EOZ started its crowd funding project, EOZ One, and given encouraging sales, embarked in their next project, EOZ Air. Distributed exclusively by Leader Radio Technologies (LRT), the EOZ Air is available for sale in Singapore at a retail price S$159. From now till 30 November, purchase the EOZ Air from the WeAreReady online store to enjoy S$20 discount when you enter the promo code “musicphotolife”.
EOZ Air is another true wireless earphones. One too many, perhaps you might ask? But true wireless earphones is a growing audio segment and with improving technology, they are getting more affordable, better quality, and more importantly, improving in design and features. After reviewing the EOZ Air for about 2 weeks, there are many things I like and just one thing I dislike.
The EOZ Air has similar design DNA as the EOZ One, minus the cord that links both earbuds together. The around-the-ear hook is made of a blend of flexible plastic and aluminum tube, making it a rather interesting design element. One of the major concerns with true wireless earbuds, ironically, is that the earbuds is cumbersome to store if you are on the go. EOZ Air comes with a vegan leather leash with rubber heads to secure both earbuds together so that you can let them hang around the neck like normal wireless earphones. But I find it unnecessary because thanks to the earhooks, if I need to ease my ears from the earbuds, I can pull out the eartips from the ear canals and leave them hanging around my ears without removing them completely. When I need to carry out a conversation, I can similarly loosen the eartips from the ear canals, and it works really well for me.
The pre-installed foam tips add to the noise isolation which is sufficient. Interestingly, I usually don’t like foam tips because they are too sticky and attracts dirt. However, the EOZ Air ones have sufficient foam-shaping properties yet not too sticky, so I can simply push the earbuds into my ears while with other brands I would have to squeeze the foam tips before inserting. If you prefer, you can swap to the normal silicone version, which I highly recommend because the sound character is much better. I will elaborate later.
The charging case is considered big compared to the industry standard, but it holds 2200 mAh battery to deliver up to 85 hours of additional charge on top of the 5.5 hours. The top case is aluminum while the rest are plastic. I’m glad the charging cable is USB-C standard. The earbuds are securely seated in the case by magnets, so they are easy to remove and place them back without physical clips.
The earbuds auto powers up when they are removed from the case – absolutely convenient. The earbuds are automatically in pairing mode, ready to connect to any Bluetooth device – another plus point. The earbuds operate via touch – tap on either earbuds to play-pause, double-tap the left earbud to skip previous track, and double-tap the right earbud to skip next track. You cannot control volume from the earbuds. The tap sensors are located where the icons are printed, and due to its position, sometimes the finger might not tap at the sensor accurately resulting in missed actions. This is a little frustrating to use. There is also a response lag after tapping the sensor, which further exacerbates the situation.
Putting that aside, the EOZ Air is one of the more comfortable around-the-ear earbuds I’ve tried in years. The combination of the aluminum structure with a flexible joint achieves the comfort. I don’t feel the earhooks against my skin nor do they feel tight. In fact, I find them somewhat redundant because the foam eartips can already secure the earbuds even without the earhooks. According to their official Kickstarter website, the EOZ Air actually put the antenna in the earhooks to improve connectivity. However, during the meet-up with LRT the local distributor, he shared that EOZ designer did not implement it in the final production. No matter, it turns out that the connectivity is the best I have reviewed so far. How good is the connectivity? I had experienced ZERO break-ups between the earbuds. On other true wireless earbuds, I could experience at least once to describe it. But it’s a matter of time that the earbuds will be disrupted at least once, just that I am amazed it hadn’t done so as regularly as other true wireless earbuds.
The foam eartips are pre-installed from the box, so I assume this is the setup that EOZ wants the consumers to experience. EOZ audio engineers choose to tune the EOZ Air with a bump at the 4K band, which unfortunately makes vocals sounding bloomy. On top of that, the higher frequencies roll off, resulting in a cloudy sound and all the percussion sounds covered up. As a reviewer, I have my personal audio preference, but I also need to see from the engineer’s perspective. There is a difference between bright overpowering and bright balanced. Sennheiser headphones are generally bright and overpowering but the brightness is detailed and pristine. Others like the recent Jabra Elite 65e is bright but balanced, so amidst the bass and midrange, treble is not forward yet it retains clarity and enjoyable.
EOZ Air with foam eartips unfortunately lacks the clarity and the airiness (pun intended). Percussions, strings, and all the high-band sounds lack definition, and when the instruments around 4K get accentuated – like saxophone – it can be uncomfortable to listen to. To fully enjoy the EOZ Air audio quality, I had to apply EQ to reduce the 4000 Hz band and boosting the 8K and 16K bands in an upward slope (apply as much as you prefer). The bass range is naturally full so I left it flat. Adjusting the EQ lifts the treble veil and improves the listenability tremendously, all the high fidelity textures becomes available. It goes to show the drivers are capable of the dynamic performance.
When I switched to silicone eartips, the 4K harshness is greatly reduced, while the upper bands attained better clarity. It’s still not as transparent as Sennheiser or B&O PLAY, but at least I can survive without much EQ (as always, EQ would make it even better!). The bass sounds a little compromised, but I suppose it’s because of the improved treble response and the softer silicone tips losing a bit of the low impacts. Musical instruments accentuating 4K band is still harshy, and the upper frequency is not going to shine (unless you EQ!) but other than that, the overall sound signature work a lot better and palatable. Bass carries some prominence with enjoyable impact, a little loose to provide some fullness, yet not overwhelmingly boomy. The overall sound staging is close and wide, with sufficient space on the left-right channels towards the ears while the mid-channel mixes are well-spread in between the eyes.
I like using the EOZ Air. The earbuds snaps in the case easily without the need to ensure fit, the earbuds power up automatically when removed, goes into Bluetooth pairing mode or connects to the last-paired device quickly. The earbuds last over 5 hours and the case can charge 85 hours before requiring a recharge. The earbuds connect to one another perfectly without any dropouts. The earhooks exerts no pressure against my skin.
The EOZ Air has so much goodness in it, that I was really disappointed initially that the audio signature could not live up to my expectations, until I switched the foam tip to silicone tips, which achieved brighter treble and less-harsh mid-treble. The EOZ Air works great with listeners who needs true wireless freedom and are not picky with the treble tuning.
Retailing at S$159, purchase the EOZ Air from We Are Ready online store to enjoy S$20 discount when you enter the promo code “musicphotolife”. Available in black, and white with rose gold.
- Materials: Nano-coated ABS, Aluminum
- Microphone: Two beamforming microphones with intelligent ambient noise reduction
- Speaker: Electro-dynamic, 8mm diameter graphene-coated driver
- Frequency: 20 – 20,000 Hz
- Earphones Battery: 2x 50 mAh -> 6 Hours of Playtime
- Charging case: 2200 mAh -> 90 hours of Playtime
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0
- Charging Type: USB Type-C
- Charging Time: 80 to 90 minutes
- Charging Case Size: 62x79x30 mm
- Sweat & Water Resistant: IPX5 Rating