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Brainwavz BLU-100 Bluetooth IEMs

Rating:
3.70833/5,
  1. thatBeatsguy
    BLU-Tooth on a Budget
    Written by thatBeatsguy
    Published May 31, 2015
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Excellent price-to-performance ratio. Includes features you'll usually see on more expensive sets.
    Cons - Too much midbass focus. 4-hour battery life.
     

    Intro

    SAM_0065.jpg
     
    Before I begin, I would like to thank Audrey at Brainwavz for providing a review sample of the BLU-100 in exchange for my honest opinion. Please note that I am neither an affiliate of Brainwavz nor any of its staff, nor am I being paid to write this review. Also, please take all following opinions with a grain of salt. All opinions expressed in the following review are strictly my own unless otherwise specified, and all pictures are taken and owned by me.
     
    Wow…okay, so it’s been quite a while since I last got a review up. I’ve been pretty busy the past weeks that I haven’t been able to write something up in so long. By now, however, things are finally getting back in full swing, and DB Headphones is back in business!
     
    Anyways, this week we’re yet gain taking a look at Brainwavz’ latest offering – a Bluetooth IEM. Now, to audiophiles like me, Bluetooth is by far the last thing we would take a look at if we’re looking for a new earphone or headphone by sound quality alone – the wireless audio transmission at this point just isn’t advanced enough to provide the same audio quality wired connections offer (just like how wired is better than wireless in gaming peripherals). But having already seen what Brainwavz is capable of doing, I was more than interested in taking up Audrey’s offer to review these new IEMs. Will they stand up to their wired counterparts? Read on and find out!
     
     

    == Aesthetics ==

    Packaging, Accessories

    SAM_0068.jpg
     
    The package I received was a pre-production package, so I didn’t get to receive the BLU-100 inside full retail packaging. However, all of the accessories which are to be found in the retail release are all here, which includes:
    1. 3 pairs of silicone eartips
    2. a pair of Comply S-400 foam eartips
    3. a pair of silicone fins (more on this later)
    4. a USB to Micro USB charging cable
    5. a nifty Velcro cable tie
    6. and their signature red-and-black hard zipper case
     
    As always, Brainwavz delivers with an impressive amount of accessories which are sure to prove useful even outside of the BLU-100’s main uses.
     
     

    Design, Build, Microphonics

    SAM_0085.jpg
     
    Brainwavz employed full-metal housings for their BLU-100 IEMs, which is particularly impressive especially at their retail price of just under $50. The cable, although a little thin, feels quite solid and is properly relieved at both ends. Its three-button remote is situated by the right earpiece, and the Micro USB charging port is situated in the right earpiece, protected by a plastic cap. Build-wise there’s little to complain about if at all.
     
    However, the BLU-100’s housings do leave me wanting. I don’t particularly like their barrel-shaped housings, not just because they look rather crude, but because they stick out of one’s ears quite a bit, which makes them very uncomfortable when laying on one’s side. A good example of what I’m looking for is the Plantronics Backbeat Go 2, which prevents that problem while still retaining a sleek, compact form factor. There’s also its flat cable, which, despite having little to no cable noise, is quite long and does trail around my back quite a bit – to make matters worse, there also isn’t any cable cinch to keep the excess cable at bay. Of course, these are all just personal gripes for me, but the bulky housings can translate into fit issues for some people (luckily I don’t happen to be one of those people).
     
     

    Fit, Comfort, Isolation

    The BLU-100, as I stated earlier, fits perfectly fine in my ears, staying secure while running or playing sports. The BLU-100 employs a shallow fit, which translates to somewhat below-average isolation. Then again, once the music starts playing, that doesn’t become much of an issue. They’re also quite comfortable in my ears with the Comply foam eartips, although I can’t really say the same for the silicone eartips as they don’t really create a proper seal in my ears. However, I found that I get headaches from the BLU-100 after only 15 minutes of listening. I still haven’t pinpointed what causes this, although at this point I’m guessing it’s the housings themselves, which seem to be completely unvented – and that’s a pretty big deal for a couple reasons (see side note below).
     
    (Side Note: Why is the BLU-100’s unvented design such a big deal? Well, the BLU-100 employs a dynamic driver, which is in layman’s terms your common IEM driver. However, dynamic drivers require at least some degree for ventilation for proper airflow as these drivers move air by design [just like speakers and headphones]. Without proper venting, the only air it moves is the one left inside your ear canals – and with the existing pressure inside the ears, it can cause undue pressure in them, which translates to the headaches I suffer while wearing them.)
     
     

    Specs

     
    Headphone Type
    Closed-back Bluetooth in-ear monitor (straight-down only)
    Bluetooth Features
    Bluetooth 4.0
    HFP, HSP, A2DP, and AptX support
    CSRBC8645 chipset
    Operating Range
    Up to 30 feet/10 metres
    (Note: this figure only applies to a perfectly open space with the BLU-100 having a direct line of sight to the source device. It does still reach a comfortable 20 feet inside a more closed-in area.)
    Battery
    60 mAh rechargeable battery (charged via Micro USB port)
    2 hours charging time
    Battery Life
    4 hours music play time
    4 hours talk time
    100 hours standby time
    Accessories
    Hard carry case
    3x set black single-flange silicone eartips (S/M/L)
    1x set black silicone fins (M)
    1x set Comply S-400 premium foam eartips (M)
    Features
    CVC echo and noise cancellation (microphone only)
    iPhone battery indicator (Preview)
    2-device memory
    Voice prompt user-interface:
    Power On/Off | Pairing | Connecting | Battery Low

     
    The BLU-100’s specs are mostly a hit for me – for one you’ve got Bluetooth 4.0 with AptX support, which is good, but on the other hand you’ve got a measly 4-hour battery life that makes the BLU-100 only end up being more of a burden than a convenience if you’re looking to use it all day. Outside of battery life, though, they do have pretty impressive features and specs that you only find in Bluetooth sets set at much higher price points than the BLU-100. Take the Backbeat GO 2 I mentioned earlier as an example – they’ve both got pretty similar specs, but the GO 2 is priced at $100 – over twice the price of the BLU-100. So when you take that into consideration, the BLU-100 is actually much better than it is at first glance.
     
     

    Connectivity

    The BLU-100’s pairing process is particularly straightforward. Hold the centre button until it powers on and continue pressing it for 1 or 2 seconds. A voice prompt will say “Pairing,” then will transmit a Bluetooth signal which your phone should be able to see. This is what it looks like on the Bluetooth selection screen on my iPod:
     
    [​IMG]
     
     
    I’ve highlighted the BLU-100 in red and as you can see, it’s named BD-121 (That could be because it’s a pre-production unit. I don’t really know why.). Just select it from the list of devices and you’re good to go!
     
    The signal of the BLU-100 has been choppy, from reading other reviewers’ opinions. However, I personally haven’t experienced those random drop-outs myself. Only the common phone-in-your-pocket drop-outs happen (which is a normal occurrence) but otherwise they perform without any major problems. (However, just to clarify, my Bluetooth setup is comprised of a 5th-generation iPod Touch or an iPad 3, with only the Bluetooth on (no Wi-Fi). Turning off WiFi and/or cellular data and leaving only the Bluetooth signal elimintaes a huge percentage of random drop-outs.)
     
     

    Microphone

    I found the BLU-100’s microphone to be pretty subpar in quality after testing the microphone over a Skype call. Disregarding the general call quality over my local internet, I found my voice sounded unnatural and distant. I found the latter to be caused by the actual positioning of the microphone, which actually points away from me instead of the other way around. Compared to the Plantronics Backbeat 903+ (an old Bluetooth headset I own) the 903+ sounds more like you’re talking over the actual phone than the BLU-100 – not that much clearer, but definitely closer, which does help to hear the other person better.
     
    Well, I guess that’s about it for the features and whatnot; now, let’s move on to the sonic part of things!
     
     

    == Sound ==

    Equipment, Burn-in

    The source equipment I used for this review is my iPad 3 and a 5th-generation iPod Touch. As the BLU-100 is a Bluetooth IEM, there are no amps or DACs in between. The eartips being used in this review are the included Comply S-400 foam eartips. The EQ software being used is TuneShell (a free app) running on the iPad 3. As always, my test tracks are available here, although I will link specific songs in the assessment for a more direct point of reference.
     
    The BLU-100 has been given at least 50 hours of burn-in prior to writing this review. So far, I haven’t noticed any differences in the sound, so without wasting any more time, let’s get right to it!
     
     

    Sound Quality

    SAM_0083.jpg
     
    The BLU-100 has a pretty generic sound signature, taking the form of a consumer-oriented V-shaped sound that you hear in at least 60% of all headphones and IEMs out there. Honestly there’s really nothing new from a general overview, but listen in closer and you’ll find some things that separate them from your usual fare.
     
