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Brainwavz BLU-Delta Bluetooth Earbud Wireless Noise Isolating Headphones

Rating:
3.75/5,
  1. thatBeatsguy
    Stroke of Genius
    Written by thatBeatsguy
    Published May 8, 2017
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Great overall package.
    Cons - Underwhelming (but decent) battery life. Remote design can be improved.
    Intro

    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: The Brainwavz BLU-Delta adds Bluetooth functionality to an already-excellent IEM, creating what I would say is a stroke of genius.

    Over the past years we’ve covered both of Brainwavz’ prime Bluetooth earphones – the BLU-100 and the BLU-200. Knowing this, Brainwavz gave me the opportunity to have a listen at yet another wireless offering, albeit this time, the product in question is a bit different. This, my readers, is the Brainwavz BLU-Delta – essentially the Brainwavz Delta turned into a Bluetooth-capable, battery-powered cyborg of an earphone. How will it fare in its new market? Let’s find out.

    (Disclaimer: the product in review was received free of charge in exchange for my honest opinion. Please take the following with a grain of salt and always try before you buy.)


    == Aesthetics ==
    Packaging, Accessories


    [​IMG]

    The Brainwavz BLU-Delta arrives in a rather large box – unusual for a BLU series IEM, but not so for Brainwavz’ wired offerings. Inside you’ll get the earphones, a USB charging cable, a manual, and three extra eartips (one of which is a Comply T-400), packaged neatly in Brainwavz’ wide earphone case. All in all it’s pretty standard coming from Brainwavz, and still quite excellent.

    From here there are a couple things I found noteworthy – first, the formal mention of a BLU series. Of course, right now it does not hold much meaning, but time will tell whether Brainwavz will release more earphones using a similar formula. Second, there is the brand-new manual, which is very well-written and detailed with regards to how the BLU-Delta works – a very admirable move from Brainwavz.


    Design, Build, Microphonics
    The BLU-Delta, as confirmed by Brainwavz, retains the housings and cable from its wired counterpart, which explains why a single housing was used for all of the BLU-Delta’s electrical bits. However, with the Bluetooth circuit, the amplifier, the battery, the remote, and the microphone all in one place, the housing ends up rather bulky. This in itself is not a bad thing, but its position on the right side of the earphone means there is a constant weighing down on your right side, unlike that of the BLU-100 and 200 which was more evenly balanced. That, or maybe a larger neckband-type housing would be a better alternative.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Of course, this is not a major concern. What is more worrying is the build. With the Delta being a dainty $30 IEM, its build was not exactly what I would call “heavy duty”. Of course, that doesn’t mean they’re absolutely flimsy – with its new life as a Bluetooth earphone, you will be less likely to damage the cable as they will simply hang around your neck throughout its battery life. And with its slim design and the assistance of the shirt clip, it makes next to no cable noise, even while on the move.


    Fit, Comfort, Isolation
    The Brainwavz BLU-Delta’s compact earphone housings allow for an easy fit with most ears – another of the many benefits carried over from the wired version. Comfort and isolation are about average at best with the stock silicone eartips, but improve exponentially with the included Comply foam eartips. Either way they remain very securely in the ears, and as such perform very well during active, er, activities.


    Specs
    Headphone TypeClosed-back Bluetooth in-ear monitor
    Driver TypeSingle 8mm dynamic
    Operating RangeUp to 10 metres (30 feet)
    Battery Life70 mAh battery for:
    • 8 – 10 hours playback time
    • 110 hours standby time
    • ~2 hours charging time
    Bluetooth FeaturesBluetooth 4.1
    Supports A2DP, HSP, HFP Bluetooth profiles
    Can connect to 2 devices simultaneously
    CVC Echo & Noise Cancellation
    Voice/LED prompts
    Accessories3x sets black silicone single-flange eartips (S/M/L)
    1x set Comply T-400 foam eartips
    Micro USB charging cable
    Hard carry case (Brainwavz wide earphone case)
    User manual
    24 month manufacturer’s warranty


    The first thing I noticed about the BLU-Delta’s spec sheet was its battery life. An 8 to 10 hour play time on a single charge? I know, I couldn’t believe it the first time either. It was almost too good to be true. But as it turned out, it is. The BLU-Delta sends out a low battery warning at around 5 hours in and powers down. But even though you can still turn it back on beyond this point, they will only run for about 30 minutes before shutting off for good. I know, I couldn’t believe it the first time either. Maybe lowering the audio volume would make it last longer, but I doubt listening to music at 20% volume would be very fun.


