Manufacturing the metal ear-cups on our BT One headphones

BT One Wireless Headphones

Great products often have just one or two design elements that distinguish them.

With our BT One headphones:

  • domed metal ear-cups
  • beveled edge around the circumference of the ear-cups

These are really the only recognizable design elements on an otherwise simple & discreet set of headphones. This was very intentional, and we believe it leads to a more satisfying user experience.

Let’s take a look at the manufacturing process.

We start with a long strip of aluminum. It’s fed into a hydraulic stamp press, which forms the initial shape of the ear-cups:

This press is no joke. With every punch of the aluminum sheet metal, the entire factory floor shakes. Despite the brute force of this machine, we end up with an ear-cup shape that’s quite close to the final product:

The shape looks good. The next step is getting that iconic JetBlack finish.

From here, the ear-cups take a bath – this process is called “anodizing”, and allows us to apply a color finish – while also protecting the metal against corrosion.

Our factory uses a customized jig to dry the ear-cups after anodizing:

The final dip allows us to apply the JetBlack color finish:

Pretty cool, right?

We aren’t done yet. Not even close! Next, we need to produce perhaps the most recognizable design element: The shiny beveled edge on the circumference of the ear-cups.

This is achieved via the use of a machine lathe. It spins the ear-cup extremely fast. A CNC (computer numerical control) cutting machine places a diamond-coated blade at the perfect spot on the spinning ear-cup.

The result is an almost instantaneous creation of a perfect beveled edge:

Here’s how far we’ve come – the initial ear-cup (immediately after the stamp-tooling), and then the ear-cup after anodization and CNC:

Now there’s one final step – laser-etching the “SAHD1-BT” inscription into the ear-cup. This is the only marking on an otherwise unbranded product.

We’ve heard from so many customers that the BT One is a very satisfying product to own. We attribute this to the simplicity of the design.

We really practiced restraint as we developed the product. The intention was to deliver a set of headphones that aged well and didn’t pander to any short-term design trends.

You can check them out here.