Earin’s first true wireless earbuds were riddled with problems, like poor connectivity and a short battery life, but their successor, the new Earin M-2’s are a joy to use (and to look at). With a more modern design, powerful balanced armature speakers, and an improved battery life, Earin has absolutely stepped its game up with these new buds.
Of course, better quality comes at a cost – so, are the Earin M-2s worth the high price? Here’s what we thought.
Price and availability
The Earin M-2s are available to buy for $249 / £219 (around AU$390), however, it doesn’t look like they are available to buy in Australia just yet.
Their price tag is significantly more expensive than the ever-popular Apple AirPods, which cost $159 (£159 / AU$229), and our favorite true wireless in-ears, the RHA TrueConnect, which come in at $170 (£150 / AU$265).
Still, they aren’t quite as expensive as other noise-canceling true wireless headphones, like the B & O Beoplay E8, which cost $299 (£259 / AU$449).
From the sleek charging case right down to the box they come in, the Earin M-2 looks incredibly elegant, coming in matte black or white and silver color schemes.
Even opening the packaging is a bit of a treat, revealing a cork box which is secured with magnets; there you’ll find the charging case with the earbuds inside, a micro-USB cable, and three sets of spare ear tips in various sizes.
The cylindrical aluminum case is compact enough to easily fit in your pocket, and features a sliding mechanism which reveals the compartment to put the earbuds into for charging. You don’t have to worry about the buds flying out of the case every time you open it, as they are kept securely in place by magnets.
The earbuds themselves are streamlined and compact, with a touch-sensitive housing that you can use to control your music or summon whichever voice assistant you use on your device.
Features and performance
Connecting the Earin M-2s to our smartphone via Bluetooth was a breeze, and we found that the connectivity of the earbuds in general was very good; we didn’t experience any connection drop outs while we were using them.
The Earin M-2s offer a battery life of around four hours, which is pretty standard for true wireless earbuds. The charging capsule does provide an additional 10 hours of playback – but that’s only about half as much as the RHA TrueConnect.
In terms of audio quality, they sound very impressive, with fantastic separation between the different frequencies. We listened to Sparklehorse’s ‘Hundreds Of Sparrows’, and we found vocals and strings to be clear and smooth, while high frequency percussion has just the right amount of attack to make for an engaging listening experience, without sounding overly harsh.
The Earin M-2s really lend themselves to contemplative acoustic music, with stereo separation and panning between the left and right earbuds coming across really naturally, with a wide soundstage.
We also tried them out on some jangly indie rock courtesy of Her’s ‘Love On The Line’, and compared to their main competitors, the Apple AirPods, they have a much warmer sound.
In general, the tonality of these in-ears produce is extremely warm, with an almost analogue quality to it; whether you consider this to be a positive or a negative largely depends on personal taste, and some users may find themselves craving a little more attack in the lower mids.
They probably won’t appeal to hardcore bassheads, however, as the lower frequencies aren’t super thumpy; however we felt bass frequencies still come across beautifully, and seem well balanced compared to to the higher frequencies.
The accuracy of the sound is partly due to the Earin M-2’s use of balanced armature drivers, which provide a more detailed frequency response than dynamic drivers. However, if you’re looking for more bass, you’ll want to go for headphones like the RHA TrueConnect, which have dynamic drivers that displace more air as they vibrate, leading to richer bass frequencies.
You can control the Earin M-2s via the touch-sensitive housing on the back of the earbuds, using one tap to play/pause your music, two taps to go to the next track, three taps to hear the previous track again, and one long tap to summon your smartphone’s voice assistant.
You can also use the touch controls to answer and reject phone calls, as well as hanging up and cancelling outgoing calls.
One interesting aspect of the Earin M-2s is the inclusion of ‘intelligent noise reduction’. Using the dual-mics built into the earbuds, it works by processing and reducing background noise, which reduces audio masking (this is when you can’t hear your music properly due to environmental noise). Not only does this make your music sound clearer, but it also means you don’t need to play your music as loud as you might normally, preserving your precious hearing.
We found this feature worked really well, and with our music on, we weren’t distracted by irritating environmental noise, particularly when commuting.
The Earin M-2s also come with a dedicated app that you can download for free from the App Store, or Google Play. Within the app, you can mess around with the audio settings, changing the gain and balance of the earbuds.
It’s a cool feature to have, particularly if you have hearing loss in one ear and want to pan all the audio to one side.
With a sleek, modern design and intuitive touch controls, there’s a lot to love about the Earin M-2s. They offer a fantastic level of audio quality, with a warm, balanced soundstage that works beautifully with chilled out acoustic music – but this might not appeal to people who are looking for thumpier basslines.
The intelligent noise reduction on offer here is pretty good, and although they don’t rival noise-canceling over-ears in this respect, the Earin M-2s get rid of a lot of irritating environmental noise, which means you can enjoy your music in relative peace.
One major downside to the Earin M-2s is the price; for nearly $250 you could get a decent pair of noise-canceling over ears instead. Our top-rated true wireless in-ears, the RHA TrueConnect is around $80 cheaper, and offers better battery life – and a bassier sound thanks to its dynamic drivers.
Design is the only area in which the Earin M-2s triumph over the RHA TrueConnect; whether you think that’s worth an additional $80 is up to you.
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