The all-wireless headphone market continues to grow, and what started out as a copy fad for Airpods has evolved into a market rich in options, both in design and features. And this variety has a positive impact on us, the users, who have the option of choosing the ones that best suit our needs.
We have tested for a few months the first completely wireless headphones from Cambridge Audio, a historic company when it comes to sound devices. The Melomania 1 is a unique headset in design, sound quality and functionality, but are they made for you?
In this analysis we will leave doubts.
A very well-kept and original design
Cambridge Audio has a unique look, and can be seen the first time we open it. The shape of these headphones has a shape of plug, with a cylindrical design.
Wearing them reaffirms that feeling that you are wearing earplugs. Aesthetically it is not that they look bad, but they draw attention and are differential, and can be a positive or negative point according to your own tastes.
Although the design is discreet and minimalist, they attract attention.
The sensation when putting them on is that they stay floating, and if you use a rubber too small for your ear you have the constant sensation that they will fall. When doing sports with them, it is recommended to use special pads that are rougher than if they improve stability. The feel of these special tires is not too pleasant and having to change tires every time you want to do sports is not a great idea. In this sense, they do not seem highly recommended.
A somewhat troublesome part of headphones is that while they allow you to put them on anyway, being a cylinder you have to consider where the microphone is if you plan to talk to them.
In the flat area we have a physical button with a led circle that lights up in a white button. The button doesn’t require a lot of pressure to activate, which is great to avoid damaging your ears. And what can we do?
- Playing music:
- One touch with any earbud: Stop or resume music.
- Double tap on right earcup: Next track.
- Double tap on left earcup: Previous track.
- Hold right button for 2 seconds: Increase volume.
- Hold left button down for 2 seconds: Lower volume.
- One tap on any handset: Accept incoming call.
- Press and hold any handset for 1 second: Reject call.
- Voice assistant: Double tap with any earphone.
- Manual pairing mode: Hold down any headset for 2 seconds.
The controls, except for stopping the music, are not too intuitive and requires a process of adaptation of a few days, but once you get the hang of it there is not much problem.
The case is made of plastic beige very elegant and the touch is soft. The experience of opening and closing the case is very pleasant, giving the feeling of ease of opening and firmness at the same time.
In addition to the headphones we have, we can get one of the official silicone covers. These will add a more colorful touch (they are available in blue, gray, orange, red, pink and green) to the case in addition to protecting it from falls. It also includes a carabiner so you can attach it to the keychain, belt or strap of any kind. Of course, it would not leave it hanging in a place that has many sudden movements since the silicone gasket does not look to be too resistant.
The best of Cambridge Audio, sound quality and battery
The sound quality of these headphones is extraordinary, and it is that no matter what type of music you listen to, they will offer an exceptional level of detail (considering their category). They don’t include a custom EQ, so in some music you may miss a certain rumble.
In classical music, 80s pop or soundtracks, the quality is superb and unrivaled in its category.
Their drivers 5.8mm graphene are a great piece not only in sound quality, but also in energy consumption. Cambridge Audio promises up to 9 hours of playback on a single charge and although we have never reached them, our average usage is usually in a continuous 6 hours remaining with approximately 28% of battery in medium high volume. In this sense they compete directly with the Creative Outlier Air and the Samsung Galaxy Buds +. Most headphones on the market last between 3 and 5 hours at most, so in this sense you will be able to listen longer and with better quality.
What we like the least about the Melomania is the charging connection port, which is still microUSB. We will not have problems when looking for cables since they include one in the box itself, but it will be one more cable that you have on the nightstand. The positive aspect is that the case supports so many charges that even if we use the headphones all day we will charge it once a week.
Speaking of the case, it is capable of offering up to 36 hours of autonomy in addition to the 9 that the headphones themselves offer. One great thing about the Melomania is that they include a battery indicator in the case in the form of multiple LED dots. If they are all on, the battery is at its maximum, and as they lose capacity, the dots go off. It seems like a very obvious feature, but it’s not that common and that makes it a virtue on these headphones.
The weaknesses of the Cambridge Audio Melomania
While Cambridge Audio has done an exceptional job in areas where excellence was required by the brand, there are other areas where the British company has a lot of room for improvement. Highlight:
- No active noise cancellation: It is the fashionable technology in headphones, and there are already models in its price that have it such as the Huawei Freebuds 3i or the Ticpods ANC, headphones that are technologically much more advanced but are also worse in autonomy and musical quality.
- You can not have everything in life, and if you are looking for headphones that have ANC technology and maximum audio quality, you will have to spend at least twice as much money on some Sony (and even so, they have a worse battery). For this price you will have to keep a virtue and an absence.
- Design for sport: We do not consider them to be headphones made for hard training sessions, especially those activities with a lot of running and jumping. If they will serve you for example for a training session without problems, but you listen to a lot of music while you play sports, I would opt for more specialized models in this activity.
- Other technological aspects: USB C charging or including a touchpad would have scored a lot of points in the user experience. Qi wireless charging would have been a great finishing touch by now.
Conclusions: for audio lovers
The Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 are headphones with a very direct focus. They are made so that you can listen to music with the highest possible quality, for many hours and with the least possible discomfort in our ears.
They are the best that you can access if your priority objective is music and technology and sports are more secondary aspects. Yes, you can play sports with them and with the physical buttons we can have some control, but they are not the preferred option.
If you love music and want to listen to it anywhere with the best quality and the longest time possible, the Melomania 1 should be among your best candidates.
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