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The Creative & Elegant Headphone

A Review On: MEElectronics Atlas On-Ear Headphones

MEElectronics Atlas On-Ear Headphones

Rated # 38 in On-Ear
See all 3 reviews
Review Details:
Audio Quality
Comfort
Design
Value
Purchased on:
SkyBleu
Posted · Updated · 1566 Views · 8 Comments

Pros: Great Design, Good Pricing, Strong Bass, Decent Detailing, Lightweight, Portable, Detachable Cable

Cons: Clarity, Treble, Overall Definition and Refinement

Review on the MEElectronics Atlas

 


Introduction

Fellow Head-Fi'ers, this is my review on the MEElectronics Atlas (Carbon), which was a headphone that I wanted to try out as I was in need for a set of headphones for on-the-go purposes. 

 

I had bought these cans from my local audio store, Noisy Motel, in which I shall give a shoutout to them for  their great service to me over these past few months on a few of my purchases. I am in no way affiliated with them, but I do wish to express to my fellow Australians, that these guys provide amazing customer service, and have my recommendation.

 

For this review, I am thinking on using a new layout that goes straight to the point, as opposed to my usual waffling. Hopefully, it should work out for the better, and much easier on the eyes of the reader. 

 

Anyways... That aside; onto my little Pictorial Unboxing

 

 

 


Unboxing

 

Here are a few quick snaps of the unit and its accessories when I unboxed it. Overall, an elegant, yet premium feeling box that housed the regular accessories, such as a carry pouch, removable cable, and the headphones themselves. 

 

Pictorial Unboxing! (Click to show)

Box (Front)

Box (Back)

Headphones!

Carry Pouch

Detachable Cable with Analogue Volume Control and Mic (Apologies for the oddly-focused picture:)

 


Review
 

Specifications

(Sourced from MEElectronics)

 

For this review, the majority, if not all of my literature will be in the forms of dot points for the ease of reading. 
 

 

Build Quality & Design/Function Factor

  • Construction (Consists of a strong plastic build which feels like it will last; slightly flexible and is durable for the time being)
  • Lightweight and highly portable
  • Designs (I found it to be very sleek and creative in what they did, and is very appealing/eye-catching)
    CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 90

    (From left to right respectively: Carbon, Sky, Fantasy, Orion, Diamond)

  • IML printed graphics (I did not find it very special and dramatic as the manufacturer's had made it out to be; just a standard design in my eyes)

     

  • Folding for portability (Has nice clicks as to when they are folded; very portable in this form)

  • Headband size adjuster (Strong clicks can be heard when adjusting the size/height, and notches are visible for OCD people such as myself:)

    (Retracted)

    (Extended)

  • Vented earpads  (Very soft and plush, and allows less sweating occurring than usual)

  • Headband (Not sure if it's just pleather or real leather, but it is sure super soft and comfortable! Made from the same pleather/leather material used for the ear pads)

 

  • Flat cable (Not a fan of flat cables, as they are less durable than rounded cables, but they're holding up fine so far)
  • Mic functionality (Works as should, and is pretty clear in terms of sound)
  • Analogue volume control (I like this design as it offers me the ability to quickly reduce the volume if someone is talking to me, or if my music is too loud - Also works with all applications)
  • Carry pouch (Nice materials used; feels durable and has the ability to protect the headphones inside from water in small amounts, eg. rain)

 

Sound Quality

  • Decent levels of detail for a $100 headphone - it's there, but not as obvious as it would be in higher-leveled headphones. More detail would be good, but for the price, it is pretty impressive.

  • Musicality is there - Has good PRaT and flow to the music to make it enjoyable for on-the-go purposes, when paying the closest attention to detail isn't the number one priority.

  • Tonality and signature is slightly warm, by the slightest, in which it has a super-thin veil cloaking the mids and treble. In no way did this make the vocals sound utterly blanketed; just by a minute amount. Also would be considered so, due to the narrowness of the soundstage. 

  • Has a weighty low-end, with a vibrant sub-bass and strong, bodied bass punch. Can be perceived as overly bassy, otherwise known as "potential basshead material".

  • Vocals have a minute veil and are forward sounding, so it can give the appearance of a minimal "muffled" sound, but it still has good body, and fullness. It's not rich, but it is far from thin sounding.

  • Instrumental separation is not so bad on these cans - enough to distinguish each instrument (almost), but not enough to detect the "layers" in between each instrument. 

