Lossless audio from wireless headphones? IAIAI’s latest media blast may suggest it has broken through the holy grail of portable audio with its latest headphones, the TMA-2 Studio Wireless +: a married 4cm 32-ohm dynamic bio-cellulose pilot to circumaural pads in Alcantara and mounted on a headband that houses the wireless radio / s for a connection that registers only 16 ms of latency. That’s a tenth of the 160ms of the Sony WH-1000XM4. The AIAIAI’s battery life is rated at 80 hours, but unlike the Sony, the TMA-2 Studio Wireless + does not offer active noise cancellation (ANC).
On the AIAIAI website:
“Designed for the modern creative workflow, which has evolved to be increasingly dynamic and ‘always on’, the TMA-2 Wireless + is a versatile and professional pair of headphones, featuring both W + Link for ultra-low latency, Bluetooth 5.0… and a coiled hi-fi cable for the traditional configuration.
Eagle eyes will spot the wrinkle. This low latency wireless performance does not come from a bluetooth pairing but AIAIAI’s W + Link wireless transmission protocol which relies on connecting a transmitter the size of a Zippo lighter to an existing analog source.
Return to the AIAIAI website:
“W + Link was specially developed for wireless audio with ultra-low latency and lossless sound in a stable and robust connection. This unlocks a latency-free wireless experience with TMA-2 Wireless +, designed for increased freedom for music creation. W + Link uses a dedicated radio frequency band to send audio between the transmitter and the headphones, unlike a Bluetooth connection which constantly exchanges frequency bands. This ensures that the 16ms latency is stable. The W + Link is developed with dual antennas to always guarantee a stable connection without interference from the environment. With a wider bandwidth than Bluetooth, W + Link can transmit uncompressed audio and transmit it multiple times in parallel. This guarantees a stable signal without interruption.
This could be extremely useful for DJs – like AIAIAI brand ambassador Richie Hawtin – looking to detach from a headphone cable for greater physical freedom in the DJ booth (where low latency monitoring is essential. ) …
… But perhaps less useful for women / men on the street.
If she already has a DAP, portable DAC or Bluetooth DAC in her pocket, she can use the coiled headphone cable provided by AIAIAI for lossless wired audio streaming. Alternatively, if the chosen source is an iPhone or Android, she can pair her smartphone with the TMA-2 Studio Wireless + Bluetooth 5.0 radio which also resides in her headband. AIAIAI doesn’t tell us about its headset’s Bluetooth codec support, but the three click buttons at the top right of the banner allow volume control and track skipping.
The AIAIAI TMA-2 Studio Wireless + will sell for € 350 and is available for pre-order now. Shipping begins December 27 where a 30 day money back guarantee applies.
More information: AIAIAI