    Connectivity
    The BLU-Delta shows up as “BWAVZ BLU” on a device when you pair it up. On my 5th generation iPod Touch and iPad Air 2, the pairing process was buttery-smooth. General connectivity is quite good, and maintains good signal towards the advertised range of 10 metres, but only in a purely open-air setting. The signal range drops sharply in more “real-world” applications, cutting out even if so much as a hand hovers over the source. Of course, your experience will vary depending on your source device and the amount of EMI (electromagnetic interference) in the area.


    == Sound ==
    Equipment, Burn-in

    The source devices used for this review are a fifth-generation iPod Touch and an iPad Air 2. The test tracks I use for my assessments are of various genres ranging from classical to electronica, with the audio file formats varying from 256 Kbps AAC to 24-bit FLAC. Some of these test tracks will be linked to in the sound assessments to demonstrate certain points.

    Prior to the assessment I listened to the Brainwavz BLU-Delta for at least 30 hours to get more accustomed to the sound – otherwise known as "brain burn-in" – to dispel any "changes" to the sound after a certain amount of time.


    Sound Quality

    [​IMG]

    Bass:

    The BLU-Delta's bass, despite being a generally bass-forward IEM, does not immediately greet you at the figurative door at first listen; instead, it sits back and does its thing until you take notice. And once you do, you'll notice just how unexpectedly good it sounds. With a fast, aggressive punch and deep extension, it works especially well for bass-heavy genres or metal (Haywyre – Dichotomy, Impulse; Rob Scallon – Gas Mask Catalogue). However, the bass is very well-controlled and usually only displays its aggressiveness when the track calls for it (Savant – Kali 47), and in more bass-light genres, only manifests as a noticeable heft and warmth in its tonality.


    Midrange:

    The midrange, on the other hand, is what meets you up front once you play the first song through the BLU-Delta. It plays often up front and in your face in electronic genres, which may come off to some as sounding a bit too aggressive (Conro – City Lights). However, what really took my attention was their clarity that shone through in just about every genre – whether the track calls for vocals, pianos, guitars, synthesisers, or any combination of those, the BLU-Delta maintains a clean, clear, and slightly warm tone that I found is absolutely beautiful (The Weeknd – I Feel It Coming; Govi - Bumblebeat).


    [​IMG]

    Treble:

    The BLU-Delta's treble is sharp and snappy, helping to give the overall sound signature the clarity it has. However, I do find it to be a bit harsh throughout most of my music library, which often forces me to turn down the volume quite a bit to be tolerable (Anna Yvette & Laura Brehm – Summer Never Ends). However, it is not as big of a deal as was the case with the MEE M6 Pro, especially considering this can be fixed by fitting the BLU-Delta with the included Comply eartips.


    Soundstage/Presentation:

    The soundstage of the BLU-Delta is in my opinion the only real weak point of this IEM. Its soundstage is noticeably cramped and congested, with most of the music packed towards the front and with little extension towards the sides (Francisco Cerda – ‘Round Gunpoint). Despite this, the overall sound is not affected and though it can be improved, it's not bad as it is.


    Genre Proficiency:

    Despite a bass-oriented sound signature, the BLU-Delta has surprising versatility with various genres. Though its aggressive low end presentation makes it more suited for electronic genres, its clarity through the upper frequencies allows it to perform acceptably with other types of music.

