iPhone Headset Review: V-Moda Remix Remote Reviewed by Jacob Spindel
Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4.5
What's hot: Awesome audio quality.
What's not: The detachable earhooks don't work as well.
And now, for something completely... the same! Yes, a stereo headset for iPhone is not exactly a unique idea. However, even if the V-Moda Remix doesn't offer much in terms of originality, it does have plenty to offer in terms of quality. By providing audio performance that is above average in every category, it offers plenty of bang for the buck. If you're in the market for a wired iPhone headset, the Remix is a great choice.
The V-Moda Remix Remote is a stereo wired headset with a built-in remote and microphone. The earbuds have a frequency response range of 5 Hz - 24 kHz and a 9 mm neodymium driver, and the reinforced Kevlar cable is 32 inches long plus 11 additional inches for each bud. The headset features a slick black design with metallic highlights, carries a two-year warranty, and weighs about 17 grams. It also includes a carrying pouch and four different sizes of interchangeable silicone tips so you can choose the best size for blocking out background noise.
The Remix also includes two detachable "sport earhooks." By threading the earbud cables through the hooks, you can use the Remix as an over-the-ear headset that clips on behind your ears to keep it in place. By making the hooks removable, V-Moda hopes to achieve the best of both worlds by creating a headset that can be worn over your ears or as a standard in-ear headset, but in practice the earhooks don't stay attached to the wires very well, and they are also less effective at hanging onto your ears than the hooks used by traditional, non-removable over-the-ear buds. Still, the earhooks are an interesting idea, and if you don't like them, you can always just leave them detached.
You can use the earbuds to listen to any device with a standard 3.5 mm audio jack, but if you want to use the three-button remote that sits where the left and right cables meet, you'll need an iPhone 3GS, iPod touch (second-gen or later), iPod nano (fourth-gen or later), iPod classic, iPod shuffle (third-gen), or a recent Mac (2009 or later). The microphone works with all of these plus earlier iPhone models.
Strangely, there are no labels to indicate which earbud is left and which is right, so if you want to ensure you're wearing them the right way, you may have to resort to labeling them yourself or using trial-and-error.
We tested the V-Moda Remix Remote with several types of music and other audio in order to evaluate its performance in different categories, and the results were impressive:
Bass: Although it isn't the most powerful we've ever encountered, the bass output from the Remix is excellent. The strong and crisp bass tones it reproduces accentuate details that cheaper earbuds make sound tinny and small computer speakers might miss entirely. 4.5/5.0
Treble: Treble is generally the easiest category for the tiny speakers used in earphones, so it's little surprise that the Remix passes this category with flying colors. 5.0/5.0
Clarity: The Remix provides high-resolution sounding output with clarity that is probably within the top three headsets we have ever tested. 5.0/5.0
Volume: No problems here - the headset can be whisper-quiet, unbearably loud, or just about any volume in-between. 5.0/5.0
Microphone: The Remix's microphone for sound input wasn't quite as impressive as its sound output. When we used it to make phone calls from an iPhone, our call recipients said we sounded more gravelly and garbled than when we used either a Bluetooth headset or the iPhone's built-in microphone. Still, the microphone is adequate for phone calls, even if it isn't the clearest available. 3.5/5.0
A La Moda
A wired stereo headset for iPhone is unlike anything you've ever seen before - except for, well, lots of other things you probably have seen before. In fact, the one feature of the V-Moda Remix Remote that is the most original - the detachable earhooks - is also its weakest point. However, instead of focusing on doing something new, the Remix focuses mainly on doing something right. Sound quality is the most important aspect of a headset by far, and the Remix Remote's sound quality is excellent in every category. Although I wish they had labeled "left" and "right," the Remix makes an excellent companion for your iPod or iPhone. The Remix Remote currently comes in four colors.
Pros: Outstanding audio quality across the board; has a microphone and a remote. Cons: Detachable earhooks don't work very well; left and right channels aren't labeled.