Just noticed under the 'Coming soon' section on the Klipsch website the new, redesigned version of the Image One. Or is this a completely different and new headphone? Can't really see the difference. (I own the Image One and happy with it)
I'm going to say they are using the same drivers, or at least it seems that way. Maybe they've been retuned? Can't be so sure though.
Here are specs of the Reference ONE:
Here are the specs of the Image ONE:
Same specs = same driver I would assume.
In a sense, it is useless. In another sense, they might have improved fit (new cushions), better cables, etc. The only way to know is to actually use them. Both fit and cable will change sound. They could have also improved the mic and build quality. There are a lot of under-the-floor changes that could tweak the sound a little bit.
Edit: I think we need a new thread to discuss Klipsch's new fall line-up
Here's a press release
Oh? and now there's a $119 copper colored "reference" S4i.
Looks they they might have improved the cable's pathetic thickness (looks like a rubbery Meelec cable), but the rip-prone strain reliefs on the driver housing look like they haven't changed at all (fail). And the L-jack is now straight (why?).
Oh boy, black tips and a black Altoids tin as well.
Well, considering I like the ergonomics of the s4 but dislike it's weak build and weak mids, this could actually be a step in the right direction for Klipsch. However, charging $20 more than the original seems a bit much for a different tuning and different color plastics.
I also just noticed a $99 Image S4A (A for ANDROID) being advertised on their homepage. It's an S4 with a single button mic and comes with a nicer case than the POS Altoids tin. Apparently, with the use of aN included Klipsch app, you can do a bunch of functions in Android beyond the usual 1 click, 2 click, 3 click.
If the overall fit, build, and sound has been improved enough, I would say that it might be worth the 20 bucks. However, I'm willing to bet the drivers haven't been retuned and the only change is in fact the flashy new colors (that I am fond of) and the build (even more fond of this). Straight jack is bad though for build. Then in that case, it definitely wouldn't be worth the 20 extra bucks being charged. We'll have to wait and see.
I know someone who used to work for Klipsch. We have chatted a few times and from what I know, even a "simple" cable change would require some sort of re-certification. Apple charges anyone who puts "compatible with iPod, iPhone, iPad"...etc on their products, and it's not a one-fee-covers-all type of deal. A small change in tooling means extra costs. I don't know if all that would justify the price increase from Image One to Reference One, given all acoustical specs are identical.
Anyway, I wouldn't mind getting a pair of the Reference One myself.