Many disagree whether Apple’s new premium AirPods Max are worth the hefty $549 asking price; there’s no doubt they’re in the premium price range, but more than a few reviewers have been sufficiently impressed by the sound quality and design to declare them as being worth the investment for anybody who is looking for a quality headphone experience.
Of course, for those who still think $549 is a bargain, Russian luxury brand Caviar has taken its usual approach to blinging up the AirPods Max with a design the puts the price tag well up into the stratosphere, creating a product that only the richest of the rich would ever consider buying.
Still, it’s fun to see what spending an extra $107,451 will buy you. In the case of Caviar’s custom AirPods Max, that’s pure gold plating over the aluminum ear cups, and in other key places throughout.
Caviar will be offering them in both black and white versions, and there’s a bit more to them than merely the pure 18-karat 750 gold casing and trim; the headband is covered with rare crocodile leather in either black or white, as appropriate, and Caviar notes that each colour will only be “released in a single piece worldwide,” suggesting that they’re going to be extremely exclusive.
Naturally, both versions include free delivery to any city in the world, and they’re even “accompanied by a personal consultant,” although they still only carry a one-year warranty, and we’re not exactly sure how AppleCare+ would apply here, although we’d certainly be amused to see how an Apple Genius might respond upon encountering a pair of these.
Caviar has a long history of creating extreme versions of Apple products, and to be fair the AirPods Max Golden Black/White editions are far from the most interesting or whimsical that they’ve come up with — in fact they’re somewhat boring by comparison to Caviar’s $6,720 Custom “Jobs” iPhone 12 Pro, which allegedly contains a fragment of Steve Jobs’ original iconic turtleneck sweater, or the limited-edition $10,220 Apple 1 iPhone 12 Pro that supposedly includes a small piece of the original Apple 1 computer.
That said, there are some serious questions about whether Caviar’s claims regarding the included memorabilia are accurate — for example, with original Apple 1 computers fetching millions at auction, it’s hard to believe that Caviar could sell nine special-edition phones containing pieces of its motherboard for only $10,000 each, and the less said about how the Russian company got its hands on one of Steve Jobs’ shirts the better.
If memorabilia of questionable authenticity isn’t your thing, however, Caviar still has lots of other expensive iPhone 12 Pro designs to choose from, including the $122,230 ‘Victory’ Solid Gold Unique, which is not only made entirely of solid 18-karat gold, but also features “a scattering of diamonds” — a clear winner for the most garish and ostentatious iPhone design ever conceived.
Other insanely luxurious products that Caviar has come up with include a $15,000 gold-covered iPhone XS Max, a $4,000 ‘Tesla’ Limited Edition iPhone X with a sola charging panel, and an extremely bizarre ‘Supremo Putin’ Nokia 3310, inspired by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The company also recently announced the PlayStation 5 ‘Golden Rock’ edition, and while the price hasn’t yet been specified, considering it’s going to be cast in 20kg of solid gold, it’s safe to say this one could likely hit the seven-figure mark.
However, there’s no doubt that these custom gold AirPods Max look gorgeous, and in this case gold is gold, so there’s definitely some legitimate intrinsic value here, although we still have to wonder who would actually want to walk around with something wrapped around their head that’s the price of a luxury car.