Bluetooth headphones Reviews Tech

Audeara A-01 Wireless Headphones review – The Gadgeteer

Audeara A-01 Wireless Headphones review – The Gadgeteer

REVIEW – Over-ear headphones have all the time been my favourite go to for immersive listening. Audeara reached out about reviewing their A-01 headphones and since I’ve been touring fairly a bit for my day job, the timing turned out good. A very good set of noise-cancelling headphones are vital for lengthy flights to assist scale back fatigue and even simply to have the ability to take pleasure in media in-between fitful bouts of sleep. The A-01s have a key function for customizing the sound profile distinctive to your personal listening to. Seeing as I turned half-ninety a few years in the past and have been more and more involved that my listening to is just not what it was, that was a function I used to be most excited to take a look at.

What’s it?

The A-01s are over-ear headphones that help each Bluetooth, three.5 cable connections, lively noise cancellation, and sound profile customization.

Hardware specs

• Connectivity: Bluetooth and three.5mm wired
• Vary: ≤10m (BT)
• ANC: Lively Noise Cancellation
• Listening Time: ≤65 hours
• Drivers: 40mm Mylar
• Freq. Response: 20Hz-22kHz
• Impedance: 32 Ohm
• Charging: MicroUSB

What’s within the field?

• A-01 Headphones
• Charging cable – Micro USB to USB-A
• three.5mm audio cable with microphone and single multi-function button
• Airline audio adapter
• 1/four Phono plug adapter
• Microfiber pouch for cables and equipment
• Molded journey case
• Quickstart information

Design and options

The general design of the A-01s is a clear, conventional tackle over-ear headphones. They’re an excellent matte black with understated graphics which might be exhausting to object to. They’re barely heavier than I used to be anticipating, however very a lot a constructive as the development is essentially aluminum and feels very strong. Nothing about them feels low cost.

All of the equipment are a notch up from what’s sometimes included with metallic housings on the cables and tasteful Audeara branding throughout most of them. The molded EVA case holds all of it in a compact, fit-in-your-pack type.

From a match perspective, the ear cups pivot 90º inward simply above the yokes which give about 30º of vertical rotation to seal towards your head very nicely. The clamping drive of headphones are instantly associated to their weight and nailing that stability could be fairly tough. Audeara opted to have the scarf prolong additional out from the top to assist strike that ratio. I feel they received it proper, however it does stick out a bit as you’ll be able to see on this photograph.

The headband is a really gentle artificial leather-based (guessing) with a subtly debossed Audeara emblem and a padded air mesh that rests towards your head.

The sizing adjustment makes use of a friction slide with detents for positioning. The detents will not be tremendous constructive, however additionally they don’t slip as soon as set.

The ear cups are snug foam wrapped with a tender artificial leather-based materials and sport very giant R and L indicators on the within speaker covers that you simply can’t miss.

The majority of all of the controls are on the left ear cup, the place you’ll discover…
• Quantity Up, Multi-function (play/pause/skip), Quantity Down
• Energy on (bluetooth) and corresponding LED
• three.5mm audio jack
• A small gap which I’m assuming is the microphone for ANC

Over on the appropriate ear cup are the next…
• ANC change and corresponding LED
• Micro-USB charging port

Setup

1. Insert the micro-USB charging cable and absolutely cost the headset. Permit as much as 6 hours for a full cost. The LED shall be purple whereas charging and can flip blue when charging is full.
2. Obtain the Audeara app from the Play retailer for Android units or from the App Retailer for Apple units.
three. Flip in your headphones with the change on the left ear cup. It might assist to place them in your head earlier than you flip the change as there are voice prompts. Press and maintain the multifunction button (middle of the three) for 3 seconds to place your headphones in pairing mode. You’ll hear “pairing” and/or see the LED flash blue/purple. Go into Bluetooth settings in your gadget and choose Audeara A-01 from the brand new system record. You’ll be able to arrange a second gadget repeating the identical step with a restrict of two related units.
four. Now you get to personalize your headphones. That is technically a setup step, however I’m going to maneuver into efficiency as a result of it’s so intricately linked.

Efficiency

As I discussed earlier, I used to be excited to leap into the listening to profile check. Their App provides three ranges of customization; eight, 16, or 32 bands which translate to a check that’s both three, 5 or 10 minutes of listening to beeps and adjusting sliders to point out what you possibly can and can’t hear. You possibly can run the check for your self or for others. It’s a cool course of the place you’ll be able to improve the quantity of every tone till you hear it (know what you’re listening for) after which again it down till you choose ‘barely audible’ and transfer on to the subsequent tone. You’ll want a quiet place to do that because the tones get actually faint on the backside of every adjustment. I left noise cancellation off for this step as I did discover some suppression.

Right here’s what my 32 level graph appear to be after going by way of the steps and directions on easy methods to learn them.

I’ve an inventory of songs that I like to make use of for testing new headphones, however on this case I additionally needed to have some visible cues for ought to I be listening to one thing. For this I used two totally different movies. One among them is one in every of my go-to songs Snarky Pet – Lingus (We Like It Right here) which has an ideal video. I additionally watched/listened to Dave Grohl’s Play. The monitor itself begins across the eight:15 mark. It’s a trippy video the place Dave is enjoying all of the totally different devices for this epically lengthy instrumental, nevertheless it’s minimize in a method the place you’ll be able to see lots of what you need to hear. It ended up being an awesome piece to check the A-01s as there are some sparse moments with clear notes, nice percussion after which some heavy sections as properly.

