Brainwavz strive to create sleek looking products for the appreciative consumer. The Jive is their latest offering that looks to build on a previously established pedigree but with a lower price tag. Find out more in our Brainwavz Jive review.
The Jive has been launched into a highly competitive price band – the sub £20 market. This area is swamped with cheap imports and unknown brands, and more often than not – the earphones are generally disappointing. Brainwavz have released the Jive into the wild in a variety of flavours: red, blue & green – with a choice of mic/control unit for use with either iPhone or Android. With their previous products maintaining a high standard – we look at this one with a keen anticipation.
Sleek, clean looks built to last
The packaging is a fairly basic & simple plastic outer ‘box’ that matches the price tag. Packaging aside, first impressions of the contents are very good indeed. The Jive earphones have a really nice scooped look to them. The earpieces are made from metal and feel very solid whilst remaining very light in the hand. There is a good strong strain relief for the cable exit at the bottom that looks like it’ll take a lot of abuse. The cable is a traditional rubber feel silicone type – nice and smooth feeling, not the more grippy type, which should help prevent tangles.
Further down, the mic/control unit are sleekly styled and again feel very tough – in addition to the usual single button, you also get volume up/down buttons which is a nice addition (make sure you get the type compatible with your smartphone*). The cable split is again built for strength – made from fully molded rubber, its not going to break easily at all. There is also a sliding upper section to the cable split that allows you to bring the cables together closer to your chin. The jack plug is set at an angle somewhere between straight & 90 degrees – this layout works well & seems to be becoming more popular.
* note – the set of Brainwavz Jive earphones we were provided with are compatible with Android. However, the buttons don’t work correctly with the Sony Xperia Z3 that we were using during testing. But, we also plugged them into a Samsung S5 and the buttons worked perfectly.
Also included are a total of 3 sets of silicone eartips (small, medium & large), 1 set of Comply S-400 foam tips, cable clip, velcro cable tie and a very nice storage case to keep everything safe and sound.
Precise and detailed sound
While there is a difference between how the silicone eartips and Comply S-400’s sound, we chose to use the silicone eartips for testing as they gave a slightly more hi-fi style sound with more detail and presence. The Comply S-400 foam tips sounded a bit flatter and less dynamic – a little EQ would easily help rectify this.
Given the pricetag, you would be forgiven for setting low expectations as far as the sound is concerned – while on one hand this may be true, the results a really very good for the money.
Bass – it is somewhat lacking, we added +4 to the bass on our Sony Xperia Z3 which helped bring it up to the levels that we like. The bass is very low, sub like and a little artificial – it doesn’t quite seem connected to the rest of the music somehow. As mentioned above, the overall sound character is quite hi-fi in nature – the mid range is fairly scooped, but the higher end is full of detail. This detail in the upper end is quite impressive – more so than anything else we’ve heard at this price point. The stereo image is also good with decent positioning.
Overall, the sound is really very good for the money and I would happily recommend the Brainwavz Jive over most of the sub £20 competition.
Brainwavz Jive Review Conclusion
Considering the price tag, range of colour choices and the sound – I think its fair to say that the Jive is marketed at a younger audience. They make a good upgrade to the earphones that typically come with any smartphone and don’t break the bank in the process. While the sound isn’t exceptional (and it never will be for this price) – they do sound as good as some earphones that we have tested that cost significantly more. All in all, the Brainwavz Jive are a great set of affordable earphones that are built to last.
- Built from tough materials
- Feel light in use
- Sound lacks bass
- Overall the sound is quite scooped (overly hi-fi)
Sound: Good detail, mid range is scooped & overall lacks bass
Design: Very nice looks and design features
Quality: Great choice of tough materials - these should take a lot of abuse
Value: Very good for the money, particularly given the mic/controls and sturdy storage case
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