The world of earbuds, and more specifically, Bluetooth earbuds, covers a spectrum of features that manufacturers try to focus in on. Fit, security, sound quality, and price are each highlighted, depending on the model in question. The big problem is normally only one of these features are or can be highlighted. Emphasizing or focusing on one feature usually forces the others to take a back seat in the real world (great sound quality buds tend to be bulky, cheap buds tend to lack great sound quality, etc).
One company currently on Kickstarter is going big in striving to excel in all these features at the same time. That company is Veosport, and their premier earbuds, the Veosport V1’s, are aiming for this very goal. Not only do the V1’s aim to be comfortable earbuds, but want to offer great (and customizable!) sound quality, and all at a very compelling price.
The overall packaging and unboxing is a very clean affair. The modern white square box opens to reveal a black circular bud case, surrounded by black foam. Below the foam is a short braided micro-USB charging cord (no wall charger is included) and user’s guide.
Opening the case reveals the pair of V1’s (white in my case, though black is also an option) and several packets of ear tips. The tips come in 3 styles and each style has 2-3 sizes, so finding the perfect fit becomes very easy. The case is a welcome bonus here, as a lot of buds come with pretty flimsy sack-like enclosures that offer little-to-no physical protection while in your gym bag, backpack, or elsewhere.
Build Quality & Comfort
The Veosport V1’s come in a very soft silicone-type of material, that appears both sturdy but still very pliable. The ear hooks continue this feeling, both being very flexible but pretty useful once looped around my ear. These buds also come with both a cord shortener (to clean up slack) and clothes clip (to keep the cord from flapping around).
The ear tips come in several styles- my favorite were the foam tips; these felt extremely secure in my ear, but also noticeably pumped up the bass levels during playback (more on this a little later).
Button Layout & Use
The V1’s come with only 3 buttons, the usual + and – buttons, and the commonly-found multi-function button. The + and – buttons are small but sufficiently raised to allow easy finding and control while active.
The multi-function button is probably my favorite feature of these earbuds. First off, it’s big; it’s a large black button molded into the side of one bud… Big style points here. But also, the satisfying way the button responds to your finger press was both noticeable and appreciated (I know I’m going gadget-geek on you here, but I think it’s a highlight when something as seemingly simple as a button click gets as much type-space as this, let alone any at all to begin with). This button is the on/off button, and also the play/pause. I’ll say it one more time, the combination of size and ‘clicky-ness’ of the V1 multi-function button makes these buds immediately climb to the top of the list in terms of ease of use.
In terms of battery life, Veosport claims up to 8 hours of use per charge. In my own unscientific testing (40 minute workouts, 2-3 times per week) I am still on my initial charge 2 weeks in. This is a whole lot better than either of my last two pairs of value-price earbuds!
Sound Quality & Price
Here’s where the Veosport V1 earbuds really want to separate themselves from the pack. But, it’s not in their sound quality out of the gate….
Let me explain- out of the box, the V1’s do seem to experience a similar fate as most other earbuds (particularly Bluetooth models): sound quality that skews either to the high tones or the bass side of the spectrum. Again, the V1’s are no different: in my opinion, while the mids and lows are really very good, the overall sound has a “closed box” effect, where the highs seem to be almost filtered out, leaving a wet-paper quality to the overall tone range. Just not bright and airy enough.
The V1’s don’t skimp on the low-frequency range, though. Particularly when I put on the foam-style ear tips, the amount of bass was very, very good. Not just loud and muddy, mind you, but good punch with very good separation at the low notes. But still, without the airy highs you need from the vocals and the instruments, it can be underwhelming at times.
Veosport aims to rectify this issue with a pairing app (unavailable at the time of writing; the iOS version is due out soon and the Android one about a month later) that allows you to change the EQ settings of the earbuds themselves, so you can tune your tunes until you acquire the sound profile you like! This is simply a fantastic idea, and Veosport should be lauded for bringing it into the market. At least trying to; they just launched their Kickstarter campaign. I really can’t wait for the app to launch to be able to mess around with my physical earbuds’ EQ.
The V1’s also have built-in noise-canceling technology, that seems to work very well. In my personal test cases, they block out ambient noise much better than my current pair of Bluetooth earbuds (that don’t have any active noise-canceling features).
Which brings us to pricing. While most higher-end Bluetooth earbuds are priced north of $100, the Veosport earbuds come in at $79. As a bonus, if you commit early via their Kickstarter, you can reserve a pair of these earbuds for as low as $49. Whether retail or via Kickstarter, I can tell you these should be a very good value in the active Bluetooth earbud market.
I’m really enjoying the Veosport V1 earbuds. First off, even without the pending EQ app, they are by far the most comfortable ‘active’ earbuds I’ve worn. Also given the amount of bass they naturally produce, I’m very much looking forward to tweaking the sound profile to get a more balanced output; with that I’m more than confident the sound quality will literally sing from these.