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beyerdynamic Aventho Wireless Headphones


Ever since last year’s Melbourne International HiFi Show, I’ve been keenly awaiting the arrival of the Beyerdynamic Aventho headphones. Well, they’re now readily available in Australia and the wonderful team from beyer’s local distributor have been kind enough to lend me a pair to review – thanks Wayne & Guy!!

What makes the Aventho so exciting to me is the technology packed inside it combined with a history of loving the design and the sound of beyerdynamic’s portable headphones such as the DT1880. The Aventhos continue the trend of beautifully designed on-ear headphones, but now come packed with AptX HD bluetooth transmission and, more importantly, the Mimi hearing technology that allows the Aventhos to be tuned to your personal hearing with a simple Android / iOS app. That all makes for a compelling package that I couldn’t wait to hear!


  • Design-type: closed, on-ear
  • Connection: Bluetooth AptX HD (or corded)
  • Impedance: 32 ohms
  • Weight: 238 g
  • Frequency response: 10 – 40,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 105 dB SPL (1 mW / 500 Hz)

For around $600, the Aventhos are an expensive portable headphone. In fact, they sit alongside top noise-cancelling options from Bowers & Wilkins and Bang & Olufsen, and they cost $100 more than Bose’s top offerings so it’s understandable that some people will immediately baulk at the price. I’m keen to find out if that’s a fair reaction or if the trade-off of hearing profiling for noise cancelling is a worthwhile swap and worth the premium price tag.

It’s probably worth noting at this point that the Aventhos also pack beyerdynamic’s Tesla driver technology and an irrefutable legacy of outstanding headphones and audio products so you know you’re going to get a good product for your money.

Design & Accessories

I’ve already said how much I loved the old DT1880 design and the Aventhos go a step further with a slightly larger cup size and a flatter profile compared to the more dome-shaped DT1880s. Beyond that there’s still the wonderful combination of metal and coloured accents (black or brown) and a great balance of luxury and industrial style.


I have to say, my first interaction with the accessories for the Aventho was pretty disappointing. When you open the box, the first thing you see and touch is the carry bag for the heapdhones. It’s a fabric bag with a little bit of structured padding at the bottom where the cups of the earphones sit and while the use of fabric keeps it compact and lightweight, it just doesn’t feel like it protects the headphones well enough. I’m not so much worried about damage from external sources so much as from inside the bag because the Aventhos come shipped with a sculpted piece of foam wedged between the earcups, but there’s no way I’d be wanting to re-fit the foam every time I put the headphones away and without the foam I would be worried about the earcups constantly rubbing together inside the bag. I can only imagine a well-used pair of Aventhos ending up with abrasion marks on both earcups within a few months, but maybe the idea is to have them on your head or around your neck for the majority of the time.

Other than the dismal carry bag, the other accessories are all fine. There’s a signal cable should you ever wish to use the Aventhos as a traditional wired headphone and a USB-C charging cable. There’s nothing more required and nothing more supplied.

Fit & Comfort

At first I thought the band was going to be too small on the Aventhos, but it expands more than you think and I was even able to wear it over a beanie or hat on cold Melbourne days. Because it’s an on-ear headphone, the clamping force is moderate and I did find myself getting slightly sore ears after 60+ minutes of use, but a quick adjustment of the earcups was enough to redistribute the pressure and have me focussed on the tunes instead of the dull ache in my ears.

The super-soft leather pads make for a comfortable interface with the ears and a great seal that shuts out a surprising amount of sound. I rarely use headphones on trains because I prefer the maximum isolation of custom in-ear monitors, but the Aventhos hold their own really well – they’re not quite as isolating as my Noble K10s, but they come close enough to be totally enjoyable on the train.


It’s not often I have to speak about multiple features for a headphone – normally it’s “How does it fit?” and “How does it sound?” but the Aventhos are no ordinary headphone. With the Aventhos we have to discuss the Bluetooth connectivity and the Mimi hearing profiling app (called MIY).

Bluetooth functionality

I’ve paired the Aventhos with a couple of devices and it’s largely seamless. I’ve experienced a few challenges with the MIY app, but I’ll discuss that later.

Once connected, the output from the V30+ switches automatically to AptX HD mode for maximum audio quality, but if you are using an AptX HD capable source device it will be worth ensuring that the AptX HD output is enabled as the difference is noticeable.

The other general bluetooth functionality is the control available via the touch-sensitive right earcup of the Aventhos. The touch controls allow you to play / pause, skip tracks forward and back, seek within tracks forwards or backwards, and raise and lower the volume. I’ve found the controls largely very responsive once I got used to the level of sensitivity and the correct way to execute each command. For example, it took me a while to work out the difference between the seek gesture and the skip track gesture, but once I understood it’s been mostly flawless. I say “mostly flawless” because there have been one or two occasions where the headphone controls stopped working, but I believe this could have been a glitch with the phone as much as with the headphones and my experience with all sorts of gear suggests that this is inevitable with any kind of bluetooth devices – they will never be 100% glitch-free, but the Aventhos come absolutely as close as I would expect and I have been completely satisfied with all of their general bluetooth functionality and compatibility so let’s talk about the key feature…


The MIY app is at the core of the Aventho experience and is where the collaboration with Mimi comes into play. The MIY app is the hearing and sound calibration app for the Aventhos and it provides a few fantastic features: measurement of your hearing and automatic calibration of the Aventho’s frequency response, and a summary of the amount of work your ears are doing based on the volume level and duration of your listening. I’ll break each of these down further because there’s a bit to discuss, but before I do I want to flag some frustrating issues I had with connectivity…

I said before that the Aventhos paired easily with my phone and this is true, however, once paired with the phone, opening the MIY app sometimes causes me major issues and seems to re-trigger pairing, resulting in a temporary disconnection of the headphones and crashing the app. I’ve also had the app fail to upload the sound profile on at least two occasions and it’s currently sending some nasty sounds through the left earpiece when attempting to complete my hearing profile test. The good news is that the headphones are working perfectly in all other ways so this seems to be an application issue rather than a problem with the headphones themselves. Hopefully, this is a localised glitch on my phone and the demo Aventhos rather than a common issue – it all worked perfectly at the beginning. (And, for the record, completing a factory reset of the headphones and uninstalling / reinstalling the app had no effect)

Hearing Calibration

With those technical glitches out of the way, the hearing calibration process is quite simple and quick, but effective. In short, the app tests one ear at a time by playing tones at different frequencies and volumes. The process is very quick – just a couple of minutes – and has you pressing a single on-screen button in the app as the sound comes and goes, changing pitch and volume. It’s different to hearing tests I’ve used in the past, but seems an effective system and the results are good. Depending on your level of hearing sensitivity (or hearing loss), you may find the output quite astounding. As it is, my pre- and post-test sound profile is not drastically different, but it’s noticeable and the post-test sound is decidedly better, particularly in the mid-range thanks to an improved overall balance in the sound signature.

Hearing Protection

Another great feature of the application helps you to maintain the health of your ears. The app reports on all sound listened to via the Aventhos when connected with bluetooth (it doesn’t monitor the wired connection). What it does is calculate the volume levels your ears have been exposed to throughout all of the wireless listening using the Aventhos regardless of the source (YouTube videos, podcasts, music, etc.). It then tells you if you are putting any strain on your ears and if you need to reduce the volume to protect your hearing from damage. This is a great tool for those who like their music loud and it’s been a comfort to me seeing that significant listening hasn’t even ‘moved the dial’ in terms of how much work my ears have been doing – after a whole day of moderate listening during commuting and some office work, the app reported only around 10% of ‘work’ done by my ears and it even encouraged me to turn the volume up a little if I wanted to!

