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Parisian styled technology: Introducing the ultra luxurious Aëdle VK-1 headphones

Aëdle VK-1 headphones

Paris-based audio brand Aëdle are making a lot of noise in the luxury headphone market thanks to their innovative and elegant designs. Style expert Jake Daniels takes a look at the story behind the company and explores why they are proving so popular in the UK.

In 2011, two entrepreneurial friends studying in Japan who shared a passion for sound, design and craftsmanship founded aëdle (which stands for noble in Danish) an audio brand dedicated to redefining the nomadic audio experience. Both Raphael Lebas de Lacour and Baptiste Sancho were committed to providing high-end products combining state of the art audio performance with refined and minimalistic design.

After two years of intense research and design, travelling the world in search of inspiration, the pair created aëdle’s first product, a pair of on-ear high-end headphones. The VK-1, or the ‘Valkyrie’, refers to a goddess in Norse mythology as well as to the famous ‘Ride of the Valkyries’ from Richard Wagner.

Aedle VK-1 headphones legacy design
The Legacy design

2011 became a landmark for the company with the VK-1 project. It demonstrated that it was possible to hand-assemble a technical product in France with the help of highly skilled craftsmen. By gathering all the skills and experience they could, both Raphael and Baptiste’s dream came true and a young audio brand was born in Paris.

Aëdle’s ethos was that design should be unobtrusive to allow the user to focus solely on their music. The VK-1 headphones were created to be beautiful, functional and to be worn with style. The company sticks to its simplicity principle, a concept that aims to simplify a complex element in a very intuitive way.

Available in Classic, Legacy and Carbon designs, the elegant on-ear VK-1 headphones feature individually sculpted parts. The ear cups are CNC-milled from a single block of aluminium, with headband and cushions crafted from soft genuine hand-sewn lambskin leather. Each VK-1 headset offers a timeless iconic design with each pair being hand-assembled in France.

High-grade materials underline the headphones quality, with each detail being manufactured with the objective of achieving the highest possible degree of robustness and reliability.

Aedle VK-1 headphones classic design
The Classic design

The 40mm drivers are custom-made from titanium-neodymium and enclosed in an aluminium sound chamber to deliver excellent overall sound quality. The VK-1s have an impedance rating of 32 ohms and promise clear defined sound, deep bass frequencies, relaxed treble and mid range levels. The adjustment system connecting the sound chambers to the headband offers excellent vertical and rotational freedom of movement.

Assembled in France’s Brittany region, skilled craftsmanship is vital to the VK-1’s design to enable aëdle to provide the highest quality products in terms of precision and design.

The classic design of the headphones combines the latest audio technologies with traditional craftsmanship. The headphones also come with three different length cables that feature a microphone that is compatible with iOS and gold plated 3.5mm jack. A heavy-quilted bag with magnetic fastener makes the perfect storage solution while traveling.

Aedle VK-1 headphones - carbon design
The Carbon design

The VK-1 was highly praised by design critics which resulted in the VK-1 Legacy receiving the Red Dot design award 2015 and the Prix Etoile de l’Observeur du Design 2014 in Paris. In fact, the Red Dot judges commented how; “The headphones embody high quality and exclusivity in all respects. The design is unobtrusive, yet still characterised by timeless elegance.”

The future looks bright for aëdle with the development of an even more versatile product that will be smaller, but will maintain the same quality and style of the VK-1s.