    Bass:
    First off, let’s start with the bass. The BLU-100 delivers quite nicely in this regard, with an impactful punch which should satisfy most consumers’ bass criteria – however I wouldn’t go so far as to say they’re basshead-friendly (Fox Stevenson – Manage). In any case, the low-end is pretty focused around the mid-to-upper bass (60-100+ Hz), which makes them sound overly full and warm (Daft Punk – Fragments of Time). Then again, they do still have quite a bit of detail down there, which really surprised me as the BLU-100 managed to reproduce the heavy bass notes on this next song (Daft Punk – Lose Yourself to Dance) fairly well.
     
     
    Midrange:
    I’ll be honest, I was quite surprised by the midrange performance of the BLU-100. Despite being a very consumer-sounding earphone, Brainwavz still managed to wring out some degree of clarity to the midrange, rendering vocals and instruments about as well as the wired and slightly more expensive Brainwavz S0 (Eagles – Desperado). To be honest, I would actually go as far as to say they sound slightly better than the S0 thanks to the BLU-100’s more pronounced treble.
     
     
    Treble:
    Speaking of treble, let’s talk about that. The BLU-100 has a nice, crisp treble that brings out just enough snap and sizzle for cymbals, claps, and high-energy synths, but also remains nice and smooth, never going to the point where they get irritating to the ears. The treble also adds a nice tactility to pianos, which otherwise would’ve turned them into a confused mess of notes (Yiruma - Reminiscent).
     
     
    Soundstage/Presentation:
    The BLU-100’s soundstage is what you would expect from an IEM at $50, but in a compact Bluetooth package. Here it again draws a parallel to the wired Brainwavz S0 in terms of soundstage and imaging capabilities, both of which perform very well. The BLU-100’s got an average soundstage and good separation, which helps with more complex recordings (Daft Punk – Touch). However, don’t expect too much out of it.

     
    Genre Proficiency:
    These Bluetooth IEMs actually sound pretty great with a wide variety of genres. From soft piano recordings to heavy dubstep and metal, they manage to sound just right for just about everything. Probably the only areas the BLU-100 fails to perform to expectations are recordings with a lot of instruments playing at the same time (Coeur de Pirate – Metal Gleamed in the Twilight), where the Bluetooth IEMs couldn’t really capture the dynamics and the emotion of the recordings.  
     

    Summary:
    Otherwise, though, you really can’t go wrong with the BLU-100, sound-wise. For a sub-$50 wireless IEM they provide a sound quality that one would find comparable to wired sets at the same price. Its V-shaped sound signature will most definitely appeal to the average consumer, and works well with just about any genre one would listen to. I’ll admit, Brainwavz made some pretty good calls in tuning the BLU-100’s sound, as honestly I have little to complain about despite the IEM being wireless.
     
     

    Other Media

    Games:
    Being a mobile-designed Bluetooth headset, it’s outright impossible to use these to game on a PC, unless you have a Bluetooth dongle that could pair and output to the IEMs. In any case, I wouldn’t say much here, other than that they could make a decent “beater” pair for gaming. It may not give you any edge over the competition, but hey, even the “competitive” mobile games (i.e. Clash of Clans and similar games) don’t even need positional audio to play – heck, you could even put the game on mute and still play just about as well as the next guy.
     
     
    Movies:
    The BLU-100, with its easy-going, consumer-friendly sound signature, should do fine with movies. They’re not the best, but they’re definitely not the worst, either. If anything, the bass reproduction is a little off-mark for me, as their focus on the midbass takes away emphasis on the rumble and more emphasis on the “boom,” which in my book is a definite ‘no.’ Otherwise, there’s nothing they do absolutely wrong so as to make them unlistenable.
     
     

    EQ Response

    I found the BLU-100 to be pretty responsive to EQ, settling down to a sweet balanced sound signature with a few quick tweaks. The curve kinda looks like this:
     
     
    …which, as you can see, looks rather similar to the “Spoken Word” preset in the iOS system equalizer. In any case, I found these tweaks worked out very nicely on the BLU-100, leaning the sound towards the balanced signature I look for. However, do note that using standalone EQ apps often drain your source battery life, and on top of the drain caused by the constant Bluetooth signal chain, you will want to watch your battery levels more closely.
     
     

    Value

    Now past the pre-order stage and now in full production and release, the BLU-100 is available on Brainwavz’ parent company MP4Nation for $44.50 (Link). I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned this many times throughout the review, but with the BLU-100’s features and performance, they are an absolute steal at this price. That’s all I can say.
     
     

    Comparison

    Versus Brainwavz S0 ($50)
    As I’ve also stated earlier in this review, I thought of the BLU-100 as a parallel to the wired Brainwavz S0, and for good reason: they sound quite alike. However, they each make clear sonic distinctions which make them unique in their own ways. The S0 is smoother, darker, and more laid-back, while the BLU-100 is livelier and more energetic. Personally I find the BLU-100 to have a more enjoyable signature, as their treble offsets the IEM’s warmth and bass very nicely.
     
     
    Versus Plantronics 903+ ($100)
    The 903+ is an old, discontinued Bluetooth headset with a sport-oriented earhook design which has now been replaced by the current Backbeat Go 2. My dad would often use these earbud-type earphones on long cycling trips, which allowed him the convenience of hands-free conversations over the phone. The great microphone, as well as the 7-hour battery life (both of which I skimmed earlier) really edges the 903+ over the BLU-100, but for an earbud fit at twice the price? No thanks.
     
     

    == Conclusion ==

    SAM_0090.jpg
     
    I’m not a fan of Bluetooth technology, as “convenient” as going wireless is. There are just way too many caveats that pull me away from ever using it over a regular wired connection. But I’ll admit the Brainwavz BLU-100 changed my position on that slightly. The BLU-100 is a great example as to why I love Brainwavz as a company. They create products with features you need at prices that give the more expensive sets a run for their money. Sure, it may not blow competitors out of the water, but for a sub-$50 package, you will want to think again.
     
     
    Category
    Score
    Comment
    Packaging, Accessories
    7/10
    The BLU-100 is, again, showered with Brainwavz’ trademark accessories package. As I didn’t receive the full release version I can’t say anything about the packaging.
    Design, Build, Microphonics
    7/10
    The BLU-100 has pretty much everything going for it in the build department – housings, cable, and all. However, it does lose out a bit for me design-wise with a few mainly personal gripes.
    Fit, Comfort, Isolation
    7.5/10
    The BLU-100’s included Comply foam eartips provide a great, secure fit and excellent comfort. The isolation, however, is quite a bit below average, so you will want to use aftermarket eartips to block out more external noise.
    Microphone
    6/10
    The microphone falls below average in my book, with its sound coming out echo-y and distant on the other end. Then again, for a sub-$50 Bluetooth IEM, it’s nothing worth complaining about.
    Bass
    7/10
    The BLU-100’s bass is something I think most non-audiophiles will find satisfying to their tastes. Decent impact, okay extension, and a clear focus on the midbass show that this was designed for the consumer in mind. It’s definitely not “audiophile-grade”.
    Midrange
    7.5/10
    I’ll admit, the BLU-100 has a surprisingly good midrange, featuring a nice amount of clarity and a smooth, warm tone. It’s something that just works.
    Treble
    7.5/10
    The treble really rounds out the BLU-100’s sound signature, with a crisp response that wrings out the tactility in vocals and instruments. It also balances out the bass very nicely.
    Presentation
    7/10
    The BLU-100’s soundstage is about as average as it gets. Decent size, decent width, good separation. It’s good, but definitely not amazing.
    Gaming, Movies
    7/10
    I found they work pretty great with watching movies on the iPad, with its 4-hour battery life outlasting a good movie or two (unless you’re having an LotR or Sherlock marathon). Gaming-wise it’s something I wouldn’t recommend, but then again, who plays FPS on mobile?
    EQ Response
    8/10
    The BLU-100 is quite responsive to EQ and shows noticeable improvements with very slight tweaks. For iOS users, the “Spoken Word” preset is recommended.
    Value
    8/10
    I think it’s obvious that the BLU-100 shows excellent value for the money, with a complete package that goes up against wired sets at around the same price.
    Total
    7.2/10
    The Brainwavz BLU-100 is the definitive budget Bluetooth IEM, with features and accessories that go head-to-head against Bluetooth headsets at twice the price. Brainwavz did very well in creating the BLU-100, never cutting corners in providing you with great sound at a very reasonable price.

     

    Suggestions for Improvement

    Improve tuning next time around. However, I don’t have any gripes sound-wise other than the focus on the midbass. Less of that = a more balanced and more audiophile sound signature.
     
    Might want to improve the battery life as well. Maybe kick it up a couple hours or so on a more expensive model in the future.
     
     

    Shout-Outs, Gallery

    I would like to again thank Audrey at Brainwavz for providing me with the sample for the BLU-100. I had an absolute blast reviewing this IEM, and I really hope to see more awesome budget offerings from you guys. As always, all of the pictures taken during the review process can be viewed here.
     
    Also, thank you so much to all of our readers for your continued support! With summer coming our way, we’re looking to start getting more content done in the coming months. We’re striving to create more frequent and better quality content for all of you guys, and maybe soon we’ll start actual work on a Buyer’s Guide!
     
