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Wise won the Productivity Award for 2020, presenting no less than half a dozen new products this year – including, To And Two-Wear Viz Robot Vacuum.
Also new: offering over-the-year voice headphones, active noise cancellation and other desirable features for only $ 50. At that price, how could it possibly compare with $ 350- $ 550, And The
It all depends on what you want with your headphones. If your preferences include a comfortable fit, a folding design, support for ANC, transparency mode, wear detection, USB-C charging, app-based equalizer and Alexa voice commands, look no further. In fact, Vise packed the embarrassment of money into a $ 50 product.
And I haven’t even mentioned what my favorite feature might be: quick conversation mode. When you drop your palm on the right earring, playback and noise are immediately cut off, allowing you to talk (and hear) to someone without removing the headphones or stopping the music manually.
I also have props for the excellent Quick-Start Guide and Wise companion app, which combine to make setup and operation enjoyable. (Last time I saw the Sony WH-1000XM4 instructions, I needed to be a bit late.)
Voice headphones: Silence
I am not an audiophile. I can appreciate the sound quality afforded by premium headphones, but most of the time I’m happy with a budget set. As long as they are effortless and the sound is not sloppy, overpowered or otherwise flawed, I would enjoy the same from Belle and Sebastian’s beloved Castropheth waitress or Brendan Benson’s Alternative to Love. It’s like looking at the Mona Lisa: Art Effiendos will pause every detail, but I’m happy to come to the Louvre.
That said, I decided to make a direct comparison between the Vise headphones and the Sony WH-1000XM4, which is on loan from the back market. On paper, they are very similar, but have a later $ 350 list price. (For the moment, this– Still five times the price of the product of Vise.)
Voice headphones are heavier at 10.2 ounces (Sony’s phone weighs 8.8). Sony’s headband has slightly more padding, and therefore feels more comfortable above the head – but I really like the thicker earcups of the Vise. They are ultrasound.
Here’s the top: Vyaz headphones sound really good. In the void, they can be considered very good. Do they bump the WH-1000XM4? Not for me: I went back and forth between them on the same tracks and constantly found that I liked Sony’s overall sound quality better.
But back to vacuuming: if I didn’t have $ 350 pair of headphones to compare them with, would I be unhappy with these Visay phones? On the contrary: I would be a happy listener with an extra $ 300 in my pocket. I’m streaming Vince Gervaldi Trio’s A Charlie Brown Christmas because I love it, and it feels absolutely adorable. Full bass, high altitude and lows, all this good stuff. There is absolutely nothing about this listening experience that makes me think, “I’m sure I had $ 350 headphones instead.” Because it can’t possibly be found Seven Time is better
For the ANC, the results were surprising: Standing next to a deep heater, which produces a deep hum, I tried both headphones. The Sony cans cut a good chunk of noise, but left some noticeable hyss. The voice phone eliminated almost all the noise and produced no residual sound to speak. So, yes, in that particular scenario, the Vise headphones were actually better at noise canceling than the very expensive Sony.
That said, neither offered much help against barking dogs or dirty family members – not to help drive interference without playing some audio. But if you’re dealing with low-frequency sounds – a fan, an airplane engine, that sort of thing – the voice does a very remarkable job.
What you won’t get for $ 50
The Vise only supplies a lightweight drawstring carry case, and you don’t get extras like 1/4-inch jack adapters or airline adapters. No real damage, but I have some minor setbacks with the hardware. The headband and earcups feature smug finger prints; I cannot detect any such touch on Sony’s phone. And the volume and play / pause buttons under the right hypotenuse are simultaneously small and crammed, and therefore difficult to navigate by touch.
But some of the small things I loved, I also like. For example, the power button works with a quick, single press; I’m not sure why every other headphones require several seconds of pressing (which always bothers me that I’m going to end up in Bluetooth pairing mode). The application has fun to play with a four-band equalizer, and you can tweak settings such as auto power-off timing and toggle between Alexa and your phone’s native voice assistant.
Although I only got a couple days to live with the Vieze headphones, I think the company has designed another game-changer. Like Vise Cam before it, it feels too good to be true. “Where’s the catch? How can it be so good at this price?”
I don’t know, and I’m not complaining. I will leave it up to my CNET co-workers to do more in-depth testing to determine if audiophiles will be as happy with these as cheapskates will do. But if you are in the latter camp, then definitely buy Vise headphones.
This article was first published last year.
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