Review: V-Moda Remote Remix In-Ear Headphones.

The world of headphones is a crowded one. Over the last few years, we’ve seen plenty of companies spring up to produce these little cans of music. At the same time, several companies have expanded into the world of personal audio, adding to their current lineup of products. One such company who has in fact been in the audio realm for several years is V-Moda. The last few years have seen some truly stylish headphones design-wise. But as you all know, headphones that are pretty but sound like crap are pretty much useless as well as a letdown. Form over function at work.

In the V-Moda Remix Remote’s case, which power overcomes and ultimately walks away with the crown? Continue on…
 

Build Quality & Construction

Upon opening the box, the eye candy-loving side of me is instantly attracted to these little buds. They have a nice metallic sheen thanks to the actual metal used — not cheap fake chrome-plated plastic. If anything, they’re certainly a a sight to look at. But not only that; they’re sturdy. I don’t have to worry about these things cracking or breaking in my pocket/bag, nor do I have to think about replacing them a mere 6-12 months in the future.

The cable that joins the buds isn’t quite as reassuring, however. Though to be honest, there’s nothing particularly worrisome that jumps out. It’s just your typical grey audio cable — no frills, no new fangled “cable tech” at work. There is a handy clip so that you can attach the headphone cable to your shirt or coat to keep it from flapping around as bad as it would if you didn’t have anything. Overall though, compared to the build quality and attention to detail of the actual ear buds themselves, the cable seems like an afterthought. And for $100 ear buds, that’s a shame.

Sound Quality

I’ll say that after the disappointing time I had with the Wicked Audio headphones, I was pleasantly surprised to actually hear some decent audio come out of the V-Moda Remix Remotes. That is, if I had to cut the crap and give it an honest, quick rating: 7.5/10. For ear buds, the V-Modas were better than your average set of ear buds. The lows were fairly punchy and defined, mids were apparent (quite a bit actually) and highs were present.

With that said, I don’t believe they are $100 ear bud quality. While lows were punchy and fairly defined, they seemed to roll off around 60Hz. Similarly, highs were in fact present, but nothing stood out. It was kind of like a pool of cymbals and other metal banging around. Though I should note that sibilance (that annoying harsh “S” sound) was thankfully non-existent. And if you’ve ever heard a bad case of sibilance, I’m sure you’d probably agree — I’ll take muddled, soft highs over sibilance any day. The last aspect, mid-range, was definitely forward. Male voices easily projected over the music — whatever music it was. (For the record, I listened to everything from Dave Matthews Band to Bullet For My Valentine.) But like everything else, the mids just weren’t right. They were honestly too forward to the point of drowning out some of the highs and blending into some of the lows. The result of that low-end blending is a bump right around 100-200Hz that is sort of odd and unnatural.

Conclusion

So where do we stand? The V-Moda Remix Remotes definitely have style. You can certainly pull double duty with them — listening to music and wearing them as a fashion statement. In regards to the actual music listening another story emerges. If you’re new to the whole scene of $20+ headphones and have never donned anything but those typical white iPod headphones in your life, the V-Modas are a huge step up. And for that person, they’re great.

For someone such as myself, however, who’s been though at least a dozen and a half pairs of headphones in the last 7-8 or so, they’re merely “ok”/nothing special. And at $100, my gut instinct would be to take that money, save it, and put it towards something a little more sonically satisfying. You know, something like a pair of Westone UM3′s, Shure, Etymotics (any of them), or even some full size cans from Sennheiser, Beyerdynamic, or AKG among others.

But of course, audio quality is a highly subjective field. What’s golden in my ears is pure dog *insert slang of poo here* in another person’s. The best way to pick a pair of headphones is to try them before you buy them. But the simple fact that pretty much all stores don’t allow such things means you’ll have to resort to a friend or relative if you’re lucky. In the end, it’s what sounds good to you.

V-Moda: Remix Remote

*Thank you to Max Borges Agency for the review unit*

Gallery