I'd been having problems with drummers and headphones for years. The headphones would fall off drummer's heads, they would bleed too much click track into the mics, and their output wouldn't be loud enough to overcome the sound of the drums around the drummer. I was considering buying the Studio Kans headphones, as a few drummers had brought in their own and seemed to dig them, but I'd go online and never could find a good source to buy them from! When the Extreme Isolation headphones showed up for review, my troubles were over. These headphones are designed similar to the Studio Kans, with a tight fit on the head and better isolation from surrounding noise. I had several drummers who owned Studio Kans try them out with positive reviews in all cases, especially regarding fidelity. In fact, I use them now for all my drum sessions. I also put them on guitarists who are doing LOUD guitar overdubs in the same room with their amps, and it's helped people play in time. The only thing I worry about is that the headphone cable is very thin, like Walkman headphones, and isn't easily replaceable like Fostex or Studio Kans which have 1/8'' plugs. It hasn't happened yet; but I'm waiting for the day the cord gets yanked out, and I have to open them up and resolder. But for now, the benefits are outweighing my concern over this, and the Extreme Isolation headphones are making bands play together better than before.

($139, www.extremeheadphones.com)

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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