What often makes an emerging brand exciting for us is not something that reinvents the wheel, but improves upon it in unexpected ways. Our latest brand crush comes to us from Giant Propeller content creator, Fernando – whose love for Nura’s “Nuraphone” was enough to pique our interest.
Founded in Australia in 2015 by doctors and hearing scientists, Nura debuted their flagship product in 2017 to critical acclaim. But what sets these headphones apart from other high-end iterations? The main selling point here is their proprietary technology that measures otoacoustic emissions to create personalized “hearing profiles.”
The main headphone cup houses a large bass speaker — or, “driver” as it’s often called. That’s where ultra-low bass frequencies come from. Meanwhile, the inner earbud delivers some additional bass, mid, and high audio frequencies (like having a full sound system in your ears that includes the subwoofer, mid-range speakers, and high-frequency tweeters).
Before you start listening to music for the first time with the Nuraphone, you need to get them tuned specifically for your hearing using the Nura mobile app. The Nuraphone plays a range of tones into the ear, and then measures a very faint sound that your ear generates in response to these tones called the Otoacoustic Emission (OAE). This tiny signal originates in the cochlea and vibrates the eardrum, turning it into a speaker and playing sound back out of your ear. Yes, our ears make sound that is about 10,000 times smaller than the sound that went in. Who knew?
Encoded in the returning sound wave is information about how well you heard the sound that went in. The Nuraphone uses an extremely sensitive microphone to detect this returning sound wave, and a self learning engine built into the Nuraphone to create your profile. No buttons or knobs. It all happens automatically and in about 60 seconds. As Nura says on their site, “It is a little bit magic.”
So once the Nuraphone “sonically shapes your music” so that it matches your specific hearing, how does it actually sound? To find out we asked Fernando a few questions to help us understand how game-changing this brand is for him…
How did you discover Nura in the first place?
Through Instagram sponsored ads. Sometimes they really work!
Tell us about what attracted you to this brand?
I had been looking for a new set of headphones for a little bit now and when I came across the Nura ads, their testimonials seemed too good to be true. But they not only had regular people’s excited reactions to their product, but also some influential music artists and producers –– and that sparked my interest immediately.
Tell us about the experience of having the headphones determine your “hearing profile.” How long did it take and how easy was it to do?
From the moment I got the product in my hands it became an experience. From the textures and materials of the packaging to the actual product itself it was easy to see that you were in the presence of a higher-caliber product. The setup of the device was easy and felt like it was scanning your brain with beeps and boop waves flowing through from ear to ear. If you can get past the feeling of a little warm pinky finger gently resting on the opening of your ear canal, these sound incredible.
That sounds weird. What do you mean “warm pinky finger?”
Because they contain earbuds within the earphones, when you put on the Nuraphone for the first time, they kinda feel like they’re locking the headphones into your head. It is weird, but I got used to it pretty quickly and they’re actually really comfortable.
Tell us about your “hearing profile” –– what did the Nuraphones teach you about how you hear music?
The hearing profiles are what make this product really unique. They do a great job on the setup of the profile to show you the difference between the neutral audio compared to your new custom profile that’s “just for you.” I’ve had / tried a lot of headphones over the years –– from DJing, video editing, traveling and everything in-between. The Nura system covers all those bases and does it better than most.
Did you know about Otoacoustic Emission before this brand?
I knew nothing about it, but now every other headphone I try on seems to lack the depth, richness and quality of these. It really is night and day.
Tell us about “social mode” and what it’s like…
Social mode is a game changer because it allows you to keep playing your music or working while also being able to hear what’s going on around you with a tap of the headphones. It makes pretending to ignore people much more interesting haha.
Do you use your headphones during work? If so, does the noise cancelation help you focus?
Yes and yes, I don’t always want to have Ace of Base playing to not hear others. The noise canceling function lets me feel alone in my thoughts… it’s awesome.
Aside from Ace of Base, what’s your favorite type of music to listen to?
NuDisco, 90’s rave and Haim. I’m appreciating all of them on a new level because of the Nuraphone. It’s like there’s a concert in my head and I’ve got the best seats. That’s not just a metaphor, because you can literally adjust your level of immersion to stand at the back of the “room,” or in the “front row.” If you love music, or need help focusing while you work, these headphones are worth every penny.