    This has been thatBeatsguy of DB Headphones; thanks for reading!
     
     

    About the Company

    At Brainwavz we have a simple mission, to produce innovative, high quality audio products with a dedicated focus on high-end sound at a realistic price. Our strength, success and product range is built on our unique relationship with our customers and users, a relationship that has produced a simple and obvious result. We give real-users real sound quality. 2014 will see Brainwavz pushing forward with an expanded product line, continuing with unique and innovative products, from earphones to headphones to audio accessories.
     
    Company website: www.yourbrainwavz.com
     
     

    Changelog

      Hisoundfi and hakushondaimao like this.
    1. kahaluu
      Nice review. I should have my pair in few days. I think they will satisfy my needs in the gym.
      kahaluu, Jun 1, 2015
  2. kova4a
    Surprisingly good first foray into the budget bluetooth market
    Written by kova4a
    Published Jun 1, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - solid build quality, good overall performance and great pricing
    Cons - some graininess, a bit too boosted mid bass, can sound a bit busy
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
     
    First off, I want to thank Brainwavz and Audrey for this BLU-100 unit.
     
    Packaging and Accessories
     
    20150512_232337.jpg
     
    I received the BLU-100 before its release and it came in the Brainwavz iem case without the final retail packaging, so I can’t comment on it. As far as the Brainwavz case goes, I’ve mentioned multiple times that it’s my favorite iem case. It’s quite tough and specious and can easily fit a pair of iems and a small DAP like a Sansa.
     
    20150512_232547.jpg
     
    Inside the case was the BLU-100 itself, a USB cable for charging, and a small gray bag with the included silicone tips, as well as a pair of ear fins. The single flange silicone tips come in 3 sizes. As usual with Brainwavz a pair of comply foam tips packaged separately was included in the other pocket of the case to complete the package.
     
    Build Quality, Design and Fit
     
    20150512_232205.jpg
     
    The Brainwavz BLU-100 has metal housing and feels quite solid without being too heavy. The cable is flat and as I’ve mentioned many times before, I personally am not a huge fan of the current flat cable trend. The cable seems sturdy enough but is prone to kinks and memory.The strain reliefs look substantial enough. 
     
    20150601_224838.jpg
    20150512_232302.jpg 20150512_232313.jpg
     
     
     
     
     
    Design-wise the BLU-100 is fairly standard for this type of bluetooth iems but maybe Brainwavz could have gone for a bit longer and angled nozzles. Otherwise, the straight-barrel housings are a bit chunky but don’t protrude too much out of the ears. There is a plastic flap covering the charging port on the right earpiece, which seems sturdy but only time will tell how it will hold up, especially given the slightly short battery life, which is around 4 hours. There are also 3 control buttons and a mic found on the cable below the right earpiece, which do their job but maybe could have been a bit more rounded and less sharp around the edges.
     
    The fit is good with the provided tips but I settled with other tips though – a split between spinfit and meelec m6’s single flanges. The isolation is surprisingly good.
    The BLU-100 is meant to be worn straight down but I found myself preferring them in an over-the-ear configuration. Microphonics aren’t bad but a different choice of cable could have improved that. There is no driver flex.
     
    Sound
     
    20150601_224758.jpg
     
    This time around it would have been hard to manage 50-100 hours of burn-in, so the BLU-100 probably has arout 15-20 hours of standard use at the time of writing this review.
    Initially I was going to post my review with impressions based only on the performance of the BLU-100 with my Galaxy A3 but later got a Galaxy S5 from a friend to test the performance with an apt-X enabled device and base my review on it.
     
    The bass is quite present. It has decent speed but lacks some depth. The mid-bass is boosted a tad too much and while the impact is pretty big it’s on the soft side. The low end does blend well with the overall smooth presentation of the BLU-100 though.
     
    The mids are slightly laid back. The overall tonality is on the warm side. Clarity is decent and there was definitely an improvement moving to a device supporting apt-X. In comparison the BLU-100 sounded somewhat busy and compressed with my A3, which made it muddier. Male vocals have good presence but the enhanced mid-bass adds air to them making them full but lacking some focus. Female vocals, on the other hand, are more relaxed and a bit grainy due to some dryness in the lower treble. Overall the mids are not overly warm and V-shaped and have a nice tone and musicality.
     
    The BLU-100 lacks some energy in the lower treble but is not prone to pointing out sibilance and fairly smooth. It is a bit dry though. It’s low on sparkle but has good upper treble presence and there is a good amount of shimmer. The treble is another area where for me the apt-X definitely contributed positively.
     
    BLU-100 is relatively spacious with above average width but is lacking a bit in the depth department. The separation is pretty good but the layering is lacking and the BLU-100 can sound busy at times even with apt-X.
     
    Summary
     
    Brainwavz BLU-100 turned out to be quite a competent performer, especially given its budget pricing. I personally have no complaints about the battery life as with bluetooth iems longer battery life requires larger housings or extra pods on the cable. For what it is – an affordable bluetooth iem and a first attempt for such a product by Brainwavz, the BLU-100 is getting the job done surprisingly well.
  3. suman134
    Go wireless.
    Written by suman134
    Published Jun 5, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Nice signature, good vocals, good SQ, Wroks nicely for calls too, Awesomely priced and accessorised.
    Cons - Nothing for the price you pay.

     Intro:-
     All of us have heard about Brainwavz as one of the brand which believes in bang for buck products. Last time they ventured into an entry level amplifier, this time around they have introduced their first Bluetooth device, BLU-100. I don’t know how but it is priced at $45 and was going for $35 thanks to their introductory offer.
     Now let me tell you that it’s not the first time I am using a Bluetooth device, but my last one was a headphone, and I gave it to my father as he commute a lot (and mostly because it was not as good as I wanted it to be).
     This time around I was excited, cuz after reviewing this much of Brainwavz product I was sure that they won’t introduce a product which lacks SQ, at least it will compete with similarly priced earphones.
     And about me, I like balance, a good balance with some stage and spark will keep me seated. Not much bothered about bass till its tight and precise. It is nice when mids are not left in the valley.
     
     Let me thank @Salsera and Brainwavz for giving me this opportunity to review BLU-100.
     
      IMG_20150521_111604.jpg IMG_20150521_111619.jpg
     
      IMG_20150521_111625.jpg   Screenshot_2015-05-21-12-27-46.png

    Accessories and miscellaneous:-
     Just like every earphone from Brainwavz, BLU-100 too comes with that usual red black box. There are 4 pairs of tips. 3 are color matching neon green core silicon tips and a pair of comply S-400 tip. I am using the large silicon tip. There is a pair of wings too, like CKX-9 but its smaller and wider here. You get a cable wrap to keep the cable organized while not using. You get a micro USB cable too to charge the device. The port is behind a flap on the back of the right earpiece.
     Build is good, even if it’s made of plastic, it looks strong, I have no problem with the size, stays in nicely, one of my friend who tried it complained about the weight but it’s just fine for me. Wear it behind the neck and forget it. If you are worried about microphonics and stress relievers, just chill, we are dealing with a Bluetooth device here and there is a big portion after the cable to hold the earphone so you don’t have to put your finger on the stress relievers while putting it in and pulling out, still stress relievers are there to save the joints from accidental damages. And the flat cable looks solid to me.
     You can wear it any way you want, over ear, cable down, no problem.
     Isolation is just above average, not as bad as Titan-1 and not as good as SHE-9850, but similar to S0. Comfort is good, but S0 is a bit more comfortable thanks to its smaller for factor.
     While on the bike, I noticed some wind noise, it’s not bad but it’s there.
     I like the way it instructs, powered on, pairing and power off, it is acceptable.
     I think I should tell you about how to get started with, should i?
     
      IMG_20150521_113830_HDR.jpg IMG_20150521_114106_HDR.jpg
     
      IMG_20150521_113659_HDR.jpg IMG_20150601_110706.jpg

     Getting started with:-
     I used it my J3 which has BT abilities along with Redmi 1S and Zenfone 2. Pairing it with any of these devices was easy.
     Just press the middle button for 2-3 seconds and a small LED starts blinking, means its ready, if you have it in your ear, it speaks out “power on”, it’s a nice feature, leave it on for a few more seconds and it start searching for nearest Bluetooth devices to pair with, and the feedback is “pairing”, cool right? And when you select it from your device it says “connecting”, sweet!!
    Me likey!!
     When connected two extra icons can be seen on the notification bar, one of for BT connectivity and other is for Headset functionality.
     Then you can play your music, Controls are easy too, start your music app, press the middle button once and you are good to go. Press it again to pause.
     Interestingly a double tap to the middle button will dial the last No. you called. As usually remotes operate, you have to press the middle button once to receive and end calls.
     A long press of the volume up and down button results with change of tracks, obviously pressing it once will turn the volume up or down from BLu-100, not of your source.
     
