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Review of SoundMagic E10S in ear headphones with smartphone remote w/lots of pics!!!


  1. twister6

    twister6 Guides Guide

    This is a Review of SoundMagic E10S in-ear headphones with in-line remote/mic. Due to a lack of original manufacture webpage update, here is a link to E10S on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/SoundMAGIC-E10S-Earphone-With-Black/dp/B00LW2UVOK/

    In the past few months I reviewed a lot of budget high quality headphones under $60, and often referred to these as "giant killers" because they represent an amazing value with a sound quality and build that rivals other well known brand headphones at much higher price. But if we step back in time to find who started this "giant killer" trend, I have to give big props to SoundMagic and their original E10 in-ear headphones. And it's not just my opinion, these headphones received a lot of recognition and awards since 2011, and now they are back with an updated 2014 version which includes smartphone playback control and in-line remote/mic. Here is what I found.

    I have reviewed original E10 in the past, so when I received E10S there was no surprises in the packaging or the headphones itself. SoundMagic followed a very simple formula: if it ain't broke don't fix it. Instead, they decided to enhance it. As I already mentioned, the package was identical to the original model with a big picture on one side and a detailed description and a clear display window on the other side to showcase these headphones. The other sides of the package had a spec and a description with a drawing of the new headphone jack. Of course, the big difference now is an included in-line remote for smartphone control.

    The accessories included 2 types of S/M/L pairs of eartips, with a wide and narrow bore to shape the sound, and one pair of double flange tips, a shirt clip, VoIP cable adapter, and a custom case. The cable adapter is a y-split cable with 3.5mm headphone and mic connection going into 3.5mm female adapter which enables connection of E10S to your laptop for Skype and other VoIP applications where you can take advantage of E10S built-in mic. Case is not just cheap generic type but of a high quality with mesh pockets on both sides allowing to store headphones and other accessories.

    Headphones itself are identical to E10 with the same lightweight aluminum bi-color design, short strain relief color coded with red for the right side, twisted high quality cable in a thin soft jacket and y-splitter with a strain relief on each side. The new addition is in-line remote/mic going to the right earpiece and an enhanced 3.5mm plug. I liked how in-line remote/mic was placed not too far down allowing an easy pick up of voice when you are talking. The remote itself was designed to be universal without volume control, only with multi-function button with a single click Play/Pause/Call controls, double click to skip forward and triple click to go back for playback control, and long press to start Google NOW. Call quality with included mic was decent, and as I mentioned before, placement of the mic/remote closer to your ear helped to pick up voice loud and clear. Another improvement was 3.5mm jack with a switch control.

    In theory multi-function remote button should be universal, but so many times those work well with iPhone and latest Galaxy and HTC phones (just play/pause/call button, not the volume), and it doesn't work with other Sony, Moto, older Samsung, or Nokia phones. Apparently there is a difference between those controls, and now you can flip a switch to make E10S compatible with any phone. This new feature makes the connector a bit bulky, but due to L-shaped design I had no issue using it with my Note 2 in a case with a decent size bumper.

    When it comes to a sound, it's exactly the same as original E10. It a very nicely balanced signature with enhanced bass (but not over the top). The lows are extended down to sub-bass and have a nice punch, mids are clear without being to recessed where vocals sound smooth and warm and still with plenty of details, and treble crisp and ear-friendly without any ear-fatigue peaks. These don't have as detailed separation of the sound, but it's still pretty good for this price range of headphones. Soundstage is average in width/depth. Also, they pair up well with any source and quite forgiving even with lower quality music files.

    Overall, I think it's a great update for a legendary budget headphones. With a very comfortable fit, quality metal construction and durable cable, robust in-line remote/mic with compatibility mode to support different types of smartphones, and a great smooth sound signature with an excellent bass punch - these represent a fantastic value and versatility to be used with any audio source.

    Here are the pictures.

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