    [​IMG]

    Summary:

    The Brainwavz BLU-Delta, having borrowed from its wired counterpart, shares most of its sonic characteristics, most of which are quite excellent. With a lively sound signature and up-front presentation, the BLU-Delta powers through various genres with comparative ease. Its congested soundstage may be a weak point, but is not that big of a deal. If one finds the treble a bit harsh, fitting them with the included Comply eartips will dull the sharp edges and round out the whole sound signature to what I feel is quite excellent.


    Other Media
    The BLU-Delta does quite admirably beyond the music player, with its sound signature serving it well for games and movies alike. Beyond that there's not much I can add to my opinion beyond what has already been said in this review, but should one intend to use them for gaming or movies on the go, do take note of the audio lag as is inherent with Bluetooth technology.


    EQ Response
    The BLU-Delta does quite admirably beyond the music player, with its sound signature serving it well for games and movies alike. Beyond that there's not much I can add to my opinion beyond what has already been said in this review, but should one intend to use them for gaming or movies on the go, do take note of the audio lag as is inherent with Bluetooth technology.


    Value
    The BLU-Delta retails for about $50 on their own website as well as authorised retailers, which places its price point right between the BLU-100 and BLU-200. Even though the sound bits of the BLU-Delta are sourced from a $30 wired IEM, it still remains a bargain at this price considering you get excellent sound with the convenience of Bluetooth tech.


    Comparison

    [​IMG]

    Versus Brainwavz BLU-100 (~$50):

    The BLU-100 was Brainwavz' first try at a Bluetooth IEM, and even now remains one of the Bluetooth IEMs I think very highly of. In this admittedly close matchup, the BLU-100 scores points for its more streamlined and durable design, but in the end I feel the BLU-Delta only barely out over the BLU-100 with it's clearer, more engaging sound quality. Regardless of how the comparison will sway you, the BLU-100 is still very much worth recommending.


    [​IMG]

    Versus Brainwavz BLU-200 (~$55):

    The BLU-200 is the more expensive brother to the BLU-100, and I have to say I found it and the BLU-Delta quite similar in their sound, and thus are also a bit of a close matchup. Points are given to the BLU-200 because of its design, but unlike the earlier comparison, I feel the BLU-Delta beats its opponent with a more significant margin. It could only be my pair, but the BLU-200's soundstage and presentation is a bit too off-putting that it becomes disorienting to listen to after some time. The BLU-Delta simply sounds better and is more comfortable to listen to over longer periods.


    == Conclusion ==

    [​IMG]

    The Brainwavz BLU-Delta is, in my opinion, one of the cleverest ideas Brainwavz has ever come up with for a new earphone. By building a Bluetooth earphone on the foundation of an existing wired set, you get all the wireless functionality with none of the flaws of a “pure-blooded” Bluetooth set (i.e. a Bluetooth IEM made from scratch). Brainwavz' decision to use their absolutely excellent Delta IEMs only adds icing to the cake. If Brainwavz continues down this path with more wired IEM-based Bluetooth earphones, I feel Brainwavz will have many more winners down the line.


    Packaging, Accessories8.5/10
    Design, Build, Microphonics7.5/10
    Fit, Comfort, Isolation8/10
    Connectivity8/10
    Bass8/10
    Midrange8/10
    Treble7.5/10
    Presentation7/10
    EQ Response8.5/10
    Value9/10
    Total8/10




    Post-Review Stuff
    As always, my deepest thanks goes out to Pandora and the Brainwavz team for yet another opportunity to listen to another one of their steps to being, in my opinion, one of the most well-rounded earphone manufacturers out there.


    Changelog
  2. msturg29
    Good Value, Nice Sound and Comply Tips...
    Written by msturg29
    Published Mar 24, 2017
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Good Sound Signature (Smooth and Neutral), Comply Tips, Nice Design
    Cons - Intermiddent BT Issues

    About Me
    Like most people, I am an avid fan of music ranging from my all-time favorite Metallica to 2Pac to Mozart, YoYo Ma and a lot in between (sorry country but heck no).  I have what doctors would call a compulsive disorder for headphones as I can never seem to stop buying and trying. I am not an audiophile, but I have a worthy quest to find the best headphone / earphone for my tastes and I like to test new gear… a lot. I rely on my ears, and my listening pleasure to determine review scores. I just hope to help other people find nice devices that will suit their taste and their budget.   
     
