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The MEElectronic AF71, Apt-X, BT4.0, why no interest?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I'm a long time lurker who spends way too much time around here when I'm looking for a new set of headphones, which seems to be every 3-6 months for some reason :) Every time I've wanted some information on a set of headphones no matter how obscure I've been able to find at leave a couple of mentions on it on Head-Fi without fail.  At least it has been without fail until today.

 

I saw the MEElectronics sale over at Tech Woot and clicked on the link thinking some M6's might be a nice cheap replacement for the Westone UM1's my cat destroyed.  While browsing the selection I saw a set of MEE Bluetooth headphones I had never seen before, the Air-Fi Metro AF71's.  I have a pair of AF32's I like to use untethered around the house to listen to audiobooks and sometimes music when I'm feeling too lazy to break out something with a cord with better sound.  Problem with the AF32's is that the ear pads are hot as Hades and IMHO they are bigger, uglier, and more attention grabbing than I want when I walk around in public.  I've been wanting a set of bluetooth IEM's but I've quite frankly haven't been impressed with the offerings like the Jaybirds, backbeats, LG Tones, etc.  But the AF71's seem to check off several of the features I've been looking for in a new bluetooth IEM.

 

http://www.meelec.com/product_p/ep-af71-bk-mee.htm

 

-Apt-X!!! Yes! I've been wanting to try this with my Apt-X capable Note 2

-Bluetooth 4.0 with Multipoint

-Very small and light IEM style

-Price!  $67 from Woot.

 

Of course everything isn't all kittens and rainbows.  There are some negatives I see:

-4 hours of music playback.  Honestly will probably be just fine for day to day usage but will need to remember to charge every night after I use it.

-Proprietary charging cable always seems to be a target for my cat to eat.

-Tip selection.  Only comes with a couple of basic silicone domes.  Wonder if the tips from my M6p's will fit?  I prefer the bi-flange with the M6's or better yet Shure Olives (my most favorite tip ever thanks to Head-Fi).

 

After searching all over Head-Fi I was shocked to see there hasn't been a single mention of these headphones yet.  Since no one on here has posted any reviews or comments on these headphones yet I decided to just buy there site unseen without ant real information on them and give them a shot.  This is quite a rarity for me as I normally won't buy anything unless there is an avalanche of positive reviews on the product.  Interesting enough after about 40 minutes I'm still listed as the last wooter to woot this so there must not be a lot of demand for this style of bluetooth headphone.

post #2 of 7

I am interested to see how these sound - the low power BT 4.0 might make a difference in SQ - and the products that utilize this BT tech should have a smaller drain on the batteries. Keep us informed..

post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivabign View Post

I am interested to see how these sound - the low power BT 4.0 might make a difference in SQ - and the products that utilize this BT tech should have a smaller drain on the batteries. Keep us informed..

 

These actually don't sound that bad.  I personally feel they are on the level of the A161P.  They take parts of the A161P and add a few more dB of bass to the mix.  The treble can be a bit peaky, but does extend pretty nicely overall. Although they have APT-X, I do wish they supported the AAC codec as none of my Apple devices support APT-X (hopefully they'll be updated in the future to support this).

 

The main reason why these aren't as popular on Head-Fi is that they are BlueTooth, and BlueTooth only.  Many still see it as a gimmick and more of a hat trick.  Others still feel that you can't get true lossless streaming without wires. Then you also have the DAC -> BT DAC/AMP combo that may not sit well with everyone. 

 


Edited by tinyman392 - 7/18/13 at 11:41am
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

Got them today and I've spend the last hour listening to some AC/DC on my Galaxy Note 2 to break them in.  I know most around here aren't in to cord cutting but I do like to use Bluetooth, mainly when I'm walking through the airport, or getting my hands dirty in the garage or cooking in the kitchen.  I've been using some AF32's but the ear pads are hot as hades in the Alabama heat and can get uncomfortable working outside with them.  I've only had the AF71's a couple of hours but here are my initial impressions.

 

Positives:

Good quality feel to the assembly.

Nice positive click with the buttons.

Small size.

Nicely designed charging port.

All fits into a compact powder case style clam shell case you find with their IEM products.

Seem quite comfortable after over an hour straight of usage.  Not as comfortable as my Westone's or my M6's but comfortable none the less.

 

Negatives:

Poor tip selection.  Just S/M/L single flange just doesn't cut it for me.  I can't get a good seal so I can't judge sound quality yet.  Knew this coming in but I was hoping it could take M6 tips but the post design is different.

Took lots of fiddling to get them to fit with the "fins" that help lock them into your ear. Fins seem to be a must to keep them in the ear.

"Kinks" in the cord from packaging tend to snag on my collar.  Lets hope they eventually smooth out. Tucking them under the collar works better than having them lay on the collar.

Range seems to be about 60-70% of my AF32s  More than 5 steps away from my phone and they start cutting out even with good line of sight to my phone.

 

First impressions were they were all mids with some harsh uppers and really thin bass, but even after an hour of of listening the bass is starting to open up and the harshness is gone.  Much of the lack of bass can be attributed to the poor seal I'm getting with them right now.  AC/DC isn't quite the right music to bring these out of their shell, they feel more at home with some Miles Davis.  I'll report back after I've used them a good bit and had a chance to break them in. 

post #5 of 7

Just got these in the mail when I got home (Woot sale), and I concur with most of the reviews. Highs are a little flakey but mids and lows are pretty impressive from a bluetooth set. We'll see how they break in after a few hours. Haven't had a problem with the ear tips, but I usually don't. Cord is a fairly grabby rubber, but not microphonic which is nice.

 

Overall not bad for $68, and the first bluetooth headphone product I've actually been relatively impressed with. 

post #6 of 7

I just received my pair of these and was overall pleased with the sound and fit, but then I put my phone in my pocket and the buds became unusable.  I was shocked that these buds would cut out with such crappy range that having my phone in my pocket would make the bluetooth signal fail.

 

I'm disappointed in these for that reason alone sadly.

post #7 of 7
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