1More Design is a company no one has really heard about. With a name that's not unlike that of a generic Chinese knock-off brand, I wasn't very keen on reviewing it. When I received the product, I was more than pleasantly surprised at the quality of the packaging and the product itself. 1More is a USA-based company headquartered in San Diego, California. Their mission “to deliver superior quality headphones at an amazing value to customers, disrupting an industry where price hiking and design shortcuts are the norm.” We’d certainly be testing not only the product but also if they align with their tall mission statement too.
Build and Design
The build quality of these headphones is excellent. You’d be surprised by the packaging, the way it is presented, and the headphones themselves.
It exudes quality and thoughtfulness from the start with its compact, well-designed packaging and well-rounded accessories included in the box. You get the earphones, a magnetic pleather hard-case, a metal shirt clip and four pairs of tips (XS, S, M, L).
One thing to note is that the hard case can appear to be a cable management tool, but it is not. Unfortunately, such a nice design is only for packaging. A little more thought there and it could’ve doubled up as a cable management solution too, a more value-added proposition for the brand.
The earphones are made of a lightweight aluminium alloy body with a Kevlar core, braided cable. It’s apparently made of a lot of “oohs and ahhs” such as “patented driver has a triple layer diaphragm with aerospace grade metal inside two outer layers of PET, a resilient polymer, which greatly increases high end and midrange clarity and response time. Dual resonant chambers enhance bass and definition.” That is indeed quite the mouthful, we’ll soon find out how it sounds with all this tech thrown at it.
The earphones are well-balanced. The highs are just right, not at all sibilant nor piercingly sharp to the ears, even with hard rock and metal. The bass is good and clean, with no muddiness, though it may feel lean at times (also due to incorrect fitting, explained later). I've no complaints in the mids department, though they do feel a bit recessed, but not to an extent that it hurts the overall sound.
Subjectively: Personally I liked the earphones. They have a clean, clear and well-balanced sound to them without veering towards any one particular frequency. When comparing to the usual budget suspects such as the Cowon EM1, the EM1’ sound bassy and lack cleanliness of sound.
As for the fitting, I personally struggled with it a bit as these are angled earphones. I’m more used to straight fitting ones and always ended up shoving these in a bit weird, causing discomfort. So watch how you insert them.
Absolutely no complaints here. The mic delivered well and without issues. The caller on the opposite side had no issues whatsoever. The mic placement is closer to the cheek than most earphones and this really helps in catching the sound better than most earphones where the mic dangles near the neck.
Verdict and Price in India:
The 1MORE Single Driver earphone with mic (1M301) is a definite recommend. This kind of sound and quality is well priced at Rs 2,500 (street price), you’d be hard pressed to find better. In fact, a similarly good sounding earphone (if memory serves right), the Brainwavz S3, costs double though sounding smoother than these.
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