LiTT website

Dyson builds headphones with an air-purifying system

This story was originally published on March 30, 2022, and last updated on December 11, 2022.

Ever looked at a pair of headphones and thought, “These need to have air purifiers in them?” Dyson is entering the audio accessory segment in the way they know how: with their own touch. The Dyson Zone is primarily a pair of noise-canceling Bluetooth headphones with air purification tech.

That is possible through that unusual magnetic face visor you see in the cover photo. Dyson thinks this gadget can help mitigate the air and noise pollution of those who live in urban cities. It shrinks its existing air filtration tech into this unusual form factor.

The Zone pulls in the air through each earpiece using a pair of compressors. The outside air is then filtered and piped through this visor-like contraption across your face, allowing you to breathe without most of the particles and pollutants. 

According to the company, it can filter out up to 99 percent of particle pollution. It’s not a medical device, so they won’t outright say that it can combat COVID-19. Think of it more as a device to filter out pollution. Like some filters on its air purifiers, its filters aren’t reusable. You’ll need to replace them after around a year. Of course, the exact time is dependent on how much air pollution you encounter and how actively you use it.

The visor isn’t flush against your face. There’s a gap between your nose and mouth, so there’s a bubble of sorts where the clean air can gather. But Dyson has a separate attachment you can clip on when you need a full-contact face mask. 

Dyson Zone filter

Dyson knows we tend to breathe heavier when we’re doing different activities. So, the Zone gets different settings depending on the level of exertion. Of course, there’s an automated option, too. That uses accelerometers to adjust airflow to what you need.

This accessory snaps in place with the help of magnets. And you can hinge it down if you want to talk to people without it blocking your face.

If you intend to just use the headphones part, that one goes the traditional route. Dyson’s goal with the Zone is to create “faithful” reproductions of a musician’s original track. Noise cancelation is courtesy of passive cancelation from the design and active noise cancelation with the help of microphones. 

It offers three different modes for noise cancelation: 

  • Isolation mode: ANC is on, and the face visor is raised
  • Conversation mode: Lowered visor shifts into this mode and ANC is disabled
  • Transparency mode: Lets in sounds around you

Now, if you want more details on the headphones, it is capable of up to 38 decibels of noise-cancellation and is equipped with 40mm neodymium drivers.

The Dyson Zone charges via USB-C and can be controlled with the MyDyson app. It’s also where you get air quality info and control audio modes.

Dyson Zone headphones

Dyson has finally shared the suggested retail price and availability of these unique headphones. They are coming to select markets, though, China, the US, the UK, Hong Kong SAR, and Singapore. It’ll come in at a pretty hefty USD 949 price tag in the colors Ultra Blue/Prussian Blue and Prussian Blue/Bright Copper. That latter colorway comes with some extras, but Engadget reported that you can only buy it through the company. The accessories include a second electrostatic carbon filter, a soft pouch, and an inflight adaptor kit.

Dyson Philippines has hinted at a potential local release of the Dyson Zone. For now, you can stay updated on news about this over at this link.

The standard and the Dyson Direct models get the signature visor, dedicated sleeve, and cleaning brush. The electrostatic filters that clean the air are rated to last up to 12 months of use before needing a replacement. 

Battery life is dependent on how extensively you use the Zone’s air filtration feature. If you won’t use the visor and just want to listen to music, its 2,600mAh battery can get up to 50 hours of listening time on a single charge. Use the visor in its slowest setting reduces battery life to four hours while using it in Mid and High further cuts that down to two-and-a-half and one-and-a-half hours, respectively. Charging time takes around three hours.

UPDATE: 2022/12/11, 11:48 A.M. GMT+8 BY NICOLE BATAC

Added availability in markets and additional info on specs

We missed a week of Cool Tech, so here get a second one for this week! We’d love to hear from you about other cool tech you’d want us to feature on the site. Say hi on social media!

Check out our other Cool Tech of the Week stories HERE.