Usage and Testing

 

For my usage and testing the new Spark headphones I used my HTC One Android phone and I also used them with my ZuneHD and my computer. To really test them though I had to use my phone most often as the headphones do have the in-line remote and microphone.

spark21 thumb Review of Id America The new Spark Aluminum In ear Headphones

 

Sound Quality:

These are relatively inexpensive headphones as they come in at around $45 on Amazon, so they’re not exactly high priced.

They’re headphones so sound is big part of them and what they do I think, the other features are more secondary to sound quality.

I listened to different types of music to test them and I found overall they sound very good with decent bass and nice highs, but they aren’t perfect. While there is good bass and decent highs, the highs aren’t what I would call crisp, but they are there and they are audible. Personally I like my highs to be more crisp and pronounced and these just aren’t that crisp.

The new Spark headphones do sound decent but overall they have sort of a muffled sound to them, everything, highs, lows and vocals all seem slightly muffled to me.

Don’t get wrong, they’re not bad sounding, it’s just I noticed they’re slightly muffled sounding, just very slightly though.

 

Controls:

I’m using the new Spark headphones with an Android phone obviously and they worked for the most part. The main functions worked like answer/end calls and play/pause with one click. The other functions didn’t work or actually they produced very undesirable results.

When I tried the double click function my phone redialed the last number and opened Google music. While it was doing those two things the music was still playing, yes during the phone call the music was playing. I don’t think we want all of those happening at the same time surely.

So the controls sort of work, at least they work for the main functions anyway on Android.

 

Call Quality:

Call quality was fine, the button worked as I mentioned. Calls were clear and I was told I could be heard as long as the microphone was relatively close to my mouth and not moving all around of course.

Personally I don’t care for phone calls in stereo, just my thing that’s all. I wouldn’t use these for phone calls myself, but if a call came in while listening to music I’d probably still use them for the call but I wouldn’t make a call with them. That’s just me and my preferences.

 

Cord:

Usually when you see a springy rubber cord like this it’s meant to be tangle free but this one really isn’t sadly. The rubber is sort of tacky or ever so slightly sticky and it causes the cord to stick to itself slightly when you wrap it up and when it does gets tangled this makes it harder to untangle.

As far a length it’s about 125cm or about 49 inches long from the connector to the headphones. This should be more than long enough for any placement of your phone on your body.

The cord can be noisy and by this I mean cord noise is what happens when you move the wires around and you hear it in your ears through the headphone themselves. The cord can transfer a lot of sound, but it depends how vigorously the cord is being moved. Walking and sitting you should be fine but I don’t think I’d run with them on but you could always turn the music up higher.

 

Noise Reduction:

The new Spark headphones don’t feature active noise reduction of course but they do a fairly good job of keeping noises out. They don’t keep everything out, but they do muffle outside sounds to a more bearable level and if the music is playing you really shouldn’t hear much from the outside.

 

Comfort:

As far as comfort, the new Spark are surprisingly very comfortable. The headphones are metal making them heavier than average so I wasn’t too sure about them, but they stayed in my ears just fine and the silicone does seal in your ears nicely and they stay in your ears. The silicone is comfortable for long periods of use so you’d be fine wearing these on a long flight or just sitting at your desk really.

 

Build Quality/Design:

I love the fact that these are made of aluminum, and I really like the looks of them. Sure most likely nobody will see the details while they’re in your ears, but they do look good, they have a unique and attractive design to them. The metal design makes them very sturdy and durable, these won’t break or get crushed accidentally I’m sure.

I was originally going to say that these don’t have any markings on them for right and left, but they do and it took me a while to find them. There is a tiny little R and an L on each one on the black rubber sleeve coming out of the headphones, it’s very tiny, I looked at them many times and didn’t see it at all. The letters are black just like the rubber little sleeve is. The remote is on the left side, so without having to look for the tiny letters you can just know that the cord with the remote is for the left ear.

Personally I’m right handed so I don’t care for the remote being on the left side myself.