    As my ocd of headphones is expensive I tend to hover around the $200 or less range of headphones, sorry fancy schmancy headphone connoisseurs.  Also I prefer Bluetooth as I am on the go a lot and don’t like cables (que the diss sesh of poor BT quality headphones). Enjoy!
     
    Tech Specs for us nerds
    ·      Drivers : Dynamic, 8 mm
    ·      Rated Impedance : 16 Ω
    ·      Frequency Range : 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz
    ·      Sensitivity : 100 dB @ 1 mW
    ·      Expected Battery: 8 hrs
    ·      Bluetooth Version: 4.1
    ·      Codecs: APT-X, AAC
    ·      Weight: 14g
     
    Accessories
    ·      Earphone Hardcase
    ·      3 sets Silicone Ear Tips (S M L)
    ·      1 set of Comply™ Foam Tips (T-400)
    ·      1 x Cable Clip
    ·      1 Micro USB Charging Cable
    ·      Velcro Cable Tie
    ·      Instruction Manual + Warranty Card (24 month warranty)
     
    Build Quality
    Housings:  The housings are medium size and stick out a bit from your ears. The build material is sleek aluminum making them seem sturdy and well made. 
     
    Cable:  The cable is a round, thin wire with pretty robust strain reliefs at the earbuds.  They seem sturdy but the cable overall seems flimsy to me and might not hold up to wear over time.
     
    Functionality/Pairing/Range
     
    Pairing for most BT is the same so I will only call out if there are issues.
    In this case there were issue and continue to be issues.  The device connects without issue, but there seems to be an issue when I bend over or tilt my head a certain way and the Bluetooth cuts out.  I tried all the steps provided by Brainwavz support and still the same outcome. 
     
    Their support has yet to fix or replace, so I will have to return.
     
    The BLU-Delta has a built in 3 button controller like just about all BT headsets.  Volume Up, Down, Power, Sync, Track Skip. 
     
    Using my OnePlus 3 all buttons worked without issue.
    Other than the issue mentioned above I was able to get about 20-25 feet away before skipping occurred.
     
     
    Comfort
    I will be honest; I don’t like silicone tips.  Once you go Comply, you don’t go back.  So I always buy the correct comply tips to go with my set.  Brainwavz is awesome including the T-400 isolation tips (great fit). 
     
    With these tips these earbuds are light and don’t fatigue my ears. 
     
    Now for the overall comfort.  These are like most other BT sets with the remote inline.  There is a cinch that makes sure the fit is tight. The issue with these is the earbuds are a bit long and the weight from the remote pulls them down.  With the cable clip you can get them to stay. Not too bad, but not the greatest; but eh compromises for wireless.  
     
    Sound Review
    I always test with the same devices and song list:
     
    Devices:  OnePlus 3 & Macbook Pro
    Songs (don’t judge me):
     
    Eagles – Hotel California [Hell Freezes Over Live Edition]
    Metallica – No Leaf Clover or Fade to Black
    Big Tymers – Still Fly
    Jethro Tull – Locomotive Brass
    Enya – Oronico Flow
     
    The BLU-Delta offers a very nice rounded, balanced sound that hits bass nicely (not too hard, but you know it’s there) and smooths out the very high end.  Similar to the Soundmagic E10BT it’s a really enjoyable sound that I really like.  No EQ needed right out of the box. 
     
    The bongos on Hotel California hit with the just right amount of oomph, and all the rest sound nice and rounded. 
     
    In no leaf clover I could hear the different instruments playing along with the guitar, sounds amazing.  Top notch quality for my ears. 
     
    For Locomotive Brass I could easily hear the bass and rhythm guitar play together and when the flute or whatever he’s playing kicks in the sound is nice and clean, not too high and piercing.
     
