Bowers and Wilkins’ Black-Tie Headphones

Don’t look like an off-duty DJ. Look as good as your music sounds.
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Don’t look like an off-duty DJ. Look as good as your music sounds.
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Looking for headphones that work as well with a suit as a pair of wingtips? Enlist the Bowers and Wilkins P5 Series 2. They're slickly designed, yet understated; built to bolster your sense of style, not make you look like an off-duty DJ. A sheepskin-wrapped headband hugs your head, while the leather memory foam cups, which hang from sleek, adjustable helixed steel, are comfortable enough for hours of wear.  Their sound is as refined as the look: A pair of re-engineered 40mm drivers and a suite of other components work their sonic wizardry on all styles of music. They proved able to capture the warmth and depth in Ryan Adams' "Gimme Something Good" as well as the manic energy of such acts as Ok Go.

Don't buy 'em if you're looking for a walloping low-end; the bass isn't stomach shaking. But if you want a pair of headphones that boast a style as grown up as their sound, there's no better. [$300; bowers-wilkins.com]

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