Taking a closer look at the Galaxy S8’s AKG earphones
Well, a bit of both, really.
Earphones, at the most fundamental level, are a compromise – the minimal form factor which gives them their convenience is also their biggest problem, as more often than not it results in poor quality, both build- and sound-wise. Sure, there are exceptions, but they almost always cost a pretty penny, making them unsuitable for the basic consumer’s needs.
It's an expensive gift, but is it a good one?
Unfortunately, a few days of testing have led to the conclusion that these earphones are not quite the high-quality product they’re advertised to be. Admittedly, they are a lot better than what is commonly bundled with other smartphones, but nonetheless never fully deliver on Samsung’s promise of premium quality.
A few problems: to my ears, the low end was a bit more pronounced than it should be, and it often drowned out the rest of the audio when listening to more electronic, bass-heavy tracks, though rock tended to be improved by the pair's tuning. The sub bass and the very high end both suffered in terms of volume, resulting in a boxier sound and dulling drums’ punchiness. Treble, too, sounded a bit off, but was never as uncomfortably loud as it usually is on cheaper earphones.
The fabric-encased cable is uncomfortably noisyAnd this is a major issue, as earbuds are, by design, made to be used while on the move. The AKG pair’s build unfortunately punishes such use, so if you’re thinking of using them while working out, well, think again. It certainly doesn’t help that the connection between the earphones and the cable feels flimsy and twisty. For what it’s worth, however, the pair is a comfortable and snug fit, unlikely to slide out of your ears on its own.
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