Dan Clark – American Made, High-End, 3D Printed Headphones

Dan is President and CEO of Mr. Speakers, makers of “The world’s first production 3D printed headphone”. His firm, located in San Diego, CA, is known for beautiful and high-functioning products. Dan is an electrical engineer with an MBA and founded MrSpeakers after he’d been working in, and around, the high-end audio market for over twenty years. He has designed both commercial and custom loudspeaker solutions, including the well-regarded Platinum Audio speakers from the late 1990’s.

The Alpha Dog

Their Alpha Dog product is a thing to behold: a beautiful headphone with highly finished, 3D printed cups and lamb-leather pads. Jude Mansilla, founder of Head-fi. Says, “The Alpha Dog is my current reference in fully closed over-ear headphones.”

If this post appears to be more of a product review than a story about Afinia, you are correct. It’s the 3D printer’s ability to manufacture once-impossible shapes that have taken MrSpeakers to the next level.

“Traditionally, high-end, closed, over-ear headphone cups are made from wood. Wood is a great material with excellent frequency-response characteristics. The main issue is that it’s almost impossible to create optimal latticework inside the wood to get the kind of isolation necessary for high-end headphones. The people who need our products are either recording engineers, audio producers or very picky audiophiles. We looked at 3D printing as a way to leapfrog our major competitors.”

Making Dreams Come True

“When I first heard about 3D printing I thought that this might be a tool to create higher-performing designs that I could only dream of. We tested all of the major brands and couldn’t find one that did the job. Fortunately, I came upon Afinia via Make Magazine’s Ultimate Guide To 3D Printing, read the review and bought several of them.”

Affinity for Afinia

“Our 3D printers run all day and are solid and dependable. In the rare occasion that we have a question, we can call the guys in Minnesota and they help us out really fast. Downtime does not fit into our business model.”

“Our Afinia’s allow us to rapidly tweak our products. Our larger competitors use heavy-duty computing and software simulations to create theirs. Most simulation software was created for speaker manufacturers. Creating headphones is a whole different animal – we rely heavily on our ears to come up with our winning designs.”

“We also have a lot in common with Afinia. We deliver great products at affordable prices. Audiophile performance should not require a stratospheric investment, so we strive to deliver incredible performance and high value each and every time. No fancy packaging, no expensive upgrades or components that don’t add value. No snake-oil.”

If you are interested in learning more about Dan’s products, you can visit them here: www.mrspeakers.com. Lest you think that MrSpeakers’ products are very expensive, Constantine Soo of Dagogo Review had this to say, “”…you would be hard pressed to find a better-closed headphone for the asking price of $299.”