  • Sounds clustered by the tiniest amount from the narrowness of the soundstage. This congestion is not emphasized, but it should be noted that the soundstage is not as wide as it could be.

  • Treble is there in its crispy, clean ways, but could do with more detail and extension. It is not as bright as it could be to define the headphones as a neutral sounding headphone as the bass to treble ratio is rather one-sided - leaning to the bassy side more. This takes away the sparkle in the highs. A bit more emphasis in the upper-mid range could easily fix this (even things out). 

  • Clarity is not the clearest out there, as this may be due to the treble not extending as high up and having that detail and crispiness.

  • The sound is relatively clean for a portable, budget headphone, but could certainly do with a cleaner sound. This may have been the result of the sub-bass being predominant

  • Soundstage isn't very wide, and is rather narrow. The overpowering bass may contribute to this as it makes the sound much closer to your head due to the strong bass punch.

  • Has good depth from the deep bass produced.

  • Lacks definition and refinement, as it still has plethora of unsmoothed edges, which is due to the absence of micro-detailing, which differentiates it from higher-leveled headphones. Could do with much more information, and positioning/imaging. Sounds rather linear as of this. 

 

(I know some of you people out there prefer the lengthy, audio descriptions on what the headphones sound like, but I think the shortened version of it with the main key points is more easily noted. If this format is too confusing and you guys prefer the old format, do let me know:)

 

Conclusion

Ultimately, I believe the MEElectronics Atlas is a great sounding, portable set of headphones, as it works beautifully when in a rush, or just on-the-go, since it has the melodic flow that makes the music enjoyable. Only when paying close attention, such as being at home, would these headphones show its flaws in sections of which it lacks. But really, when you're on the train, bus, or going to the gym (and what not), all these minor details are of the past, as you just want to hear the song at hand, and focus on whatever it is that you are doing. These headphones are my workout/gym headphones, and for that purpose, they perform exceptionally well - enough to get the blood pumping, and are sturdy enough to live through drops and heavy usage.

 

Now the important question...Would I recommend them? Of course I would - only with the exception that you'd be using it for the purposes I had mentioned above.

 

PS: Any errors and/or flaws that you may spot in my write-up that I might have missed, or if there is/are something you don't quite agree on - please do inform me about it via PM, or in the comments below.
 
 
 

Over & Out,

SkyBleu-

 

 

8 Comments:

Great review - I just got myself a pair and agree they're really nice sounding portable headphones for the price. The isolation isn't the best though. I saw in another thread you said you modded the ear pads to improve this. Could you let me know where you got the ear pads you used for this, and how you attached them? Also, did the new pads decrease the sound leakage out of the headphones, and did they worsen the sound signature or quality in any way? Cheers
Hi @bobbooo,
Thank you:)
 
I would first up like to say that the ways in which I acquired the pads were rather "random". 
The oval-shaped pads that you see on the top, is actually taken from a fake pair of Beats Studio, in which I gutted the pad just to use the soft pleather material (the oval-shape). The inside pad that sits on top of the stock pads (overlaps it), is a Sony MDR-V150 ear pad (or any small, circular small Sony ear pad in that respect. 
 
I attached both of them by just overlapping them, as you would with a regular ear pad, over the original pads. The new pads surely did decrease the sound leakage, and as of the sound signature, the bass became more prominent and the sound was more distant (soundstage increased, with the loss of some richness in the vocals). I personally didn't mind the losses in sound quality, as to me, they were just an average headphone for on the go purposes, where sound quality isn't he number one priority, but the isolation is. 

Hope I could help:)
Thanks for the detailed answer! I think I'll try to find a cheap pair of replacement Sony pads then.
@bobbooo No worries!
 
@Bansaku Thanks. 

I guess pad mods do benefit us in ways, such as comfort, isolation and expanding the soundstage, but it also hinders us from the original sound of the headphones - which isn't always necessarily a good thing.
 
Now as of your critiquing:) I do appreciate that  you picked up on things that I may have not put in as much thought as I should have. 
 
After spending more time with the unit, I do agree that they're not as dark and warm as I had originally thought. I believe, and I guess you could say that this is an excuse, as when I first got the Atlas, I also had a lot of bright-sounding gear around, which had probably lead to me saying they're warm/dark, and treble-lacking. 
 
Before I wrote the mini-review, I had spent approximately a week with them.
 
