In autumn of 2018, the wired in-ear model E11C made quite the impression with us, largely down to a balanced sound quality that’s normally something you find in the 50 euro price range. For around 30 euros more, you can now experience the same drivers used with that model, but with the added benefit of Bluetooth connectivity. Of particular note here is that Bluetooth 5.0 promises extremely long runtimes.
These classic black headphones are made to a high standard and boast a lightweight construction that’s still robust and durable thanks to a predominantly aluminium body. What’s more, the material is IPX4 certified, granting you peace of mind when it comes to sweat and splash protection. As such, there’s broader applications beyond mobile use, with sporting activities being one such area where they can be used effectively. Three pairs of silicone earbuds are included, all offering good levels of comfort. The buds themselves are relatively long, allowing them to be inserted deeper into the ear canal, enhancing insulation against external noise. The elastic neckband provides strain relief, while the earpieces have the handy feature of being magnetic, attracting and adhering to each other when not in use.
These were some of the first headphones to support Bluetooth 5.0, which is particularly energy-efficient and therefore makes bold promises about ensuring longer operating times of your devices, as well as allowing for longer ranges for connectivity. In fact the manufacturer specifies that 48 to 60 hours of music playback can be expected. You can also expect up to 24 hours of talk time with Bluetooth 5.0 here, while at standby, an impressive 280 hours of performance is promised. This is all rather revolutionary, especially when you consider how compact these in-ears are.
The range of functions on offer here is fairly straightforward. The rubberised remote control is separated from the neckband by a short run of cable and presents you with three buttons. These are set well apart from each other for user-friendliness. In addition to on/off functions, you can use the remote to control initial pairing, oversee music playback, answer calls, jump between tracks, control volume and fast-forward through media. That’s plenty of functionality for such a discreet set of buttons.
As far as pairing is concerned, you’ll be glad to know the whole process is quick and easy. Pairing is initiated and complete shortly after switching on.
When it comes to audio codecs, the E11BT supports SBC. This is a more efficient variant on mSBC. For more intensive demands, AAC is also supported. However, other higher resolution or low latency codecs are not supported.
The average iPhone 8S has considerable battery reserves, so you can use these in-ears to enjoy your favourite tracks with plenty of volume in noisy environments without the worry of disturbing your neighbours. The 10 mm neodymium drivers used with these are identical to the technology found within the E11C. Sound reproduction is therefore pretty comparable to what you might have experienced with that device.
These headphones deliver powerful sound, with plenty of energy in the bass that never suffers from seeming overemphasised. This is definitely welcome when considering mobile use. Very low basses are also reproduced with plenty of definition. The E11BT proves itself a pleasantly stable performer, even when encountering bass-heavy material and higher levels.
The headphones are balanced and rich in detail in the midrange. This means that acoustic instruments and vocals enjoy sufficient authenticity, while providing a dynamic sound image when listening to pop, synthetic and rock productions. In general, there’s a tendency toward a more open sound, rather than something warmer and more pronounced.
These Bluetooth in-ears reproduce upper frequencies without unwanted hardness. Transparency is also good. Percussive instruments, not to mention room and panoramic details are all accurately reproduced. This is a premier performer when you consider the price bracket of around 80 euros.
Considering its sound characteristics, I find the E11BT an ideal choice for those after a more universally suitable choice of in-ear headphone. It’s ideal for everything from pop, rock and EDM productions, to more dynamic music genres like jazz and classical compositions. Finally, voice quality is also more than adequate when answering or making calls.
SoundMAGIC definitely made the right move in migrating the E11C to a wireless Bluetooth version, with the E11BT hitting all the right marks in performance. What’s more, with the manufacturer taking the plunge quickly with a move toward Bluetooth 5.0, it has a real ace up its sleeve for those seeking in-ears for mobile use. The enhanced battery life alone means these in-ears have a serious advantage over many competitor models at the moment.
- Ear couplingIn-ear
- Transducer principledynamic
- Frequency response (headphones)20 - 22.000 Hz
- Impedance42 ohms
- Sound pressure level (SPL)@1kHz: 100±2 dB
What's in the box
- 3 pairs of silicone ear tips in S/M/L
- USB charging cable
- Carrying pouch
- BT version: 5.0
- BT codecs: AAC, SBC, mSBC