The Classical Tonal earphones are constructed out of unique materials that give it a unique look and sound.
The earphones themselves are constructed out of rosewood to bring out more warmthin the sound. The earbuds are soft and fit into my ears with no problem. The earphones come with a half dozen different buds for different ear sizes, but the default size fit my ears just fine (I appear have generic white male ears).
The backs of the earphones are gold-plated, and feel heavier in your hand than your average buds. They have a neat little cable loop that protects the cable at common stress points. The rubberized material is a cut above conventional plastic cords, which tend to easily fray and tangle. Overall the presentation is classy. The rosewood/gold combination made the earphones look like something a CEO uses at his desk.
I liked the look and the feel of the earphones. The only downside? This is just my observation, but when I saw myself wearing the earphones, it kind of looked like I was wearing earrings. There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s just I’m not a bling-wearer, so it felt unusual for me.
「What really surprised me about the earphones is how well they handled the low range (i.e. bass). I sampled lots of classical music, from symphonies to movie soundtracks to solo violin, and it handled them all pretty well. While they definitely have great warmth, they don’t have a very strong soundstage. All the distinct sounds come from the same place, as if listening to an orchestra from the middle of an amphitheatre.」
These earphones are a great example of specialization at work: if you make earphones that work amazingly well at one genre of music, it may come at the cost of other genres. A good example of this is the Beats headphones: the emphasis on bass (the low-end) means that they offer below par sound quality in other genres. And frankly, it’s good to see audio manufacturers catering to listeners of these other genres.