I picked up a pair of the newly released Apple EarPods yesterday, and thought I would write up a quick review on them. They are the same price ($35.00 CDN) as their previous generation earbuds, except they now come with a travel/storage case which I think is a nice addition – I’ll touch on this towards the bottom of the review.
Sound Quality: The biggest improvement by far is the sound quality. I used the previous generation earbuds nearly every single day over the past 5 years, so I am very familiar with how they sound. When I tried out the new EarPods, I expected them to be better, but was shocked at how much better they are. The bass response has improved tenfold in my opinion, and I am very happy with that. The overall sound is now richer, deeper, and fuller – it’s truly a remarkable improvement over the previous earbuds.
Build Quality: Apple rarely disappoints when it comes to the build quality of their products, and the new Apple EarPods are no exception. They’ve even slightly improved the remote and mic portion which now feels a bit more solid and the volume up/down is a bit more pronounced. I felt that the previous generation earbuds were well built as well, but these are just a step above.
Travel/Storage Case: The design of the travel/storage case is good. It’s not great, and it’s far from perfect, but it will come in handy at times. I don’t think it’s something that you’d want to use on a daily basis though. Wrapping the headphones into the case takes a bit of work – you have to first place the EarPods into the required spots, then wrap once before placing in the remote/mic section. After that, you can simply finish wrapping the remaining cord around the outside of the case. I found that placing the plastic cap on after this takes a bit of work – you have to make sure no portions of the cord are sticking out, and I’m not certain, but I think the clear plastic cap fits better in one orientation than the other – which is impossible to distinguish as the storage case is square. As I said above, it will definitely come in handy at times, but not something I see myself using on a daily basis.
Overall, I am extremely pleased with the new EarPods – the sound quality just blew me away! Granted I don’t have a ton of experience with other earbuds, but I do have experience with other great headphones. As far as earbud style headphones go, I am confident that you will never find another pair at this price range that delivers as well as the new Apple EarPods do.