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Parrot's Zik blyetooth headphones. - Page 3

post #31 of 63
Bluetooth pairing is one device at a time. There is some delay in transmission, but how much depends partly on the transmitter. Some are faster than others. I have one that we use with a camera during video shoots to feed audio to our sound guy who tried the Ziks. He complains he's out of sync, like a lip sync issue. I don't think that will be good for your playing. You can always use the Ziks wired, though. They do warm up a bit, but no worse than any full ear desing. On ear phones are always much cooler in temp.
post #32 of 63
Originally Posted by Passive Dollar View Post

Well I recently got one of these and I have to agree, the noise cancelation is pretty good. Though one thing that bugs me is that the vocals sound very fuzzy compared to my ATH-W3Ks, but its a 1k price difference plus the bluetooth so, what can I say... Otherwise It's Wonderful

I get this effect with cymbals (see the comment about flac) mostly, I have maybe 50+ hours on them I think they are getting better OR I'm translating better. Whichever it is the effect is the same. I seem to prefer them with the dsp off but cant object to the quality when on. Not really a surprise that flac format sounds better the losssy formats.

The android app was upgraded; now supports jellybean and the help section is now in english out of beta

post #33 of 63
Originally Posted by ri_toast View Post

I get this effect with cymbals (see the comment about flac) mostly, I have maybe 50+ hours on them I think they are getting better OR I'm translating better. Whichever it is the effect is the same. I seem to prefer them with the dsp off but cant object to the quality when on. Not really a surprise that flac format sounds better the losssy formats.

The android app was upgraded; now supports jellybean and the help section is now in english out of beta

good to hear they are making nessicary imporvements! These sound very cool :D I love to see that things are getting beta for teh software!

post #34 of 63
Does anyone care to share updates after using them for a couple of months? Any wear or other issues/concerns?
post #35 of 63
*bump* considering something similar to this for mobile/work usage.
post #36 of 63

Version 1.8 for the AS Suite has come out and it makes these cans sound phenomenal (for Bluetooth)!  My listening preference is 180 on Concert Hall with eq being flat.  YMMV, but this thing was designed to be as good as the software and with version 1.8, this thing is very very good.


My only gripe, and this is MY gripe because I think I have weird shaped right ear or something...But my right earlobe hurts a little after long use.  The rest of my ear and my left ear are totally comfortable though.  


If you don't mind tweaking your sound stage, the SQ on these can be as phenomenal as you want it to be.  If you deny the opportunity to enjoy wireless music, you're really missing out on this one.


User-tweaking sound stage/quality via software on headphones could very well be the future.  Practically an audiophile's dream.


Also, on a side note, there is now a Windows Phone 8 version of the AS Suite and it works good too.  I can use it with my Lumia 1020 now.  But my main source is still my iPhone 5S.

Edited by Jouten - 12/6/13 at 12:59pm
post #37 of 63

I picked up a pair of these at the airport. Was actually looking for a wired pair of noise-suppressing headphones and looking sceptically at some ridiculously overpriced Senns when the sales guy said 'Wait, we're selling something that's really good and cheaper, I'll let you try mine'.  I was very impressed.  You shouldn't expect audiophile quality sound from them of course, after all they're bluetooth active noise-cancelling headphones.  But for travel I find them pretty much perfect.


The good:


- I store music on my Mac laptop, a Samsung tablet and my Galaxy S3; apart from the laptop you can easily install an app on the other devices that gives you control over all the features such as the 'soundscape'.  Very intuitive and works great.


- Bluetooth pairing is quick and painless, also works great with NFC on my phone.

- Noise cancellation is actually pretty good and they have a feature that somehow detects if you're talking or someone is speaking to you and then switches off the noise cancelling so the voice comes through.

- Very intuitive controls:  just slide a finger vertically over the right ear pad to control volume, horizontally to skip or return to a track in a playlist, tap to pause or to resume (it also detects when you take them off and then automatically pauses/resumes once you put them back on).

- Their 'soundscape' feature actually works very well.