My one question about this feature is whether or not the system is intelligent enough to calculate the actual sound output level of the headphones given that the sound levels can vary based on the source, volume of the device (i.e. smartphone), and the volume of the Aventhos themselves. Hopefully the system accounts for all these variables, but I do wonder.


I wasn’t sure where to put this, but it sort of fits here so let me talk about the Aventho’s voice because I love it! The Aventho tells you when it’s switched on, what it’s battery level is, etc. and it does it all in a very precise English accent that I can’t get enough of – not in some creepy way, but I really enjoy hearing the insanely crisp annunciation when she says “Battery level at eighty percenT” (capital, bold “t” is a deliberate attempt to poorly convey the sound of the annunciation via text). Check out the video review when I post it (subscribe to my Twitter or Facebook feed for notifications) because I’ll be doing my very best to record an example for the video.

Volume Control

Being an active wireless headphone, the Aventhos have their own volume which is separate from the controls on source device. I found during ongoing listening that the steps in volume using the headphones were sometimes too large and I had to use the finer increments on my phone to get the volume just right. This detracted slightly from the convenience of having the touch controls on the headphones themselves so it would be nice to have more, smaller steps on the headphones themselves, but it’s a minor gripe and only an issue when shuffling between various albums without the benefit of ReplayGain (volume levelling) from my music app.

Sound Quality

It’s really unusual writing a review of a headphone that’s been custom tuned to your hearing – it leads to some interesting questions: is the sound designed to be perfectly accurate? Does the headphone still have its own sound signature? Let me try to answer these questions…


The bass from the Aventhos is very good. It’s strong and punchy, but snappy and tight. There’s no bloat or bloom in it, but I also don’t find it lacking. Having said that, I occasionally wish for something more – I just can’t quite put a finger on what it is I’m missing. Now, don’t get me wrong, this is one of the better balanced bass reproductions I’ve heard and you could do much, much worse, but perhaps it’s just a touch too tidy for my tastes, a touch too sterile. Yes, the weight and impact is good, but it might be decaying a little faster than I prefer. For most people out there I think this bass will be close to perfect (based on the comments I read on forums and in reviews), but it doesn’t quite match the live experience that I crave and that leads me to loving the bass from slightly coloured setups like the AudioQuest NightHawk and Thinksound On1.


The mids are clearly the sweet spot from the Aventhos. Once the calibration is complete, these are one of the most enjoyable mid-range headphones I have ever listened to. The mids sing through so clearly and strongly without ever over-shadowing any other frequency. In my recent review of the Burson Audio V5i opamp I discussed how it puts all of the midrange in the spotlight, sometimes at the expense of the bass or treble, but the Aventhos walk that fine line to perfection. Listening to the Aventhos will yield some of the purest, cleanest vocals and instrumentals you could hope to hear from a wireless headphone (or most other headphones), but it’s always in the full context of the whole recording, not pushed out front or separated from the other instruments (unless recorded that way). I find myself actively looking forward the midrange experience each time I switch these on and that’s impressive!


If the Aventhos have a true weak spot, it’s probably the treble, but only by the tiniest fraction. In fact, let me moderate that comment – the treble is good, it’s just ever-so-slightly disappointing in comparison to the rest of the magic coming out of the Aventho’s earcups. I think this is a symptom of the bluetooth transmission because even AptX HD protocol has a small degree of compression and compression has the greatest impact on treble quality in my experience – it roughs up the edges of the treble. AptX HD is touted as top quality bluetooth transmission and it is very, very good, but it still uses a 4:1 compression ratio so you are losing something – it’s simple maths.

The reason the treble falls just short of perfect is that it is perfect in intensity, has just the right extension, but just misses out on the clarity and quality of perfection. Imagine the tiniest hint of “fuzz” at the edge of the notes – that’s the nearest way I can describe it. It’s incredibly subtle and only noticeable in direct comparison to an outstanding wired setup, but it’s there. Would it prevent me from buying the Aventhos? Absolutely not. These are an awesome headphone and minimise the impact of wireless connectivity to the greatest possible degree (based on current lossy technology), but they can’t compete with a wired setup.

