High Fidelity, Low Impact: New Earbuds from Thinksound
Popping some wood or bamboo on an electronic accessory (we saw both at this year's Consumer Electronics Show) is certainly not an automatic recipe for a greener, more earth-friendly product . But budding audio company Thinksound has gone several steps beyond "that natural look" with its first two entries into the headphone market. To boot, Thinksound's founders have some worthy cred in the performance audio field, meaning that listening to these headphones might give you wood in more ways than one.
Thinksound founders Aaron Fournier and Mike Tunney met while working at Tivoli Audio, and after some twists and turns (including Fournier working as a chief audio product tester for Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports), the two decided the market was ripe for a high-end earbud with a reduced ecological impact.
The initial result is two models, Rain and Thunder, both of which are housed in sustainably harvested wood and recyclable aluminum (though we'd like some more details on the wood source). Cables are free of PVC and packaging has been tweaked to reduce the amount of material, eradicate chlorine bleaching, and increase the recycled content.
The Rain model (MSRP $99) is engineered to respond to crisp highs, while Thunder is a more base-centric design (MSRP $74.99). Both are available in two colors and come with a cotton carrying bag and four sizes of silicone ear inserts.