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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:

9to5 Mac - Review: Can the Erato Apollo 7 fill the wireless earbud void before Apple’s AirPods?

9to5 Mac - Review: Can the Erato Apollo 7 fill the wireless earbud void before Apple’s AirPods?
9to5mac - Greg Barbosa
I discovered the Erato Apollo 7 a few months ago during its Kickstarter campaign and nearly immediately knew it would be a pair of earbuds that could fit into my life nicely. It really looked like the first pair of true wireless earbuds that included all the functionality I wanted, without sacrificing any distinct feature. With the AirPods being delayed potentially as far out as January, is there a possibility that the Erato Apollo 7 ($299) is ready to fill the void that Apple left with the iPhone 7?

Design | Charging Case

When I first picked up the Apollo 7s charging case, I felt as though I was holding a futuristic version of a contact lens case, or a compact eye-glasses case. It’s a small, smooth, and tough package that feels solid in the hand all the way around. It’s got a firm weight to it that includes a slide out tray where the earbuds sit in to charge.

Placing the earbuds into the charging tray feels much simpler and more secure than Earin’s own as each piece lodges into place when charging. The individual earbuds have a charging LED to help indicate when each earbud is charging and an external LED on the case itself to show the same.

The charging LEDs on the Erato case are an unobtrusive soft white that simply turn off when the case and buds are fully charged. I’m not a fan of large colorful LEDs on tech products and Erato hit the nail on the head in terms of balance here.

Design | Earbuds

The Apollo 7 earbuds have a dichromatic design, one color for the main body of the earbud, and another one that surrounds the charging contact point and control. Looking at them today I still can’t quite tell how I feel about the design choice. It could be choice of using two colors, or just the paint on the earbuds themselves, but sometimes they just appear…cheap. I think I may have preferred a pair of earbuds that had an all around consistent color.

I do like the torpedo style design, akin to what Earin did with their earbuds. The blinking LED on the earbud is very welcome too as it becomes obvious when the earbud is running out of battery, and whether or not it’s charging once placed in the case.

The button control on the Erato is my favorite part of the earpieces. When not in the ear, the control is an obvious, click-centric button. It presses nicely and sounds great in the ear without producing an annoyingly loud pop every time it’s pressed. Having the ability to control my audio and have feedback that I actually pressed the button is very welcoming.

The earbuds come with a pack of different ear tips and this time around I decided to stick with the smallest Comply foam earbud tips. I found myself liking them substantially more than I thought I would have. Although the Earin included Comply ear tips, I couldn’t quite ever get them to sit in my ear properly. I have to think the difference here is because the Erato Apollo 7’s ear tips design juts straight out versus resting at an angle away from the earbud.

I did notice that after about a week of using these every single day my left ear started to experience some pain along the ear canal and some overall sensitive hearing to sounds. I still haven’t quite settled on whether this is my fault by not allowing my ears to relax after having music blasted into them near millimeters away all day, or that the Apollo 7 earbuds go pretty far into the canal to get a secure hold.

Audio

As soon as I hit play on the Apollo 7 earbuds I knew these would be new everyday wireless buds. All the audio quality issues I had with my Earin and Syllable true wireless earbuds didn’t remotely exist here. The sound was loud, clear, and balanced. While I wanted a bit more kick out of the bass, I was more than happy with the overall audio.

On the Earin earbuds I got accustomed to only listening to podcasts as my ears seemed to favor that during the testing. With the Erato Apollo 7 I was ready and able to enjoy all audio content formats and still have a good auditory experience. Podcast voices came in nicely balanced without any pains of high treble, and bass heavy music never muddled the experience.

 

All in all, I found the Erato’s audio quality easily surpassing my expectations and other true wireless earbuds I’ve been testing. Though the sound can’t compete with headphones that have larger audio drivers, for the size they were they held their own.

Where it did suffer was in phone calls. I found that more than 90% of the time others couldn’t hear me at all, causing me to switch to the iPhone’s microphone during the call. While not too inconvenient, it was definitely a bit annoying to be able to answer from the earbuds but not have anyone hear me. Strangely enough the microphone on the earbuds was just good enough that Siri could understand my requests.

Connectivity

The most impressive part of Erato’s Apollo 7, has to have been the fact that it so rarely disconnected. Across all the true wireless earbuds I had tested, every single one faced a variation on disconnection issues. The Erato Apollo 7 earbuds stayed connected to one another and to my devices without failing me whenever I needed it.

In the moments it did disconnect from my iPhone I would have to reconnect them through Settings, but the earbuds themselves never disconnected from one another. Gone were the issues I had where music in one earbud would get out of sync from the other, or then eventually play at slight delays.

Battery Life

Erato’s specs list the Apollo 7 as having three hours of continuous play time, and four hours of talk time. Based on the play time estimates alone I would say it was accurate. I found myself streaming music and playing for a little over three hours and whenever it died I would just drop them into the charging case that came with them. I used the charging case multiple times over the day and it was more than adequate in getting what I needed done.

Although the Erato Apollo 7 doesn’t have a quick charge functionality in the way the Apple AirPods have stated (15 minutes equaling three hours of battery life), it was never a terrible experience having to slide them into the charging tray.

Misc.

The Erato Apollo 7 includes audible voice prompts while powering on the device, when it pairs to the opposite earbud, and when it pairs with the phone. Not loud or annoying at all, the voice prompts are a welcome addition in letting me know that everything is about to work as well as it should.

