by | August 17, 2016 | Reviews

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The good:

 

The 1more Capsule hybrid in ear monitor offers very impressive build quality, clear and balanced sound, wonderful comfort and isolation at a very low price.

 

The bad:

 

Not always easy to drive with average smartphones.

 

1more has made quite a name for itself in the digital audio market in a very short period of time. The 1more E1001 triple-driver in ear headphones were on Customer Reports’ list of best headphones and speakers for the summer of 2016. Other products from the brand were also well received by customers around the globe.

 

The 1more Capsule Dual Driver headphones were a new set of in-ear monitor released by the Shenzhen-based brand at CES 2016. With only 1 unit of dynamic driver and 1 unit of balanced armature driver, they are priced a little lower than the 1more E1001 triple driver headphones and are marketing towards consumers with a tighter budget.

 

Specifications

 

Type: Closed, hybrid

Rated power: 5mW

Driver unit: HD Hybrid 2-way (7mm dynamic + Balanced Armature)

Frequency response: 20-40,000 Hz

Sensitivity: 98 dB/mW

Impedance: 32 Ω

Cord type : Approx. 1.2m, enameled copper cord

Plug: Gold-plated straight stereo mini plug (3.5mm)

Weight: 15g

Supplied accessories: Hybrid silicone rubber earbuds (3 pairs), silicone extension sleeves (1 pair), Cord adjuster, Carrying bag

 

 

 

Retail package

 

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The packaging of the 1more Capsule Dual Driver isn’t as extravagant as that of the E1001 Triple Driver, but it is still quite exquisite.

 

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Inside the box you will find the headphones and all the accessories, including three pairs of silicone rubber earbuds, a pair of silicone extension sleeves for larger ears, a cord adjuster and a carrying bag. There is also interesting graphic display showing the design outline of these capsule headphones.

 

 

 

Design

 

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The design of the 1more Capsule Dual Driver is one of a kind. These headphones don’t look like anything we have seen before and in our opinion, they represent the capsule design better than any other headphones which were also called capsules.

 

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The housing of these headphones is a combination of aluminum and plastic, although it may not feel as premium as the all metal shell of the E1001 Triple Driver, it doesn’t give those headphones a cheap look and, the plastic side really feels nice when it makes contact to our skin. As a matter of fact, the 1more Capsule Hybrid might be one of the best-looking sets of headphones we have come across.

 

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Like all headphones from 1more, the Capsule Hybrid have angled nozzles. According to 1more, those nozzles could give users a more comfortable fit and better isolation. The metal meshes in the nozzle are also very unique, I don’t really see them being more effective in keeping out dust and ear waxes, but they may allow better sound flow.

 

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When you are not using them, the hands-free magnetic earpieces can easily clasp around your neck.

 

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The wire of the Capsule Hybrid is also very nice. The reinforced Kevlar aramid fibers give the cable very high tensile strength. Also, this wire has very little memory and microphonics, and is an absolute joy to use.

 

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1More has included an in-line remote in all of their headphone products, and the Capsule Dual Driver are no exception. There are three buttons on board: Volume +, Play/Pause, and Volume -. The patented remote is compatible with both Android OS and iOS, and will be highly appreciated by people who use their smartphone as their main audio player.

 

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The Capsule Hybrid also have a 3.5mm straight plug plated in gold.

 

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1more never disappoints in terms of the quality of their products, and the build quality of the Capsule Hybrid Dual Driver could even rival headphones priced many times higher.

 

 

 

Comfort and isolation

 

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These headphones are extremely light, the angled nozzles and soft ear tips fit into my ears comfortably, I can wear them for hours and won’t feel any amount of burden. The capsule design ergonomically aligns with the natural shape of our ears and help keep those earbuds inside even when we are running or doing any type of fast movement. With the extension sleeves used, the fit becomes more stable, I can even wear them while playing tennis, not that I suggest anyone to do so.

 

The 1more Capsule Hybrid also offer probably the best isolation of all the iems I have ever used, once the buds are in my ears, they can give a tight seal which can filter out most of the background sound. I have to take bus from my apartment to work every day, and I can enjoy music without any sort of distractions with these headphones.

