Every time we review a 1More product, we end up being suitably surprised by the price to performance ratio. As more and more phones start ditching the headphone jack, a good pair of wireless headphones has become a necessary part of every music enthusiast’s arsenal. The 1More iBFree is one such entry-level Bluetooth headset that claims to punch above its weight in terms of audio quality.
1More iBFree Specifications
- Charging Time: 2hrs
- StandBy Time: 240hrs
- Talking Time: 10hrs
- Music Play Time: 8hrs
- Wireless Range: 10m
- Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.1
- Bluetooth Protocol: HFP/ HSP/ A2DP/ AVRCP
- Input: 5V1A
With a focus on active lifestyle use and especially in the gym, the 1More iBFree has been designed to lock into your ear and stay there. The driver unit itself is cylindrical and is made of metal. Moulded plastic wraps around the earphone end and is a part of the wingtips that extend towards the top which help it stay positioned within the ear.
It’s got to be said that the iBFree are some of the most comfortable Bluetooth earphones we’ve come across. The earphones weigh just about 14 grams and you can barely feel them once you’ve put them on. We liked the fact that there is very good strain relief on the earphone side since fitness focussed earphones are subject to rougher use than most others.
Moving on to the cabling and control pod, we didn’t observe much of microphonics. The rubberized cable should ideally sit behind the head but in this case, the control pod cabling falls a bit short and you might be left fumbling to find the correct button. There is fairly limited tactile feedback on the buttons so they aren’t the easiest to press down anyway.
The control pod, of course, has a central button that doubles up for power and play/pause, on either side lie the forward and back buttons. Finally, the micro USB charging port too can be found here. Battery life is rated for 10 hours and we comfortably got over 8 hours of usage time out of it.
While 1More might have established a bit of a following in the audiophile community, the iBFree is anything but a reference grade monitor. The sound here is supposed to be fun and to a large extent, it is. That said, we observed that the sound signature was slightly askew.
Most ‘fun sounding’ earphones tend to bump up the bass response since that is what most popular music tends to focus on anyway. Surprisingly that is perhaps the weakest element of the iBFree. The bass reproduction is light and airy and lacks the rumble and depth that you’d expect. Bassheads will particularly be disappointed. Similar to the recessed bass, the lower mids are also pushed back a bit. On the other hand, the mids and highs are very upfront and sound lush. In fact, some might say that they’ve been boosted a bit too much in tuning because of the way they stand out. The 1More iBFree benefits a lot from EQ’ing. Instead of boosting the bass which introduces a bit of distortion, bringing down the highs can really make a difference. The forward sounding highs are a bit too bright and sibilance is quite evident on instruments like cymbals. The iBFree is particularly good at resolving details on vocal centric tracks.
We really enjoyed listening to acoustic and vocal heavy tracks on the 1More iBFree. There is a certain musicality to the sound signature but playing around the equalizer improves it further. AptX connectivity ensures that you are getting CD quality playback here. Unlike many entry-level Bluetooth headphones that we’ve tried out, the quality of audio reproduction here is very good and there’s a lot of detail. 1More’s choice of tuning though is interesting and might not please everyone.
Overall the 1More iBFree Bluetooth Earphones are a very fun sounding pair that might not appease bass heads but work very well for rock, acoustic and vocal-centric music.
We liked the build quality and the comfort levels are top-notch. The control pod could do with a bit of work in terms of tactile feedback but for the most part, the iBFree is a dependable Bluetooth headset that is amongst the better options at the price point. The build quality is certainly better than the offerings by Brainwavz though we feel that the bass reproduction on the Brainwavz Blu-200 is a bit better. The 1More iBFree is priced at Rs. 3,500. You can get it on Amazon.in.