On a pure listening aspect, I ran via a ton of Tom Misch (thanks for the advice Satch!), Mike Shinoda’s new album (“Crossing a Line” is a superb monitor) together with a bunch of my different favorites.

The App has personalization settings that allow you to set Zero-100% personalization based mostly in your listening to check which you’ll be able to entry by means of the saved consumer profiles. They recommend that you simply begin your expertise at 50% and work your method as much as 100%. Every time you choose a brand new proportion, you’ll have to hit the “Apply” button to have them take impact.

With a number of totally different tracks, I began at Zero% after which adjusted up. The distinction was noticeable in a method I can’t fairly describe. At 25% – 75% it stored sounding higher in a approach that was totally different than simply messing with the standard EQ. Bouncing again right down to Zero% all of a sudden began sounding skinny, virtually like I used to be lacking one thing. 100% sounded too polished? I don’t have the fitting phrase for it however would equate it to that ‘motion smoothing’ or ‘judder’ setting in your TV that makes issues look too clean.

I settled at 75% for my listening. My media all sounded nice. Songs sounded clear and balanced. In television exhibits, the quiet dialogue sections have been a lot simpler to listen to with out cranking up the quantity solely to have my ears blown out on the sudden explosion or no matter motion occurred subsequent.

Right here are some things you’ll need to concentrate on…

  • I used to be capable of put on the headphones for good lengthy stretches of four hours and past with out problem. The headband didn’t ever really feel heavy on the highest of my head and my ears didn’t overheat the best way they do with some rather more widespread ANC headphones you is perhaps accustomed to.
  • The headphones have to be powered on to make use of the personalization settings
  • The app requires mobile or wifi connectivity to perform. (You must solely want the app when you’re establishing or altering personalization)The audio check requires Bluetooth. It truly will hook up with your telephone with two separate BT connections. One for the check and one for common listening. It was a bit complicated to see within the settings panel of my telephone, and extra so, once I was clearly related to audio, however the Audeara app was telling me I wasn’t. It wasn’t talked about within the literature, or on the location, however their customer support staff helped me perceive what was happening. 
  • The listening to check could be a bit glitchy. I had no points with the eight tone check, however the 16 and 32 tone check acquired progressively more durable to make use of. The tones began delaying and getting behind what I used to be doing. I had the most effective luck manually scrolling to the bottom tone to start out the exams after which timing my responses after every beep. Took a bit extra time, however finally you’re more likely to solely undergo this course of as soon as or occasionally. It was fairly irritating, however the finish outcome personalization was well worth the hassle. (I used to be capable of affirm that my review set had an as of but unreleased FW model, so hoping they proceed to work out the bugs.)
  • On the pivot places and edges of the sliders, the corners are a bit on the sharp aspect. It’s not main, however you may really feel one in every of them if hanging round your neck for any size of time.

The A-01s are tremendous versatile. You’ll be able to plug within the three.5mm headphone twine and simply begin listening immediately (and it seems just like the audio twine takes precedence over the Bluetooth connection). To get any of the customized profiles, you’ll want them powered on.  Whenever you flip on the ANC, there’s a quick audio drop whereas the processing kicks in. No massive deal, as you’re possible not toggling it on and off steadily. ANC can also be optionally available which is nice should you have been to succeed in the top of your battery, at which level you’ll be able to pay attention with the audio cable once more (unpersonalized).

Talking of the battery. I made positive I had a full cost earlier than leaving on my journey. I hit about 40+ hours of aircraft, practice, and lengthy taxis earlier than preparing for my flight house the place I charged them simply to ensure I didn’t run out mid-flight. Audeara’s estimate of ≤65 hours seems to be fairly correct.

The multifunction and quantity buttons are tremendous small. I used to be in a position to make use of my thumb as an alternative of a thumbnail, however in the long run, it was truly simpler for me utilizing my telephone to make these changes because it was often proper in entrance of me.

[Sidebar/open question here, and aimed more at Bluetooth headphones as a category – Why are power and Bluetooth LEDs on the outside of headphones? One generally flips the on button and looks at the LED before putting them on their head, and you’re definitely not going to see that LED once you’re wearing them. Couldn’t all that flashing be inside the ear cup and not annoy your seatmate on the flight? Just a thought.]

What I like

• Construct and aesthetic high quality – strong, sturdy, clear
• Sound high quality – clear and clear (w/ & w/o ANC)
• Customized sound profile based mostly by yourself listening to
• Rechargeable battery and its operating time

What must be improved

• Listening to check app is glitchy
• Quantity and multi-function buttons are actually small
• Edges on both sides of the sizing adjustment are somewhat sharp

Remaining ideas

I’m actually proud of these headphones. They’re not low cost, however they’re sitting in the identical worth zone as all the most important gamers with some killer options that make them stand out. I’ve had a number of generations of Bose QCs through the years. I can confidently say that Audeara has nailed it with the A-01s. The headphones are constructed solidly, look nice after which paired with sound profile customization that’s incredible. I’m wanting ahead to an official FW replace that hopefully resolves a few of  the check points. General… very properly completed.

Worth: $249.99
The place to purchase: Audeara and Amazon
Supply: The pattern of this product was offered by Audeara.

Help The Gadgeteer:
The Gadgeteer’s primary sources of income are promoting and affiliate hyperlinks in articles like this one. Meaning we might obtain a small fee on purchases for free of charge to you.