturing known as “Selective Laser
Sintering.” NightHawk, the first completely original production headphone to use a
3D-printed part, represents beauty, intelligence, and responsible innovation.

Sensitive ergonomics in a headphone design remove unnecessary boundaries
between the listener and his or her emotional involvement with the music.
NightHawk’s flexible headband efficiently distributes the headphone’s weight,
providing a feel that is both comfortable and comforting—you’ll want to wear
NightHawk. Its simple yet intelligent, patent-pending suspension system allows the
earcups to move freely, accommodating heads of nearly any shape or size, while
effectively decoupling the earcups to counteract intrusive resonances. NightHawk’s
earpads are made of soft, durable protein leather—again shaped to resemble the
human ear—with greater thickness toward the rear of the pad, thus providing
additional comfort while setting NightHawk’s drivers at an angle optimized for
precise, stable imaging. Listen for hours—in comfort, immersed in music, moved
by NightHawk.

NightHawk benefits from AudioQuest’s 30+ years of experience in the high-performance
cable business, including a headphone cable purposefully designed to minimize
distortion, promote intense user satisfaction, and provide a deep emotional connection
to the music. It uses many of the same ingredients found in our speaker cables
and interconnects, including high-purity Solid Perfect-Surface Copper+ conductors,
Foamed-Polyethylene insulation, Carbon-Based Noise-Dissipation System (NDS),
and silver-plated terminations. The cable’s exceptionally soft nylon braid minimizes
mechanical noise and complements NightHawk’s quiet, confident beauty, while its
3.5mm plug has a 45° scooped shape designed to provide a satisfying feel as you
make and unmake connections. In addition, we include a custom 3.5mm-to-1/4”
headphone adaptor that, like our finest cable connectors, features thick Direct-Silver
plating over the highest quality base metal, resulting in a part that isn’t merely
functional, but also meets the standards set by NightHawk itself. Every bit of
NightHawk was designed to exude quality, performance, innovation, and beauty.

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