I’ve never been a huge fan of in-ear headphones. They don’t seem to fit my ear very well and I just don’t have a pleasant experience with them because of that. That said, I end up testing out many, many different styles of Bluetooth earphones because it’s what is most popular these days since mobile phones are how most of us listen to music. Ever since the Apple removed the headphones jack from the iPhone and that is my mobile device of choice, I’ve been searching for the best options for headphones. While I like my on-ear and over-the-ear headphones, they aren’t always the most convenient to take from place to place. When I learned that one of my favorite accessory companies, AUKEY, was releasing a new set of earphones, I had to try them out.
The Aukey EP-B80 Key Series Headphones offer the user high-resolution audio. The EP-B80 headphones provide high-fidelity sound for users and with its hybrid driver system, audiophiles will surely fall quickly for these premium listening devices. These Key Series headphones feature Bluetooth 5, aptX-low latency, USB-C charging, water resistance, and voice assistant support. Thanks to the dual driver design, the EP-B80 headphones generate a richer, purer sound with a wide 10Hz-22kHz frequency range. You can expect to get up to 8 hours of listening time with a full charge. The headphones are also designed to provide users with a stable, comfortable fit thanks to its over-ear ear-hooks. Three sizes of memory foam and soft silicone ear tips are provided along with the headphones as well as a soft silicone case for storage.
- AUKEY EP-B80 Bluetooth Earbuds
- 3 Pairs of Foam and 3 Pairs of Silicone Ear-Tips (SML)
- USB-A to C Cable
- Carrying Pouch
- User Manual
- 45-Day Money Back and 24-Month Product Replacement Warranty Card
The first thing I noticed about the Key Series headphones was their packaging. The box is light grey — like the headphones themselves — and features an image of the product on the cover along with the Aukey logo. The back is blank and no details are printed on the box. I find this rather refreshing because some accessory designers add so many details that it clutters the packaging. When you open the box, you will find the headphones careful lain into precut protective foam. You will also immediately notice the replacement foam ear tips and a silicone carrying case. To me, the presentation out of the box was quite impressive. In addition to the pieces already described, you will also find a quick start guide, user manual and silicone ear tips beneath the protective foam.
Getting started with the EP-B80s is simple. The multipurpose button in the center of the inline controls on the headphones’ cable also serves as the power button for the unit. The first time you power the headphones on, they will go into pairing mode. Within a few seconds, you should see AUKEY EP-B80 appear in your mobile device’s Bluetooth device menu. Even though it was still a quick pairing for me, the process took a bit longer than some other Bluetooth headphones.
After I successfully paired the headphones to my iPhone XS, it was time to try them out. The headphones arrive with a set of the foam ear cushions installed. I’m not a big fan of the foam ear tips so I decided to remove them and replace them with a set of silicone tips. The foam tips were a little difficult to remove from the headphones without tearing them. The set that is pre-installed is also covered with a thin plastic wrap. The wrap made it hard to grip the foam and because of that, some of the foam started wearing as I pulled them off the headphones. I also want to point out here that the ear tips, in general, were harder to install and remove than other earphones I’ve used. I want tips to be secure, but I can usually roll my finger across the base of an earphone and have the tip gently come off. The tips on the Aukey headphones had to be pulled off.
Because I typically have issues with in-ear headphones fitting me properly, I installed the smallest ear tips possible. I placed the earphones inside my ear canal and then wound the loop around my ear to keep them secure during activities. I actually found the earphones to be quite comfortable and they also felt secure. I moved my head around quite a bit while I was listening to music and I never had any problems with the headphones moving while I was wearing them. I did, however, have a ‘fit’ issue with the earphone itself not resting far enough into my ear canal. Therefore, the sound I was getting was clear, but a bit hollow sounding. I did manually press the earphones into my ear canal a bit and hold it in place for a few seconds to see if that made a difference with the sound quality — it did. The sound was very rich and the bass was deep. It was actually the sound quality I hope for with on-ear/over-the-ear headphones. I was left disappointed when I removed my hands from my ears and the sound quality became tinny and lifeless again.
While I love the style of these particular earphones, they aren’t the right ones for me. They are built very well, have a unique style to them and provide a wonderful sound, but since they aren’t a great physical fit for me, I’m not getting a great experience with them and will probably look back to my other headphones as my main listening devices. Even though I had some problems with these headphones, that doesn’t mean that everyone will. In fact, I think someone who uses in-ear headphones on a regular basis will find these to be quite wonderful.
Originally published at macsources.com on January 11, 2019.