I've written about how Apple can't sell me on an iPhone without a headphone jack, but I didn't expect a headphone company to come along with Lightning-port headphones so cool that I'd consider living without the traditional 3.5mm plug. But one look at Libratone's lightning port-based Q Adapt in-ear headphones ($180, available for pre-order from the company’s website today) had me rethinking my arguments.
The Q Adapt headphones offer four different levels of cancellation, making it easy to block out as much noise as you want. This way, cyclists and pedestrians can hear just enough sound from the streets for their safety, and frequent fliers can elect to not hear those crying babies or annoying passengers getting into arguments.
Unlike other noise-cancelling headphones, the Q Adapt buds won't need to be charged or use batteries, since they connect with the Lightning port, which can send and draw power. Noise cancellation settings can be adjusted using a dedicated button on the in-line remote, which also features the same volume up, volume down and playback buttons you've seen on all headphone controllers.
While Q Adapt headphones look like a sleeker, more-futuristic version of Apple's current earbuds, their cord is fabric-wrapped, which should make it more resistant to snags and balling up.
Since the Q Adapt headphones will only be compatible with Apple devices, they've been designed to match the company's current phones. Libratone will make the headphones in Elegant Nude, Cloudy White, Stormy Black, and Rose Pink. Yes, you read that right, Elegant Nude is a color name now.
Looking at the press photos, Elegant Nude appears to be Libratone's name for Gold, though we in the Tom's Guide newsroom think it looks more like a skin-tone than a gold. Also, can the name Cloudy White never be used again? We can't think of a single real-world object we'd want to connect that phrase to.