I’m a fan of 1More. Their product line continues to grow over time. Every model I’ve heard to date has been impressive in their own way. The triple driver earphone is still one of my favorite in-ear monitors I’ve ever experienced. While they haven’t dipped their toes in the pool of summit-fi gear I’m confident that will one day be a reality. Their product lines appeals to the masses and also hits a sweet spot with those who make sound quality a top priority. 1More adds a splash of audiophile tuning goodness to all of their earphones.
After finishing my review of their capsule hybrid IEM, I asked the 1More reps if they had anything new and exciting in terms of full sized headphones. When they offered to send a review sample of the MK802 bluetooth headphones I jumped on the chance. Let’s take a look and listen, and go over them with a comprehensive review.
I was borrowed a review sample of the MK802 in exchange for my honest opinion and review. I am in no way affiliated with 1More. I’d like to take this time to personally thank them for the opportunity to share my experience with the Head-Fi community.
The MK802 comes in a black sleeved box with gray and silver accents. A very nice photo of the headphones are featured on the front sleeve along with a list of some key features.
The back sleeve displays more features (in eight languages) and has a nice side shot of the headphones which shows the customizable bass settings. Also displayed is a screenshot of the 1More application (for Apple and Android) which works in conjunction with the MK802.
Removing the sleeve reveals a sharp black box that matches packaging from previous 1More products I’ve used. Removing the top I’m greeted with a view of the MK802 headphones resting in a foam/velvet inlay. A red box is cleverly placed above the headphones and contains the cables, stickers and owner’s manual. Like all 1More products, the packaging is pretty extraordinary and leaves owners with an impression of luxury beyond the asking price.
Specifications and Accessories Specifications
Frequency Range: 20-20,000 Hz
Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.1 with 30 foot range
Battery Life: 5 months standby, 26 hours talk time, 15 hours continuous music playback
Charging Time: 2 Hours
Driver: 40mm dynamic drivers (made from beryllium and PEEK)
Sensitivity: 104 dB
Rated Power: 50 mW
Weight: 244 grams
1X Pair 1More MK802 bluetooth headphones (options of red or blue)
1X Optional kevlar cable with mic/remote for wired operation
1X Microfiber drawstring carrying case
1X Micro USB charging cable and power adapter
1X Owner’s manual
Build and Design
Holding the MK802 in my hand, the first impression is that they seem lightweight and reasonably durable. The headphone’s frame is constructed from what 1More describes as synthetic titanium. Holding them in my hands it appears and feels similar to a flexible carbon fiber-like material. A satin blue (or red) coated finish gives the MK802 a really modern and attractive look. 1More logos and silver accents can be seen on each side of the headband and cups.
The headbands’ inner padding is a synthetic leather band with memory foam inside. The same can be said of the on-ear pads. The cups slide up and down to make room for various sized heads. To improve comfort there is a ball and socket design that allows the cups to oscillate in every direction and rest comfortably on the owner’s ears. Right and left channel markers are located on the inside of each cup.
All of the MK802 controls are located on the back side of the right cup. From top to bottom the buttons are Power, Volume up (long press for song change), Play/Pause/Answer calls/Hang up calls, Volume down (long press for song change), and the One more button (more on this in functionality). A bass adjustment switch is located on the left cup, allowing users to adjust the bass level their preference.
Overall I’m very happy with the build and design. It’s like 1More took elements from today’s most popular consumer headphones and tweaked it. The look is modern, hip and fresh. The finish is very cool and the silver accents accentuate the overall look.
Ergonomics (Fit, Comfort, Isolation)
The lightweight and slim profile for a full size headphone makes the MK802 a great travel companion. It was easy to wear them around my neck when not using them. The adjustable slides on each side in combination with the oscillating cups guarantees a fit for almost any size head. The closed back and nice seal (along with adjustable bass settings) were ideal for commuting.
The small pad circumference does create some minor caveats in terms of comfort and fit. Although the pads of the MK802 are very soft, the squeeze of the headband caused heat buildup and some mild discomfort when using them for long listening sessions. The MK802 fits more like an on-ear headphone. As with just about all on-ear headphones, I had to take a short break after a while to let my ears cool down and stop sweating. Although not a great big deal, let it be known that comfort isn’t the greatest. It’s on par with headphones with an on-ear design. I do wish the MK802 had a larger circumference.
The MK802 for the most parts is operated like most other bluetooth headphones. Power and pairing is standard. Volume and track change are the same as almost all Aptx bluetooth headphones. Play and pause (as well as phone functions) are also the same. Also on par with other bluetooth cans, the MK802 has a 3.5mm cable with microphone and remote (that works for both Android and Iphone) to use when battery is dead, or to be used when a non-bluetooth device is used.
Although basic functions are very similar 1More takes things a step further, offering its customers a unique and refreshing experience with its added features. Starting with the left cup 1More has implemented an adjustable bass dial. The dial tweaks the bass response from very lean, to relatively neutral, to bass forward. The settings are spot on and allow the headphones to appeal to just about any listening preference without altering midrange and treble frequencies. The switch is manual and not a product of digital sound processing, meaning it can be used with or without the headphones being turned on. I was torn between what setting I liked the most. Although I found the leanest setting virtually useless I enjoyed listening to them with the relatively neutral and bassy settings (depending on what I was listening to).