     As I mostly say, no problems!! But not here, I have some problem with range. It reads 10 meters but its close to 4-5 meters, And once you start moving, this get bad. Frames starts to drop and once you are beyond 4 meters away, it gets worse. If a wall is in between you and your source, just forget it, it’s a no go irrespective of the distance. And sometimes bones too can interrupt streaming.
     So my advice is to keep your deice in your pocket, don’t leave it here and there while using BLU-100.
       I experienced some lag too, mostly when I play some game, its like 500ms to 1s late. Its not a bad thing but annoying as the demon screams after its already dead and my car crashes after its already crashed!! Nothing else, it’s me being slightly hard at it.
     It is time for SQ assessment.
     
      IMG_20150601_110616.jpg IMG_20150601_110648.jpg

     Sound quality:-
      Where is my VSD5!! And S0? yeah, got it, but comparisons after SQ.
     Its fairly balance to me, it feels like that because of its more forward and eager mids. I like it, its bassy never the less, and spark is there too. Its signature is warm and dark but not as dark as S0, sounds lush and cohesive too.
    So here we go with Bass:-
     Bass has enough impact and oomph to satisfy, goes deep enough, moves enough air too, sub bass is good too, has nice extension for a BT device, but there is a mid bass hump which ruins things a bit, drags itself into the mids and hampers the decay too resulting in a slightly muddy and laid back presentation. Otherwise things are good with the lows. Quality is good, precise and to the point where for a minute I thought I can compare it to Titan-1 but Titan-1 has more precision speed superior quality, and has a smaller mid bass hump too, but can be compared for resolution, BLU-100 is not vivid but has similar resolution.
     It has nice quantity and impact, mid bass quantity is just okay for me, slightly more would have put me off.
     Mids:-
     This is the part of the spectrum that has impressed me the most, its forward enough to make me forget those loop holes in the mids, soothing when listening to male vocals and sharp with Female vocals, feels awesome when listening to Tove Lo habits and Mr. Probz Waves, nicely done. Has given enough emphasis to vocals, instruments on the other hand are slightly Messed up. As I said it lacks some instrument clarity and are not vivid enough to do so. Micro detailing is a thing one should forget about while using these. Some guitar work, some triangle work, some cymbals too are turned down.
     The best thing is its forwardness with vocals. Other things are not so good.  And when you get onto trance and high BPS songs full of instruments and vocals, BLU-100 just falls apart, its unable to handle this much of information. So no critical listening can be done with this, and good for casual listening without bothering about cables and microphonics.
     Pop and hip hop tracks sound nice, vocal tracks are best suited with lesser instruments.
    Highs:-
     The nicer the lesser you talk about it. Its not like its totally missing but it lacks extension, there is some upper mid spark which extends up to lower highs, but that’s it, over that its muted, lacks enough energy to be clear, but till that slump its got more than enough energy, more than S0 to be precise. And its not bad, it just lacks much needed extension. Cymbals are okay, guitars are good, but when you get into some fast paced music with some serious instrument work, it falls flat, everything gets messed up, giving up much details, so play some slow jams, with lesser instruments, trance and house is just okay as the just use synthesizers in the track and it is just fine. If the track has some more things playing in the background, it will not sound nice.
     So stick to pop, and hip-hop, not rock, if rock don’t expect details.

      P_20150601_111842.jpg P_20150601_112639_BF.jpg

    VS S0:-
     S0 has deeper bass, more sub bass, decay is better and has lesser bleed to mids, very slight to be precise, mid bass hump is not as prominent, Mids are laid back and vocals are not as appealing as BLU-100, thankfully it can keep up with fast paced songs and does better with rock trance and house music too. But then it lacks some upper mid energy of the BLU-100 which puts me off. Has better top end extension but its kind of not enough as it lacks spark. Border line dark will be the best word for S0 where Blu-100 is slightly brighter and warmer.
     I think it’s a tie, or say not comparable head to head, I can compare any earphone with any other but its different case here.

     Conclusion:-
    Better than my first BT headphone which was muddy and boomy with so much bass bolt that its mids were shadowed, sadly I never went for another BT device, I know that they will lack something when compared to wired ones or I will have to shell out some pretty penny which I am not willing to.
     But BLU-100 is more balanced, far better, mid bass is just at the border, vocals are good and mids are manageable, you get to run around without worrying about the wire getting caught up with something. It is a good companion for gym work outs or morning walks, you get to pick calls effortlessly and call clarity is superb too. Better then my 1s and similar to Zenfone 2.
     All I would like to have is some more extension with the highs and lesser mid bass with better reception. I hope the next BT earphone from Brainwavz will be like this. With a higher price tag obviously.
     But for $45, asking for awesome clarity and details from a BT earphone is a bit too much.
     I wont call it fantastic, I wont call it bad, its good, and can give nightmares to similarly priced BT devices.
     
     Here is the link to this BT earphone device.
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
     
     I stop here, that is it from me. Thanks for reading.

      IMG_20150521_111633.jpg IMG_20150521_113816_HDR.jpg

      IMG_20150521_114007_HDR.jpg IMG_20150521_114038_HDR.jpg

      IMG_20150601_111157.jpg IMG_20150601_110947.jpg

     
     Cheers!! good day to you all.
     
     
    1. peter123
      Nice work!
       
      I really enjoyed reading it :)
      peter123, Jun 5, 2015
    2. suman134
      Thanks, glad that you liked it.
      suman134, Jun 5, 2015
    3. suman134
  4. givemeyourshoes
    A good bluetooth IEM for the money, great for the gym
    Written by givemeyourshoes
    Published Jun 7, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Fit, connectivity, apt-x!!!!
    Cons - only 4 hours of listening time, an audible hiss when not playing music
    Gallery:
     
    http://imgur.com/a/bMe6a
     
    Introduction:
     
    Being on mailing lists is dangerous.  That daily MassDrop email, notifications from EarPhoneSolutions, etc… always making me spend my money.  Well, a recent email from MP4Nation introducing the Brianwavz blu-100 bluetooth IEMs peaked my interest.  The pre-order discount, plus the use of some store points meant they would cost me $31.00 shipped (MSPR $44.50).  At that price I figured what the hell, and placed the order.  
     
    Accessories:
     
    When the blu-100 arrived, I was pleased to see the box was nice and compact.  I hate excess packaging, it’s such a waste.  Opening the box reviewed the usual warranty card and a zippered semi-hardshell case.  Packed inside the case are the blu-100 IEM, a USB charging cable, one pair of comply foam tips (medium), three hybrid silicon tips (medium set pre-installed), and rubber ear locks.  The accessories included are exactly what you need / want, and nothing more.  The case is nice too, as I have been tossing this in my bag all week (I bike to work) and no issues yet.
     
    Specifications - copied from MP4Nation.net product description
     
    Specifications:
            Transducers/Drivers: Dynamic, 8mm
            Rated Impedance: 30ohms Closed Dynamic
            Sensitivity: 110dB at 1mW
            Frequency range: 20 ~ 20000Hz
            Bluetooth 4.0 (CSRBC8645) with aptX
            Operation max distance: 30ft (10m)
            Battery: 60mAh - 4hrs playtime, 100hrs standby, 2hrs for       full charge (Micro USB charging)
            CVC echo and noise cancellation
            Supports voice prompt for MMI: Power on - Paring - Connecting - Battery low - Power off
            Supports HFP, HSP and A2DP
            Supports pairing with two devices at the same time
            3 button remote, works with Apple iOS products, Android & Windows phones & PC
            1 year warranty
     
    Fit:
     
    The blu-100 is certainly on the large side, but given that it is wireless, that is to be expected.  It feels a bit heavier than other IEMs as well.  That said, I have had zero issues with the fit.  The blu-100, using the medium hybrid silicon tips fits snuggly in my ears and stays put, even when at the gym.  If the silicon tips don’t keep them in your ears, the included comply foam S-400 tips should do the trick.  Additionally, the rubber ear locks will help keep them secure.  It’s nice to see that Brainwavz has provided options to ensure the fit is good for the majority of people.  The only con to fit is that the cable did stick to my neck a few times when wearing a shirt that had a rather large neck opening.  When I turned my head I felt a tug on the IEM, but it didn’t come out.
     
    Function:
     
    The blu-100 can be paired with two devices, and that works great because I have it paired with my Apple MacBook Air, and with my LG G3 smartphone.  When turning on the blu-100 (OK the more I type the product name, the more I feel like it should be an e-cig) with a three second press of the middle button, a voice notifies you that the power is on.  That same voice will let you know when the device is connected, and when it powers off.  If the device becomes disconnected, an audible beep repeats ever few seconds until you re-connect or power off the blu-100.  
     
    The three button remote is your standard affair with volume up and down, and play/pause in the center.  The play/pause button doubles as the answer/end call button.  A full review of the manual will outline the other functions, including how to fast forward, rewind, skip tracks, and use voice commands for your phone or computer.  
     
