I listen to a lot of music.
While I work on homework, type up articles, drive around on errands, go for a run, and even as I mix sound for live productions.
I spend too much time listening to music for it to sound bad.
After two weeks with Cambridge Audio’s Melomania 1+ true wireless earbuds, here’s what you need to know:
The market for Bluetooth wireless headphones/earbuds in 2022 is oversaturated. Consumers go to Amazon to look for a pair of functional, high quality, low price wireless earbuds under $100 and are bombarded with dozens of options from hundreds of brands. This search often leaves consumers discouraged, having to decide between quality and price. London-based company Cambridge Audio seeks to take further control in this market by balancing those two variables: quality and price.
Right away, I was surprised at the quality of the packaging. The whole unboxing experience felt more premium than I was anticipating and was setting the bar for the listening experience. At first touch the product looked and felt quite similar to 2nd Gen Apple Airpods. Once I paired the wireless earbuds using the instructions in the packaging, I downloaded the Melomania app and after a 15 minute firmware update, the buds were ready for listening. While I was impressed by the unboxing, an unboxing is only as good as the performance of the product.
The first thing I noticed when I put them in my ears was that the pre-installed memory foam tips did not fit right. I switched from the memory foam to the silicone tips and those seem to fit better. These wireless earbuds come with a bunch of options and replacement tips. A feature that I miss from other true-wireless earbuds like Airpods Pro or Samsung Galaxy Buds was the ear fit test. Eventually however, I found the tips that worked for me. Out of the box, the Melomania 1+’s do offer 9 sets of tips, including both silicone and memory foam.
I’ve used Airpods Pro nearly everyday for the past two years. As a result, I’m accustomed to a very specific sound profile. So when I started using the Melomania 1+’s I right away I noticed a richer, fuller profile specifically in the lows (around 60Hz). One feature that I love is the EQ control inside the Melomania app. The app offers preset sound profiles including: Immersive, Rock, Voice, R&B and more. The equalizer also offers three custom, user-controlled profiles which I enjoyed tuning to my tastes. Cambridge Audio is serious about audio quality and understands their users are too. From hip hop songs while I work out, podcasts while I lay in bed, and listening to others on phone calls the 1+’s delivered high quality audio in a wide range of applications.
Design and Functionality
While Cambridge knocks it out of the park with audio quality, the form factor of the Melomania 1+ simply does not meet the mark for what a pair of truly-wireless headphones can be. They opted for a bullet-like design similar to a pair of foam earplugs. Of course everyone’s ears are different, but for mine they stuck straight out and felt rather monolithic on my ears. I put these earbuds to the test as I worked out. Throughout my workout, I found myself intermittently readjusting the true-wireless earbuds in my ears. I never felt they were at risk of falling out of my ears, but I did readjust to ensure proper ear-seal for audio quality. According to Cambridge, for workout enthusiasts the Melomania Touch is what they recommend for performance and security during exercise.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve worn Airpods Pro for a couple years now. I love the fit, design, and physical functionality of those wireless earbuds. Hardware wise, they are everything I want in a pair of truly-wireless earbuds (although Soundcore’s Space Series makes their case as an AirPods replacement). However, there are some great design features on the 1+’s. On the end of the earbuds is a singular flush push button. The button on each bud is outlined by a LED light that changes colors depending on the action being performed, a classy touch. The button has a variety of functions depending on the frequency and duration of presses, including voice assistant control. While I appreciated the subtlety of the button and the touch controls, I didn’t love the harsh noise the button echoed in my ear when pressed.
The battery on the Melomania 1+’s are a huge win for these earbuds! They were always charged and ready to go for whenever I used them. Officially, they average nine hours of playback time with up to 45 hours of life with the charging case. While I wish the case had wireless charging, the 1+’s have an exceptional battery. For their price range, Cambridge knocks it out of the park when it comes to battery life.
As a self-described Airpods Pro loyalist, the 1+’s don’t offer the same functionality and integration between hardware and software that I’m used to. However, Cambridge knows they aren’t going after Apple Airpods or Samsung Galaxy Buds customers. Going back to what consumers want: low price, high quality.
The Melomania 1+’s deliver a high quality listening experience with a great battery while maintaining a low price. For $59.99 on Amazon, Cambridge delivers earbuds that rise above their competition as some of the best sounding wireless headphones in their entry-level price range.