MEElectronics is one of my favorite “value” brands. They consistently bring incredible sound to the sub-$100 market. Sound that rivals the big names and often beat what can cost twice or three times as much. Since they’ve gotten a good reputation in their young life making lower priced earbuds and headphones they have started moving into a less saturated premium market.
I first heard their prototype AF32s at CES and I was instantly impressed. Headphones with better than HT-21 quality along with integrated Bluetooth Audio sounded like they could be great. Soon after CES was over they sent over a pair along with some HT-21s.
The AF32s instantly show their attempts at not only creating a good sounding product but also a good looking one. Featuring bright red foam ear cups and head band padding, the AF32 look sleek. The glossy piano black finish mixes well with the red and remind me of my car which is jet black with red leather seats. Unfortunately, the build quality does not match the looks and the AF32 feel a little flimsy. I have not had any durability issues however so it might just be the light weight throwing me off.
The AF32 were designed to be portable. They feature two hinges allowing it to fold neatly and fit in the provided bag along with a 1/8″ cable and charging cable. This lets you carry them around everywhere.
With A2DP stereo Bluetooth onboard, I expected the sound to be good but not great wirelessly. The difference however between using the set wirelessly vs wired was about negligible. Conveniently, if your battery runs out you can always swap back to the wired mode. Only Bluetooth requires battery power. Rated at 12 hours, you should only have to charge every few days. The 12 hours is very conservative however. Maybe it’s with the music maxed out. I got almost 30 hours per charge on my set.
Now for the sound. The best part of the AF32 is the sound. While I’m used to MEElectronics earbuds retailing for $50 or less that sound better than most $100+ sets, the AF32 are at an already fairly high $80 retail. Still, for a set of headphones that packs Bluetooth Audio and that features a microphone, for $80 the AF32 is a definite steal. The sound quality is incredible for the price and while there’s some slight bass boost which is normally seen in this non-audiophile range of headphones, it’s not too much. After several days of break in the treble really started to shine and the entire range of sound made me really enjoy the music I was listening to. This applied to every genre I could test, too. The drivers could be a little faster but for $80 I really have no complaints. Add in the fact that you can wirelessly listen for over a day continuously and you have yourself a real winner.
I continue to be impressed with MEElectronics and their Air-Fi AF32 Bluetooth Headphones are no exception. Let’s see if the HT-21 can do the same in our upcoming review.