Apple, the brand which needs no introduction in the first place is a well established brand based out of Cupertino, California. They are one of the largest tech companies in the world and recently acquired the status of First 3 trillion dollar company in the world. Their Airpods are well known for their portability and their infamous design but before the dawn of wireless technology the wired were the only option and Apple released their Earpods at that time and it was included free along with the smartphone and later yeah they even removed the charger out of the box🥲. In this review let’s see about the free earphone that came alongside the iPhone.
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DESIGN AND FIT:
The design is the iconic apple earpods ofcourse! Lot of brands imitated this and this design is not something unusual to the consumers. The whole design is based on the Half in ear design and Apple didn’t make any in ear design for the Earpods which is pretty disappointing from my side.
The earpieces just sit in the conchae area and don’t create that perfect seal that the in-ears would provide hence the outer noises can be heard quite noticeably in the low volume at the same time the sound leakage is also quite noticeable.
The whole construction is made out of plastic but the quality is pretty sturdy and good. The cable given has some rubber outer coating and tangles quite often. The mic is placed at a comfortable position and for the convenience of changing the tracks and answer/end call the buttons were given alongside the mic.
The sound profile of the Ear pods is not as I expected as a whole. It’s more on a L shaped profile with excess mid bass presence and the treble feels lacklustre and lifeless. The technicalities are pretty disappointing but considering that it came as a free product alongside the iPhone its average.
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The low end in this Earpods is the dominating aspect but not in a good aspect. The mid bass just takes the center stage and you can literally feel the sub bass even in the sub bass focussed tracks. The mid bass is too thick and fuller hence the midrange gets completely affected and you feel the midrange to be hazier and cloudy.
The sub bass is too subtle where the reach and the rumble is quite not present in this. The ethereal environment is just lacking where this just sounds like a broken speaker. The bass lacks the punch and control instead this just focuses on the quantity which is completely out of control and impactless.
Overall the quantity is more whereas the quality is just disappointing to the core. No track separation, layering and no technicality aspects are appreciable.
- BigFoot – MALFNKTION
- Take It – Seige
- Mountains – Hans Zimmer
The mid range of the Earpods is kind of weird sounding. They appear very hazy and cloudy due to that excess mid bass bleed that it contains. The midrange presentation feels very much closed and the vocals and the instruments sounds hollow as that of sounding like in an empty room. The piano notes and the guitar strings in the background sometimes get lost.
The male vocals and the female vocals appear very much drowned and appear lifeless. The technicalities like the layering and the instrument separation appears very much disappointing thus making the whole listening experience lacklustre and lifeless.
Since the staging seems pretty closed out, the separation struggles. Everything appears coming out of a small closed room. The upper midrange emphasis is completely lacking hence they sound duller but the lower midrange feels uncontrollably fuller thus giving that hollow effect. The upper midrange lacklustre made the vocals suffocate without the air.
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- The Blowers Daughter – Damien Rice
- When You Say Nothing At All – Susan Wong
- Perfect – Ed Sheeran
- Sexual Healing – Marvin Gaye
The treble in the EarpPods is just like that of the Mid range. The treble extension is done poorly here where the cymbal crashes and the string plucks can be barely heard out. The shimmer and the sparkle in the top end can’t be seen here thus the brightness is completely off. The track separation is poor while the sibilance is kept under control and that’s the only positive that you can say of the sound.
Whenever the trumpets comes to the play they sound duller and lacks that sparkle due to that lack of air in the top end. The singer’s breath and the detail retrieval in the top end is just completely disappointing and I’m not sure this is due to that half in ear design.
- Something Happened On The Way To Heaven – Phill Collins
- Dire Straits – Sultans Of Swing
- Dreams – Fleetwood Mac
Tonality and Timbre: The tonality is very cold and warm. They appear to be on a neutral side but the cold hint in the tonality is pretty noticeable. Due to that excess mid bass presence the warmth exceeded out of control. The timbre of the instruments are dull and lifeless.
Staging: The staging is pretty closed out. The width, height and the depth everything appears shallow and feels like holographic staging and lacks the immersive factor.
Imaging: The imaging is fuzzy due to that excess bass. The instruments are difficult to find out and in the busy tracks this job even gets messier.
Layering: The layering is pretty mediocre here where the placement of the instruments are not done in a great way.
Detail Retrieval and Separation: They are mediocre as said in the above statements.
- Crossing – Yosi Horikawa
- Hideaway – Jacob Collier
- In The Heights – Lin – Manuel Miranda
PROS AND CONS:
- Compatibility with iPhone
- Design and Fit
- Mic Quality
- Sound Quality
- Not Value For Money
Apple EarPods, the earphones that come out of the box have many flaws when it comes to the pure sound quality but when it comes to convenience they are the one to get. The termination is ended with a lightning type hence no need of taking the dongles everywhere and the mic quality that you get out of the Earpods are one of the best in the market for sure.
But the convenience part just ends there where coming to the sound quality they are a mere disappointment. Of Course the mainstream consumers would love this signature but after trying out a lot of audiophile grade earphones this definitely seems off the grade. It just delivers the boom and the uncontrolled bass response along with that shallow, hazy midrange with that lacklustre treble.
Overall, you are getting this earphone out of the box for free and now even that’s removed hence would you buy this at extra cost? Definitely NO! There are a lot better options available in the market now and even for a cheaper price than the retail price of the Earpods. Many can vouch for the lightning convenience but I would spend extra and get a dongle and the quality earphones separately. Apple just packed it alongside the phone just to imply the statement that it’s BETTER THAN NONE….
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This Review is Written By KATHIRAVAN.C
I’m Kathiravan from Tamilnadu. A budding audiophile here with high love towards music and audio equipment. My first experience of enjoying the hifi audio came when I started to use budget chi-fi gears and now it came all along the way of reviewing the gears with high end stuffs. I love reviewing audio products.