    In my daily use, the blu-100 has worked great with iTunes, in which all outlined controls function as advertised.  When using Rdio on my phone, functions work as well.  However, the volume buttons on the blu-100 seem to control an internal volume, and I am able to adjust the volume on my phone separately.  To make this easy, I have been seeing the volume on my phone to just below max volume, and using the volume up/down on the remote of the blu-100.  When using Pandora on my Android device however, results have been poor at best.  The volume up/down work just as with Rdio (or any other audio on my smartphone and computer), but the play/pause feature and skip track option do not function.  This is not a deal breaker, but is worth noting.  
     
    Listening time is spot on at about 4 hours, just as promised.  It feels odd charging headphones daily this past week.  Fortunately, these do charge somewhat quickly, in around 1.5 hours from drained to full.  Charging time will vary based on the wall charger or computer you are using.  One of the only major cons is that I wish the 60mah battery were larger, to allow for longer listening time.  Eight hours would be nice, to get me through a full day of use.
     
    This probably goes without saying, but to just to confirm, the blu-100 does not have a passive mode.  If the battery is dead, you don’t have sound.
     
    Sound:
     
    Having a decent collection of IEMs ranging from the Westone UM3X and UE Triple.Fi 10, to the SE215 and Audeo PFE 012, all the way down to $20 Panasonic and Apple Ear Pods, I have ALWAYS preferred wired earphones.  I have owned a couple pair of bluetooth on-ear headphones previously, and they lasted all of a week or three before they were sold off.  The artifacting and compression that comes along with bluetooth use is just something I can’t get passed.  Fortunately, the blu-100 alleviates this issue with the implementation of the apt-x codec.  The audio quality, in regards to bluetooth compression is more than acceptable. 
     
    The one issue that does plague just about any bluetooth device is present here as well, however.  I am speaking of the background hiss.  For $44.50 I didn’t expect a complete silent device, and I got what I expected.  That said, the hiss is usually only audio been no other sound is playing.  As soon the music starts I stop noticing it.  It has peeked through a few times when listening to pod casts or if a song has a spot of silence or a very quite part.  For the most part it isn’t an issue.
     
    When it comes to sound signature, the blu-100 is on the darker side, and it certainly has a v-shaped sound.  The bass is full bodied, and hits nice and low.  It is certainly boosted.  To be honest, most of the time I don’t want this.  However, I purchased the blu-100 with an intent to use them at the gym, and in this situation, I want bass, and lots of it.  It helps me get into the music and forget about the pain of working out (don’t tear your shoulder at the batting cages ok kids).  The bass is full, but is boomy and not the most well defined.  
     
    When it comes to the midrange, you’ll find it is a bit recessed.  Vocals are still very present, and lively.   This makes the blu-100 feel a bit darker, but the sound is still pleasing and musical.
     
    The treble on these is slightly boosted, but oddly enough, rolls off in the upper range.  It is never sibilant or harsh, and lacks a bit of sparkle.  But what is there is clean and helps to bring the music to life.  In short, the treble is polite.  
     
    Overall, the blu-100 is very warm, and reminds me a lot of the Shure SE215.  That said, the blu-100 is lacking in the detail and resolution provided by the SE215, but not by much.  The blu-100 is not without it’s shortcomings, but for its intended use, I have been very happy with them.  At the gym, these have been exactly what I want / need.  They fit well, get out of the way thanks to the behind the neck cord, and sound good enough.  These are not an audiophile’s dream, but for portable use and gym use they certainly get the job done, and quite well.  I would even suggest that these would be great for the non-audiophile in your life.  
     
     
    TL;DR - the blu100 is a good but not great wireless IEM for gym use, at $44.50 it is worth a buy.
     
     
    *note, I have not taken or received any calls with these.  I talk on the phone ALL DAMN DAY at work, so I tend not to use the phone outside of work.  Other’s who have reviewed the blu-100 say the call quality is fine.  
  5. NA Blur
    Bainwavz Does It Again: A Low Cost Competitor
    Written by NA Blur
    Published Jun 7, 2015
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Good bassy sound, comfortable, easy to setup
    Cons - May be too bassy for some, only a 20 ft range, still has a cord
    Brainwavz BLU-100 Bluetooth IEM
     
    http://www.yourbrainwavz.com/blu100.html
     
    BLU-100_Box.jpg
     
    BLU-100_Back.jpg
     
    BLU-100_Items.jpg
     
    BLU-100_Ear.jpg
     
    SPECS:
     
    http://www.yourbrainwavz.com/blu100.html
     
     
    BLU-100_Specs.jpg
     
    BLU-100_Specs2.jpg
     
     
    WHERE TO BUY / COST:
     
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
     
    $50 new
     
    TEST TRACKS
     
    1901 by Birdy – Tests high treble, clarity, and overall feel of a headphone’s fun factor.
     
    I Shall Not Be Moved by Damon Fowler – Used to test the punchiness of drums, coherence of the midrange, and vocals.
     
     
    OVERVIEW
     
    If, like me, you often exercise with IEMs the necessity for simplicity and total functionality is a must.  Brainwavz’s answer to this quest is the BLU-100 bluetooth IEM.  Acoustically a bit bass heavy for my tastes the BLU-100 attempts to satisfy our craving for such a headphone.  It is easy to setup, connected easily to my iPod, and has a range of approximately 6m (20ft) indoors.
     
    AESTHETICS
     
    The BLU-100 is designed well in that is is colorful, well labeled, and easy to look at.  Nothing pokes out as being poorly made or badly executed.  Both earpieces are joined with a 58cm (23in) cable including a three botton control installed near the right earpiece.
     
    The accessory package is much more complete than most any other IEM in its price point.  Brainwavz includes a pair of Comply foam tips and wing-flanges on top of their standard tip selection, a welcomed thought.
     
    ACOUSTICS
     
    I tested the BLU-100 using an iPod touch 5th Gen as I use it as my primary travel music companion.  The frequency response is definitely bass shifted, but not so much so that my standard set of test tracks were mismanaged.  When I exercise I am not really doing any critical listening a little more oomph on the low end is welcomed.
     
    1901 by Birdy was very enjoyable with noticeable emphasis on the low end and some roll off in the treble.  The midrange remained full, but at times the soundstage became congested end clustered.
     
    Now We Are Free reveals some of the limitations of the BLU-100.  The treble is obviously rolled off.  The sizzle and metallic snap of the cymbals is missing along with the hollow sound of the woodwind instruments.  A fun track, but a little treble shy.
     
    CONCLUSION
     
    With the boom in headphones these days it is very pleasant to see Brainwavz successfully competing in the market.  They keep price and performance in mind not trying to tip either scale, one of the primary reasons I like their products.  The BLU-100 is modeled after a ton of other higher end Bluetooth IEMs, but at almost half the price.  Take the Jaybird BlueBuds X for example.  If a Bluetooth IEM of this type is on your list I have no qualms recommending the BLU-100 from Brainwavz.
  6. Cotnijoe
    Brainwavz Blu-100: A Solid Budget Bluetooth Earphone
    Written by Cotnijoe
    Published Jun 15, 2015
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Easy to Use, Portability, Price
    Cons - Battery Life, Bass, Treble Harshness
    Introduction:
    Brainwavz is a company that has been making some nice budget earphones for quite a few years now. Recently, Brainwavz released their first Bluetooth earphone, the Blu-100, and a couple review units were sent out for reviews. I received my unit from Brainwavz as a review unit. I’ve posted my objective impressions here to help those interested in the new Brainwavz Bluetooth headphone to decide whether it’s right for them or not, and as always, my review is in no way influenced by Brainwavz and I am not affiliated with Brainwavz in any way.
     
    Packaging and Accessories:
    When I first received the package from Brainwavz, I was a bit surprised. I’ve always liked the packaging that came with Brainwavz earphones, but the Blu-100 came in a significantly smaller package. The box the Blu-100 came with was also a bit beat up. I definitely prefer the packaging of the other models that has a sturdier plastic packaging, and I’m not sure why Brainwavz opted for the flimsy box for the Blu-100 – it’s not like the Blu-100 is a significantly cheaper model or anything.
     
    Regardless, everything got to me unharmed besides the box itself, so no real harm done. Upon opening the box, you find the typical Brainwavz carrying case with the Blu-100 themselves, a USB cable, and some ear tips. A rubbery device that’s supposed to help the Blu-100 fit into the ear more easily is also included. Overall, all the necessary accessories are present but it’s certainly not anything fancy.
     
    IMG_0074.jpg
    Packaging and Included Accessories
     
    Design, Build, and Comfort:
    As with most Brainwavz earphones, the housing is quite sturdy and made mostly of metal. The left and right earpieces are clearly labeled and don’t seem like they’ll be scratched off anytime soon. The housing is light-weight, but can feel somewhat heavy at times as they also tend to stick out of my ears quite a bit. But with the help of the extra rubber ear fit (thingy?) they included, the Blu-100 fits into my ears quite nicely. Isolation is fairly average for an in ear and it gets the job done, but isn’t anything spectacular.
     
    The cable is non-detachable and is a flat cable similar to some of the other portable earphones that Brainwavz offers. However, the cable is significantly thinner than the likes of the S5 and is significantly more manageable and with reduced cable noise.
     
