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Zipbuds Slide Sport Earphones Review
      #48870 - 11/30/15 04:06 PM

I go through a lot of earbuds, and I mean a LOT of earbuds. It's not that I lose them or even abuse them. All I do is run with them, and not even particularly far. In my experience, 12-20 miles per week is enough to bring almost any set of earbuds to their (its?) figurative knees within months because they simply aren't built for this lethal combination of continuous impact and water exposure. They always go out in one of two ways: Either the controls stop working or the wires separate at one of the connections.

I was understandably skeptical when I received my Zipbuds Slide Sport, but since the remote on my current pair (obscenely expensive big brand earbuds) had recently stopped working, I was happy to give them a go. First off: fit and features. Every set of Zipbuds Slide Sport comes with three different sets of silicone tips to ensure a comfortable fit so I had no trouble getting them to stay in my ears without discomfort. They also feature a lightweight, water-resistant 1-button remote, which can be used to control your music, answer phone calls, or access Siri. Unfortunately, this model has no volume buttons on the remote; a feature I sorely missed. Of course, they wouldn't be Zipbuds if they didn't have some sort of zippery technology. While this may seem like a gimmick to those who haven't used it; trust me, it's not. The Zipbuds Slide Sport have an evolved version of their signature zipper in the form of a sliding friction clamp; sort of like what you'd find on the more expensive resealable sandwich bags. It's lighter and less obtrusive than the original zipper, yet still quite functional, in that it not only wrangles your earbuds as claimed, but also limits bounce while exercising. Simply slide the clamp up just under your chin and you will no longer have the entire weight of the cable seeking to yank the buds out of your ears with every step. Regarding the tangle-free claim, I found the Zipbuds Slide Sport to be virtually tangle-free. The sliding clamp does an excellent job of keeping the earbuds from wrapping around each other (and anything else) when not in use. However, it's the thicker, stiffer, square-edged cables that keep the rest of the device so orderly. Between these two features, you can say goodbye to tedious untangling before use. Even wrapping them hastily around my fingers and shoving them in my pocket did not succeed in knotting them up. Just remember to slide the clamp up to the earbuds before stowing them. Lastly, I found the sound to be excellent for such a lightweight set of earbuds. Excellent clarity, enough bass to satisfy my non-audiophile needs, and no distortion at any volume with which I was willing to test them.

While I found the Zipbuds Slide Sport to be feature-rich and cleverly engineered, it's the small touches that usually win me completely over to a new product, and in this regard, they do not disappoint. The buds sit in your ears at a slight backward-swept angle, which keeps them from crowding your outer ear. The plug, while featuring a horizontal connection, is set far enough back to accommodate most cases. And most importantly, at least to me, are the reinforced connections that may prevent them fraying with long-term use. If they do fail, Zipbuds offers a lifetime durability guarantee, although the terms of this are not available on their website so I can't share with you exactly what it is. As previously mentioned, the Slide Sport is available in seven different color combinations so feel free to express yourself a bit as you exercise.

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4.5
What's Hot: Sliding "zipper" minimizes bounce/tangles. Noise-cancelling mic/remote. Siri compatible. Water-resistant. Lifetime durability guarantee. 7 color options.
What's Not: No volume control.
Price: $79.95 (retail) $49.95 (street)
Website: Zipbuds

Reviewed by: Tom Slayton



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