Yamaha unveils flagship high-end planar magnetic headphones

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Yamaha has unveiled its first planar magnetic headphones in over three decades. The Yamaha YH-5000SE combine the Japanese giant’s legendary “orthodynamic” drivers with new tech and a slew of luxurious materials.

At £4799 / AU$7499 (around $5700), the flagship over-ears aren’t exactly cheap. But then, they are built by Japanese craftsmen. And they boast a magnesium body that makes them “one of the lightest, high-end headphones in the world” at 320g.

The orthodynamic drivers (Yamaha’s version of planar magnetic drivers) promise exceptionally accurate sonics “without the slightest bit of distortion”. A bold claim, but one that Yamaha stands by thanks to the superior responsiveness of the driver’s diaphragm, which is claimed to be “significantly lighter” than that of dynamic drivers.

Yamaha YH-5000SE

(Image credit: Yamaha)

The company told What Hi-Fi? that development of the YH-5000SE started way back in 2016. Only after trialling 1000 different diaphragms over the course of six years did Yamaha’s engineers find what they were looking for.

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