Before you write-off the Aventhos, let me tell you about the treble in isolation, with no unfair comparisons to wired systems. The Aventhos produce a polite treble presentation, but it’s not lacking in any way. The treble is crisp, clean and highly detailed. The only times it strayed into sibilance was when listening to really poor recordings and that tells me they’re not glossing over things – they’re sharing what’s there accurately, but not without care. The treble is enjoyable, precise and perfectly balanced with the rest of the spectrum, particularly given that you’ve completed the calibration to ensure that it is adjusted to match your individual hearing.

A Caveat About Cables

It’s important to note that while the Aventho can operate as a wired headphone, doing so disables all of the sound processing that occurs with the wireless connection so some of what I’ve said here won’t apply 100% to the Aventhos when wired. In a short test I found that they were still very enjoyable when wired, but they’re clearly not designed to be used this way – it’s just a nice ‘emergency’ feature in my eyes.

Sanity-Check Comparison: Aventhos vs thinksound On1

If you’ve read my review of the On1 or checked out the On My Desk & In My Bag page, you’ll know that I adore the On1 – they are my goto portable, on-ear headphone so it makes sense to compare them with the Aventhos. The On1 (now updated to On2) are half the price and more compact, but have no hearing calibration, no touch controls and require a cable. They’re also not as sexy despite the beautiful wooden cups.

In terms of sound, the On1 are still fantastic, but the Aventho leaves them sounding a little shrill in the treble – a touch too edgy – and the upper mids have a slightly boxed-in sound compared to the outstanding clarity of the Aventhos. Where the On1 claws back some ground is with its bass presentation and overall groove. The On1s are more liable to have me tapping my foot or nodding my head and it’s all because of the bass reproduction which has a slight bump in the lower mid-bass to produce a satisfying weight and body to the bass. It’s not as tight as the Aventho, but it creates the groove.

So here’s the rub, I prefer the groove from the On1, but I find myself longing for the more relaxed presentation of the Aventhos. I could happily live with either, but neither is perfect. If wireless were important to me, the Aventhos would obviously win, but I am still (just) in favour of sound quality (read: cables) over the slight bump in convenience. With that in mind it’s honestly a draw between these two and I think I would pick up one set just as often as the other given the choice between both.


The Aventhos aren’t cheap. For $600 they are well into the premium end of the market. There are cheaper headphones that offer similar functionality and more (I’m currently in contact with Audeara who offer a similar headphone that also offers active noise cancelling), but I’m not convinced that anything else can match the combination of size, beautiful design and technology that’s in the Aventhos. Sure, others like the Audeara and Nuraphone (Nura declined any type of review opportunity) might offer different hearing calibration systems and active noise cancellation, but the Aventhos look so damn good, don’t require a piece sticking into your ear canal (like the Nuraphone) and are tiny in comparison to the competition. I’m not suggesting that either of these competitors are lesser products as I’m yet to try either, but I can honestly say that I would gladly buy the Aventhos and never lose a moment’s sleep wondering if I was missing out on something. I’m not a huge fan of active noise cancellation (except perhaps on planes where I tend to use custom IEMs anyway) and I really value the compact design of the Aventhos.

I will be very sad to see these go back to the supplier in a couple of weeks once the video review is done and I will be seriously considering a purchase. That tells you how much I enjoyed them. They aren’t quite perfect in that they don’t stir in me the desire to nod my head or tap my foot along with the music, but only the very best headphones can make that happen. These are the first wireless headphone I have ever listened to that has me contemplating a future without cables and that’s a huge achievement!

If you’re as sold on the Aventho Wireless as I am and you’d like to support this blog, please consider buying via the link below – it costs you nothing and provides a small amount of income to help me produce more reviews in the future.