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Erato’s Muse 5 wireless in-ear headphones give AirPods a run for their money

Erato’s Muse 5 wireless in-ear headphones give AirPods a run for their money

TechCrunch - Darrell Etherington

The Muse 5’s least impressive feature might be their design – it’s a bit like you’re putting bulky buds you found at the local gas station in your ears, with the plastic construction and contrasting color plastic ring on each unit. But they are completely wireless, and effectively so, which is not something you’ll get at the gas station, obviously. Plus, their design is ergonomic – the two-part ear canal soft silicon tips ensure a snug fit, at least in my experience, without requiring tricks like memory foam to ensure a seal.

The overall look and feel of the Muse 5 contrasts considerably with Erato’s Apollo 7, the wireless buds it released last year. But the Muse 5 gets a bit more battery life than its predecessor, with four hours of music playback per full charge instead of just three, and the case packs enough backup charge to get you up to 12 hours of playback without having to connect to a plug-in power source.

Muse 5 is also more unobtrusive than the Apollo 7, which stick some distance out of your ears. They’re also more subtle than Apple’s own AirPods, provided you get the black version, and they’re more likely to sit comfortably and securely in your ears if you happen to have ear shapes that don’t work with Apple’s native wireless buds.

Sound quality is good on the Muse 5, better than you might expect given the build quality and materials used. They sound as good as wired earbuds in this price range, and have better sound isolation than Apple’s AirPods, and potentially better sound depending on how you like your tunes. The built-in microphone also works well, despite not having any special beam forming magic, although you wont’ want to use it for more than issuing Siri commands and making quick calls.

After trying a number of different sets of completely wireless buds, the Muse 5 strike a good balance in terms of price tag, features, sound quality and design (though they’re lacking the most in this last area). I did experience very occasional dropouts, but that’s par for the course with even teh best among these devices. For $180, the Muse 5 is a good alternative to the AirPods that stand a much better chance of working with your ears, and with sound that won’t leave you wishing you’d waited for something better.

Original Article: 

https://techcrunch.com/2017/03/24/eratos-muse-5-wireless-in-ear-headphones-give-airpods-a-run-for-their-money/

Why Wait For The AirPod? These Three Truly Wireless Earbuds Work Great And Are Available Now

Why Wait For The AirPod? These Three Truly Wireless Earbuds Work Great And Are Available Now

FORBES - Ben Sin

With Apple's AirPods delayed until who knows when, iPhone 7 owners looking for truly wireless earbuds have few options. The earliest releases (2015) from the likes of companies big (Samsung) and small (Earin) suffered from broken connections and inelegant designs. Bragi's Dash is probably the most famous one (I haven't tried those) but they're pricey due to its ambitiousness (it wants to be a fitness tracker too).

What if you want just clean looking wireless earbuds, and nothing more? Crazybaby's very cool looking Air isn't ready for release yet. But three start-ups from China and Taiwan have respectively released its own take. I got the chance to test all three recently, and they're all pretty good.

The Erato Apollo 7 (left); Jabees BTwins (middle); and Axgio Dash (right). Photo: Ben Sin

The Erato Apollo 7 (left); Jabees BTwins (middle); and Axgio Dash (right). Photo: Ben Sin

Let's start with the Erato Apollo 7, the best overall of the bunch and probably the best true wireless earbuds overall on the market right now. Several other reviews, including CNET and the Verge, have concluded that these earbuds have the strongest and most reliable connection in the industry, and my own testing came up with the same result. It took a few tries to connect both earbuds together (you start by turning on one to connect it to your phone/computer as the "master device," then you turn on the other to connect the two buds), but once it connected, I never came across problems again. The earbuds just worked every time: I take them out of its premium-feeling/looking metal charging case, turn on my phone's bluetooth and within a second the earbuds are paired.

Sound quality, obviously, falls short of any good set of wired headphones/earbuds, but it's great for wireless earbuds, and more than enough to probably 90% of the population. There's a lot of clarity during podcast sessions and the bass is strong -- very noticeable when listening to Nas' Illmatic -- on this, more so than on any other wireless earbuds I've tried. That's due to the Apollo 7's 5.8mm micro-sized dynamic driver, whereas most other wireless buds (including Bragi's and Earin's) use the weaker armature drivers. The mids are also very clear, but the highs come out quite muffled.

The included charging dock is made of metal and slides out (and clicks shut) in a satisfying way. Photo: Ben Sin

The included charging dock is made of metal and slides out (and clicks shut) in a satisfying way. Photo: Ben Sin

Speaking of muffled, though the Apollo 7 includes a mic for making phone calls, but unfortunately, the caller on the other end said she couldn't hear me clearly over several test calls using different smartphones. But I must conceded -- I have a deep and "mumbly" voice to begin with. Perhaps a better speaker wouldn't encounter these problems. I also did hear the caller clearly though.

Taking calls and pausing music are all done withe Apollo 7's multi-functional buttons. There's one on each bud, which seems overkill, but it's there because the Apollo 7 can work as just a single earbud if you so choose.

