So, finally Gizmo Gyaan is back and yes, it’s the same, offering you an insight into ‘All things technical’, things you never knew about, and this time we’re discussing about the history of headphones. Ever wondered where they came from, maybe you never cared, but it’s truly worth knowing where it all started. And if you think it’s Steve Jobs who invented them, you are not even close.
It was way back in the 1880s, when the first headphones were used, not by music lovers but telephone operators. The device was a single earpiece weighing over 10 pounds. Heavy, isn’t it? Finally in 1895, headphones were used for it’s actual purpose – music. Interestingly, they looked less like headphones and more like stethoscopes.
In 1910, the first modern headphones were introduced, and yes, these did look like headphones. The device was worked upon by Nathaniel Baldwin in his kitchen. Wow! What better place than a kitchen to come up with something innovative. The headphones were used by the US navy.
Beyerdynamic in 1937 gave headphones a brand new meaning. The company introduced dynamic headphones which were an instant hit and still are a favorite to many.
A decade later in 1949, AKG introduced it’s first, the K120. This model along with a few others that followed were largely responsible for making AKG one of the leading audio equipment producers. Soon in 1958 came the Koss SP-3 which could even make the present-day headphones shy away.
A year later in 1959, the first ever electrostatic headphones were introduced. These are now very rarely found and are most likely at the verge of getting extinct. In 1968, Koss hopped back into action with its own electrostatic model – the ESP-6. At 2 pounds, these were quite lighter than the ones produced around half a century ago.
1979 – the year when Sony came up with something highly innovative. The MDL-3L2 portable headphones were shipped along with Sony’s first ever Walkman.
Finally in 1980 the in-ear headphones were introduced. Though highly attractive, the headphones failed to get the desired attention until Steve Jobs came up with his own. In 2001, the iPod was shipped with an attractive looking white pair of in-ear headphones.
Its not just about sound quality, but also the style. A few popular rappers these days prefer using headphones worth a million dollars. Now, if you are the richest man on the planet, you would probably want to have one for yourself.