Earin A-3 Earphones Reviews: Quirky, Sleek EarbudsThe A-3s are sleek and sound great. However, the clunky, hard-plastic fitting and quirkiness of the connectivity make them not suitable for everyone.
We like this
Amazingly sleek design
Battery life is solid
A balanced, well-balanced and nuanced sound quality
Uncomfortable, awkward fit
Connectivity issues that are quirky
The offering is a little bit expensive
Although these earbuds are beautiful and sound great, their connectivity and fit leave much to be desired.
Earin gave us a review unit to allow one of our writers test it. For more information, please read on.
Earin A-3 Earphones is a unique wireless earbud. And that sort of makes sense, because Earin was actually an early adopter of the true wireless market—releasing a pair right around the same time that Apple dropped its AirPods.
Earin's A-3 headphones represent the most recent generation in Earin's offering. They are quite different than the flagship models. This is a good thing in some aspects. The A-3s have a modern design and a solid build quality. They also produce surprisingly great sound. In other ways, the headphones' differences are drawbacks—like the poor fit and quirky connectivity. My pair lasted me about a week. You can read on to find out how they compare.
When I opened the A-3s, I was immediately struck by how completely different they looked. The design of the A-3s is truly unique. From their matte, brushed aluminum cases to the twist dial design at the ends of each earbud, it's stunning. Half-circle shape with flip-open top. Although I was sent the silver model, the all black version looks a lot more sleeker.
Earin achieved both simplicity and unobtrusiveness, which was clearly evident.
Earbuds don't look at all like earbuds. They look flat and flush with your ears when they are in place. You can see the flat line running through the center of each circle, similar to the old TV dial. It also functions the same way when the earbuds are twisted into your ears.
Although I do not like the overblown claims made on marketing websites, Earin's claim that they are the "smallest wireless headphones on the market" seems plausible considering how small the A-3s actually are. Earin achieved simplicity and minimal intrusion, which was clearly their goal.
Because each person's preference and ear shape is different, it's hard to assess the fit and comfort of true wireless headphones. My preference is for silicone tips that grip your ears with at least two points of contact, but not too tightly within the canal.
They are almost impossible to wear more than 30 minutes due to the rigid and pokey nature of the plastic earbuds.
Instead of using silicone tips, the A-3s rely on the tapered point made from plastic that houses speaker drivers. They sit in the ear just like Apple's original AirPods. The fact that many AirPods are used might make this fit work for you. However, I find the rigid and pokey plastic earbuds to be almost uncomfortably uncomfortable.
Earin designed the earbuds so that they can twist and rotate to fit more shapes of ears. However, I cannot help but feel like the decision to leave any rubber at the tips of the ear tips was an error.
It is impressive to see the attention paid when building the A-3s. Although the hardshell case is made of metal, it seems to be durable. I'm not worried about micro-scratches and scuffs, but I haven’t noticed any permanent marks. Although the earbuds are not made of soft-touch, premium plastic they feel durable to dirt and drops.
An inherent benefit of not including any silicone tips means the part that goes into your ear—an area normally prone to wax buildup—is exposed and easy to keep clean. Earin also has an IP52 rating, which is for dust and water resistance. Although this isn’t the best score, it’s still a nice protection.
It is difficult to rate the sound quality of true wireless headphones because it takes into account fit and natural isolation. Earin claims that they are passive noise-isolating, meaning they block out sound rather than cancelling it. These earbuds don't fit well into my ears so the sound quality is affected. It's possible that this may not be the case for everyone, but it is important to know.
The A-3s are very balanced in practice. They provide detail and nuance throughout the entire frequency range.
Once you get used to the sound, it is quite pleasant. Each bud has 14.3 millimeter drivers that provide a good amount of headroom. You'll hear a wider frequency range, covering 20Hz-20kHz. Bluetooth aptX codesc is available to reduce loss.
The A-3s are balanced in practice and provide nuanced detail across the entire frequency range. Although I noticed some muddiness in the lower mids, it was not noticeable at high volumes so this could be due to unintended distortion artifacts. This is a great product, however, it is a shame that the fit can be so difficult to adjust.
It's amazing that five hours of listening can be achieved on one charge, considering how small each earbud is. The battery charger case adds another 30 hours to this amount. In my tests these numbers were consistent with real life. I am confident that the A-3s can last for a week without any additional use.
Although the case charges quickly using USB-C, at just three hours, it's not my fastest. Earin's inclusion of Qi wireless charging within the battery case is something I like. Wireless charging is a must-have feature for true wireless headphones. I am constantly amazed at the number of manufacturers that don't include it in their products.
Earin wireless charging is very reliable, but the company had to compromise on design. Wireless functionality can't be used through metal enclosures so the back of Earin's charging case features a black plastic plate that allows wireless pass-through. It is not as obvious on the all black model, however it should be noted if you choose the silver one.
Earin describes the A-3 as "no left nor right" earphones. It is a great choice because each earbud can establish an independent connection with your source device. Although this is great for one earbud at a time it causes some issues when trying to connect the other earphones.
I had to manually force the earbuds into pairing mode right out of the box—a fact that isn't usually the case with earbuds—and I actually had to pair and re-pair them to my phone a couple of times before both sides worked well.
Although this isn't a major issue for me as I am used to diagnosing Bluetooth problems, it could prove annoying for average users. The sound quality is excellent once paired. I was able to use the headphones for video, even though there were many Bluetooth devices around my house.
It is great to have a dedicated smartphone app for the Earin A-3s. However, with only a few options—like monitoring battery life, adjusting the on-board tap controls, and updating firmware—the app doesn't do a whole lot to expand functionality. Because the area you are supposed to touch can be so tiny and hard to reach, touch controls can also prove to be a bit fickle.
The A-3s are priced at $200. This is not a cheap or excessive price. This seems to be the average price for mid-to high-end earbuds. I find it reasonable. They look great and fit the budget well. If you are able to get them to comfortably sit in your ears they will sound just as good as $200 earbuds. Depending on what you value, however, some may find the awkward fit and quirky connectivity to be unacceptable at this price point.
The Verve Buds by Motorola are one of few earbud brands that are so focused on sleek design. The tiny, plastic-shaped batteries in these buds fit almost flush into your ears. These buds sound a bit less good and are slightly more plasticky in construction, however they cost half as much.
Perfect for some users.
The Earin A-3s are difficult to choose between the right or wrong side. There's a lot to like about them—a sleek design, a solid build, and balanced sound quality. All of that depends on your ability to fit the earbuds comfortably in your ears. This was not easy for me. Bluetooth connectivity is not perfect. There are some inconsistencies. These last two factors are crucial for an earbud pair. The A-3s may be a great buy, for some, they might be disappointing for others.