Another earful

Headphones are much like television presenters - in that there are far too many of them around, and only a select few are worth tuning in to - but these two new faces appeal rather than appall, thanks to some intelligent product design.

Sennheiser's HD 238 Precision headphones (£70) are engineered as a compact, lightweight means of enjoying vivid, Hi-Fi quality playback - preferably in quiet surroundings, as their 'open' design prevents any effective noise-cancelling properties.

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The Bose Mobile in-ear headset (£99), meanwhile, has been designed with the iPhone generation in mind. Besides the comfortable silicon ear caps, its other appealing properties are a button to pause your music while you take a phone call, and a discrete but effective microphone that negates the need to shout in public - something worth remembering the next time you're remonstrating with British Gas on your homeward commute.