31
Mar
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Last Updated: April 30th, 2012

These days, earbuds are a dime a dozen - they can be had for as little as $1 at the dollar store, all the way into the hundreds of dollars for a high-end pair. And sound quality has improved quite a bit since the early days - any buds that are mid-range or better usually offer pretty good sound, so they're differentiated as much by features as by sound quality. That's where the $50 a-JAYS One+ headphones come through: features. In this case, the largest selling point (that gives it that little "+" in the name) is the inclusion of a control button.

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Seemingly inspired by the headphone controls on newer iPod Shuffles, you can control your phone's music player simply by clicking the button that's a few inches below your ear. The button interfaces with the simple, elegant JAYS app, which in turn interfaces with the music player. Things get better, though: the company has also packed a microphone into the control, meaning it's easy and convenient to answer the phone without taking the earbuds in or holding the phone up to your face. It's all fairly simple and intuitive, and opening the Jays app reminds you of any button combinations you may have forgotten. It's a legitimately useful feature that makes it quick and easy to change songs, adjust volume, and take/reject calls.

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In the (surprisingly attractive) box you'll find the (also attractive) earbuds, a manual, and 4 sets of different sized buds (in addition to the set already on them) - there's definitely an emphasis on sleek design here. Changing the earbuds is about as simple as it gets - pop off the current set and use surgeon-steady hands to put on the new ones. Once you size them to your ears, you'll find they do quite an impressive job of blocking out sound, especially considering they're simple silicon cones. They fit quite comfortably and, at least in my case, stayed that way even after extended use and movement. Unlike harder, firmer earbuds, the soft cones never caused me any discomfort or headache, even after extended (90+ minute) use.

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Sound quality is good, especially for the price range, and the company's advertised emphasis on low-end oomph pans out, with the bass coming in impressively strong. While the sound quality isn't going to blow your mind the same way it would on a pair of $200 'buds, it's certainly in the upper echelon of what you'll find in this price range and class.

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The second distinct (albeit not unique) feature that Jays advertises with the One+ is flat cables. On the upside, they always stay organized and never get twisted. It's not without a small downside, though: the cables are big (compared to other cables, anyway) and fairly heavy (once again, comparatively). Don't get me wrong - in both cases, it's nothing dramatic enough to ruin them, but it's enough to occasionally be an annoyance when wearing them while moving around a lot, such as exercising. Luckily, the annoyance is more than offset by the benefits offered.

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All told, consumers who can look past the somewhat heavy (albeit not uncomfortably so) cables will find the a-JAYS One+ earbuds to be sleek, comfortable, easy to use, and packing strong bass and respectable sound.

Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

    Digging the flat cable. A LOT. Seems very durable and convenient.

  • odd

    Do you need to use the app? I can't use a player that doesn't have folder browsing :/

    • sriracha

      "Seemingly inspired by the headphone controls on newer iPod Shuffles, you can control your phone's music player simply by clicking the button that's a few inches below your ear. The button interfaces with the simple, elegant JAYS app, which in turn interfaces with the music player"

      looks like it works with any player, or there is a player that is a-Jays, or it only works with the stock player. kinda unclear.

      • Aaron Gingrich

        The app reads the buttons signals, then passes it on to the music player. Not really sure how to word it other than it is now.

        As it's worded now:

        Button -> Jays App -> Music Player.

  • jerry

    I have a set of headphones that have the button too. I wonder if the app will work with that.

  • jerry

    The app works with stock player. Just tried it on cdma gnex

  • Alex B

    Hack a 3.5mm stereo line socket onto a pair of HTC RC E160 headphones (about £3 from Amazon Marketplace sellers), then use the inline remote on what's left of the cable with whatever headphones you like. No apps required, total cost probably about £20 including a decent pair of Sennheiser/JVC earphones.

  • Tristan

    I may have to pick up a set of these and give them a shot. Nice review, Aaron!

  • Munsoned

    Not interested in earbuds that tie you to the phone. GIVE ME BLUETOOTH OR GIVE ME DEATH! Ok so that was a bit extreme.

    I have a pair of LG Tones (HBS-700). Yeah, they are a bit geeky, can be bulky, but when I wear a collared shirt for work it hides under the collar nicely; all you see is the wire earbuds. The nice thing about these I can control volume, skip forward/backwards, and answer calls. ALSO, I will leave my phone charging at my work PC, and can walk 30 feet +/- depending on signal obstruction before I start losing signal. Sound quality is lacking some bass, but that doesn't bother me none. AND compared to other bluetooth brands they are rather affordable. I've bought two, one for work and one for home. I can use them in a 12 hour day, forget to plug them in to charge, and have gone another 12 hour day (intermittent useage of course)

    They may not be the most practical, the coolest or fashion forward pair of bluetooth earbuds, but they get the job done without having a wire to snag on things. No extra software, no extra app. It even works with Spotify or the player that is on my phone.

    SO! when Android Police finds me a bluetooth product worth commenting on I will entertain the idea of giving my review.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I haven't reviewed them here, but the HBH-IS800 is my favorite ultra-portable set of BT earbuds. Otherwise, I reviewed the AF-32, which I quite liked for the price, and we reviewed some other BT buds/headphones before.

      And then there's the Sony Smart wireless headset pro that I'm dying to try when it comes out.

    • Ni

      Sony Ericsson MW600 already exists, is quite cheap and can convert easily any 3.5mm headphone to bluetooth. Give it a try, it really is a good product!

  • Al McDowall

    A request for input from any ear-bud fans:

    I'm not quite an audiophile but I do actively listen when I listen to music. I'm picky enough that I know that inner ear phones (not buds) need a foam cover on them to improve the sound (mainly at the low end).

    I generally use large closed headphones which cover the ear, and am pleased with the range. Any time I have tried earbuds, I find them distinctly lacking in the lower end, as in it is almost not present at all. I'm not going down the beats road (low end at the sacrifice of everything else) but am I missing something on the buds? They are very popular so either everyone that uses them does not care about faithful reproduction, or I have not yet tried the right pair. What do you guys think? Have you tried a pair which really give a good full range response?

    (Genuinely interested, not looking to dump on earbuds, rather hoping for some good guidance)

  • aSeven

    For those interested, maybe look at Wicked Jawbreakers WI-2150. Sound quality is simply amazing for the price. Regular $30 I think, but you can get them on eBay for half that. I picked up a few on sale in-store for $10 and was shocked by how good they sound, as I find most IEMs in the price range sound like absolute garbage.

    Great passive sound isolation, built-in microphone, and very clear audio.

    They are a little heavy on the bass, but that does seem to be what some people are after.

  • 5zeci

    They sure look nifty. Somebody in the design team has done some reasearch I hope...

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