    The included control-talk microphone has a plastic housing with responsive buttons that have a nice click to them and a microphone that has surprisingly good quality. People I’ve talked to on the other end of the line have told me that there is an improvement in clarity of my voice.
     
    Charging is easily done by opening the cap on the right earpiece, which reveals a micro USB port for charging. The battery life of the Blu-100 is very short, at only around 4 hours of music playing or calls. This is what really limits the Blu-100 and where it becomes a niche product. If you’re looking for something wireless to use at work that doesn’t clutter up the desk with extra cables, this product is not for you. The Blu-100 is truly for portable use – and portable use only. These are perfect for those that need something easy and simply to use for community to and from work or for something like going to the gym.
     
    In terms of Bluetooth, there have been many reports of the Blu-100 not functioning particularly well or cutting out.  I’m not sure if Brainwavz has resolve any issues with the Blu-100 since those review or not, but I had no trouble my unit. I was able to get about 20 feet away from my phone while still retaining connection when there was nothing obstruction the connection (walls for example). While out and about, I had absolutely no problems with the Bluetooth connection with my phone in my pocket (which seems to have been a problem for some). Now, I do admit that I’m no techy and not particularly well versed in terms of Bluetooth technology, so I can’t give much more than my experience with the Blu-100. All I can offer is that I had no issues with the Bluetooth and syncing was a breeze with both my HTC One M8 and my girlfriend’s iPhone 5C.
     
    One thing I did find disappointing is that the Blu-100 has a little bit of hiss that was noticeable for me. It’s not a big issue and won’t be for most people using a portable earphone anyways, but it was something I picked up.
     
    Overall, I found the design of the Blu-100 to be solid for the price and very easy to use.
     
    IMG_0075.jpg
    Blu-100 With Cap Open Revealing Micro USB Jack
     
    Sound Impressions:
    Bass
    The Blu-100 has an overall V-shape tuning so the bass is somewhat elevated (but not to the extent of something like Brainwavz’s S5). When I first listened to the Blu-100, I was in a car. I heard almost no bass from them, which confused me very much. Most of Brainwavz’s IEMs have had fairly prominent bass – had Brainwavz come out with a neutral IEM? Why in a portable Bluetooth IEM?
     
    It turns out that wasn’t the case. The Blu-100 has a bit of a midbass bump, but with quite an early bass roll off. The drivers don’t move much air past 30 Hz. What you end up with is not a whole lot of subbass punch, and a fairly prominent mid bass that is nonetheless really lacking in tightness of impact – which explains why I couldn’t hear the bass in a car (most of the lower frequencies tend to get drowned out and the lack off a tight impact meant that bass hits basically disappear as well). Overall, the bass lacks some texture and didn’t leave me particularly impressed.
     
    Midrange
    The midrange is honestly very impressive for a Bluetooth headphone that can be found for under 50 dollars. Vocals come out as being relatively natural sounding and clean sounding, although overall detail retrieval is nothing to be wowed over.
     
    Treble
    The treble is somewhat elevated on the Blu-100, which gives the IEM a nice crisp sound. The treble at times can be a bit harsh due to the extra sparkle and, at louder volumes, the treble can get quite hot and tend to distort a bit, causing a grainy and harsh sound.
     
    Soundstage/Imaging
    The Blu-100 offers a fairly in-your-head experience. As a relatively low cost Bluetooth IEM, it’s nothing to gripe over as I wouldn’t expect much out of it. Despite that, I found the overall sound to be pretty clean, meaning that the smaller soundstage doesn’t particularly smear the sound all that much.
     
    Summary on Sound
    Overall, I quite like the sound of the Blu-100. The Blu-100 has a fun tuning that is sort of an in-between of the Brainwavz S0 and S5. The Blu-100 doesn’t have the thickness in the lower midrange that the S0 can have, and it doesn’t have the overly hot treble that the S5 can have. Overall, I think sound-wise, the Blu-100 is a solid contender in the realm of lower cost Bluetooth earphones.
     
    Conclusion:
    Honestly, I think Brainwavz has a really solid product here. My experience with it has been very good and, besides a few complaints in terms of sound and battery life, there isn’t all that much to complain about with the Blu-100. However, I can’t help feeling a bit unsure about purchasing the Blu-100 for myself as there has been quite a bit of report with issues regarding the Bluetooth connection dropping out or being inconsistent. In  my experience, however, Brainwavz has had very good customer service and I’m sure you would be able to get a pair that has a consistent Bluetooth connection.
     
    The Brainwavz Blu-100 gets a thumbs up from me, and it’s actually one of the more enjoyable product I’ve gotten to try from Brainwavz, despite it not being superior in sound quality compared to the more expensive offerings from Brainwavz.
     
    Link to the Blu-100 on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
      moedawg140 likes this.
  7. pformagg
    Decent Bluetooth Wireless IEM for the money
    Written by pformagg
    Published Jun 16, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Bluetooth, Form factor, Price
    Cons - Battery Life
      [​IMG]

      Firstly, like to thank Audrey from Brainwavz for supplying a BLU-100 to review. This is my first review for a Bluetooth IEM and also my first one that I have listened too.

     Packaging, Accessories and Build Quality
     
    The BLU-100 comes in a very standard retail box. It comes with standard accessories which include 3 Pairs of Silicone ear tips (S, M, L), 1 set of Comply foam tips, an ear clip, a USB charging cable and a nice clam-shell zippered case. 
     
    [​IMG]First impression when holding the BLU-100, is the size and weight. The housings are quite large, which is understandable, as they have to hold the driver and the Bluetooth internals. They are also a little heavier than most IEM’s that I have used, but I didn’t notice fatigue once I started using them.
    The ear tips are connected with a single cable, which also holds the remote calls and music controls. I would like to have had a cable clip with the accessories, as I found they can fall off if you take one ear out to listen to someone else while wearing them, but this is not a major issue.
     
    Connecting to my phones was simple and easy. The BLU-100 makes a connect sound and the light (which is very dim) also lets you know. Charging is done via a Micro USB connector inside the right driver housing, which is easily accessible. Charge time is around 2 hours, which will give you close to 4 hours playback. This was pretty accurate, although I never went over 4 hours.
     
    Sound Quality 
     
    Given that these are my first wireless IEM’s, I was not expecting too much. Well, I was very surprised. These produce very decent sound, not critical listening IEM’s but a great all round IEM that can reproduce good amount of detail for most music. The IEM’s are definitely suited to bass/mid lovers, but the treble was still smooth.
     
    [​IMG]The Bass: BLU-100 bass is somewhat punchy, aimed more towards mids then low end sub bass. Still producing a good amount. Bass heads will still be satisfied.
    The Mids: The mids are laid back, and not really a great feature. But there is still a good amount of detail to satisfy most listeners.
     
    The Treble: The treble has reasonable extension, which gets even better after the burn in. Like the mids, the treble is detailed and clear, but you feel that bass was more important in the design of this earphone. Still pretty good sound overall
     
    The sound-signature is, warm and smooth, with a good amount of bass. 
     
    Conclusion
     
    The BLU-100 is a great all round IEM. For under $50, you can’t go wrong with all the features that is on offer. Having Bluetooth connectivity, this is an awesome little IEM that cuts the wire. I would see this as more outdoors style IEM and most listeners will find the sound to be more than suitable. I consider these a very good all round earphone.
     
     
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
     
    --
    Specification
    1. Drivers Dynamic: 8mm
    2. Rated Impedance: 30Ω closed Dynamic
    3. Frequency Range: 20 ~ 20000Hz
    4. Sensitivity: 110 dB @ 1 mW
    5. Bluetooth 4.0 Codec aptX™
    6. Max Distance: 10mt(30ft)
    7. Battery: 60mAh
    8. Playtime/Standby: 4hrs/100hrs
    9. Charge Time: 2hrs(USB)
    10. Noise Cancellation: CVC echo/noise
    11. Voice Prompt: Yes
    12. Profiles: HFP HSP A2DP
    13. Pairing: Dual Pairing
    14. In-Line Remote/Mic
  8. DannyBai
    Very capable bluetooth earphone and a no brainer at this price.
    Written by DannyBai
    Published Jun 16, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Affordable, great sounding bluetooth earphone.
    Cons - Fit can be problematic.
    Brainwavz has consistently provided great value to performance iem's and the BLU-100 is no different. This is their first bluetooth earphone and I would say they did an excellent job.

    The BLU-100's come with the best earphone case I've come across. I buy these cases for my other earphones as well. Hard shell case has enough room for the earphones and accessories as well. BLU-100's, three pairs of silicon tips, ear guides, pair of Comply tips and the USB cable all fit without issue.
    Build quality of the earphone seem very durable. Housings are made of metal attached by a flat rubbery cable and the three button remote on the right side. The USB charging port is on the right earpiece and it's simple to open and use. Charge time was between one to two hours and play time lasted close to 4 hours.
    Button functionality is simple and worked flawlessly for me. Middle button for play/pause. Top button for forward and bottom for rewind. Short press of the top and bottom buttons increase and decrease volume. Long press skips forward or reverses the tracks. Middle button long press turns on or off the earphones. Pairing with my iPhone 6 Plus and my Mac computers was a breeze and after the first pairing, each additional sessions, the source remembered the BLU-100's and pairing was automatic.

