So I’ll admit, I’ve had these ClarityOne EB110 earbuds since CES 2012 (that’s over 3 months for those of you keeping track). So yes, you could say this review is… ahem… a bit late. But as you audiophiles know, any new set of headphones needs some playing time to break in. According to the folks from ClarityOne that I spoke to at CES 2012, the burn-in time for the EB110 earbuds is between 90 and 100 hours. Considering I’ve been using these earbuds exclusively for the past 3 months, you could say I’ve gone well past the burn-in time, tracking many more hours on this set of very good earbuds.
ClarityOne is the brand of audio products from parent company PureSound Technologies, Inc., which is based out of Oakville, Ontario in Canada. The ClarityOne EB110 earbuds are the culmination of 12 years of research, testing, and tweaking to arrive at the current product.
The ClarityOne company reps at CES2012 offered up two main selling points for the EB110 earbuds – their use of the company’s patented PureSound Processor technology and their ability to run using only 8 Ohms of resistance. According to ClarityOne, PureSound Processor technology eliminates distortion that exists with conventional speakers. Because of this patented system, the earbuds are able to run using only 8 Ohms of resistance – 1/2 to 1/4 the resistance of traditional headphones. ClarityOne claims that their audio products will consume less battery life, and I actually did notice an improvement in the battery life of my iPod, so I was quite impressed with this feature of the earbuds.
The EB110′s come with a built-in microphone and phone call button which allows for users to answer calls by clicking the microphone button. One you have completed your call, you can also end the call by clicking the same button. I’ve tested this feature several times using my iPhone and it works flawlessly. Additionally, the quality of the microphone is solid, as the person whom I was talking too couldn’t distinguish me using my iPhone’s microphone or the EB110 microphone.
Of course, sound quality is always most important when it comes to any set of headphones, and for the price, the EB110 earbuds deliver a very good quality of sound. To achieve the most comfortable and appropriate fit, I fitted my EB110′s with the smallest tips. Even after several hours of continuous listening, the earbuds remained comfortable in my ears, which was pleasantly welcoming for me since earbuds usually start to hurt my ears not too long after I start using them. I listened to several different genres of music – bass-heavy rap, the balanced sounds of alternative rock, and a bit of trance, which is both treble and bass-heavy. Overall, the balance of low, mid, and high range sounds was very nice, though I do feel the EB110′s are just a little bit bass heavy (though no where near as much as the distorted bass coming from the many lines of rap star promoted headphones). Considering the listed frequency range of the EB110′s is 15Hz – 20kHz, it’s not surprising that they are a little bass heavy.
Overall, I have been very impressed with the ClarityOne EB110′s earbuds. At a price of $129.99 – just at the bottom price point for middle price range headphones – the EB110′s are a good buy. I wish this set had a volume control button in addition to the call answer/end button, but in order to get that feature you’ll have to spend $20 for an upgraded set. $20 extra for this pretty standard feature is, in my opinion, unacceptable. But honestly, it’s probably the only downside to these headphones. Sound quality is the most important feature of any set of headphones, and thankfully for the ClarityOne EB110 earbuds, they sound really good for their price range.