There are so many different designs when it comes to headphones and it seems like you just buy the latest design and then another comes onto the market making yours look obsolete. However, there’s one type that never goes out of style and that’s the earbud. Yes, you may argue that they get tangled up in your pocket or bag and that can be true or you may dislike them because of comfort issues. These are the things that I looked at when I was testing the Ailihen M10 earbud. I was given a sample and asked to give my honest opinion.
The first thing that struck me was the way these earphones are presented. When they arrived they were in an aqua coloured box, not dissimilar to a certain New York based jeweller’s packaging, so right away they grabbed my attention. Inside you’ll find a sturdy black case that’s round shaped, soft to the touch, has the Ailihen logo emblazoned on the top and opens and closes with a zip around the edges. On opening you’ll find ample space to store the earphones as well as a small pouch on the top compartment where the accessories can be stored. This means the issue of earphones being lost or tangled up in a pocket or bag is no longer a worry. The design is classic and would suit any taste but is more likely to appeal to those who like a no-frills look.
The earphones themselves are crafted from aluminium alloy and are designed to be durable and sturdy. The metallic materials used certainly give a tougher appearance than the plastic alternatives I am used to using. The cord is made from two different materials. The top half closest to the buds is coated in a plastic as you would expect on headphones but the bottom half is fabric, not unlike a shoelace. It’s a nice little touch that makes them a bit different. The Ailihen brand name is featured on the jack too, so there’s no doubt about who made these.
The Ailihen M10 earbuds have powerful 10mm neodymium drivers, designed to provide crisp sound quality and it’s clear that these are a cut above others in their price range when I tried them. The sound quality is exceptionally clear.
These headphones are also sold with three gel ear sizes, namely small, medium and large, and can be easily changed depending on your preference. The idea is that the right size of earbud will lock out background noise and prevent you from becoming distracted, giving you a truly immersive listening experience, but let’s be honest. It’s a comfort issue. Sometimes earbuds can hurt if you wear them too long and a different size of gel cover can make a huge difference. Personally, I found them really comfortable and I wore the smallest size.
These headphones are also designed to take hands free calls and feature an inline microphone that isolates your voice from background noises. There is a remote with a single button around the middle of the cord, where the plastic meets the fabric. It does work in that it answers calls, but whether it isolates your voice against background noise is something I couldn’t confirm. When I spoke to my someone on a call wearing these, the other person could still hear some traffic. Environmental noises like wind weren’t so distorting, so it does work in that respect.
These headphones will work with any device that has a headphone socket, which is great but with more and more wireless headphones that connect via Bluetooth coming onto the market, this design may become outdated in the future. However, there will always be people around (myself included) who like to plug in and for those of us who do, these are a worthwhile investment. They come with a one year warranty and a 100% money back guarantee, so if you’re not completely happy with your Ailihen purchase, you can send it back for a refund. I have to say though, I wouldn’t be sending these back. I am really happy with them and they will definitely replace the bog-standard white plastic ones I got with my iPhone in my handbag.
If you’d like to know more about Ailihen you can check out their website or Facebook page. The M10 headphones are currently available on Amazon. They have a RRP of £45.98 but at the time of writing, they are priced at £12.98.