The JLab Epic Earbuds have an unusual feature that sets them apart from any other earphones I’ve tested. Let’s take a close listen and find out just how epic they are.
As soon as I laid eyes on this pair of bright blue and silver pair earphones, I knew there was something radically different about them. Wrapped around the earpieces are what the company calls “cush fins.” These flexible rubber attachments hold the earphones in place, giving you a tighter and more secure seal between earphone and ear.
That seal can make a noticeable difference in the sound you hear, particularly in the bass frequencies. From the three included pairs of these cush fins, I selected the ones that best fit my ear.
They work by gently wedging themselves into the parts of your ear that form the rim of that crater where the sound goes (the anatomical names of these external ear parts are the antihelix, tragus and antitragus).
Fitting them into my ears, I noticed that these unique fins work remarkably well, holding the earphones exactly where they need to be to deliver the best possible sound to my ears.
Even without those innovative appendages, these earphones can rock the sound with alacrity. Their drivers are unusually large — 13mm, which the company says is “the largest driver we never packed into an earbud.” That must be why their bass sounded tighter and more powerful than most earbuds I’ve heard. I was also impressed with the high frequencies, which sounded clear and clean, going way higher than my ears are capable of hearing.
These earphones are surprisingly cheap given their sound quality. For $49.99, I couldn’t believe they sounded almost as good as my current go-to earphones, the $130 RHA MA750i.
The main sound quality advantage of those fancier earphones (that cost 2.5 times as much) was their midrange frequencies, which in A/B testing sounded slightly more realistic to my ears than the sound coming from the Epic Earbuds. But it wasn’t eighty dollars’ worth of extra realism.
The Epic Earbuds comfortably rested in my ears more securely than those pricier cans, holding themselves in place even when I shook my head or ran around. They admirably functioned as super-effective earplugs while I flew in a noisy jet. Best of all, they allowed more of their rich-sounding bass to pleasingly rattle my eardrums.
The only disadvantage I could find with these JLab Epic earbuds was the lack of a volume control on the in-line controller. Although it works well and incorporates a mic for smartphone use, its single button only allows you to answer/disconnect calls or skip tracks.
Nevertheless, I like the way JLab Audio delivers high quality products at a lower price, and the company’s done that again with these first-rate earphones. I think they sound good enough to deserve their ambitious name.
Images: Charlie White