TH808's double-layered grills still appear instantly recognisable and distinctive to the brand. It too addresses the clamour to adapt the original TH900 for exclusive listening in quiet home and office environments, promising something more tonally neutral and evenly-balanced while remaining unmistakably Fostex.
Costs saved on the finish certainly get transferred over to its sound, with a greater silence between notes granting the impression of better dynamic range reproduction and sophistication over its more flamboyant – and more expensive – TH909 cousin.
Double-layered etched metal grills are used as openings to TH808's housings, randomising resonance points and eliminating standing waves while appearing gorgeous to boot.
A soundstage that already breathed naturally on TH900 blossomed and reached its climatic zenith in TH808. Centre-image and depth are produced especially realistically.
TH808 grabs you and shakes you in one massive dynamic movement, also thanks to its 50mm driver – the same one featuring in the TH900 and TH909 – that moves plenty of air.
Made of Fostex's famous Biodyna biocellulose material and guaranteed huge excursion by a 1.5 tesla magnetic circuit, TH808 effortlessly produces a bass that is flat and linear in nature, without any sort of mid-bass bloat.
More air and space allows for male and female vocal fundamentals to emerge, and their overtones dissipate magically into the ether around.
TH808's Biodyna is stiff and lightweight as a diaphragm material but also promises excellent damping. Biocellulose allows Fostex to keep the large 50mm driver under control at all times even as frequencies rise, averting any harsh intermodulation due to cone modal break-up.
TH808's highs sparkle and decay naturally as a result, without the harshness that some felt lingered on TH900. The former's notes start and stop on a dime, transients properly defined without smear or bleed – clearly a low-distortion affair for even-handed and natural music reproduction throughout.
PW Audio make a perfect cable pairing for TH808, with No.5 setting you up nicely to begin on HiBy Music's R6 Pro II, before Moloch elevates affairs for a RS8 partnership. Also browse the rest of Fostex's artisan handcrafted headphones here, or our other cans here.
Driver 50mm Biodyna biocellulose
Frequency response 5Hz-45kHz
Sensitivity 96dB SPL/1mW