At 4 grams each, the Apollo 7 are considered light, but the bullet-shaped earpieces are quite big and the other end sticks out enough that I was worried about them falling out. The Taiwanese start-up does, however, offer additional earpieces, including one with a sport wing, that should hold them in place more securely.

Oh, and if they do fall out and, say, fall onto dirt. It's okay -- these earbuds are fully water resistant so you can rinse them off and it'll work fine. You can't wear them to swim -- but it's good to know sweat and rain and faucet water won't damage them.

The charging dock that comes with the earbuds, as mentioned earlier, is very well-built and feels very high-end, like something you store jewelry in. It offers two additional charges to the earbuds. The Apollo 7 lasted an average of three hours per charge, so you're looking at nine hours of use before you have to top up. The earbuds come in different colors (black, gold, pink, silver) and the charging dock matches the look. As always, I like black the best.

At $300 though, the Erato Apollo 7 is actually pricier than the AirPod, but these are truly wireless earbuds that offer arguably the best sound and connectivity on the market right now -- and it's not ugly like the AirPods.

 

To read more click the Original Article link below:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/bensin/2016/12/01/why-wait-for-the-airpod-these-three-truly-wireless-earbuds-work-great-and-are-available-now/#6e3b82576267

Travelocafe - Erato's Apollo 7- Best Looking, Truly Wireless Earbuds

Travelocafe -  Erato's Apollo 7- Best Looking, Truly Wireless Earbuds

Travelocafe - Laura Iancu

Long live the wireless earbud trend that is shaping up to be the next revolution in the audio wearable. I always hated cables, especially the cables of my headphones. Every time after taking my seat on an airplane or train, I used to spend the first moments fighting with my headphone cables. But no more.
Gone are the days when I tread along my morning jog with a cable dangling in front of me. Enter the new wireless buds that connect to the phone via Bluetooth, but also don't have any physical connection between them to worry about.
After so many years of waiting, it finally happened. Out of the many startups and big-name companies that are trying to make truly wireless earbuds, a small company called Erato made a pair where the Bluetooth connection doesn’t continuously drop out. This has been the most consistent problem with just about every other pair of wireless earbuds.

But with Erato’s earbuds, known by their catchy name, Apollo 7, I don’t have to pay attention where I place my phone when I use them. Handbag, backpack, front pocket, back pocket, it really doesn’t matter where my phone is. The Apollo 7 offers a truly wire-free earbud experience that actually works perfectly.
Battery life
Firstly, let's get out of the way the two questions that most people will ask:

Are the buds easy to loose?

And how good is the battery life?
I thought the new wireless buds would come with a different set of problems, that I will have to worry about  - losing one of them. But that was only until I got my hands on Erato's Apollo 7. The buds come with a dedicated carry case that also acts as a charging device. Once I finish using the buds, I just place them into the carry case and drop it into my handbag or pocket.

They have up to 4 hours of battery autonomy, but once in the case the buds will get recharged by the case, and they will be ready for me to use them again. Due to the compact charging case, I can go on using them all day long. The battery in the case can charge them two full times before I need to find an outlet or use my portable power bank.
Design and Features
I'm sure you'll all agree that Erato's Apollo 7 are the best looking wireless earbuds out there, right? I mean, look at this excellent design! It offers waterproof audio enjoyment for the active types without any cable hassle. Plus, the Apollo offers standalone touch controls for switching tracks or answering phone calls with the built-in omnidirectional microphone.
Weighing just 4 grams, these buds support the advanced AAC, SBC, and aptX audio standards, and lock into your auricle securely with an inventive horn system, while looking good on the outside. Each bud has a small button so you can control tracks, change volume and answer calls.

 

Those little buttons actually work surprisingly well, given the lack of available real estate. A long press will switch each bud on and off and activate Bluetooth pairing. A single press answers calls or pauses music. A double press, meanwhile, will increase or lower volume depending on the side. Just press the left ear for volume down, right for up, or activate Siri/Google Voice. They are amazingly easy to use!

 

 

While wearing the Apollo 7 you will notice that they stick out just a bit. They do not hang down from your ears like Apple's Airpods. They are comfortable to wear, and never feel like they are going to fall out, not even during jogging. 
Even so, for the tiny bit that people might notice in my ear, I wanted the right color for me. I am happy to say there are four colors to choose from, which happen to match the colorways of the iPhone - dark gray, light gray, metallic pink and gold. Coincidence? The buds are so small that there's not really a lot to judge them on, but if you are paying attention to every little detail, these buds will not disappoint. They look amazing in your ear.

 


Verdict

So is it time to join the truly wireless club? If Apple has its way, the 3.5mm jack will be a thing of the past, and you'll want to consider wireless headphones even if right now you're not interested. I am not usually an early adaptor, mostly due to the costs that come with this type of life choice, but I hate cables so much, I had to go wireless. And Erato's Apollo 7 gives the opportunity to go truly wireless!
Original Article: