Sunday, July 21, 2019

Beyerdynamic Xelento Wireless IEM Review


Beyerdyanmic has something special with their Tesla driver. They did a great job miniaturizing it for the Xelento in ear monitors. They sounded absolutely amazing, as you read in our headphone shootout last year. This year Beyerdynamic made them even better. They made them wireless! MSRP is $1199.




Features and specs:

Operating principle: Closed

Transmission Type: Wireless via Bluetooth®

Remote: Universal 3-button remote

Nominal impedance headphones: 16 ohms

Headphone frequency response: 8-48,000 Hz

Nominal sound pressure level: 110 dB (1 mW / 500 Hz)

Supported Bluetooth profiles: HSP, HFP, A2DP, AVRCP, GAVDP

Codecs: aptX™, aptX™ HD, AAC, SBC



The Xelento Wireless came in a great looking color printed box with photos and specs of the EIM. Opening the box revealed well protected IEM’s held in place by a foam sleeve. Underneath the foam sleeve were slots that held the semi hard case, wireless adapter, multiple sets of eartips, and clip. The ear tips came in multiple sizes both in comply and silicone. The hard carry case has a magnetic closure. Inside the case were held the charging cord, a set of filters, and standard cable with built in mic and controls. Materials used in the construction of the IEM’s was highly polished stainless steel. Quality of materials was excellent, as was the fit and finish. They could definitely pass as jewelry! The cables were also a high quality with a soft plastic covering. Every thing was of a high quality in materials and fit and finish. This is obviously Beyerdynamics at their finest, and it shows! Also included was the quick start guide.



I really like the entire design of the Beyerdynamics Xelento Wireless. The polished stainless steel looks amazing, more like chrome. You have both wired and wireless cables for any listening needs. The hard case even has an elastic band with a snap to hold your cable and charging cord securely in place, and custom plastic moldings to hold the IEM’s securely in place.




When it comes to delivering your music to your ears, The Beyerdynamics Xelento Wireless provides the best available. It all starts with the Tesla driver. They are designed for Hi-Res audio tracks, so you get the best sound. And thanks to the Xelento Wireless supporting Aptx HD, you can even enjoy your Hi-Res Audio Tracks wirelessly!




You know a manufacture is serious about providing you the best possible sound when they include Apt X HD, which is still hard to find support for in a product. But Beyerdynamic didn’t just stop there, they also included their Mosayc Sound Personalization, and M1Y App Control. Unfortunately as you get older, you will typically start to loose your hearing. Thanks to the included software app, you get your own hearing test. It tests your hearing with a set of test tones at different frequencies, to see which was you have a hard time hearing. It then boosts those frequencies so you can get a fuller sound. It’s a truly innovative product that no matter if you’re 22 or 82 is designed to help you get the most out of your music. The software was easy to set-up and use with the app that walks you thru the whole process.  The Bluetooth also works very well, giving you a range of 30-40 feet, depending on if there are walls between you and your phone. Now let’s hear how they sound!

Disturbed- Sound of Silence: Piano sounded extremely natural, vocals were very smooth with excellent texture and timbre, guitar was very crisp and clean with excellent resolution, violin was also silky smooth with nice harmonics. Tympani had great impact and dynamics as did the cymbals. Adele- Rolling In the Deep: Guitar was extremely crisp and clean with excellent resolution of the strings. Kick drum had excellent punch and depth and played with authority. Piano was very natural. Cymbals and high hat were also very crisp. Junior Wells- Why Are People Like That: Bass had excellent depth and played with authority. Drums and cymbals were very crisp, clean. Piano sounded very natural. Harmonica was silky smooth with excellent harmonics and dynamics. Vocals had tons of resolution of the texture ad timbre. Soundstage was big and imaging was spot on. Liquid Soul- Spam Sucker: Trumpets were extremely smooth and dynamic without being too brassy. Drums, cymbals and high hat were crisp and clean with excellent resolution. Kick drum had real punch and played with really good low end extension and great authority. Sax had excellent harmonics, texture and resolution for the woodiness of the reed.


The Beyerdynamic Xelento Wireless are not for everyone, as their price is pretty steep at $1,199.  But then again, not everyone can drive a Ferrari GT California like Ferris Buehler.  But if you have the means, it is highly recommended.  With 3.5mm, 2.5mm, and wireless cable, it’s the most versatile IEM I have seen in a long time.  And I love the included filters so you can custom tailor the sound without the use of DSP.  But they have that as well!  The sound is one that you have to hear to believe.  If I didn’t hear it, I would not have believed that sound this good is possible with a single dynamic driver.  But then again, their Tesla driver is a special driver.  Based on it’s design, features, quality, and performance, the Beyerdynamic Xelento Wireless has earned our Editor’s Choice Award. For more info and complete specs, check out their website at www.beyerdynamic.com.


