Written by Cheryl Tan
It’s rare to find something outstanding in the “budget” range for true wireless earphones, especially under S$100. There will usually be some compromises made, whether it be sound quality, build quality or others. Jade Audio’s EW1 is probably the TWS earphone with the least compromises made, while retaining an affordable price of S$89.
Design-wise, I thought the case was rather plain, which I liked. It’s made of plastic, but the plastic is relatively durable and the size of the case is comparatively smaller than other TWS earphones’ cases. There’s a simple “Jade Audio” lettering in white on the lid, which does look quite nice.
The earbuds have a glittery faceplate which almost resembles stars in the night sky, and I quite like it. The white lettering for the brand on both faceplates however, is something I could do without. I don’t really enjoy promoting brands in my ears, and I found it detracted a bit from me appreciating the faceplate.
But they’re compact and have great noise isolation thanks to how well they seal in the ear. Connection is great, and the earphones are running on Bluetooth 5.0 which means less stutters and drops.
These are touch-controlled and I really do like the fact that the initial touches on either side control the volume. Volume adjustment is the biggest issue I have with most TWS earphones because it requires me to pull out my phone to do it manually. Now, the volume control, play/pause control and track skipping can all be done via the touch controls on the earbuds.
Battery life is on the better side comparing the small form factor, with 7 hours claimed for the earbuds and an additional 2 charges in the case for a total of 21 hours. I found the earbuds lasted me around 6 hours, which doesn’t quite live up to the claim, but still good enough for something at this price point.
Unfortunately, there’s no fast charging and we’re still stuck with a Micro-USB charging port, which means an additional cable to bring around if travelling.
The EW1 actually has a pretty warm and fun sound, with plenty of emphasis on the lower region and bass. People who listen to pop and hip hop would quite enjoy this pair of earphones, but as is the case with more affordably priced earphones, the highs are a bit stifled.
There’s a bit of sparkle lacking from in the upper registers and string instruments don’t sound as energetic. Soundstage is decent, but the separation isn’t great.
Typically, I’d be wary of recommending something that seems too good to be true, but the Jade Audio EW1 has packed plenty into a product at this price point. People on a budget would do well to seriously consider the EW1 if they’re looking for the convenience of wireless earphones.