Though most see headphone stands as purely aesthetic, I’ve found them to provide very real benefits to usability; they’ve become a staple in my life, enabling easy access to my headphone collection while showcasing my favourite designs. It’s far more practical to have my headphones waiting on a stand than packed away in a box/case, and I’m granted some peace of mind that they won’t be disturbed when not in use. So whether your headphones are expensive, cheap, old or new, they can benefit from a stand. However, most stands are either price prohibitive or flawed in their design; with flat holders that indent the headband and no way to store the cable. The HS102 seeks to append this moreover at a modest $25 USD. You can read more about the stand here.
I would like to thank Avantree very much for providing me with the HS102 for the purpose of review. All words are my own and there is no monetary incentive for a positive review. Despite receiving the stand free of cost, I will attempt to be as objective as possible in my evaluation.
The stand comes within a nice box similar to Avantree’s other products. A well-presenting cover slides off to reveal a protective hard-box. Inside is the stand, disassembled into its 3 components; a metal frame in addition to a silicone base and headband holder.
The stand is very easy to assemble, the headband holder clips into the top of the metal frame while the base slides onto the bottom. The stand can be easily disassembled, unlike the Bluelounge Posto, however, it’s very sturdy with little risk of accidental detachment.
The HS102 is not as pleasing to the eye as the cleaner Luxa-2 that’s become very popular on the net. What it offers instead, is greater functionality alongside a pleasing if not quite striking design. The stand’s main structure is a tough metal that tapers outwards to provide a stable base. As it’s still on the narrower side, and as the flexible silicone cable holder provides limited support, the stand is prone to rocking from side to side though I didn’t experience any tips during my month of testing.
The stand is of similar dimensions to the Luxa-2. It lacks the Luxa’s stable weighted base but maintains convincing weight and rigidity. The metal frame is super sturdy, holding my heavier full-sized headphones with ease. The finish is aggressively textured and a little rough around the edges, but with no spurs or chips that may scuff any resting headphone. It’s 24cm tall, comfortably holding the vast majority of headphones, even those with long plugs at the bottom.
The flexible nature of the headband holder is a highlight, a small but appreciable inclusion. It’s curved similarly to the majority of headbands, spreading weight more evenly over a larger area. As such, the HS102 doesn’t indent the headband as most headphone holders do, while remaining easier to access than omega stands. The only potential issue is its limited width (4cm) as some headphones with suspension headbands don’t fit within the channel of the holder (as below).
The large base doubles as a cable holder, keeping things neat and organised. It’s large enough to store most cables but will struggle with thicker, longer cables on full-sized headphones. Combined with its thinner headband holder channel, the HS102 best suits portable headphones, though it works a treat for most mainstream models including the HD6/7XX series and over-ear models from Audio Technica, Soundmagic and AKG.
The $25 HS102 is one of the more affordable headstands on the net yet it is also one of the most practical. Its flexible headband holder is a blessing for heavier, more plushly padded headphones, and cable tray keeps things organised (satiating my borderline OCD). It doesn’t bring anything cutting edge to the table such as an integrated USB hub, nor does it present quite as well as the highly coveted Luxa-2. Rather, Avantree provide a realistic headphone storage/display solution with the HS102; a stand that manages a fine balance between visual appeal, functionality and practicality.