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Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless IEM Review


True wireless IEM’s can be seen just about everywhere.  Another company with a true wireless model is Sennheiser, with their Momentum True Wireless. Sennheiser has a long history of making excellent products. And the styling often tends to be on the elegant side. That elegant styling continues with the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless IEM. With an MSRP of $299, they are also priced good as well.
 
Features and specs:
Dimensions: 78.6 x 45 x 35 mm (charging case)
Microphone: MEMS
Bluetooth Version: Bluetooth 5.0 compliant, class 1
Supported Profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HSP, HFP
THD, total harmonic distortion: <0 94db="" font="" khz="">
Ear coupling: Ear Canal
Weight: 69.8 g (earbuds and charging case), 13.2 g (both earbuds), 56.6 g (charging case)
Charging time: Approx. 1.5 hrs
Microphone sensitivity: 94 dB SPL at 1 kHz
Operating temperature: 0 to +40°C
Power supply: 5 V, 650 mA: USB charging via USB-C socket at charging case
Battery Specification Built-in Lithium rechargeable battery
Frequency range 5 Hz to 21 kHz (earbuds) 100 Hz to 10 kHz (microphone)
Sensitivity: 107 dB SPL (1 kHz / 1 mW)
Speaker type: Dynamic
Operating relative humidity: 10 to 80%, non condensing
Battery time: Up to 4 hrs (A2DP) with rechargeable batteries of the earbuds, Up to 12 hrs with rechargeable battery of the charging case
Water Protection Code: IPX4, splash resistant (earbuds)
Type of Codec: SBC, aptX™, aptX™ Low Latency, AAC


The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless came in a nice looking color printed box, with photos of the IEM along with their features and specs. Opening the box showed a well protected product held in place by custom molded foam. There were 3 custom cut outs in the foam. 1 for each IEM, and then one for the charging case. I loved the elegant look of the cloth wrapped case. Materials used in the construction was mostly metal, plastic and some cloth. Quality of materials used as is the fit and finish is excellent.


I really like the design of the Momentum True Wireless. They have built-in mics for the Voice Assistance, and for phone calls. The touch control makes them simple to use. And I love the carry case which doubles as a charger. So once it’s time for a recharge, the case will give you 2 full charges. They also give you active noise cancellation. There’s even an app that will let you control the features as well as the sound. The Bluetooth range is also great at 40-55 feet, depending on if there are several walls between you and your phone.  Lets see how they sound.
 
Disturbed- Sound of Silence: Piano sounded natural, vocals very smooth with very good texture and timbre, guitar was very crisp and clean. Violin was also very smooth with nice low level harmonics, tympani had good impact and dynamics, soundstage was also quite big. Adele- Rolling In the Deep: Guitar was very crisp with very good resolution of the strings. Drum had very good impact, low end extension, and played with good authority. Cymbals were very crisp with excellent resolution. Piano sounded very natural. Vocals were smooth as honey, with excellent texture and harmonics, imaging was spot on with a large soundstage. Junior Wells- Why Are People Like That: Brass had very good resolution and played very deep and with a ton of authority. Drums and cymbals were extremely crisp with excellent dynamics. Harmonica was silky smooth with very good harmonics and dynamics. Vocals were silky smooth with very good resolution of the texture. Piano very natural. Liquid Soul- Spam Sucker: Trumpets were very smooth and dynamic without being too brassy. Drums, cymbals and high hat were really crisp and clean with very good resolution. Kick drum had punch and played with good depth and authority. Sax had very good harmonics, texture and woodiness of the reed.
 
I loved the styling of the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless, especially with the cloth wrapped case.  It’s aural sound deliverance was also excellent as well, with plenty of resolution for your tunes. Based on it’s design, features, quality, and performance,the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless has earned our Highly Recommended Award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their websites at www.sennheiser.com.


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JBL Under Armour True Wireless Flash IEM Headphone Review


True Wireless Products are getting more and more popular. And they are becoming available for all different uses. These are designed for the active individual. Whether you are inside on your treadmill or jogging outside in the rain, JBL has you covered with their Under Armour True Wireless Flash. With an MSRP of only $169, they are also a great value!




