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Maldives, Malé
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Review on 20-Hour Playtime Aiwa Arc-1 Bluetooth Over-Ear Wireless Headphones With Audiophile Sound Quality by John Maynard

Revainrating 4 out of 5

Last word: Incredible for $199.99

Ever since I received my Exos-9 Bluetooth speaker about a year ago, I have been sold on AIWA. From their customer support, to their values as a company, to the products themselves, AIWA is one of the most reputable audio companies on the market today. So, when I began receiving newsletters about the Arc-1 Bluetooth Headphones, I jumped on the opportunity to get a pair for myself.Just a PSA before I get too detailed in this review: If you are considering these headphones, just buy them! Not because they're perfect, but because you have nothing to lose. If you love them, great. If you're not satisfied, thats fine too. AIWA will refund you all your money if your purchase is within the 90 day "No Questions Asked" period. Good luck finding another company that cares about you like that!SOUND QUALITY: The quality is definitely there; however, it is a different kind of experience. If you're looking for a music experience that puts you in the studio, where you hear the drummer on the right and the guitarist on the left, this is the headphone for you. If you specialize in audio produciton where your job is to live in the details, these headphones would also suit you. If you're a bass head, and want your music to FILL your headphones and gyrate your skull, this may not be the headphone for you. I think the best adjective to describe the sound from these headphones is ACCURATE. Maybe you (like me) are used to a certain kind of sound from your music. You may be surprised by the sound you get from the Arc-1's BECAUSE they are so accurate. Therefore, I don't believe sound accuracy ALWAYS equates to the best music experience for everyone.With that said, DEAR AIWA: Some headphones are great with bass. Others are great with with mids and highs. I believe the Arc-1's can do great with all of these. But! I miss having a 5 setting EQ (like on the Exos-9) where I can tailor the sound to the music I'm listening to any given day. With the Arc-1's, I'm getting sound accuracy across the board, but sometimes I do want the bass to punch me in the face, and other other times I want my mids and highs more up front. If there was a supplement (maybe an app?) to give the Arc-1's some more CUSTOMIZABILITY, these headphones would be my go to every time.As of now, I combine a pair of Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pros, a portable amp, and the built in Spotify Premium EQ adjuster to tailor the sound frequency to the music I'm listening to that day. If I could cut out all these middle men and use an EQ adjuster that was made specifically for the Arc-1's, that would be awesome.HARDWARE QUALITY: In the words of AIWA employees, the external components of these headphones are "battle tested", and will stand the test of time. As far as accessories, not sure why AIWA would go through the trouble of providing a gorgeous braided charging cable, and then include the dinkiest aux cable I've ever seen. Obviously, these headphones are intended to be wireless, but if you're going to include an aux cable, make it of the same quality as the charging cable or don't include it at all. I will give AIWA the benefit of the doubt, though, because maybe the cheap cable only came with the pre-orders (which still seems a bit silly). The soft case is nice and slim, but nothing to speak of. Haven't received the pre-order hard case yet, but I assume it will be wonderful. The only thing I could complain about on the headphones themselves is that the buttons feel and sound a bit cheap. I wish they were, like the body, metal. Or, maybe even rubber, just not cheap wiggly plastic. Granted, I believe AIWA did the best they could do with a $200 budget.SOFTWARE: Definitely needs some work, but I love the fact that I can connect to my phone and laptop at the same time. I use this feature all the time and alone is almost reason enough to buy these headphones. It is, however, a bit finicky at the moment. Sometimes the headphones get confused and won't switch the sound over to my phone or laptop. I'm excited to see how this feature works after a few firmware updates. The Qconnect feature is really cool and works great. I really wish there wasn't a time gap between the two headphones though. That really limits the capabilities of this feature.COSMETICALLY: (WARNING: OPINIONS) These headphones aren't the best looking headphones on the market, but AIWA was pretty explicit about their intentions for this product. These headphones are "double the hardware", not double the fashion statement. I would love it if AIWA delivered a slightly more expensive, luxury option for these headphones in the future, where they could afford to pay more attention to detail.COMFORT: Very comfortable and light. My ears do begin to sweat after a couple hours, but thats only natural. No ear fatigue even after hours of listening.BATTERY: I don't think I'll have to charge these until the apocalypse. Wow these things can hold a charge.CONCLUSION: Great headphones. The reasoning behind the 4 stars rating is because of the need for firmware updates, no EQ customization, and, from a cosmetic viewpoint, they aren't worth mentioning. However, headphones like these for $200 dollars is unheard of. Like anything though, I believe these headphones will become better with time and refining.Just buy them. If anything, consider it a donation to the best audio equipment company on the market today and your donation happens to come with some of the best headphones you'll ever put on your cranium.Cheers and thank you AIWA for yet another incredible product!

img 1 attached to 20-Hour Playtime Aiwa Arc-1 Bluetooth Over-Ear Wireless Headphones With Audiophile Sound Quality review by John Maynard

  • Over-Ear Headphones
  • The headphones lack any unique or standout features that distinguish them from other Bluetooth headphones in the same price range

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