In the audio tech world, on-ear headphones don’t get much respect. And while it’s true that this type of headphone often struggles with performance and comfort, there are solid, adequately-priced on-ear options out there.
The Klipsch Reference On-Ear Bluetooth® headphones utilize Klipsch’s Balanced Dynamic (KBD) driver technology to decrease distortion and deliver the most authentic bass ever heard in an on-ear headphone. With Bluetooth® high definition streaming audio and a cVc® microphone, these premium headphones deliver a comfortable and easy-to-use listening experience. Unlike other on-ear headphones the Klipsch Reference don’t squeeze and pinch your ears, but given their price, they’re not exactly winning in the bang-for-your-buck department.
Before I start talking about the headphones and how do they perform I should probably make one of those full disclosure statements. Here it is: I am not a fan of wireless headphones. Most of the wireless headphones suffer from battery life, audio quality and pairing problems. Klipsch claims that the headphones can last 20 hours streaming music, so let dig into the details shall we.
Inside the box:
The headphones come in two different finishes white and black. We received the white pair for review. The first thing we noticed out of the box was the included hard case for the headphones, which includes inside, the headphones itself folded in a minimalistic and nice design, a removable 2.5mm cable in case your battery runs out, mico-USB cable to charge the headphones and the instruction manual which contains details how to pair the headphones with your device, charging it and using the different functionality when listening to music or answering calls. The unboxing experience was amazing and it gives the headphones that premium look and feel. With that price range, it is expected to get a fancy unboxing experience.
Build and Appearance:
The Klipsch Reference has a very simple and streamlined build to it. The headphone is very comfortable and pretty lightweight. The headband is made of a very white foam and leather wrap. It is also collapsible and easily stored in the hard-shell case that come with the headphones. The earcups are deep and not too wide so medium and smaller ears fit well, while larger ears might have to bend around the inside of the cups. The earpads are a removable soft leather memory foam which should stand up pretty well over time. I’m not sure what sort of memory foam magic Klipsch has woven into these pads, but they’re freakishly comfortable. Combine that with a set of headphones that are much lighter than they look, and you have an optimum experience for your ears.
On the right earcup you will find the Bluetooth hands-free controls. The usual controls for power, volume, play/pause and charging port are all located on the right earcup. You will get short messages spoken to you by the device, such as battery low, connected, and tones for when it turns on and when max volume has been reached. The battery life is around 20 hours, which is pretty good for an on-ear Bluetooth headphone.
Everything I’ve read about Bluetooth headphones makes the pairing experience sound like a pain, but getting these set up was so simple that I had to make sure I didn’t miss a step. Press the power button for two seconds to make them discoverable, tap over to your phone’s bluetooth menu, and tap the headphones in the list. That’s it! they now pair automatically every time I turn them on, an experience which feels more convenient than hunting for a headphone jack.
Okay, all of that sounds great, right? But… do they sound good? They sound incredible! Again, I’m coming from using a good pair of on-ears from a well-known brand, and listening to these makes me feel like I’ve had dollar store speakers taped to my head for the last year. Mids and highs are crystal clear. Bass definitely makes itself known, but it doesn’t overpower the mix like some headphones I’ve tried. The only word I can think of to adequately describe the sound is “clarity.”
“Klipsch reference headphones have a premium design, an amazing sound experience and comfy. They are the best all-around on-ear wireless headphones that you can get your hands on”
The pads seal my ears off extremely well from outside noise, leaving only a beautifully clear audio mix that doesn’t distort on even the highest volumes. The battery life is excellent, and I love the little touches like having volume and playback controls built-in to the headset itself (which are also easy to locate by feel alone).
If you have a device that can output audio over Bluetooth, it should work with those with no issue. If you don’t, that’s not a problem either… Klipsch actually includes a 3.5mm cable that plugs into the headphones for use with legacy devices.
With a review this positive, you probably wonder how much do they cost and from where you can buy it? Well the headphone comes at a price of 249 USD. It is a little bit overpriced, but compared to what the headphone brings I think it’s totally worth buying it.
The Klipsch Reference is a pretty great all around headphones. The design and comfort are top notch, in addition to the wireless design, folding headband, and replaceable earpads all add life-time into the headphone. The sound quality is fair in its neutral design, but in the end it winds up having a brighter sound signature. I think Klipsch has made something close the perfect pair of headphones with these Bluetooth On-Ears. If you’re ready to get serious about listening to music on the go, add these to your cart and thank me later.
I was provided the Klipsch in-ear headphones as a review sample. Head over Klipsch website to know more about their products.