- Decent, app-controlled EQ with a number of presets as well as manual configuration

- Sound quality is good, using the correct EQ/soundscape combo it's very good considering what it is.  I find it quite lively, treble is perhaps a bit too accentuated at times and transparency and resolution are definitely not up to what a good quality conventional headphone can deliver.  I find the treble a bit too accentuated.  Let me state it this way:  it's sufficiently good that I also use them while laying on my couch reading a book late night when I feel too lazy to haul over my usual gear.

- Good range with the bluetooth connection

- No obtrusively flickering or strong LED's in sight meaning you won't look like a toolbag wearing them in the dark

- Build quality is good, they look and feel solidly made and tolerances (eg for the micro-usb connector) are tight, no wiggle, no play.

- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder but I find them aesthetically pleasing and carry comfort is good (at least, I wore them essentially all the time over a 9 hour flight)


The less than good:


- With noise cancellation on, battery life is about 6 hours and they use a proprietary Li-ion battery in the left ear pad. They do provide a USB-micro USB cable that can be used for charging but the device you wish to charge from has to have a USB port, meaning forget about charging them from a tablet.  O.t.o.h. charging on the plane was not an issue at all and you can use them while they charge (cable is long enough).

- With noise cancellation on but no music playing, there's a rumble/hiss on the right side.  Not sure if this is unavoidable or not but it's not really bothersome either.

- Apps for android and iOS but as far as I could see, no app  that works on OS/X, meaning that you have to set the configuration from your mobile device and then it'll also be applied to whatever you listen to on your laptop.This also means that when connected to the laptop via bluetooth, there's absolutely no way to see battery charge status.

- Switching between devices means turning bluetooth off on the coupled device, switching off the cans, then re-coupling to the device you wish to connect to.


Conclusion:  I thank the salesperson for pointing them out to me, they certainly up the game for the competition and pricing is (imho) good, I paid 283 EUR inclusive of taxes, which converts to about 380 USD I believe.  Next time I pass customs I'll reclaim the 21% tax that was levied. To me they're quite perfect for my frequent plane trips.  Haven't tried the phone features yet.

post #38 of 63
Headphones that are both wireless and noise cancelling are born with two strikes against them, as audiophiles state that each feature corrupts the purity of sound. Maybe, but...

I fear that I have become a headphone addict as I purchased and tried various headphones while waiting for these. I purchased the Zik by Starck at Brookstone 18 months ago, where I could listen to them first. I had been following them with interest (lust?) since they won Best of CES in January, 2012.

I have diligently compared these Ziks to headphones purchased in the intervening 18 months:

* Sennheiser HD 598 over the ear corded ($180 at Amazon);
* Sennheiser PXC BT310i on the ear Bluetooth noise cancelling ($230 at Amazon - won the HiFi best headphone in 2011);
* Klipsch s4i earbuds ($70);
* Apple In-ear headphones with remote and mic (the two-driver in each earpiece one, $70 from The Apple Store).

In short, I love the Ziks.

To compare, I used the first 90 sec of The Band of Heathens "You're Going to Miss Me When I'm Gone," with its deep drum (do you hear a distinctive twang or just the boom?), its brushed cymbal (do you hear individual bristles on the cymbal as well as the overall 'shuff'?), its similar-but-different vocalists on first and second verse, and its bass glissando on the third verse. Gentle reader, I spent an entire evening listening to this 90 sec of music on four headphones for you! But...

I fear I am not much of an audiophile. I could easily detect differences among each of the five headphones in each of these areas. I might be able, in a blind test, to guess which headphone was in use. I definitely could not determine a preference... like a succulent orange and perfect apple, each was good, and each was different, but none were preferable, despite my very best efforts to compare on each of the features of that song I used.

However, the Zik also caused me to hear nuances I had not heard with the others.

Furthermore, I could compare its noise cancellation with the Sennheiser PXC BT310i (Zik markedly better); its comfort with both the over-ear Sennheiser and the on-ear Sennheiser (Zik more comfortable), and its Bluetooth connect capabilities to the Sennheiser PXC (Sennheiser connects more easily with PCs and the Sennheiser Bluetooth dongles one needs to add Bluetooth to the iPod Classic and TVs; Zik connects well only to the iPod Touch, iPhone 4, and iPad 1 (and I asume the other iPads) and is very fussy, gets driver error messages, or does not connect at all to the others... Sennheiser connects to these Apple products easily as well).

