Plenty of the biggest brands are getting on board with the new balanced armatures tech this year. Brands like Sony, who recently showed off their entire 2012 headphone range – including seven in-ears that tote balanced armatures.

The XBA 4iPs are the top of the range and are a pair of in-ears that squeeze four miniature drivers into each, admittedly chunky, enclosure.

These are some of the finest in-ears we've ever heard – a crisp, hugely punchy and thrilling listen. They'll pump detailed sound into each of your gloriously spoilt lugholes.

Yes, £400 is a lot, but you can get these for £275 these days which is a really great deal. The XBA range includes cheaper alternatives but if you take your music seriously, these Sony's are seriously worth it.

Stuff says... 

Sony XBA-4iP review

If you take your music seriously, these Sonys are seriously worth the price

Where to buy Sony XBA-4iP: