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Our Verdict

The AKG Y45 BT headphones are a great choice for portable Bluetooth listening, and perfect for commuters and those on the go. We marginally preferred the Sennheiser MM 400-X for the prizes of Best Portable Bluetooth Headphones but the AKGs are nearly half the price, so certainly worth considering.

The AKG Y45 BT headphones are portable and wireless, and so make great headphones for commuters or others who wish to listen to music on the move.

These on-ear Bluetooth headphones are priced at £109.99, but can be found cheaper online. See the bottom of this review for the latest, best prices.

They remind us a lot of our current favourite portable Bluetooth headphones, the Sennheiser MM 400-X, which retail for £180.

And so this review can also be taken as a shoot-out between these two portable Bluetooth headphones. Which comes out as the best portable Bluetooth headphones?

(We also reviewed a fine set of Best Headphones round-up too.)

Best portable Bluetooth headphones

First, let’s examine portability.

Both the AKG Y45 and Sennheiser MM 400-X fold down pretty small. The AKG fold up marginally less wide but a little taller, so there’s really not much in it.

Both come with a protective carry case; the AKG case is round and lacks the Sennheiser case’s compartment that will fit a cable (in case the batteries run out) and even an iPod. That said you can stuff the cable in the AKG pouch alongside the headphones.

The 105g Sennheiser headphones are 45g lighter than these AKGs (150g), but again there’s not a huge amount in it.

Both come with a separate, detachable cable for non-Bluetooth listening – if the batteries fade out on you, and also for optimum audio quality when you don’t need to be cable free. Battery life is a little longer on the Sennheiser headphones: 10 compared to 8 hours.

The AKG Y45, just like the Sennheiser, features ear-cup-mounted controls. The right earcup holds Play/Pause/Call Answer/Call End, Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power/Pairing buttons. Plus both boast an integrated microphone so you can switch to answering phone calls without taking the headphones off.

I found the controls to be a bit fiddly and close together at first, and preferred the easier, bigger controls on the Sennheisers. Turning the AKGs off also took some getting used to.

You charge the headphones with the supplied Micro USB cable.

AKG Y45 BT headphones: audio quality

To my ear the audio quality on both the AKG and the more expensive Sennheisers sounded remarkably similar, offering a great sound. If I had to choose one it would be the Sennheisers but it’s a very close call; and you should consider that the AKGs are nearly half the price!

But I also defer to my audio buff colleague Andrew Harrison for his expertly trained ears.

First Andrew tested the AKG Y45 BT with its cable. He found they have a warm balance, and slightly rolled-off upper treble. The mildly muffled effect nonetheless helps soften the grit of MP3 and AAC recordings, in his opinion.

The headphones have a mildly thumping upper bass, boosted to follow the fashion of other street headphones – and so they are not entirely unlike the Beats sound, although not as obvious as with the comparable Philips Fidelio M2BT headphones.

They feature a strong midrange for voices, but not especially ‘open’ in character.

There is limited stereo width even with binaural material. And the bass-forward voicing can colour the sound, making it a little opaque and jumbled in Andrew’s considered judgement.

Overall Andrew thinks that the AKG Y45 favour rock and urban music, but are not so satisfying for classical and jazz.

Tested with Bluetooth there is noticeably increased white-noise hiss, especially when not covered up by any music. Busier music passages can sound dynamically compressed.

To my untrained ear the audio quality was more than acceptable at this price, and give the more expensive Sennheiser headphones a good run for the money.

AKG Y45 BT headphones: design Specs AKG Y45 BT: Specs

17Hz to 20KHz frequency response

100mW max input power

120dB sensitivity

Bluetooth 3.0

smartphone control

1.2m cable

3.5mm plug


You're reading Akg Y45 Bt Headphones Review – Stylish, Portable And Wireless

Creative Hitz Wp380 Wireless Bluetooth Headphones Review

Our Verdict

We were impressed with the Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones, for sound quality, comfort and wireless freedom. Once you tried Bluetooth headphones going back to wired models seems rather primitive. Sound quality is great and these headphones are comfortable to wear and don’t leak much noise to the outside world.

The Creative Hitz WP380 are a solid but lightweight set of headphones that allow for both wireless and wired listening. We review the Creative Hitz WP380 for sound quality, Bluetooth connectivity and comfort.

Wireless speakers and headphones are becoming increasingly popular now that Bluetooth technology has developed to cope with high-quality audio. See also: Best speakers for iPhone, Galaxy, Nexus and  Best earbuds and headphones for iPhone, iPad, Android

Were moving on from the days of Apple’s iconic white iPod earbud cables. Getting rid of such headphone cables has more benefits than just not snagging yourself on door handles or having to untangle miles of strangely knotty cable – can anyone explain just how headphone cables do get in such tangles? Read: How to add Bluetooth to an iPod classic.

With Near Field Communication (NFC) technology all you need to do is tap your NFC-enabled smartphone or music player to a compatible speaker or headphone and you’re connected within seconds. Sadly Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod can’t yet handle tap-to-pair with speakers or other accessories such as the Creative Hitz WP380 wireless on-ear headphones. But NFC comes in just about every Android and Windows Phone, so Apple users are missing out for the time being.

That’s not to say that the £89.99 WP380 headphones won’t work with iPhones or iPods – it’s only the tap-to-pair NFC feature that is denied them until Apple wakes up to the benefits.

Instead you hold down one area of the headphones through power up and a few seconds more to start pairing the WP380 and your iPhone/iPod.

With Bluetooth headphones such as these you can share your audio with another headphone user – no walking oddly tethered by a cable lead.

Creative calls this ShareMe. Sharing an audio source might seem like a gimmick but think of the possibilities: listening to music, a podcast or audiobook together, or watching a movie with friend during a commute or long-haul flight.

Pairing two sets of compatible headphones isn’t as easy as tapping NFC devices but it’s a relatively simple matter of both users pressing some of the headphone buttons.

Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones review: Sound quality

We were pleasantly surprised how good the Creative Hitz WP380 does sound. To be sure we gave the wireless headphones to our resident audio nut, Technical Editor Andrew Harrison, to test.

He was impressed that there’s none of the background hiss and crackle he has heard on many Bluetooth audio devices.

Connected by aptX (data reduction technology) to a MacBook, it’s close to having a regular wired connection.

The overall tone of the headphones are good – warm bass without being overblown, tight and controlled for the most part too; level midband, inoffensive treble if with a little metallic hint audible in classical strings, for instance.

There is a nice stereo spread between the ears, and usefully wide sound with good image focus.

In layman’s terms… the Creative Hitz WP380 is a pair of great-sounding wireless headphones.

The Creative Hitz WP380 headphones feature the Apt-X codec, which is a neat audio compression technology (codec) that optimizes audio streaming through Bluetooth in an attempt to transmit CD level audio quality wirelessly. Both the headphones and the device you’re streaming from have to support aptX. Just as with NFC Apple doesn’t yet support Apt-X with its mobile devices but plenty of Android smartphones do. Check out a list of Apt-X– compatible devices here.

Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones review: Comfort

The headphones are a bit clampy on the head but are secure with it, and we found noise leakage to be mininmal – so you won’t annoy people near you with your music.

Andrew did detect some slight mechanical noise from the headband if he waggled his head or jaw, but we don’t think this is going to put many people off these quality headphones.

You control On/Off power, volume and Forward/Back track selection from the right ear pad.

There are no heavy batteries to constantly replace or weigh you down as charging is done through the supplied Micro USB cable. A nice touch is that the headphones come with a flat, tangle-free audio cable (2.5mm jack for the headphones and 3.5mm for the audio player) in case the battery power runs out.

Creative claims that you’ll get up to 12 hours of playback and talk time with a single charge.

Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones review: Built-in mic

The headphones boats a built-in, HD-ready speech microphone with the ClearSpeech Engine that Creative claims actively suppresses external noises and digitally enhances speech clarity to keep conversations loud and clear.

Will iPhone 5 HD Voice work in the UK?

Specs Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones: Specs


Weight 150g (5.3oz)

Main Features: Volume Control, aptX, Near Field Communication (NFC)

Driver Size: 34mm (1.33 inches) Neodymium magnet

Frequency Response 18Hz ~ 22kHz

Optional cable Length 1.2m / 3.9ft

Best Headphones 2023: Earbuds, Wireless, Anc & More

We review a wide range of headphones in terms of prices and features so you’ll find a varied selection here – everything from cheap earbuds to keep your kid’s cartoon from blasting to everyone in the vicinity to premium ANC cans for commuting in peace and quiet. We have the best over-ear headphones, best sony headphones, best Bose headphones and more.

Modern consumer headphones are almost all Bluetooth capable which makes them the best wireless headphones but some also offer the ability to use a wired connection, too.

Bear in mind that in general, spending more on audio really does mean getting better quality as well as features.

Best headphones 2023

1. Sony WH-1000XM5 – Best Overall


Phenomenal audio quality

Great noise cancellation

Serious smarts


No longer fold


Best Prices Today:

It seems Sony can do no wrong with its flagship XM headphones, well almost. They’re more expensive than their predecessors and the design no longer folds down which will irk some users.

However, the price can largely be put down to inflation and if the non-folding design doesn’t bother you then these headphones are essentially flawless starting with the kinds of high-end sound and noise cancelling you’d expect from Sony, despite smaller drivers.

Elsewhere, the improved headband allows smooth adjustment and there’s an unrivalled selection of smart features from Adaptive Sound Control to Speak-to-Chat. It’s a small step forward but they remain the best over-ear headphones you can buy.

The caveat, as usual, is that considering this is refinement and not reinvention, you can buy previous generations, even the WH-1000XM4, for much lower prices providing a better value option.

Read our full

2. Sony WF-1000XM4 – Best True Wireless Earbuds


Class leading ANC

Incredible sound

Smart features


More expensive than some

Bulky for small ears

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Sony has done it again with its latest pair of flagship earbuds with an unmatched combination of sound quality, top-notch noise cancelling and high-end smart features borrowed from the WH model.

They also have strong battery life so they are the best package on the market if you can afford them. 

There’s very little to be disappointed with here, perhaps only that the earbuds themselves are still bigger than some rivals so aren’t well-suited to smaller ears.

Read our full

3. Cambridge Audio Melomania Touch – Best Battery Life


Epic battery life

Great sound

Useful app




Slow to switch modes

Slightly awkward case

Best Prices Today:

They don’t have noise cancelling, but the Melomania Touch are still a great pair of wireless earbuds.

As long as ANC isn’t a must-have feature, they offer excellent sound quality and a comfortable design with changeable fins.

The standout here is unrivalled battery life with the ability to go for a whopping total of 50 hours if you use them in low power mode. They can still last an awesome 44 hours in high performance mode.

Read our full

4. NuraLoop – Best Custom Sound


Superb personalised sound

Excellent ANC

Good value


Proprietary eartips and adapter

No digital assistant support

Bulky case

Best Prices Today:

NuraLoop manages to condense the audio wizardry found in the company’s first product and deliver an in-ear alternative that’s hard to beat in terms of comfort, quality sound, top-notch noise cancellation and battery longevity.

Better yet, at this price, they undercut Apple’s AirPods Pro while delivering a better audio experience overall. Just be aware that they lack virtual assistant support and relies on some proprietary components that might cost a little extra to replace.

They are now cheaper due to the introduction of the NuraTrue earbuds.

Read our full

5. Bose QuietComfort 45 – Best Comfort


Light and comfortable

Effective noise cancelling

Solid battery life


No ANC adjustment

Lacking smart features

Plasticky build

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It was a long wait for Bose to update the QC35 II and five years later the QuietComfort 45 still live up to the name.

With cloud-like cushions and a lightweight design, they are the best choice for long listening sessions – whether you’re simply at your desk or on a long haul flight. 

Noise cancelling performance is top-notch as you’d expect from Bose and battery life is solid – with wired mode still an option.

Things are surprisingly simple though with just two ANC modes – Quiet and Aware – missing the 11 levels of adjustment found on the QC Earbuds. They also lack smart features such as ear detection.

Read our full

6. Anker Soundcore Life A2 NC – Best Budget Wireless Earbuds


Hybrid Active Noise Cancellation

Powerful bass

Great battery life


No auto-pause

Case feels a little cheap

No auto-switching of ANC profiles

If you’re not on a tight budget then you’ll struggle to find better wireless earbuds than these.

They might have a slightly cheap-feeling case and no auto-pausing tech (aka wear detection) but those downsides are massively overshadowed by great performance and a surprisingly comprehensive feature set.

As well as powerful bass, the A2 buds have excellent noise cancelling with three presets for different environments and the app offers EQ sound customisation. Throw in touch controls and solid battery life and there’s very little to dislike.

And you can easily find them at prices lower than the RRP.

Read our full

7. H2O Audio Tri Pro Multi-Sport – Best Bone Conduction Headphones


Decent audio in water

Good battery life

Can store a wide range of songs and podcasts


Fiddly controls

More instructions needed in app

Slightly uncomfortable after long periods of wear

Technical issues

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Your ear canal being totally free of obstructions means you can clearly hear what’s going on around you. Perfect for urban running, never missing that platform change announcement and many other situations like office working where colleagues will regularly need to attract your attention. You can even swim in this pair.

The fit is really good, battery life is decent and they are more affordable than you might expect.

Read our full

8. Marshall Monitor II ANC – Most Stylish Headphones


Build quality

Comfortable & compact

Good battery life


Middling ANC

Joystick control won’t suit everyone

If noise cancelling is your top priority then Marshall is a little behind rivals in this area, but the Monitor II ANC headphones have a lot to offer.

For starters, they have a more affordable price (RRP) and offer one of the most compact and comfortable designs for a pair of over-ear headphones. They also sound very good, too.

We also like the useful buttons, long battery life and the way the app allows you to customise various elements.

Read our full

9. Fairbuds XL – Best Sustainability


Great sound

Decent ANC


Solid battery life


ANC isn’t class-leading

Some stitching issues

Basic app

The active noise cancelling is good, but also not class-leading. The battery life is great though and the Fairbuds XL offer an alternatively stylish design, particularly in the green colour shown.

The big, XL even, reason to buy these headphones over rivals is down to Fairphone’s ethical and sustainable ethos with recycled materials and the ability to fix pretty much anything that goes wrong down the line with official spare parts.

Read our full

10. Apple AirPods Max – Best Luxury Listening


Incredible sound quality

Premium build

Great ANC

Impressive smarts


Limited Android support

No power button

Silly Smart Case

No Lossless support

Best Prices Today:

They got off to a rocky start but after some firmware updates, the AirPods Max are an excellent choice for Apple users who can afford them.

The design and build are among the most luxurious we’ve ever seen (ignoring the ridiculous Smart Case) and they sound great too, even without Lossless playback support.

You also get active noise cancelling with an excellent transparency mode along with smart features like Hey Siri and Spatial Audio with head-tracking for a more immersive listening experience, whether that’s music or movies.

Read our full

Once you know how much you are willing to spend, the next decision to make is what type of headphones are right for you.

Overall, there are three types but there are also various sub-categories within each, often with a bit of crossover. Here’s what you need to know:


– Small, lightweight and often inexpensive


– Comfortable and space to house larger drivers


– A good balance of the above

Now take a look at the below options for more types:


– Another way of saying in-ear headphones


– Earbuds connected together with a section designed to sit around the neck

True wireless earbuds

– Earbuds that are not connected to each other with a wire

Find out how we test audio.

Features to look out for

As mentioned earlier, most headphones we test are Bluetooth wireless headphones. It’s not just more convenient but many smartphones don’t come with a physical headphone jack so plug a cable in anymore.

Wireless will never reach the quality of a trusty wire, although some pairs may offer both options which can be a life saver when the battery runs out. Read our reviews to see how good they sound over the air and look out for the latest versions of Bluetooth as well as codecs like aptX and LDAC for better audio.

We have a chart just for the best wireless earbuds and best budget wireless earbuds if you want the convenience of in-ears.

The other modern feature to look out for is noise cancelling. Beware that many sets will try to promote this despite it being ‘passive’, which simply means the headphones are physically blocking sound like earplugs you’d wear in bed for sleeping.

What you really want is ‘active noise cancelling’ (ANC) which means the headphones are listening to the outside world with microphones, then getting rid of that sound. This is done by cleverly playing you an inverted version of the signal. We have a dedicated round-up for the best noise cancelling headphones.

Not all noise cancelling is equal though, so read our reviews to see how good it is. Some also have various levels of the feature as well as additional modes that let some outside sound in to keep you safe or so you hear important announcements. They go by various names like ‘aware’, ‘transparency’ or ‘social’.

Hi-Res is also sought after and means you’ll be listening to CD quality or better audio. Various music streaming services offer this but there are lots of hoops to jump through to make sure you’re getting the proper Hi-Red quality. These include your smartphone or other device, having a Hi-Res codec as well as a fast enough internet connection. 

Some headphones have unique features with the very unusual Dyson Zone springing to mind. They can purify the air around you and feed it towards your mouth and nose with a futuristic visor. They’re expensive and have a number of drawbacks so don’t quite make it into this chart.



Are headphones good for gaming?

In a word, yes. Headphones are a great choice for gaming because you get a more immersive experience and for certain games, such as first-person shooters, you will hear where an enemy is around you much more clearly.

Most modern pairs of headphones come with microphones so you can use these for chatting to teammates, too. Just be aware that using Bluetooth headphones can introduce delay (aka lag) so make sure you choose a pair with low latency – some even have gaming modes you can switch to in the accompanying app. Otherwise, wired is the way to go.


What are the best type of headphones for the gym? 

Some of this will come down to personal choice but in-ear headphones, specifically true wireless earbuds, are better for the gym and other fitness activities in various ways. 

Lots of models are specifically designed with the gym in mind so look for models that can do things like track your activity and even heart rate. If you’re worried about them falling out, some have over the ear hook designs to ensure they don’t come out. 


What are the best headphones for iPhone? 

It seems a bit obvious, but the simple answer to this is AirPods. Apple’s ecosystem is close-knit and the firm has made AirPods, in various models, with iPhone users in mind, as well as its other products. 

There’s no need to worry about any compatibility issues and you’ll also benefit from features such as Find My if you lose an earbud, Spatial Audio and smart pairing. 

Other brands aren’t out of the question, but they have to develop for multiple platforms so going with Apple offers you a guarantee when it comes to user experience. 


What are the best headphones for flying?

Some of your decision making here will come down to personal choice but the essential thing to look for is a pair with active noise cancelling (ANC). This is what you need to help get rid of the sound of the engines, air conditioning and possibly even annoying passengers. 

You can use wireless earbuds, but on- and over-ear headphones are better for flying in a number of ways. For starters, they normally have longer battery life so are unlikely to need charging mid-flight. 

They’re also typically comfortable for longer periods of time and some offer the ability to use a wired connection making it a lot easier to plug into the in-flight entertainment system. 

Tronsmart Mega Pro Portable Speaker Review

There are tons of Bluetooth speakers out there, making it difficult to review one and try to differentiate it from the rest. I had a chance to try out the Tronsmart Mega Pro portable speaker, and it didn’t disappoint.

Looks and Feel

When I took the speaker out of the box, the very first impression was that it is very heavy. Being a portable speaker, I would expect it to be something small and light. Weighing at 1780g and with a size of 250 x 82 x 104mm, it is not considered light, small and portable to me. I would think twice before I put it in my bag to bring it with me.

At the top of the speaker is the touch control. The buttons, ordered from left to right, are “Voice assistant,” “Mode,” “TWS stereo,” “Equalizer,” “Previous Track,” “Playing,” “Next Track” and “NFC.” Right below the buttons is a Volume slider.

At the back are the various ports and the Power button. There is an AUX input, USB-A, USB-C ports and a TF/SD card slot for playing music from a card.

What I really like is the rubberized bottom. You can just place it on the table with little chance of knocking it down or moving it accidentally.


ModelTronsmart Mega ProBluetooth5.0Bluetooth ProfileA2DP V1.3, ACRCP V1.4, HFP V1.6Bluetooth transmissionUp to 20m / 66ft (open area)Li-Battery Capability10400mAhWaterproofIPX5Power SupplyDC 5V/3A, via Type-C portFrequency Range20Hz – 20000HzBatteryBuilt-in lithium battery, 10400mAhPlaytimeUp to 10 hours (on a 50% volume)Talk timeUp to 20 hours (on a 70% volume)StandbyAbout 24 monthsCharging time4 hoursDimensions9.84 x 3.23 x 4.09 inches / 250 x 82 x 104mmWeight1780g / 62.78 oz


To say that this is just a normal Bluetooth speaker is an understatement. Despite how it looks, it packed more punches than any other Bluetooth speaker.

First of all, it packs a 60W woofer and 2 side tweeters with 1 passive bass radiator and 2 amplifiers in the speaker, which ensure that it can deliver good bass and output.

It also comes with three modes of Equalizer effects. The default is Deep Bass. Pressing the EQ button once will activate 3D bass (green light) and pressing it twice will activate the Vocal bass (blue light).

The huge battery pack (10400mAh) within ensures that it can last a long time (up to 10 hours) before you need a recharge. It can also be used as a power bank to charge your mobile phone.

Its IPX5 rating allows some water to be splashed on it, but don’t bring it into the pool.

The Tronsmart Mega Pro also supports Siri, Google Assistant and Cortana, though it only supports answer and end call function.


Getting it to work is very easy. Simply power it on and pair it with your device. The pairing is fast and effortless. If your phone comes with an NFC feature, you can easily pair the speaker with the phone and NFC, too.

When playing music on it, the volume slider doesn’t work as well as it should. There seems to be a maximum limit, and I can’t make it any louder beyond a certain level. On the other hand, if I control the volume from the device, the volume can get really loud. With a sound meter, it recorded a 86dB at its maximum volume, which is considered really loud. Even at 50 percent volume, it consistently hovered at 60 – 70db.

The bass effect of the speaker is really good. The Equalizer setting makes quite a big difference to the music being played. When playing Santorini by Yanni, I found that the 3D bass gives the best sound effect. For a movie, the Vocal bass gives the best sound effect.

The ability to charge your phone is a bonus. While there is no quick-charging option, I am still able to charge my phone from 30% to 100% in two hours.

If you have two of these speakers, you can pair them up with the TWS stereo mode and use them as a pair of stereo speakers. With both speakers in close proximity and powered on, press the TWS button on one of them, and it will pair with the other speaker. The active speaker will have a flashing light on the TWS button.

Wrapping Up

Other than it being a portable speaker, this is a really great speaker. Be it the specifications or performance, both are impressive. If you love heavy bass to your music, you will like this speaker.

The Tronsmart Mega Pro speaker is priced at $89.99 and is available for purchase from Aliexpress, Geekbuying, and Amazon.


Damien Oh started writing tech articles since 2007 and has over 10 years of experience in the tech industry. He is proficient in Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and iOS, and worked as a part time WordPress Developer. He is currently the owner and Editor-in-Chief of Make Tech Easier.

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Best Portable Audio Recording? Zoom H1 Review

Before actually owning the zoom h1, I did do my own research on the product. Everyone’s conclusion was that it felt like a cheap toy. However, I feel as though, while it is all plastic, it still feels sturdy.  I have dropped this mic before and it has yet to crack. (I hope it doesn’t of course!)  And upside to it being all plastic is that it is very light. The build itself is a very small mic intended for on the go usage. It might just be me, but there is something satisfying when you can buy an a product for use, and not have to worry about it getting scuffed up. Coming in an all plastic and cheap form actually makes me want to bring it around more. I toss it into my bag and go. And I think that’s a very important factor when considering this type of product to buy. Just don’t expect a tank when your buying this product. Keep in mind the satisfying buying price of it and you won’t have any complaints.

To be blunt the sound is fantastic.  With an onboard mic that you get with your typical DSLR, you’ll notice the sound levels are not equal. Every now and then I would record a conversation with two people, and while they are at the same exact distance from the camera, every now and then one voice would be extremely high while the other would be low.– Not with the zoom h1. If I aim the mic correctly, the audio is not only equal, but it is also accurate.Another problem that I had before using the Zoom h1 was the fact that my onboard mic picked up a certain humming noise in the background. The h1, as im sure many if not all external mics, fix this problem.  The Zoom h1 mic also removed the audio echo that I received with many other cameras. (Especially webcams)

I do not have a wind filter, as it does not come with one, but I have noticed, to no surprised, that in semi-windy condition, without a wind filter, it does pick up a lot of wind noise.  A LOT. Not a negative thing, that’s typical, but don’t be put off by it and buy a wind filter. (If you intend to work in windy conditions)

The Zoom H1 does cannot be directly connected into your camera. You must manually sync you audio. It could be a major pain, and it is something you definitely want to consider. I believe in the new Final Cut Pro X there is a way to automatically sync the audio, but even then, I would of course rather just have the audio recorded right into our DSLR. If this is a problem, you might want to consider the Zoom H1′s big brother: the Zoom H4n.

The zoom consumes only one AA battery, but I still wish it had a charging feature.  It also does have  tripod screw in so if you have an extra tripod you can mount it equally to your camera.

For a budget mic, I think it is a great product.  I do envy the Zoom H4n, but considering the price this product it is going for, I can’t complain much. It’s a mic, that I use to supplement everything, my DSLR, my webcam, and sometimes even my phone. The only downside I would have to say is, again, you have to manually sync the audio in post production. So do I recommend this mic? Yes, yes I do!

The Zoom H1, your portable audio recorder now the perfect supplement to any DSLR or video recording device. Small and affordable, but what does all of that sacrifice?

Mini Review: Schatzii Bullet – Tiny, Stylish, Expensive, Limited Battery

If there was one thing I would have sworn you could never interest me in trying, it was yet another Bluetooth earpiece. There are about a zillion of these available (well, 45,322 according to Amazon), and for the most part my view has always been that if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen ’em all. Stick them in your ear and get tinny, one-eared sound that is hopeless for music but does the job for hands-free phone calls when you don’t have access to an installed setup in your car.

But I had to admit that the Schatzii Bullet is rather smaller and more stylish than most, with a cute charging system that goes some way toward making up for the somewhat limited battery-life that inevitably accompanies such a small device. It seemed worth a try …

What you see in the photo above, with my iPhone SE for scale, is the earpiece in its charging tube.

The earpiece itself, shown below, measures just 2cm long by 1.5cm wide. The whole unit sits inside your ear, with nothing dangling down or sitting on your ear. That fact, coupled to the amazingly light 3.5g weight, makes it far more comfortable than the typical Bluetooth earpiece out there.

The downside, of course, is a limited battery-life. Although it’s good for 80 hours on standby, you only get around 90 minutes of talk-time. For someone like a cab driver, who is on the phone for much of the day, this would be wildly impractical. But for many of us, an hour is actually enough to make it through the day.

And when the battery runs out, that’s not game over if you don’t need continuous use. Because that charging tube is a portable power pack that can recharge the earpiece up to three times. The earpiece just snaps magnetically into place, and recharges in around an hour. So if you have a one-hour commute, for example, you could use it all the way in, snap it into the charging tube in your pocket and then use it all the way home again.

The whole unit – earpiece plus power pack – measures less than 6.5cm long by 1.5cm wide, so slips easily into any pocket.

You get an extremely discreet red LED while it’s charging, which goes out when it’s fully-charged. You recharge the power pack itself via a supplied micro-USB lead, hidden beneath a cap on the other end of the tube.

At the business end, the earpiece also snaps very firmly into place via a strong magnet. I didn’t feel there was any risk of it coming loose in my pocket, and indeed it remained in place both in a pocket and in a bag.

Sound quality is exactly what you’d expect from a tiny Bluetooth earpiece: distinctly average. Nobody would be using a single earpiece for music, and volume is limited, but it’s adequate for phone calls in most environments, including a car. It wouldn’t cope with very noisy places, but very few earpieces do. It does, though, have built-in noise-reduction, and I could hear well enough in a train station.

But you can’t really beat the Bullet when it comes to portability, especially when you take into account the very neat charging system. The stylishness is also a good match for Apple products. I think there are those who will find this hard to resist – and it’s small and light enough that I’ve kept it in my bag as a ‘just in case’ option for those times when I go out without headphones. You can also get similar rebadged versions for significantly less.

The Schatzii BULLET Bluetooth Earpiece with Charging Capsule is $126.49 from Mobile Fun. There are rebadged versions available on Amazon from around $70, but check the details as finishes vary and not all have the charging tube cap.

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