I prefer the cloth bag that the Zik comes in to the hard case of the Bose, as the bag can be folded away to very small size when empty.

I much enjoy the iPhone App that controls the Zik (noise cancellation on/off, reverberance and sound stage width, and 7-band equalizer, as well as battery level). They are great diversions, though I am quite happy listening with all of these features off (no NC, no sound stage effect, flat equalization). The comfortably-padded headphones insulate nearly as much sound with NC off as the Sennheiser on-ear suppresses while on, and as much as the in-ear headphones.

Cost? A step up from those I have been comparing it to, but not that much more than the popular Beats Studio Over-Ear by Dr Dre ($300), which I have tried and found of similar sound, comfort, and noise-suppression quality, but with no Bluetooth or advanced features (touch, auto off when removed, phone use).

Looks? In the eye of the beholder. I find them Great! The flash of orange within the headband, the flat black, the weighty piece over the head, the smooth appearance are all appealing to me.

In short, headphones with both wireless operation and noise cancellation are few and far between, perhaps 5% of the headphone models. To my mind, of the one I had in hand and could compare directly, this is the better.

So my biggest complaint? They are not waterproof, which means that if I take a shower, I have to take them off. Well, you know the daily shower is becoming a thing of the past, as we confront our water shortage...
post #39 of 63

After owning them for 2+ weeks and some extended listening sessions on more flights than  I care for:  all the positives I mentioned in my previous remarks remain (amazing sound, especially because they're bluetooth and noise cancelling).


Two annoying aspects:


- Battery life is really about 6 hours max, that's simply too short and not every plane has an easy reach USB-port that can be used for charging them.

- There's an app allowing you to modify settings and see battery status, that works fine on my android devices but there's no such thing allowing you to do the same when coupled to a mac and switching devices involves killing bluetooth on the device you're connected to, switching off the headphones, then switching on bluetooth on the 'new' device, switching the cans back on and searching for them.  This process doesn't always work flawlessly.  Coupling via NFC with my Galaxy S3 (latest OS) doesn't work either.


The battery issue is the most annoying imo, if they could somehow extend battery life and provide an app that runs on a mac then this setup would be just perfect for travel/in hotels etc as the sound is really great, beating some more expensive wired on/over ear 'audiophile' headphones imo.

post #40 of 63

I have to agree with the above post.  The battery issue is killing me.  Although I have seen some alternatives mentioned for externally charging a second battery, which I am considering.  Here's a link to a charger that I have read works: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/digipower-battery-charger/1319445.p?id=1219048898449#

post #41 of 63
Originally Posted by Xenophon View Post


The battery issue is the most annoying imo


Can you buy a second battery?


Also, I don't want to sound ridiculous, but can you use these "wired" or is it "Bluetooth only"?


I'm interested in the idea of using these with my iPod classic. Possible?


And the burning question:


If it's possible to plug it into any source without wireless, can I still use noise cancelling?

post #42 of 63
Yes, purchasing extra batteries is not a problem but afaik you need to recharge while it's in the headphone, thee's no separate charger. Listening wired is possible, either connected via usb or the headphone out so the last option would work with the ipod but be warned, the cable is short. I'm pretty sure you can still use noise cancelling while connected via wire but can't confirm as I only listen via bluetooth and my wire is in Delhi while I'm in Japan. But they're really meant for bluetooth listening, if you won't use that functionality then I'd consider another product. I don't think the ipod classic has bluetooth.. And the eq settings work via an app, pretty sure these will only be accessible via bluetooth. Amazing sound via bluetooth though, better than seriously more expensive senns I've heard.
post #43 of 63

Thanks! Perfect response.


How's the comfort? 

post #44 of 63
No complaints, have worn them over extended periods and on ear comfort is very good. Occasionally there's a bit of discomfort on the top of your skull as the headband is quite hard/slender. But typically this happens when i toss around in an airplane seat. No deal breaker at all for me. They're not too warm either but then I tolerate heat extremely well and rarely sweat. And my wife tells me they don't leak sound. It was an impulsive buy when I got them but I'm happy, except for the battery life thing. Would purchase again, knowing what I know now.
post #45 of 63

Thanks mate, great impressions and you've been incredibly helpful.


Finally, for flights:


Would you recommend any product over the Parrot Zik?

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