If you’re looking for a pair of earbuds with great sound quality, the Cleer ARC Earbuds are definitely worth checking out. While they have a somewhat unconventional design, they’re a fairly well-rounded package that tick a few boxes.
The ARC Open-Ear True Wireless Earbuds are comprised of a flexible hinge and earhook and provide a sound that I find to be adjacent to bone-conduction. That is to say they don’t go in your ears and they project the audio a bit.
You’ll have no issues hearing what’s going on around you as there’s plenty of space between the earbud and your ear. If you’re wearing these on the morning commute, or on a jog, they’ll sound almost as if you had traditional earbuds in with the transparency mode activated. Spatial awareness is never an issue.
The earbuds come in a protective case which charges them up; however, the case only holds up to seven hours of battery life total. Whereas most earbuds might yield another couple of charges these do not. That’s about the only major gripe I had with these.
To charge the earbuds you’ll find a small ribbon USB cord inside of the protective case. Pull it out and plug into a laptop or charger and you’ll be good to go before you know it. Just ten minutes on the charger is enough to add an hour of playback.
Sound is crisp and clear but never overly loud. I found the ARC Open-Ear True Wireless Earbuds offered a well-spaced sound stage but it could use a bit more punch on the low end. Understanding the design doesn’t really allow for a thumping bass experience, it could do a tad better here.
I’ve worn these in a variety of environments and find them to do a great job of allowing ambient noise but never too much. The white noise of an ocean was about the toughest scenario I found myself in. This was when I found it most difficult to pick up audio from a podcast or book. I kept checking to see if I could turn the volume up.
I like the build quality of these earbuds; they feel like they’re constructed from solid materials. And even with the over-ear hook in place, I could still wear sunglasses without any real fatigue.
I might appreciate if the charging case had a removable cable or came with a short USB Type-C cord that could be swapped out. I don’t see any weakness in the ribbon cable, but I feel like people may be prone to accidentally zipping it a time or two and I don’t know how well it would handle over time.
We’re also at a price point where wireless charging is something that could or should be included. Given that the case has a solid bottom to it, I thought it was going to have wireless support, but it does not. I’d be willing to drop another $10-$20 for its inclusion.
All in all, I like these earbuds more than I initially thought I would. They’re lighter and more comfortable to wear than anticipated, and they have a good sound in most environments.
Knowing where these work well and where they don’t, I feel like these are a good solution for working out, running, and daily commutes. You’ll not want these for mowing, sitting near the ocean waves, or in a noisier space as they just can’t compete on volume.
Having seen two different products from Cleer come through our office now, I certainly think it’s a brand worth considering. You can learn more about the ARC Open-Ear True Wireless Earbuds at the Cleer website where you can purchase them in two color options.