Audio technology company Crazybaby — responsible for the mad Mars floating speaker — is back with another pair of great looking true wireless earphones that, unlike the original Air, won’t actually drive you crazy, baby, with incessant connection problems. The Crazybaby Air 1S share an almost identical design to the original, which is a good thing, but with completely reworked connection tech. This is also a very good thing.
These are true wireless in-ears, so there are no wires to restrict movement, and unlike some similar products they are not massive. The sleek, teardrop design means they are unobtrusive in your ear, and at 4 grams each, they are also very comfortable.
Even after a couple of hours wearing the Air 1S, there is no inner ear fatigue.
The little buds are stored inside a cylindrical case that also keeps the tiny internal batteries topped up. Crazybaby says a total of 12 hours is possible. A selection of different sized tips come inside the package, along with a pair of covers with a built-in tip that wraps around the whole earbud.
Inside is a carbon nanotube diaphragm, just like the older Air models, with audio customization for more bass, a degree of noise reduction, and 3D virtual surround sound. Each earbud has its own power button with an LED inside to show the status, and Crazybaby says the Air 1S headphones introduce new-and-improved connectivity technology promising a stable, reliable connection. We were skeptical. So we put a pair in our ears to find out.
The Crazybaby Air 1S use Bluetooth 4.2 and both earbuds connect separately, rather than as one. This means you can still use a single bud if you lose or forget one. Hold down the power/sync button on each earbud to activate Bluetooth. We connected them to our iPhone X and to a Series 3 Apple Watch at the gym. Happily, they connect far more reliably than the original Crazybaby Air earbuds, and also stay connected too.
That said, it’s still not quite perfect. Connecting with the Apple Watch sometimes required turning off the earbuds, restarting the watch, and repairing before they worked. We’d also sometimes have to manually enter the Bluetooth menu on the iPhone to connect to the earbuds after switching them on. It’s not a big deal; but some other Bluetooth products are faster and easier to deal with.
They fit snugly and securely in your ear, and don’t poke out like most others. They could go almost unnoticed, aside from the pulsing Crazybaby logo in each one. Even after a couple of hours wearing them, there is no inner ear fatigue. This won’t matter if they sound bad, which luckily they don’t, provided you don’t push them too hard.
It’s a very full sound, and doesn’t go lightly on the bass. The lower midrange is very powerful, often at the expense of vocals, but this along with the impressive volume makes them great for noisy environments like the gym.
Battery life in the the Air 1S was solid, easily achieving the quoted two hour listening time.
When the volume was past three-quarters on the iPhone X, the Air 1S became a little raucous and stopped being pleasurable. Otherwise, it’s a tight soundstage, with Band Maid’s Choose Me sounding surprisingly intimate and centrally focused. The song’s strong bass-line and drums threaten to overpower the vocals when heard on the Air 1S.
The Air 1S protect you from outside noise very well, and although there is no actual active noise cancelation, the difference in volume of the sound around you after taking them out is considerable. Crazybaby’s app provides a visual guide to the features, which includes taking calls and using a voice assistant on the phone. This worked with Siri, after a double press of the left earbud’s button. The app also has its own music player.
Battery life from the tiny 55mAh cells has been solid, with the Air 1S easily achieving the quoted two hour charged listening time. Popping them inside the case will recharge them several times over for a total of 12 hours use. This enabled them to happily last for three visits to the gym, and several commutes during the week. While decent, it’s below what other similar products are capable of, including the Apple AirPods. There’s also no visual battery percentage indicator in the app either, which would be very helpful.
Crazybaby is pushing the Air 1S toward the fitness market, having worked to include an IPX6 rating to resist sweat and rain. Don’t expect any custom fitness tracking technology inside, though, because these are purely for entertainment when you’re at the gym or out on a run. Despite being light on features, the Crazybaby Air 1S should not be overlooked — these are very stylish, and extremely comfortable true wireless earbuds, which is something many will appreciate more than yet another way to count steps.
At $160, the price is relatively reasonable, though we feel the need to remind readers that options like Jabra’s Elite Active 65t and Apple’s AirPods offer better battery and stronger connection for about the same price. If you love the sleek form factor and want to give them a shot, however, the Crazybaby Air 1S are available to purchase now through the company’s own website. If you really want a pair, pick them up quickly because if you’re one of the first 800 to place an order, the price is reduced to just $100.
Updated with sound impressions 8-17-2018
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