I always wonder what is really meant when people say that BMW, or Ferrari, or whoever, colluded with this or that consumer tech company to create a product. Obviously they didn’t get the lead designer for the 5 series to work on these from the ground up, but at the same time they didn’t hire the guy who created the seat-recline mechanism. I’m guessing they get a few sketches from the art department at BMW, who are asked what a BMW headphone might look like. Then Sennheiser does the rest, runs it by BMW for a thumbs up, and then proudly says “we collaborated!” That’s just my guess.
Whatever the process was that ended up in the creation of these things, they did something right. With such a small device to create, it’s nice when people get get a definite design in there. Klipsch didn’t do so well with the X5s, no matter how good they sound, though Sleek’s SA-6es have a real “pro” look to them. The BMW Designworks 980 series relies on clean lines, metal highlights, and of course the inevitable leather carrying case (I’ve found these indispensable, actually).
Personally I’m always going to go with in-ears over earbuds, but the extra support from that ear-thing might be good for joggers or people on the move who still want to rock some chrome. The model numbers, from left to right, are: OMX-980, MX-980, CX-980. No word I’m pricing, but show me a bargain BMW. I’m guessing they’ll be around $150.