    I think the Delta Bluetooth has a nice clean sound.
     
    Comparisons
    Brainwavz BLU-Delta vs E10BT
     
    Same price for both of these.  Sound signature is similar, but the Delta’s hit a bit harder and aren’t as clear on the high end as the E10BTs.  The Brainwavz have a shorter battery life and a very spotty Bluetooth connection.  They have APT-X for better sound, but with connection issues these are a no-go.
     
    Brainwavz BLU-Delta vs 1More iBfree
     
    Again these are similar price.  The iBfree’s have a much harsher high end and less bass.  They actually are a bit piercing right out of the box.  I installed the EQ app by 1More and this really improved the sound.  Also they recommend a burn-in for these.  So time will tell if sounds improve.  Overall the BLU-Delta sound was preferred.
     
    Conclusion
    I have to say that the sound quality and the accessories provided are quite a bargain for only $50.  They come with Comply tips, which are excellent as usual.  I just wish that Brainwavz didn’t have the connection issues I was facing and perhaps added some wing tips to keep these slightly heavy buds in place.    
     
    Overall if I didn’t have the connection issues it would be a hard pick between these and Soundmagic as they are both great low cost Bluetooth devices.  

  3. chompchomps
    A quality Bluetooth offering
    Written by chompchomps
    Published Feb 24, 2017
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Solid construction, bluetooth, good casing, proven sound signature
    Cons - Large In-Line remote, More foam tips
    IMG_4334.jpg
     
    Introduction
    Based on the very successful Delta earphones previously, Brainwavz has come up with a second version of the Delta’s, now upgraded with Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity. As these are not meant for sports, these will be aimed at the growing users of mobile devices without the standard 3.5mm ports.
     
    IMG_4329.jpg  .   IMG_4332.jpg
     
    Unboxing
    Boxing the Brainwavz Delta was a pleasure, being encased in a small box with a picture of how the Delta’s look like on the front and details of the accessories provided at the side and at the back of the casing. Opening it reveals a large semi-hard case, similar to the ones provided by the M100s previously. I really like this case as it gives it ample protection without being overly bulky and is able to store the earphones as well as accessories together with it. I really like this approach of just packing everything within the hard case as it helps to reduce cost of materials as well as helping consumers like myself save space since i like to keep product boxes.
     
    Apart from the Delta’s, accessories included within the case would be:
    1. A Shirt clip
    2. A Microusb charging cable
    3. Silicon tips in S,M,L
    4. A set of T-400 Black Comply Foam tips
    5. User Guide
    6. Velcro cable tie
     
    Overall, accessories provided are pretty standard, but i personally find the case top notch. [​IMG]
     
    IMG_4330.jpg
     
     
    Build Quality
    Encased in an all metal shell, I'm impressed with the construction of these IEMS. They feel solid and well made, with a hefty amount of strain relief to increase the durability of the earphones. The cables are soft and pliable with the remote on the right side of the wiring. The remote is rather large and has a soft touch finish to it. The in line remote has three standard buttons and also has a mic. At the mid section of the cable, there is a slider to secure the earphones to your head and also a shirt clip to secure it to your shirt. I’ve no complaints but only compliments of the build quality and for the price, i think it’s a pretty good upgrade from the usual plastic shells.
     
    IMG_4333.jpg  .      IMG_4335.jpg
     
     
    Sound
    The equipment i used with this earphones is my Iphone 7 Plus with media from Spotify Premium, in extreme quality (320kbps)
     
    When connecting the earphones to the phone, it was fuss-free and easy. Upon pairing, a voice prompting “Your Brainwavz product is turned on” is a nice touch. However i found it odd that once paired with my iphone,  the usual indicator that shows the pairing and the battery indicator on the status bar is not shown, instead a headphone icon is displayed.
     