 

 

 

Microphone

 

Microphone quality was excellent. The voice assistant on my smartphone had no issues picking up my voice commands. During calls, the other party said that I sounded clearer than when using the phone’s built-in mic, so it seems that the 1more Hybrid earphone’s new microphone works well.

 

 

Performance

 

 

Tested tracks

 

Beyonce – Daddy Lessons

Alicia keys – Unthinkable

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Let’s Eat

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – White Privilege

Justin Timberlake – Mirrors

Maroon 5 – Harder to Breathe

Gavin DeGraw – Fire

DNCE – Cake by the Ocean

Demi Lovato – Cool for the Summer

Snow Patrol – Run

Emeli Sande – Clown

Drake – Controlla

G-Eazy – Calm Down

Nick Jonas – Chains

 

Source: Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, LG G3, Huawei P9 Lite, iriver U100

 

 

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The 1more Capsule Hybrid have a sensitivity rating of 98db/mW and an impedance of 32om, not the easiest to drive. My Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge failed to push these headphones to their full potential, even though I turned the volume all the way up. My LG G3 worked much better with the Capsule Hybrid than the S7 Edge, thanks to its dedicated DAC. My iriver U100, however, has no problem driving them to an ear-splitting level. I can only assume that the sound quality can be significantly improved with an amplifier or higher-end DAPs, but normally headphones in this price range are still mainly paired with smartphones, just make sure you are not using the Snapdragon 820 version of S7 or S7 Edge (The Exynos 8890 version of S7 has a dedicated DAC so it may sound a lot better).

 

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When it comes to sound quality, the 1more Capsule Hybrid headphones are a force to be reckon with. These headphones have 2 units of drivers under the hood: 1 unit of dynamic driver to handle the lows and 1 unit of balanced armature tweeter to take care of the mids and highs. Designed to bring “powerful yet intimate listening experience”, 1more even hired the Grammy-winning sound engineer Luca Bignardi to tune these headphones in the brand’s sound lab in California. Also, these headphones have a frequency response of 20-40,000Hz, and are granted with a High-Res Audio certification.

 

The H8 have a very flat sound profile, which means songs across a variety of genres sound neutral and clean and the sound engineer didn’t tune them to emphasize certain frequencies. The sound is natural, realistic and balanced. The harsh bass and treble boosting prevalent with many other headphones priced below $100 are non-existent here. But at this price point, there are some necessary compromises.

 

The 1more Capsule Hybrid headphones had bass with great potential. There was a great amount of bass and, in terms of sub-bass extension, these headphones could reach very deep. The sub-bass contained texture and lots of detail, and on certain tracks this became very evident. The mid-bass had nice punch and presence, as well.

 

The mids of the Capsule Hybrid are not forgiving of bad vocal recordings with the upper mids tending to display a little sibilance in female vocals if the source or recording is a poor fit. Even with a decent source and a nice piece of recording, the mids were still not as full as I would have liked, and the more dominant lower frequencies could sometimes bleed into the lower mids. But the nice thing was they were neither extremely recessed nor veiled, male vocals and most female vocals are presented nice and clear, In Nick Jonas’ “Chains”, I can hear his voice piercing through the accompaniment. Also, the upper mids here were smoother and more accurate than what’re delivered by similarly priced dynamic headphones.

 

The greatest strength of the Hybrid is its full, bright, crisp and clear highs. Instruments in these frequencies sounded extremely nice. Unlike the 1more E1001 Triple Driver, the Capsule Hybrid didn’t sound overly bright in its highs, but they do sound more defined and less metallic, at least to my ears.

 

With that said, everyone’s hearing is different and everyone has a preference for certain sound profiles depending on which genre of music they listen to. The best way to decide if the Capsule’s sound is right for you is to give them a listen for yourself, but that’s probably not realistic for most people outside of China as 1more isn’t really a household name around the globe. I personally listened to many types of music, and I noticed that the 1more Capsule Hybrid didn’t really disappoint in any track I threw at them.

 

 

Conclusion

 

If you were put off by the lack of sound quality in big brand earphones priced below $100, the 1more Capsule Hybrid are a pretty good candidate. The overall design and build quality of these headphones are very good, comfort and isolation are also among the best. The sound quality is understandably well below the qualities of a studio-class headphones where audiophiles may notice a lack of high-frequency trebles, but still unbeatable among headphones priced around.

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