So, as of now, after owning the unit for some time (50 hours + usage), and trying it as I type this, I will include the differences down below, and modify my review. :) 
 
- Although I don't find them to be as dark as I did, I am still finding them to sound warm by the slightest. This may be due to the sub-bass being more prominent than usual, and that the soundstage (with stock ear pads) is rather narrow, so there may be the tiniest sense of congestion (This is probably me being subjective/opinionated as I'm used to wide staged headphones). Nonetheless, the bass still punches nicely, and cleanly as well. 
 
- Now for the treble, yes, I do agree they're pretty crisp, and clean sounding for a $100 headphone. Maybe not lacking as I had originally stated, but it is definitely present after more time spent listening (I know, I should have altered my review when I noticed, but just got too lazy, haha). I personally think, to consider them bright-bright, the highs would have to extend a bit further up with more detail to them. In comparison to something like my HP200's or HD600's, these just don't hit that high mark that the other two do, and in saying so, the other two has more spark and crispiness to it which makes it refreshing for me, although I understand others will find it a bit too bright. If you've tried out some of the AKG headphones, you'd find that the treble is that crisp, that it almost sounds fatiguing; because that's how I found it. 
 
- I, if I remember correctly from when I owned the M80's, I believe the M80's leaned a touch warm, but had silky smooth, liquid sounding mids. Sadly, as you said, mids aren't your thing, so I can see why you'd rate the Atlas around the M80 level. ;) 
 
But really, all in all, I'd say that how we perceive the audio is dependent on what we've heard in the past. Like for me, when I first started "audiophile-ing", my first IEMs were the T-Peos H-100. They were probably what made me form an interest for bright sounding equipment, as they were, and still are, the brightest, clearest IEMs I have ever heard - and I have experienced some top-tier IEMs/Headphones before. 
 
Anyways, I do apologize for not reviewing the unit...
Good review (as always), and thank you for your info on how you modded the pads; I too mod'd mine using a pair of over-ear pads from a pair of Sony headphones, sewed a sinch around the seam and placed them on top on the pads. Besides the soundstage drastically expanding, the bass became more warm, less thundering, and the vocals really smoothed out but some strange harmonics (due to the extra air space) made listening somewhat annoying.
 
I do have some critiquing about your review that seems to be at odds with what myself and others have said in their reviews about the Atlas. I know you know great sound judging by your impressive (awesome) line-up of headphones you own. So forgive me for questioning some of your review.
 
Tonality and signature is slightly warm, and leans a touch dark ", " Clarity is not the clearest out there, as this may be due to the lack of treble ".  
 
The first thing I noticed when I first listened to the Atlas was how bright they were, with impressive bass and sub-bass. After burn-in I brought the Atlas to a family event to hear their opinions on what I think is an impressive set of mini-cans for under $100. My Father (musician, editor TV/radio) and my brother (DJ, mixing/recording) were blown away by how crisp and sparkly the treble was while at the same time powerful bass. One brother and my niece actually said they were too trebly! I do agree the mids are a teeny-tiny bit veiled (sometimes), but I find they are very forward and very non-fatiguing; I hate mids as they (usually) annoy my ears but the Atlas surprised me quite a bit. I actually enjoy them. Treble is very crispy and has great sparkle. I mostly listen to metal and classical/instrumental so great treble is more of a seller for me vs mid and bass. I will say this, compared to Sen HD 449, Monster Inspiron/DNA/N-Tune, and Sony MDRV55R, Beats HD, this has LOADS of treble. I will go so far as to say that the Atlas sounds a lot better than the mentioned in regards to treble, including the HD 449.
 
How long have you used them for before you wrote your mini-review and has your opinion of the changed? I too found the Atlas to be lacking treble and average mids at first, but after 20 hours of burn-in the Atlas really opened up. I never gave myself a chance to have mental burn-in as I only listened to them once per week for about 2h minutes each time (the length of the albums Greatest Video Game Music Vol 1+2 by the London Philharmonic orchestra). Each week I noticed the sound getting better and better. By my ears I dare say they are a contender for the V-Moda M80.
Seems like my last line got cut off. What I meant to say was:
 
Anyways, I do apologize for not reviewing the unit from a normal perspective, as opposed to a high-expectation perspective. :)
Whoa I went to edit and and accidentally deleted the comment. I was going to add considering your headphone line-up you are spoiled with awesome sound. :)
 
Anyway, thanks for the quick reply. Your further explanation of 'bright' was appreciated. Yes, they aren't bright-bright by any means, but for their price range and their intended competition, wonderful; I wouldn't dare compare the Atlas to any audiophile grade headphones.
Haha, all good. :)
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