The Apollo 7 is also waterproof, something I didn’t even realize could be important until on my second day of owning the pair they fell into my dog’s water bowl. Following the instructions in the guide, I left the earbuds out for 24 hours without touching them. After the 24 hours were up, I picked them up and went right back to playing them as good as day one.

Conclusion

It’s impossible to review true wireless earbuds nowadays without thinking of what Apple’s AirPods could even be like. The Apollo 7 and AirPods share a lot of similarities with the ability to control audio from the earbuds themselves to the charging case. Based on what we’ve seen with the AirPods though, I truly believe the Erato Apollo 7 holds a candle to Apple’s (yet to be released) AirPods.

In features and usage alone I rank it high, but it will definitely have to find a way to compete or turn over Apple customers because the $299 price point for the Apollo 7 is hard to swallow.

Original Article: 

https://9to5mac.com/2016/11/01/review-erato-apollo-7-true-wireless-earbuds/

Ideaing - Gain Freedom With Erato’s Apollo 7 Wireless Earphones

Ideaing - Gain Freedom With Erato’s Apollo 7 Wireless Earphones

Ideaing - Stuart Campbell

For those that love high quality music, or just like to be lost in a podcast, it’s nice to be able to tune out the outside world without sacrificing mobility. I travel a lot and have gone through a lot of various headsets.

At one point, I even carried around a set of full-size headphones because I loved the sounds they gave, but the bulk eventually gave way to various wired earbuds of varying quality. The issue with these though is that wires just get in the way too often.

Living with the Erato Apollo 7 wireless earbuds for the last week, I can honestly say that these are the best sounding and most convenient headsets I’ve used so far.

Disclosure: Erato wanted us to evaluate their headphones so bad that they sent me a pair of Apollo 7 wireless earphones and let me test them in various conditions. 

Convenience

So why are having wireless headsets so great? In a word; mobility. I like my music all the time, at home, at work, and on the go. When you’re wired in, moving around things at work can get you tangled. I often just got frustrated with the dangling cord as I switched notepads, went for my coffee, or rummaged through my bag for a pen.

There are a lot of situations that I found freedom to listen to music in my day to day life with the Erato wireless headphones. For example, cleaning or doing projects around the house were impossible with a wired headsets. I found that my workout was way less distracting as well as I didn’t have my wire flapping around while jogging or while reaching for free weights.

The best part about them is, compared to the Apple AirPods, you don’t have to wait for these at some unspecified date and don’t have to put up with the dorky hanging bits.

 

 Sound Quality

For those have had the pleasure of experiencing a high end set of full-sized Bose or Sennheiser headphones, I would say that these are on par with those high-end brands. For their size and convenience, I haven’t heard any better in a similar price range. I listened to a lot of different types of music to get a feel of the quality in different ranges, and I was impressed.

What impressed me the most was the fullness of the sound at all level. The higher end was clean and the bass was full. I didn’t hear any degradation even at high volume.

Comfort

Included with the Apollo 7’s are two types of earphone tips: standard round tips, and high quality foam tips. I found that the standard round tips worked well to block out outside noise which was nice in a cafe, and could be used as earplugs on a flight. The foam tips however provided superior sound quality and comfort. I left these in my ears for house and had no pain or irritation that I normally experience with earbuds.

One thing that I couldn’t figure out is that that there are a set of stabilizers in the box that I could not figure out how to use. I worked out with these and did a few vigorous head-shakes just for fun, and I couldn’t get them to come out.

 

erato-apollo-7-case-500

 

Features

The Apollo 7’s have little buttons on each earbud, and pushing them in different combinations offers some simple control of things like answering your phone and adjusting the volume. But learning the commands is a bit like learning Morse Code as it relies on combinations of long and short presses.

If you sweat a lot, or are worried about losing these in the sink, Erato boasts nano waterproof technology. I did not try this feature, but it’s good to know a mishap won’t ruin your investment.

One feature I would have liked is a way to tell battery percentage. As it is, there is just a little voice that indicates low battery about 5 minutes before they turn off.

Also included is a nifty charge case that is compact as has extra charge for your headsets so you can charge them on the go. I found this very convenient. The battery life is about 4 hours, but with the case, you can charge easily during a meeting or a nap. Just make sure to snap the earbuds into place in the holder or they won’t charge correctly.

 

earto_inside

 

Connectivity

Hold the power button for 5 seconds. Tap one on your phone’s Bluetooth menu. Enjoy.

The process for connecting these to my phone the simplest Bluetooth connection I’ve ever seen. And even after a week with these, there was never a time I had to reconnect them.

Over the course of using them, I did have a few hiccups, but overall they were very stable. I ran a test around my house and the connection was stable across my kitchen and living room when I had line of site. Going around a corner gave the headphones a bad case of the hiccups. Considering that my phone is usually on my desk, in my pocket, or in my gym bag nearby, this was never a practical issue.

 

Erato Colors

 

Conclusion

The $300 price does put the Apollo 7 earphones on the top shelf, however, if you are in the market for something of this caliber, the excellent quality of sound and convenience of Bluetooth makes the Apollo 7 earbuds worth it. We at Ideaing highly recommend the Apollo 7 earbuds.

Original Article:

https://ideaing.com/ideas/gain-freedom-with-eratos-apollo-7-wireless-earphones