Style, good looks, great comfort and mind blowing sound. That’s what you’d expect from a set of Bluetooth headphones that will set you back around the $350 mark isn’t it?
Well the Klipsch Image One Bluetooth Headphones tick all those boxes and more. They come with appropriate charging cables, a male to male standard headphones cable and a really slick carry case. Klipsch as a brand has been around for nearly 70 years and over that time has developed a reputation for delivering uncompromised sound quality; sporting the catch cry Big Sound, No Bullshit and it doesn’t take much of a listen to any of their products to know they’re serious about that.
The design of the headphones is really nice, there is only so much a manufactured can do without stepping into weird design and Klipsch has done well to stay modern; yet stylish on the BT One headset. The carry case is protective and easy to access, revealing the headset when you first open it up.
The earpieces are surprisingly soft and extremely comfortable, even over glasses which can be uncomfortable with some headphone designs. The controls are really simple, well thought out, designed and delivered. Power, Play/Pause (answer/hang up), forward and back are the four easy to access controls on the right ear facing outwards.
The metallic hinged earpieces give a space saving ability without compromising the comfort of the headset or the life of the headset; cheaper (plastic) options on hinges often don’t last long. The overall feel of these headphones is a feeling of good design, comfort and understanding clients wants and needs; A quality device that most users will (budget pending) enjoy using, look after and continue to enjoy for many years to come.
“Wow, BIG wow…”
That was the first words that erupted from my mouth when I cranked these up for the first time. The clarity of sound, particularly for a wireless headset is astounding. Clear and crisp (without being sharp) high range sound, the mid range (where vocals and a lot of melody in orchestral scores come from) had power and clarity and the bass was more than just there… it packed some punch!
Being somewhat eclectic with my music tastes, I listen to everything from Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and Brian Tyler (the musical genius behind multiple blockbuster movie scores and games) through to the opposite end of the scale with Pantera, Killswitch Engage and Five Finger Death Punch and many things in between that doesn’t make my brain want to escape through my eyeballs and kill me in my sleep; so no One Direction, No Ed Sheeran and most certainly no pop princess garbage!
It didn’t seem to matter what I was listening to, the depth of sound that you would expect from a high quality set of headphones was there.
The party trick for these headphones is their ability (despite the lack of visible microphone) is that when your phone rings; whether it’s a call, Skype or one of the instant messaging programs that are installed you can answer the call on your headphones. In my testing time with the Image One headset, the call quality is better than any dedicate call taking Bluetooth headset I’ve used and when I questioned the people I was speaking to they noted that they were unable to distinguish the difference between my phone microphone or the headset. Probably the highest praise anyone could give a wireless headset and this feedback was consistent from all the people I spoke to about the call quality, the only time this differed was when I was on the limit of the bluetooth connection range, which would be an issue for any Bluetooth device.
Bluetooth technology has come a very long way since I had my first headset where the call quality wasn’t very good, the sound was tinny and the battery life really sucked. There are still some of the cheaper manufacturers on the market who will suffer one or more of these afflictions but Klipsch aren’t one of them. They’ve done a great job of delivering outstanding sound quality for audio playback as well as phone calls.
Battery Life & Charging
Lets just cut to the chase here; I have no complaints on either. I spend at least 4 – 5 hours every day listening to music or podcasts and it wasn’t until the second Tuesday that I had a battery warning (very conveniently as I was heading for a meeting). By the time I returned from the meeting and lunch, the headphones were completely charged and ready to go again. I would confidently say I’m on the extreme end of use with at least 25 hours of use in any given week and the battery lasted 6.5 working days before it required a charge.
When it came time to charge them again second time around (since the first caught me by surprise) I took note of the charge time which was around 90 minutes from completely flat i.e. they turned off by themselves and at 45 mins I checked and they had just shy of 65% battery left which is great and would easily see you through a day with a half hour – 45 minute top up charge which is another win for these headphones.
The bottom line
They’re quality; genuine top shelf hardware that anyone who’s willing to pay out for is not going to be disappointed with but the bottom line is going to be a bit of a shock to some people and frankly will be a sticking point; perhaps a deal breaker for a lot of users running at RRP AU$350
They aren’t offering a “Bang for buck” experience, but more a great sound experience; which is a really good experience with Klipsch.
They’re stylish, comfortable and sound amazing; but premium products come at a premium price
Only you can make the decision to make the step past good bang for buck sound performance with call taking capability, but if you’ve got the budget and are in the market for a new set of headphones for your travels, I’d confidently say that these won’t disappoint you.
JB Hifi and Harvey Norman are listed as stockists of the Klipsch brand on their website, but you may need to call your local store before dropping in to ensure they have stock; In SA I found it was only the larger stores that had stock when I checked for availability.
Will you be checking out the Klipsch Image One Bluetooth Headphones?