Among the many complaints surrounding Apple's removal of the headphone jack from the iPhone 7, one of the loudest has been the problem of "how do I charge and listen to music at the same time if both cables go into the same port?" Apple's answer so far has been to point you in the direction of its wireless headphones, but Pioneer has designed its own: a Lightning port integrated into its Lightning headphones cable.
The $149.95 Pioneer Rayz Plus have a charging pass-through, which is essentially a built-in dongle. Only it's a teeny tiny one, about as elegant as such things can be.
Pioneer also throws in a couple of highly desired features: adaptive noise canceling and an auto-pause of your music when you take the earbuds out. The noise canceling is said to "adapt to your ear and the world around you," which is done via the use of no less than six microphones on each pair of headphones. The $99.95 Rayz have this feature too, and it basically does a scan of your ear for a personalized tuning of the noise removal. A HearThru mode, for when you want to be in touch with ambient sound without removing the earphones, is also on board.
Both of these new Pioneer models are feature-rich and make good use of the added capabilities of Lightning versus the traditional 3.5mm connector. An accompanying iOS app will let you fine-tune the EQ and program a so-called smart button on the in-line remote control as well. There's nothing about the technical specs of these Rayz headphones that suggests they'll sound terrific, but if their noise canceling and other convenience features work as well as advertised, they'll find a receptive audience among the tens of millions of iPhone 7 owners.