Sometimes the most enjoyable projects are the ones that begin casually and with no goal in mind; the sort of thing that starts with an overactive imagination and a thirst for challenge and discovery
Along the way, we explored countless new driver variants (only a few of which are shown in the image below).
Some of the most exciting discoveries followed a more intuitive path than the more esoteric samples we've developed (if you've met us at a social event, you know what we're talking about). Yet while novel driver technology often demands complex approaches to tuning and design, we were equally attracted to a smaller range of drivers that presented a cohesive tone when directly dropped into a minimal design. We found ourselves building up from the fundamentals all over again - who would have thought?
There was a trend in the second category: most of these drivers were smaller than the ones we've used before. Even before ETA began producing headphones, we've always been charmed by the closer-to-pistonic motion, smoother mid-to-treble transition and tighter dispersion pattern of a smaller electrodynamic driver - 20hz bass extension be damned!
As we narrowed down our initial selection of 25mm to 46mm drivers, a preference emerged for particular types of materials and mechanical features. Fast forward a few more months and several more iterations, and we landed on a newly-developed-yet-back-to-basics driver.
The Ada driver features a 7-micron biocellulose dome with a slightly stiffer 5-micron PET surround than the PU of our 50mm offerings, with a unique 16 ohm pure copper voice coil powered by a strongest-in-class N52 NdFeB magnet.
Even though this driver showed remarkable ability in a near-featureless shell, we hit the drawing boards to dig out every gram of performance this driver had to offer. As such, Ada is our first headphone to:
- fully integrate the internal structure of the driver chassis into the external enclosure through the use of extensive coupling and acoustic-impedance matching parts across multiple axes
- implement direct bracing of the driver's pole vent against a filtered rear horn, similar to that of back-loaded horn loudspeaker.
In addition to the acoustic design, we re-crafted our high-airflow earpads and adjusted the bend of our stock headband to create one of the most comfortable supra-aural experiences currently on the market in this form factor. At 206 grams, Ada will surprise you with a sense of ease and comfort for extended listening - a headphone experience designed to be enjoyed.