The thing about being a portable audiophile is that you have to put a lot of trust in online reviews. It’s hard to get the full experience testing out a pair of cans in Best Buy and often places like that are lacking the vast majority of most high-end models.
Lumoid has seen the opportunity in personal audio and is looking to allow people the chance to test out a wide swath of headphones, bluetooth speakers and home audio products before they delve into dropping several hundreds or thousands of dollars on audio gear.
The company already allows consumers to check out different wearables, drones and photo equipment for a few weeks. At the end of that period, people can ship the gear back and decide to put a portion (sometimes 100%) of the rental fee towards the cost of actually buying the item.
The service really sees different usage depending on what you’re looking for. If you’re looking to check out some “basic” sub-$300 headphones the service is really a killer deal. Say you’re not quite sure what kind of noise-canceling headphones you want, hop on the site and choose three pairs from the list (which is admittedly a little light at the moment, but contains some of the most popular models) and if you decide to buy a pair after you test them out, you can put $40 of the $50 rental fee towards a new pair.
In addition to allowing you to be a little bit more diligent in zeroing in on the pair of headphones you want to spend money on, the service is also a great opportunity to be able to try out some of the best headphones money can buy.
The Sennheiser HD 800s are considered by many to be one of the best pair of ‘phones available today. The open, around-the-ear headphones have developed an almost cult-like devotion to the accuracy with which they reproduce studio sound. Here’s kind of the bummer though, these things retail for $1600.
Barring some major cosmic table turning that involves me going back in time and shorting Twitter stock, I doubt Ill be dropping that kind of cash on a pair of headphones anytime soon, though getting the chance to spend a couple weeks with HD 800s or the Audeze LCD3s is definitely worth the fractionally insignificant rental price.
The new audio offerings aren’t just limited to headphones though, you can test out individual home audio products from manufacturers like Sonos, Devialet and others, or get a few bluetooth speaker options shipped your way to try.
Audio products, like many things, are something you really have to experience yourself. When you move into the higher end especially, a service like Lumoid allows you the chance to be 100% sure about what you’re spending your cash on, whether it’s a $1600 pair of behemoth headphones or a $40 bluetooth speaker.