Introduction Once considered a novelty, headphones with armature drivers are now more common as many Chinese brands such as Astrotec, Dunu and Sound Magic have released a variety of less expensive armature and hybrid headphones in recent years. No brand went as far as Xiaomi, though, pricing its hybrid dual driver in-ear-headphones at only $17.54, which is truly affordable to everyone. 1more is a fairly new Chinese brand specialized in making headphones, but they did come with lots of promises. The fabulous packaging, refined design and moderate pricing showed their determination in making it big. Having released several entry-level iems and gained a lot of positive feedback, they finally aimed at the higher-end of the market, releasing an all new hybrid model – the 1more E1001 hybrid 3-way in-ear headphone. Specifications Type: Closed, hybrid Rated power: 5mW Driver unit: HD Hybrid 3-way (16mm dynamic + 2×Balanced Armature) Frequency response: 20-40,000 Hz Sensitivity: 99 dB/mW Impedance: 32 Ω Cord type : Approx. 1.25m, enameled copper cord Plug: Gold-plated straight stereo mini plug (3.5mm) Weight: 18g Supplied accessories: Hybrid silicone rubber earbuds (5 pairs), Foamed silicone earbud (3 pairs), Cord adjuster, Carrying case, flight plug adapter Perfectly aware of their limited influence and brand value in this chaotic headphone industry, 1more knows that they have to do more in order to draw customers’ attentions. The 1more E1001 headphones are quite good on paper with a solid 99db/mW sensitivity rating and a frequency response of 20-40,000Hz. And the fact that their 3-button remote is compatible with both Android and iOS makes them more valuable to users who mostly listen to music with their phones. Of course, the $99 price tag may raise a lot of questions about what is special about the 1more E1001 headphones, especially when it comes to sound quality. Are they better than most dynamics iems under $100, how could they be so much cheaper than other triple driver iems, or are they just equivalent to the Xiaomi earphones? Let’s take a closer look. Packaging For a pair of earphones priced under $100, the packaging of the 1more E1001 is simply extravagant. The box itself is rather slick, with a magnetic latch which makes the packing more like a jewelry box. Inside the box you will see stylish graphics showing the design outline of the E1001, as well as the beautifully printed statement. All accessories are contained in independent boxes, you will find 8 pair of eartips (5 pairs of rubber silicon ones and 3 pairs of foam silicon ones), a cord adjuster, a flight dual plug adapter, a black leather carrying case, the warranty card and user manual. Design and build The 1more E1001 has a very premium metallic design, with a combination of rose gold and deep blue. The forged aluminum alloy body houses two balanced armature drivers and a dynamic driver. It is not as high-profile as some Monster and B&O in ear monitors, but it is still one of kind. The cord is engineered to stand the test of time and even some occasional torture. The interior of enameled copper is wrapped around by Kevlar fiber to maximize tensile strength. There is also an inline remote/microphone, which is compatible with both Android and iOS based smartphones and tablets. Though I don’t use this kind of remote very often, I know it is valuable to users who use their smartphone as their main audio player and make occasional phone calls while listening to music. The E1001 earphones are a little heavier than average iems with plastic shells, but as they are ergonomically shaped, the weight is evenly distributed while they rest in my ears. Thus, I never felt uncomfortable, even after wearing them for a few hours. Build quality of these headphones are simply great. They feel even sturdier than my Monster Turbine, which costed me $299. Isolation and fit The 1more E1001 earphones are designed to give the users a perfect fit and decent isolation. With eartips of the right size, they can give you a very comfortable fit, and a tight seal which helps you block out 90% of the outside noise. However, the E1001 headphones are not designed for sports activities such as running and cycling, as the wind noise can sabotage your fun of listening to music. Also, although the fit is decent enough for walking and jogging, the earbuds could fall from your ears if you work your body a little harder. Performance Audio Players: Iriver U100, Apple iPod Shuffle, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, LG G3, MS Surface Pro3 Tested tracks: Sade – King of Sorrow (APE) Ed Sheeran – Afire Love (MP3@320kbps) Coldplay – Every Teardrop is a Waterfall (FLAC) Alicia Keys – Brand New Me (FLAC) Destiny’s Child – Say My Name (MP3@320kbps) G-Eazy – Me, Myself and I (FLAC) Adele – Hello (FLAC) Demi Lovato – Confident (FLAC) Kris Allen – Falling Slowly (APE) Ariana Grande – Focus (MP3@320kbps) Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Otherside (APE) Emeli Sande – Next to Me (FLAC) Emeli Sande – Heaven (FLAC) The Weeknd – Often (FLAC) Drake – Hotline Bling (APE) Comparisons: Monster Turbine, Bose Freestyle, Fox Extreme UR20, Ausdom ANC7, Astrotec GX50 Unlike most high-end headphones, the 1more E1001 can be easily driven with anything. It will surely sound slightly better with an amplifier or a high-end audio player, but it still sounded perfectly fine running off my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, my LG G3 and Surface Pro 3. The 1more E1001 triple-driver earphones have a sound profile that could be more appealing to most audiophiles than bass heads. The sound is very clean, relaxing and well-balanced, with a lot of detail. But the bass is not that fat. I am not saying that the 1more E1001 are severely lacking in bass, but if you are used to the boomy Monster and Beats headphones or other dynamic headphones with that kind of sound profile, you will crave for more bass prominence with the E1001. If the 1more E1001’s bass is not satisfying enough for certain users, the mids and highs are where they really shine, easily blowing my Bose Freestyle and Monster Turbine out of the water. The midrange is smooth, rich, and seductive. Both male and female vocals are presented clearly and accurately. The high frequency spectrum is full, bright, crisp and clear. The 1more E1001 are not a pair of headphones that would ever be called muddy—though some listeners might find it on the slightly overly-bright side, depending on your personal tastes and what genre of music you're listening to. The E1001 aren't the most open-sounding, you will notice that when you listen to tracks which are made to make you feel the spaciousness and openness, such as Coldplay’s “Paradise” and Emeli Sande’s “Heaven”. But the detail is brilliant, I even enjoyed a full hour of American country music on the radio, and I am normally no fan of country. I also did notice some harshness and dryness while playing Drake’s “Hotline Bling” and some old British Rock songs, and there can be some unwanted metallic feel sometimes, but above all, the E1001’s sound is rich, warm, and full of intricate detail. Conclusion I've tested quite a number of in-ear monitors recently and the 1more E1001 triple driver earphones rank up there with my favorites. For only $99, these headphones are extravagantly packaged, beautifully designed, with build quality that could even rival products priced many times higher. Offering a comfortable fit, well-balanced sound, and a remote that works well with almost all smartphones, the 1more E1001 could be the iem to beat in the $100 realm. With that said, the E1001 are definitely not headphones for bass-heads. Although it works fine with most bass centric music, it just lacks that extra punchiness to stimulate the excitement. But if you are more about accuracy and do not stick to a certain genre of music, you can’t go wrong with the E1001 triple driver headphones.