The Chinese manufacturer KZ is very famous for its wired headphones, but you can find some controversial wireless models in its assortment. The company introduced a very budget wireless earbuds called KZ S1 and it surprised me.
In this review, I will tell my opinion about the earbuds, sound and microphone quality, as well as their advantages and disadvantages.
The price of the new KZ S1 wireless earbuds is only $ 23 and for this price, you get attractive features.
To the main chips I can attribute – this is a hybrid driver in combination with one dynamic and armature driver, wireless connection Bluetooth 5.0, multifunctional touch control and much more.
Therefore, before talking about sound and making conclusions about wireless earbuds, I want to talk about the box and appearance.
KZ S1: Specifications
|Driver unit:||Hybrid technology: 1DD + 1BA|
|Bluetooth protocol:||AAC, and SBC|
|Charging Time:||120 min|
KZ S1: Unboxing
The box is unremarkable, but you should not expect a premium from budget headphones, as the price is up to $25. The package is small and made of white cardboard, where on the front there is a sketch of the earbuds and the name of the model and company.
Inside the box, I found – this is a charging box with earbuds inside, instructions for use in English, two additional pairs of ear pads and a charging Type-C cable.
Again, the box looks simple for its price, but the equipment left a positive impression. For example, a Type-C charging cable and pleasant ear pads show a high-quality view of the earbuds, but let’s look at the S1 model in more detail.
KZ S1: Design
KZ earbud housing is made of glossy plastic. It is assembled quite well and has a convenient shape, like for my ears.
A gray model of earbuds came to my test, but also the manufacturer offers various colors, such as black, white and green.
The size of the earbuds is not heavy and each earphone weighs about 4.5 grams, and the charging box is about 42.5 grams excluding earbuds.
In the ears of KZ S1, they sit well and you can listen to music or watch movies for a long time. However, I did not feel any fatigue or discomfort.
On the front of the case, I see the company logo, touch control panel and LED indicator. The inner part has three contacts for charging through a portable charging case, as well as a channel designation.
The sound guide has a regular shape, which fits well in the ear canal. It is also worth noting that the sound guide received a golden eye-catching color, where on the base there is a ledge for ear pads and it is covered with a metal mesh from dust and dirt.
The manufacturer does not indicate any protection against water, so given its price, I think that it is not worth wetting them in water. But sweat or small splashes of water will not be a problem.
The charging case is made of the same gray plastic as the earbuds themselves and I cannot say any comments about it.
The lid has a company logo on the top and it received a magnetic connection, so I did not have any accidental openings.
Inside the box, I see the seats for the earbuds and they also have a magnetic connection. There is also a button and an LED indicator of the charge level.
On the back of the case is a Type-C port for charging. I am very glad that manufacturers have recently used Type-C connections to charge even in budget models of wireless earbuds.
In terms of build quality and materials, the new KZ S1 earbuds have a good design and a comfortable fit. The design is very similar to the KZ wire models and there is some advantage in this when comparing other manufacturers in terms of convenience.
KZ S1: Pairing and Control
As I mentioned, the new generation of KZ S1 earbuds is equipped with a Bluetooth 5.0 wireless connection.
Also, the S1 model received support for the AAC codec and game mode.
As for the delays, I did not find them at all while watching videos on YouTube, and during the games, the delays were very minimal.
At the first pairing, I did not have any difficulties. The first thing to do is to get the earbuds from the charging case, turn them on and go to the Bluetooth menu on any of your devices, then connect to the S1 device.
The controls are very intuitive and simple, for example, a single press produces a play/pause, accept/put the handset on any channel from the earbuds.
To switch the track forward – double tap on the right earphone and back – double tap on the left channel. The voice control is called while holding for about 2 seconds on any of the channels. KZ S1 has no volume control on board.
KZ S1: Sound
Before talking about sound quality, I wanted to mention one fact.
As I wrote above, I have a hybrid version of earbuds with one dynamic and one armature driver, but there is also a regular version with one dynamic driver on sale.
The low frequencies are very clean and balanced, while the bass is not very strong, but they are expressive and booming.
The mid and high frequencies received similar sufficient detail with good and correct dynamics.
In general, the sound quality pleased me, in recent years, these earbuds have shown themselves worthy and the KZ S1 model sounds much better than its competitors in the price range up to $30.
The quality of the microphone is not the best, but you can talk, the interlocutor will hear you clearly even in noisy places.
KZ S1: Battery
Not the best indicator in battery life was shown by KZ S1 since 40 mAh battery capacity is also not the highest value. In my case, at maximum volume, KZ wireless earbuds worked for 3 hours and 15 minutes.
The charging case received 300mAh and you manage to charge additional headphones 3-4 more times. The total battery life will be about 14 hours.
The charging time through a Type-C connection will be approximately 2 hours.
KZ S1: Conclusion and Reviews
Despite its low price, I was pleasantly surprised by the new hybrid wireless earbuds from KZ.
The disadvantages I can attribute are touch controls, which you need to get used to, since accidentally pressing the first time I often had. Also, the lack of volume control may become a small problem for some users.
Advantages are also present in the new earbuds and I can relate to them – this is a comfortable fit and good build quality and materials. The sound of the hybrid version with the armature driver sounds very harmonious with crystal detail. Another positive factor is the Type-C connection.
KZ S1: Price and where to buy cheaper?
Currently, you can purchase hybrid earbuds with an armature and dynamic driver for the price of $23.32, and the regular version with one dynamic driver for $20.40 with a 31% discount.
I believe that a little less than three dollars is not such a large amount, but the sound quality will be much better for the hybrid version.