    Overall sound impressions of this earphone is mostly positive. Slightly v-shaped sound but vocals are not sucked out. Mid-bass emphasis that's not obtrusive to my ears and treble that is sparkly and crisp but lacks some refinement. Not bad considering this is a bluetooth earphone currently priced under $40. More in-depth sound impressions.
    Bass depending on fit can be mid-bassy or neutral with a looser fit. I found both signatures quite enjoyable but with a correct fit, these will have a lift in the mid-bass but there is good control and texture. There is no looseness with the bass. When called for, bass does reach well into sub-bass.
    Midrange is slightly recessed compared to the bass and treble but vocals come out nicely free of sibilance and grain.
    Treble is quite sparkly and crisp but lacks refinement. I hear some graininess at higher volumes but performs better at low to mid volume levels.
    The BLU-100's sound seems better controlled at low to mid volume levels but at higher levels it loses some control.
    Staging isn't wide or deep but what you hear is well rounded.

    Comparing to the Meelectronics Air-Fi Metro2 which retails for $59.99, the BLU-100's 3 buttons are easier to use since it's just better laid out and built. Build goes to the BLU-100's since the Meelectronics is plastic. Housings are also a little smaller on the Brainwavz but fit is similar on both. Sound impressions are that the Meelectronics is more even in the frequencies while the Brainwavz is slightly more v-shaped. Both actually sound quite good for bluetooth earphones but the BLU-100's is the better value in my opinion since it's better built, easier to control and sound is quite competent.

  9. acain
    Minimalistic design with a great sound that won't break your wallet
    Written by acain
    Published Jun 19, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Great build, Great sound, at a Greater price
    Cons - Battery Life, Dust cap design,
    This review is for Brainwavz BLU-100 earphones
     
    INTRODUCTION
     
    Let me introduce myself my name is Adam I am a 38 years old, I have been into audio equipment since I was in highschool. I don’t consider myself an audiophile, I am just an average guy that loves music. I like to listen to my music with the best possible quality. My journey to Head-Fi started one day doing a search on the web for headphone reviews. Just about all searches for headphones and earbuds brings you to Head-Fi, after lurking for a couple weeks I finally made an account and here I am writing reviews. Being on Head-Fi I have learned so much and I am learning something new every day.

     
    Since I am your average Tom, Dick, or Harry working a 9 to 5 job, raising 2.5 kids and a dog that know one takes care of but me. My reviews are written geared towards the average consumer since most web searches direct you to Head-Fi. Head-Fi reviews get more traffic than most pro-audio magazine or any designated review site, you won't find my reviews filled with audiophile terms or do I use graphs, meters, or charts the only tools I use are the ones stuck on the side of my head, there cheaper and it's the only tool that matters in the end. To be honest audiophile terms confuse me, some of them have 2 different meanings depending on who you talk to, or the definition says to see another term. Being a simple guy and write know better than a 10th grader, if you have at least a 6th grade education you are in luck. So if you're looking for the other type of review, skip down about 67 pages and you will eventually find one. If you just want to know if this product sounds good and is worth all your hard earned cash, then you're like me then, so keep on reading.
     
    There has already been some reviews of the Blu-100’s, some reviews state they have a V-shaped sound signature and some say there neutral. Anyways Brainwavz reached out to me and asked me if I would like to review the Blu-100’s, of course I said yes especially with all the positive reviews on pre-production units. The demo unit I received is a production unit, I would like to say thank you to Audrey at Brainwavz for sending me out a review unit. I am not an employee or am I being compensated for this review, and is based on my honest opinions. Blu-100’s retail for $39.50 from the following link.
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YDVY34Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&keywords=bluetooth+earphones
     
    Bluetooth ear phones haven’t been known for their fidelity, but over the last couple of years technology has changed with Bluetooth 4.0. Personally when I use bluetooth it’s out of convenience, some of the things I want in a wireless headset is size, active range, battery, and weight. When convenience outweighs fidelity, depending on the circumstances fidelity may not be achieved anyway due to the environment. Earlier bluetooth headsets have been rather bulky and heavy, understandably to house the technology and batteries. The only time I really use bluetooth is when I am exercising or working. While exercising I can throw my source in a gym bag and don’t have to worry about dropping my dap on the ground or getting my headphones wires caught in a weight machine. Going wireless obviously I want the most minimalist ear bud available. Depending on my situation bluetooth is the only way to go, so let’s see how the Brainwavz stacks up.
     
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    SPECIFICATIONS  
     
    Transducers/Drivers: Dynamic, 8mm
    Rated Impedance: 30ohms Closed Dynamic
    Sensitivity: 110dB at 1mW
    Frequency range: 20 ~ 20000Hz
    Bluetooth 4.0 (CSRBC8645) with aptX
    Operation max distance: 30ft (10m)
    Battery: 60mAh - 4hrs playtime, 100hrs standby, 2hrs for full charge (Micro USB charging)
    CVC echo and noise cancellation
    Supports voice prompt for MMI: Power on - Pairing - Connecting - Battery low - Power off
    Supports HFP, HSP and A2DP
    Supports pairing with two devices at the same time
    3 button remote, works with Apple iOS products, Android & Windows phones & PC
    1 year warranty

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    PACKAGING
     
    Brainwavz Blu-100 come in a small white box, with there product photo on the front and the contents of accessories on the back. That’s about it for the packaging it get’s the ear buds from point A to B.

     
    ACCESSORIES
     
    1 x Comply foam tips
    3 x Pairs of ear tips (S/M/L)
    2 x Silicone ear clip
    1 x Micro USB cable for charging
    1 x Hard carrying case
    1 x Instruction manual
    1 x Warranty card
     
    Blu-100’s come with everything you need to get you going, every size silicone tip for proper fit they also included 1 set of Comply foam tips. The nicest surprise was the hard clamshell carrying case with a zipper. Inside you will find a pocket on both sides for your charging cable and ear tips, I have to say I love this case and will be using it to transport some of my other iem’s. Ear buds priced higher don’t even include a case this nice.
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    BUILD AND FIT
     
    The build quality of the Blu-100’s is mostly an a metal design, the housings are shaped like barrels and painted black. The right earpiece contains the micro usb port for charging. To access the port there is a rubber dust cover that lifts up for access.  The cable connecting the 2 ear pieces is very thin but sturdy, coated in a non-slip rubber material. Right at chin level is the 3 button mic/control for music controls and phone functions. Brainwavz Blu-100’s do have some weight to them being constructed of mostly metal. Although being slightly heavy they seemed to stay in place while moving around and exercising.  I have to say they were pretty comfortable for how far they stick out of my ears.
     
    From other bluetooth sets I have used they are one of the smaller ones. Compared to Beats Powerbeats2 wireless they are considerably smaller. Compared to Plantronics Blu-100’s wire seems more flexible and more comfortable. Overall they fit perfectly in my small ears,and where very comfortable for long periods.
     
    Being on the smaller size the Blu’s battery life is only rated up to 4 hours, I was perfectly fine with the battery life for the smaller size, they take about 2 hours to fully recharge them. They support Bluetooth 4.0 aptx technology for better audio quality and less battery consumption.  The 3 button mic/controller is just like any other 3 button, it’s also used to pair to your device.
     
    The wireless range is about 20-30 feet depending on where I was at, I wouldn’t be straying too far from my source anyway. Overall I couldn’t be happier with the build and fit of the Blu-100’s, they are the nicest wireless earbuds that I have used to date. Especially compared to the price of other Bluetooth headsets that support 4.0 I was really happy to see they did not incorporate ear hooks. I can't stand ear hooks they make behind my ears sweat and they just look goofy. Most of the time you can tell if an ear bud is Bluetooth or wired just by the design, Blu's look more like a regular wired ear bud that I have seen before. Style and fashion are almost as just important as the sound these days, Brainwavz nailed it with the design of these.

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    SOUND
     
    Now to one of the most important parts the sound, so how do they sound? The majority of my listening was done using my Samsung Alpha streaming Spotify, I also paired them with my AK100II and Lenovo Ultrabook.  Some people hear them as having a V sound signature I would have to disagree. But we all don’t hear alike, that doesn’t mean they're wrong that’s just how they hear them. I hear them as being pretty well balanced. Don’t get me wrong you're not going to be doing critical listening with these, but they do sound better than some  wired earbuds I have heard.  
     
    They have a nice neutral sound with a slight emphasis in the mid bass region. Mid-bass is more present then sub-bass without being overdone for my tastes. The mids in the Blu-100 sticks out to me, being there strong point. Very good detail and smooth sound for being wireless. There is a hint of warmthness to them without sounding veiled. Upper frequencies are no slacker either, they have very good clarity and sound pretty balanced to me. Other reviews of the Blu's state to hear them as being elevated and sometimes fatiguing. I don’t hear them as being fatiguing at all.
     