Features and specs:



General Specifications :

Weight (g): 16

Weight (oz): 0.56

Ear tip material: Silicon

Bluetooth version: 4.2


Audio Specifications :


Driver size (mm): 5.8

Number of drivers per ear: 1.0

Driver sensitivity at 1kHz/1mW (dB): 95dB

Impedance (ohms): 14.0




Control and Connection Specifications:


Bluetooth profiles: A2DP V1.3, AVRCP V1.5, HFP V1.6

Bluetooth transmitter power: <9 .5="" dbm="" font="">

Bluetooth frequency: 2.402GHz - 2.48GHz

Bluetooth transmitted modulation: GFSK, π/4DQPSK, 8DPSK

Dynamic frequency response range (Hz): 20Hz-22kHz



Battery:




Battery Type: Lithium-ion polymer (3.7V,85*2mAh)

Charging time (hours from empty): 2.0

Speed Charging time (hours): 2.0

Talk time (hours): 5.0

Maximum music play time with ANC off (hours): 5+20

Play time (hours): 5.0



The box they came in was a premium color printed box with images and specs of the IEM. Opening the box revealed well protected IEM’s held in place by custom molded foam. Also secured in the foam was the charging case. Materials used in the construction of the IEM’s was mostly plastic with some metal and rubber tips that wrapped around the IEM. The charging case was mostly metal with a cloth wrist strap. Quality of materials used was very good, as was the fit and finish. Also included was the owner’s manual, charging cord and additional rubber tips.



I loved the design of the IEM’s. The rubber tip wrapped around the end of the IEM, and had a little rubber notch that stuck out, to help hold them in place in your ears. I also liked the design of the charging case. I love the way it does double duty. It holds the IEM’s but it also holds a built-in battery to charge them. The slots for the IEM’s are magnetic, so it also holds them in place while they are being charged. The LED is red while being charged, and turns off when fully charged. Turning them on and syncing to my LG V40 was very simple and fast. Bluetooth range was also very good at 30-40 feet, depending on if there are any walls between you and your smartphone. Now lets see how they sound!

 

Disturbed- Sound of Silence: Piano sounded very natural, vocals had good texture, guitar was crisp. Violin had good harmonics, cymbals had nice details and dynamics. Adele- Rolling In the Deep: Guitar was very crisp and clean with good resolution. Kick drum had good impact and depth with very good authority. Cymbals and high hat were very crisp with very good resolution. Piano sounded very natural. Vocals had very good resolution to the texture and timbre. Imaging was quite good and they threw a nice sized soundstage. Junior Wells- Why Are People Like That: Bass had nice low end extension and played with authority, drums and cymbals were crisp and dynamic with very good resolution. Harmonica was very dynamic with excellent harmonics. Piano sounded very natural. Vocals were silky smooth with very good texture. Soundstage was quite big. Liquid Soul- Spam Sucker: Trumpets were smooth and dynamic without being too brassy. Drums cymbals, and high hat were really crisp and clean with good resolution. Kick drum had really good impact, low end extension and played with authority. Sax had very good dynamics, texture and woodiness of the reed.

 

To some things up, these are all great products.  No matter your budget, these all provide great sound for their price.  The biggest surprise was the giving much better sound than expected for their price point. The JBL Under Armor True Wireless have earned our Highly Recommended Award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their websites at www.jbl.com.


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1More Quad Driver In Ear Headphone Review


I’m surprised at the amount of value that headphones are able to provide.  The 1More Quad Driver IEM is a great example of this. 1More is new to the scene, with the company only being in business for 5 years. Their business model is to provide quality sounding headphones with a huge bang for the buck. With an MSRP of only $169 for a hybrid quad driver IEM, I would say the business plan is working. The bang for the buck would be huge, as long as they sound good. 


Features and specs:

Weight: 18.5 g

Cable Length: 1.25 m

In-line Remote Control and Microphone

Oxygen-Free Copper Wire

Plug: 3.5 mm Gold Plated

Frequency Range: 20-40,000 Hz

Impedance: 32 Ω

Sensitivity: 99 dB

Rated Power: 5 mW





The 1More Quad Drive IEM came in a premium color printed box with photos and specs of the IEM. Taking off the sleeve, was the box. Opening the box revealed a well protected IEM held in place by custom plastic molding. I was extremely impressed with the packaging! I have seen headphones at 3 times the price not have as impressive packaging as this. There were also slots for the ¼” Adapter, airplane adapter, clip and holder for the 8 different ear tips that are provided under the ear tips is a spot for the manuals. There was also the faux leather semi-hard case with magnetic closure. Equally impressive was the build quality. Materials used in the construction were metal and plastic. Quality of materials used was very good, as was the fit and finish.



I can definitely see where 1More is being extremely aggressive at following their business plan. The packaging is worthy of 3 times the price. The materials used and quality of construction is also very good. And you get a lot of high quality accessories. The only downside I see so far is the lack of detachable cables. Otherwise I see these selling for 2 times the price or more.  Now lets hear how they sound!



