27 November 2017

REVIEW: Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones

AMP it up.

Bluetooth headphone review time yet again, and we're taking another trip into what is becoming an increasingly familiar area of personal entertainment gadgets. It was only a few years ago that we were marvelling at the wonder that was Bluetooth, and then even more recently at how small they were all getting. Now we're back in the truly wireless earbud department with a very exciting (and sexy looking) pair. We review the Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones.

These, just like the Motorola Stream Sport that we recently video reviewed, are the type of headphones that feature no wires whatsoever, and live in a tidy little charging case when not in use. However, unlike the Motorola efforts, the AMPS AIR are gorgeous, looking like tiny sex toys for your ears. No wait, that sounds very weird.

Actually no, we'll stick with the comparison, as the Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones have clearly been designed to attract attention. Despite the buds themselves being small - the smallest truly wireless headphones we've ever reviewed, so far - they have a great deal of presence, aided by the shiny copper colour of the Sol logo contrasting the textured black body (in our case, at least. The Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones come in several different colours).

The charging case is also very pretty with a finger-pleasing metal top and a smooth plastic body. Actually, the aesthetics of the case are top notch right up until you open it. You see, the ports into which each of the earbuds slot to receive a charge, are off-centred. It's no biggie, and it certainly doesn't effect the functionality of the case, but it looks a bit odd; a tad askew. As we say, it wasn't a major disappointment, just strange that it had been designed like that. We assume it is so the case can accommodate a full-sized USB port on the right side - which is a good thing, as that means it can be used as portable battery for charging your phone, too.

Once charged up the buds should be capable of giving you about three hours of continuous playback. However, once flat, you can whack 'em back in the case to juice up. We found that, once the case itself was fully charged, it gave the buds approximately 12 full charges, which is quite good. Depending on how often you use them, and if you use the case to charge your phone, they could last you a good couple of weeks of your commute.

Mind you, if you do charge your phone from the case, expect that to go waaaaaay down. The case's battery is just 2200mAh, which although great for the teeny tiny buds, means you'll get about one full phone charge out of it. So great for emergencies, but not so great for every day use.

But anyway, how the hell do they sound? Well, we've always been big fans of Sol Republic headphones, and the few sets that we have tested over the years have always impressed. The Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones were no exception to this rule. The sounds they confidently reproduced were rich, clear and felt very present. Headphones like these always struggle with deliver deep bass, but the AMPS did a decent enough job, so all genres of music sounded great.

We were very happy to never experience signal loss between the two buds; something that tends to blight 'phones like these. We were also doubly happy that the little blighters never fell out of our ears. Sol Republic include four extra sets of tips, so you should be able to get the right fit. After that, the texture of the buds actually help to keep them in your shell-likes, and as they are rain and sweat resistant, you can use them for sports and workouts.

So in many ways, the Sol Republic AMPS AIR Headphones are pretty perfect - especially considering that they're not going to break the bank. They look great, we love that the case can also be used as a mobile power pack, and they sound the absolute business... almost enough to forgive that off-centred design. Picky, aren't we?


Available from www.amazon.co.uk

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