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The only other thing you’ll find in the box is a strange headphone socket adapter – this converts a standard stereo mini-jack to two mono mini-jacks. The reason for this converter is that some older aeroplanes still have use twin mono mini-jacks for the in-flight entertainment, and Creative, correctly assumes that you would prefer to listen to a set of HN-700s than the awful excuse for headphones that the airlines hand out.
The cord plugs into a mini-jack port on the left hand can. This is also where you’ll find the on/off switch for the noise cancelling, as well as a volume wheel. The latter is pretty handy and saves you having to get your player out of your pocket if the next track happens to be exceptionally loud or soft. The left can is also where the two AAA batteries reside – a side panel slides down but thankfully stays attached to the headphones, so there’s no chance of losing it when you’re changing the batteries.
Obviously the big question is whether the noise cancelling works or not and I’m glad to say that it not only works, but works superbly. I did a little test in the office by standing underneath the air conditioning unit – this is a particularly noisy bit of kit that produces a similar kind of rumble to the engine noise in an aeroplane. Flicking the noise cancelling switch on the HN-700s completely eradicated the noise, cocooning you in an ambient noise free zone. I also tried them on a tube train and although the bangs and clacks still broke through, the ambient rumble was completely gone, allowing you to listen at a lower volume level.
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