Disturbed- Sound of Silence: Piano sounded very natural, vocals had very good texture and timbre. Guitar was very crisp and clean. Violin was very smooth with very good harmonics. Tympani had nice impact, cymbals had very good details and dynamics. Adele- Rolling In the Deep: Guitar was very crisp with very good resolution, bass drums had very good impact, depth and played with ok authority. Piano was very natural. Vocals were silky smooth with much better than expected texture and timbre. Cymbals and high hat were also crisp and clean. Junior Wells- Why Are People Like That: Bass had really nice depth and played with ok authority. Drums had good dynamics and cymbals were very crisp. Harmonica was very dynamic and silky smooth. Piano sounded very natural. Vocals were smooth like honey with very good texture and timbre. Liquid Soul- Spam Sucker:Trumpets were really smooth and dynamic without being too brassy. Drums, cymbals and high hat were really crisp and clean with lots of resolution. Kick drum had decent impact ant depth. Sax had really good harmonics, texture and woodiness of the reed.

 

The 1More Quad Driver IEM provided excellent sound for their price.  Using quad drivers at their price point is very aggressive, and gives a great sound! They just had bass output that was more reserved. Based on their design, features, quality, and performance they have earned our Recommended Award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their website at www.1more.com.


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Audio-Technica ATH-SPORT70BT Waterproof Wireless In Ear Headphones Review


The wireless headphone models are getting more and more popular. And they can be found reasonably cheap with good features. The Audio-Technica ATH-SPORT70BT is a wireless IEM designed for the active individual. Whether you are jogging, or playing basketball, they are designed for you. They wrap around your ears to securely hold them in place. They are also waterproof, so they are completely outdoor friendly! MSRP is a low $120.




Features and specs:


Type: Dynamic

Driver Diameter: 9 mm

Frequency Response: 20 – 20,000 Hz

Sensitivity: 93 dB/mW

Impedance: 16 ohms

Battery: DC 3.7 V lithium polymer rechargeable battery

Battery Life: Up to 6 hours

Charging Time: Approx. 3 hours (for 0-100% charge)

Weight: 28.5 g (1.0 oz) without eartips

Accessories Included: Eartips (XS, S, M, L), Comply™ foam eartips (M) with SweatGuard™ technology, 30 cm (1') USB charging cable, hard carrying case

Type (Microphone): Condenser

Sensitivity (Microphone): -42 dB (1V/Pa at 1 kHz)

Frequency Response (Microphone): 50 – 8,000 Hz

Polar Pattern (Microphone): Omnidirectional

Communication System: Bluetooth Version 4.1

Output: Bluetooth Specification Power Class 2

Maximum Communication Range: Line of sight - approx. 10 m (33')

Compatible Bluetooth Profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP

Support Codec: AAC, SBC






The Audio-Technica ATH-SPORT70BT came in a nice looking color printed box with photos and specs of the IEM. Opening the box revealed a well protected product held in place by custom molded plastic. Materials used in the construction was mostly plastic with some rubber and a little metal in the wrap around frame. Quality of materials used, as well as the fit and finish was very good. Audio-Technica is known for making a quality product, even in their more economical products like this one. Also included was additional ear tips so you can get a good fit, a charging cord, and a soft zipper case with an interior pocket to hold the accessories.



When it came to using the product, I was very satisfied. And the design worked very well. I was able to get a good fit with the included tips. The bendable frame made sure I had a snug fit to keep the IEM in place. Pairing with the LG V40 ThinQ was very simple and easy. They even had decent Bluetooth range at 30-40 feet, depending if there are walls between you and your phone.




Now it’s time for the listening. Disturbed- Sound of Silence: Piano sounded natural, vocals had good texture, guitar was very crisp, violin had nice harmonics. Adele- Rolling In The Deep: Guitar was very crisp and clean, vocals smooth with great texture. Drums had very good impact and deep low-end extension, piano sounded natural. High hat was crisp and dynamic, as were the percussion. Junior Wells- Why Are People Like That: Bass had very nice depth, drums were very dynamic, cymbals were very crisp and piano sounded natural, harmonic was smooth, clean and very dynamic. Vocals had nice timbre and harmonics, sound stage was surprisingly big, overall a bit bright. Liquid Soul- Spam Sucker: Trumpets were really smooth and dynamic, drums, as well as the cymbals and high hat were really crisp and clean, kick drum had good impact, sax had really good harmonics and woodiness.

 

As far as the overall sound, the Audio-Technica ATH-SPORT70BT had a slightly bright sound signature, with good resolution for the price. Being wireless and waterproof, they are a great value for the price. Based on their design, features, quality, and performance, the Audio-Technica ATH-SPORT70BT has earned our Value Award. For more info and complete specs, check out their website at www.audio-technica.com.  


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