    Compared to the Beats Powerbeats2 wireless the Beats have more sub and midbass, with the Blu’s being more controlled and smoother.. The midrange of the Blu’s compared to the Beats is a hands down winner, sounding natural and more detailed. The higher frequencies of the Blu’s also comes out in front of the Beats, with the Beats sounding too laid back and distant. Comparing these 2 wireless ear buds could seem unfair because of the huge price difference, but in the end the Blu’s came out sounding better to my ears with a cheaper price. A lot of people have the conception that higher priced goods will perform better. And this just shows you how far from the truth that is. Some Bluetooth headsets I have used I have experienced a lot of back round hissing noise, with the Brainwavz these were pretty quiet.

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    FINAL THOUGHTS
     
    For under $40 you can’t go wrong with these, they're built like a rock and will withstand some tough environments. Compared to the other bluetooth iem’s that I have tried these are actually smaller. They sound pretty good with all genres of music and sound exceptional well with pop, hip-hop, rap and electronica. If you're a first time buyer and are curious about wireless iem’s, these are very affordable and I would highly recommend these. Or if you have a pair already and you're not happy with the sound quality. I am very impressed how something this cheap can outperform other products 3  times their price. Having a 4 hour battery life might put some people off, but that's a trade off for how small these are compared to other wireless sets that have a longer battery life. From first laying my eyes on these I was very excited to review them. I like the way they look like regular ear buds, a good amount of other Bluetooth headsets are very bulky to house the batteries and electronics so you wont be walking around looking like a freak.
     
    Brainwavz Blu-100's are the first product that I have every heard from Brainwavz, just about all there products are affordable and won't kill your bank account. Hopefully I will have a chance to review some of there other products, I am always looking for a solid product that I don't have to worry about breaking my daughters college fund. Just kidding my daughter will marry someone rich, my luck she will only marry someone named Rich. Thanks for reading I hope I helped anyone interested in buying these.



     
      twister6 and hakushondaimao like this.
  10. d marc0
    "Look Mum, No Wires!"
    Written by d marc0
    Published Jun 21, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Appropriate sound signature for outdoor use; good build quality; effective phone call and music controls; aptX!
    Cons - battery life could be better; lacks balance when worn around the neck; maximum distance for bluetooth needs improvement
     
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    Brainwavz is one of my favourite brands when it comes to reasonably priced IEMs. They seem to always nail it when it in terms of build quality and I am impressed by the sturdiness of their products. Sound quality wise, the R3 is my no. 1 Brainwavz IEM. The R3 sounds mature, refined, and well tuned for a dual-dynamic driver earphones. With the release of their new bluetooth headset, I wondered if they will retain the quality in their work. Fortunately, I've been given the opportunity to review the BLU-100. So lets find out if Brainwavz' entry to the bluetooth headset category can impress me just as much as my last experience...
     
    SETUP:  Sony Xperia Z3 Compact and iPhone 5s
                   Spotify - extreme quality streaming (320 kbps)
                   Using Dunu 1000 stock tips.
     
    TEST TRACKS: SPOTIFY
                  Australia TOP 50 - charts
                  Workout Beats
                 
     
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    The BLU-100 is a bluetooth headset and I will rate it based on my needs/uses from these types of earphones. The build quality is impressive just like any other Brainwavz product I've used. The cable connecting the two earphones is light, supple, and durable; perfect for the active lifestyle. I'm not saying its perfect because like any other product, there is always room for improvement. When not in use, one can conveniently hang the earphones around the neck. Unfortunately the weight of the in-line mic/remote causes imbalance and so the right earpiece always hangs lower than the left earpiece. Honestly it's not a serious problem but the OCD in me just bothers me to no end. This can be a easily improved hopefully in the next BLU model.
     
    The earphones are quite big and I understand this is inevitable because they need to fit a few added goodies comprising a bluetooth headset (drivers, bluetooth, micro usb port, battery). Inspite the size, they fit my ears comfortably and are surprisingly light! The barrel design IEMs were able to stay snug and secure in my tiny ears, another plus that I didn't expect from these types of earphones. Physical activities such as running, exercises, walks, and other day-to-day duties were no hindrance to music enjoyment that the BLU-100 delivers. There's a mild cable noise when running but that's about it. Wind noise can be an issue but it didn't annoy me much as long as I kept a perfect seal and set the volume at reasonably loud levels.
     
    Bluetooth connection between devices worked as expected. I didn't have any pairing issues with the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact and iPhone 5s. As for the stability of the connection, it's been pretty solid 90% of the time. Just like any other small bluetooth devices, there are intermittent interferences depending on your environment and/or situation. I didn't find any serious connection issues that could affect my rating for this bluetooth headset. It definitely worked as expected and for that I'm thankful. I spent 5 hours at IKEA with the BLU-100 and rarely did I get interference. Music through Spotify sounded great! My only gripe is the maximum distance required to keep a stable connection - not as good as the specifications of 10 meters. Real world applications at least in my experience was limited to 3-5 meters, again depending on the environment/situation. Otherwise, keeping the phone/source in my pocket is the ideal scenario for the BLU-100.
     
    Phone call controls and mic are well implemented and I found them easy to use. Testing a phone call, voices are clear and quite loud. The person I talked to also confirmed that he can hear me clearly which is really good. There are added features as well such as multiple pairing, voice dial, and last number dial. As for Music controls, they are a breeze to use; well implemented for both Android and IOS phones.
     
    Battery duration is well above specifications (4 hrs); a couple of tests I ran reached durations of 4 hours 37 mins and 4 hours 25 mins. This is good as per declared specification but I'd be lying if I said it's enough for travelling. It's definitely enough for day-to-day use but if long travel is the itinerary, make sure to bring a battery pack.
     
     
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    The SOUND SIGNATURE of the BLU-100 is ideal for outdoor usage, bassy with great mids and smooth highs. Not necessarily the best but definitely a lot better than most IEMs in the $100 price range that I’ve heard. That even includes non-bluetooth IEMs!

    BASS has good slam and impact but can be a bit too emphasised in the mid-bass region for some genres such as rock. There’s a significant boost in the entire bass frequency which I feel is ideal when you're out in a noisy environment. Fortunately, it seldom bleeds too much in the mids and mostly just enough to be negligible when you're out and about. At certain times the bass texture is a bit thick which really benefits most popular music nowadays. Bass quality is actually good enough for the intended purpose of this headset. When you're out doing physical activities, accuracy is not the priority. Music enjoyment to set the mood is ideal and the BLU-100 has the bass kicks to keep you engaged to whatever music you listen to as long as it's not classical music. Decay/speed, detail, and texture are good enough; even better than the S5 if memory serves me right. As a result, other genres such as RnB, Hip-hop, Pop, and Ballads are excellent on the BLU-100.

    MIDRANGE is impressive with its clear and detailed presentation which I really appreciate considering the price. Vocals are upfront for both male and female singers; projecting the right emotion when listening to the songs. Guitar sounds natural and edgy… thanks to the slight emphasis in the upper midrange. Clarity is again worth mentioning because it is quite capable for a $100 IEM intended for on-the-go usage. 

    TREBLE is quite smooth with this bluetooth headset, this is achieved when using wide bore tips such as the Dunu 1000 silicone tips. Lower treble is quite detailed and transparent which is good for synthesizers in electronic music. There’s a recession in the upper treble which smoothens the entire presentation. This allows loud volume listening because there is no sibilance and it's not fatiguing. Unfortunately, this is not good for serious listening because it lacks the required airy presentation. Despite this limitation, I truly feel the smooth treble tuning was intended to allow listening at higher volumes in noisy environments. Please make sure that you're in a safe environment when doing this because you have to be aware of your surroundings if situated in busy environments where there are vehicles or other potential hazards.

    IMAGING AND SOUNDSTAGE: Soundstage width is only average but the presentation is not congested because of the well tuned midrange. It is a bit intimate in its overall projection but good imaging and instrument separation contribute in its cohesiveness. 

     
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    CONCLUSION: The BLU-100 is a capable bluetooth headset that is affordable and easy to use. It provides convenience to people who are active and in need of a companion that can deliver good quality music and effective handsfree phone controls. I could've given it 4.5 stars if not for the inconsistency in the maximum distance of its bluetooth connectivity. Other than that, truly an excellent entry for Brainwavz in the bluetooth headset category. Highly Recommended!
     
    Special thanks to Brainwavz for the BLU-100 review unit.
      H20Fidelity, getclikinagas and fnkcow like this.
    1. AlexF
      Apple handhelds don't support Apt-X and SBC isn't good enough. Brainwavz needed to include AAC codec into A2DP profile.
      AlexF, Jun 22, 2015
    2. d marc0
      @alexf let's hope Brainwavz includes that in the iteration of their bluetooth headset.
      d marc0, Jun 26, 2015