On a quiet Monday morning like this, one of the first rules of thumb is to check out what’s new in the world of headphones – they’re rarely riveting, but are, at least, always essential.

First up, from Sony, we have the DR-BT140Q over-ear Bluetooth ‘phones, which go on sale in Japan next month for ¥10,000 (£47), offering a choice of colours and all the usual wireless goodness.

Hands-free too

Black, white, silver and pink all come with Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR, A2DP, AVRCP and the rest of the wireless necessities. They even pull double duty as a mobile phone hands-free, thanks to a mic jammed into each right earpiece.

At 53g and with 12 hours of uptime per charge, we’re looking at some serious value for money, so let’s hope for a release in the West sometime soon.

Stylish and small

Elsewhere, but still only in Japan for now, Marantz has a ¥8,800 (£42) set of aluminium goodies for our delectation. The 13g HP101 in-ear headphones are built from aluminium to reduce vibration from outside, making high tones sharper, we’re told.

As with all decent headphones, the 101s include a selection of silicone earplugs for a snugger fit and a handful of adapters for plugging into different jack socket sizes and airplane entertainment systems.