    A rough representation of the songs that i listen to :
    • Bohemian Rhapsody - Panic! At the Disco
    • LIFTED - CL
    • Reminder - The Weeknd
    • All We Know - The Chainsmokers
    • Shape of you (Acoustic) - Ed Sheeran
     
    In general, I found the sound signature to be quite neutral, with no obvious colouring. Comparing to the previously reviewed M100’s, these are less warm and have less bass quantity. The bass seem quick and just the right amount for songs without an overbearing sub bass. I found the sub bass to be somewhat lacking without the rumble in some of the songs i listen to. The mids are also not too forward sounding although it can be more prominent in acoustic songs and in vocals. However on some songs, it can feel a tad recessed, especially while listening to EDMs. As someone who leans towards the warm sounding types of earphones, I tend to be quite sensitive to sibilance and sharp highs. The deltas are pleasantly tuned and i had no trouble with the highs on this IEM. I would not say these are the most detailed pair of earphones around, but the for the price, i would be happy with it.
     
    I think the soundstage is rather decent, and rock songs don't sound congested. Imaging is somewhat better than the M100s that i reviewed previously. There was something weird about the soundstage which i can't seem to phrase it in proper terms but here goes: usually the tune would come from the far left and right but with these, they seem to be behind my back diagonally backwards to the left and right.
     
    IMG_4331.jpg  .    IMG_4336.jpg
     
     
    What can make this better?
    First up, i found the in-line remote being a tad too large. It's large enough to make the earphones feel unbalanced. However, wearing this behind your neck with the remote resting on your shoulders is find. I found the shirt clip to be extremely useful in this earphone as without the clip, when the remote slides to the front of your shoulder, the cable will fall towards the right side, making it uncomfortable to turn your head. With the clip cleverly placed behind the cable slider, it secures the IEM to the shirt collar,  giving enough length to turn my head comfortably and without worry that it might dislodge the earphone. With a smaller remote, the earphones can be more comfortable to wear and using it would be a more pleasant experience.
     
    Second, i thought with a higher price point, more sizes of foam tips can be provided. This may add to the cost and i guess not everyone is a fan of foam tips or open to the idea of trying them.
     
     
    Conclusion
    I found this offering to be a great one by Brainwavz, to move with the current trends without the 3.5mm jack. At $70SGD, it is being priced competitively compared to more common and popular offerings like the Apple Airpods ($239SGD) and Beats X ($198SGD). I don't know how they compare sonically, but i feel that at $70, it is much more affordable for those who want to give wireless audio equipment a go.
     
     
    Last but not least, I would like to thank Brainwavz and Pandora for this opportunity to review this IEM.
      B9Scrambler and Salsera like this.
  4. Fusionicster
    The Deltas dont master the wireless evolution
    Written by Fusionicster
    Published Feb 15, 2017
    3.0/5,
    Pros - Delta SQ, value for money
    Cons - Connectivity, voiceover, battery life
    I've been purchasing Brainwavz products for a long time now, this is the first pair to disappoint me.
     
    I'll start with the negatives as that's what you're all here to see!
     
    Negative
    Connectivity is an issue.
    It connects straight away but sometimes doesn't actually work. Once playing, they play great for the session.
    Problem is some sessions require Bluetooth toggle and power cycle on the headphones to initialise. Tested on two Android smartphones.
     
    I hate the voiceover.
    I would much prefer a simple notification noise to inform me when paired or when battery is running low.
    The current system is a womans voice recorded in low bit rate that garbles at you.
     
    Battery life has not met expectations.
    I'm getting approx 4-5 hours per charge. (rated for 8hr)
     
    The clasp is trash
    The shirt clasp disassembles itself. Mine never made it past the second use.
     
    The control box is a brick
    Whilst not heavy, it is noticeable. I feel the design could have been improved. (subjective)
     
    Positive
    Inline remote is great
     
    Voice calling
    Inline microphone sounds clear for calls
     
    Sound quality is as expected
    Go read the hundreds of reviews on the standard non Bluetooth Deltas. Doesn't go as loud without distortion but that's a common trait of most wireless buds.
     
    Bundled kit is great
    Nice carry case, extra tips and USB cable. Would have traded this all in for a better clasp though.