The 1More application can be downloaded from your phone’s app store and used in conjunction with your MK802 headphones. The app is an “all-in-one” solution for your headphones. From this app, you can use the apps “burn in” feature. There are four steps, in which the app will play a continuous loop of digital noise or music (depending on which step of burn-in you are at) to fully break in your headphones. Needless to say, this will be a handy resource for reviewers and audiophiles who want to burn in headphones other than the MK802. Aside from the burn in feature, the app can be used to replace your stock music player and play music files stored on your device. The equalizer built into the app works well.
The best aspect of the 1More app is the 1More button portion. From the menu tab, owners can assign the 1More button on their headphones to open a particular app. For me it was the Google music app. Once the button is assigned to an app, I could access that particular app by pressing the 1More button on the right cup of my headphones (when my phone screen was turned on). Although I consider this button is an awesome concept, it’s kind of silly to have to turn the screen on just to reach back to the 1More button to access the assigned app. It would be a lot nice if I could access the app without turning my screen on and unlocking my phone. Also, I found it annoying (and battery draining) to see that the 1More app runs constantly in the background (with or without the headphones being used) and showing on my phone’s pull down screen at all times. These are things that I assume could be fixed with an update.
Battery Life of the MK802 is probably the best I’ve seen from a bluetooth headphone. I listen to headphones maybe a couple hours (sometimes more, sometimes less) every day. I was able to charge the MK802 headphones and go AN ENTIRE WORK WEEK without having to charge these things. The MK802 is a boss when it comes to battery usage. A two hour charge gives me week’s worth of functionality, AWESOMESAUCE! When using the bluetooth function during phone calls, friends and family heard my voice coming through at a four out of five in terms of clarity which is excellent for a headphone of this style. I rate their voices similarly.
In terms of range, the MK802 actually lives up to its promised thirty foot range. After this distance the headphone’s signal will begin to break up, and will disconnect at around forty to forty-five feet.
Any 1More earphone I’ve heard hasn’t disappointed in the sound department, and the MK802 is not an exception. The beryllium and PEEK driver delivers excellent fidelity for a portable on-ear bluetooth headphone. Usually I would separate the wired/wireless sound comparisons, but they both sound good enough that I can generalize the two together. I didn’t necessarily notice a perceptual degradation of sound quality when switching from a wired (via my LG V20) to a wireless bluetooth connection.
Because these headphones have three distinct bass settings. Because of this I will give a generalization of each setting
I consider this setting useless. Unless you like listening to your music with virtually no bass, you will probably feel the same way. Although you can vaguely hear the bass, the whole signature is flat and lifeless with this setting. There is zero sub bass, very light and lean mid-bass, and minimal dynamics.
Neutral-ish Middle Setting
The middle bass setting sits smack dab between the other two other bass settings and renders the most balanced overall sound of the three. There is a light sub bass, nice tight punchy mid-bass that avoids the dreaded mid-bass bleed for the most part. If this was the only tuning I would say that they were very neutral and flirting with being a bit sterile at lower volumes and adequate and enjoyable at louder volumes. I enjoyed this setting for acoustic, live, jazz, classical and other various more mature genres of music.
I consider this to be modern genre music setting. The bass becomes bold and robust with plenty of soundstage depth and mild mid-bass bump that provides a slight resonance and increased dynamics. These headphones go from neutral (with the middle setting) to HiFi enjoyment in this setting. Although the bass is forward, entertaining and fun, and nowhere near some of the bassier (and sloppier sounding) bass forward cans I’ve heard.
Mids are natural and fun, with a decent sense of balance. The response isn’t necessarily razor sharp, nor do you get the same clarity, separation and dynamics of summit-fi desktop stuff. Still, for bluetooth headphones they are excellent, with nice balance and no radical spikes or dips to throw the sound off. Think along the lines of an Audio Technica M50 in terms of sound quality. The clarity and separations isn’t world class, but definitely one of the better performers for its price.
Treble is crisp and extends reasonably well. At the same time I don’t consider it to be harsh. Pronunciations of the letters S and T are present and not harsh. Sibilance is avoided for the most part. Cymbal crashes are in balance with the rest of the sound and rendered decently. Just like the midrange, you won’t get summit-fi performance, but it’s definitely one of the best things you can get for the money. Balance is decent with neighboring frequencies.
Soundstage and Imaging
This criteria is entirely dependant on what bass setting you use. With the leanest setting the soundstage and imaging suffers significantly. With the Neutral-sh bass setting soundstage is slightly mediocre but imaging is solid. With the bassy setting the soundstage is quite large thanks to the bass depth, but imaging takes a hit at the same time.
I have a few pairs of bluetooth headphones at this point, and the MK802 is my current favorite. The battery life is phenomenal, the sound quality rivals similarly priced wired models, the adjustable bass settings allows me to dial it in for whatever I’m listening to, and the added bells and whistles 1More included allows me to enjoy these even more than the average pair of bluetooth cans.
The MK802 does have a couple things that I think could be improved. An over-ear fit (instead of on-ear) would make them more comfortable for long listening sessions. Some firmware updates to their stock app would improve the user experience. Other than that, I really can’t say anything else. Let that be a testament to how good these headphones are. I usually have more suggestions for improvement.
When rating a product I have to take all criteria into account. The MK802 gets four and a half stars for design and build, four stars for ergonomics, four and a half stars for functionality, and four and a half stars for sound. A solid score, and another impressive product from 1More.