1MORE 1M301 Single Driver In-Ear Headphones Review

1MORE, who you may also know as the company behind Xiaomi’s headphones, is well known for producing headphones that both look and sound good at an affordable price.

Today, we will be taking a look at their 1M301 single driver in-ear headphones, which normally retails for S$59, but you can often find one under S$40 at electronics exhibitions.


Summary – Very Well Rounded!

The 1MORE 1M301 may not be the best in all areas when you compare it to similarly priced in-ear headphones, but there isn’t really anything bad about it.

Pros:

  • Luxurious unboxing experience
  • Cloth carrying pouch included
  • Elegant metal body design
  • Lower half of cable is Kevlar braided
  • Produces sound with good amount of details and deep bass
  • Great microphone
  • Volume buttons work on iOS & Android

Cons:

  • So so noise isolation?
  • Lack of cons

Unboxing – A Surreal Experience

1MORE doesn’t disappoint us with the 1M301’s packaging.

Like most of 1MORE’s other headphones, unboxing the 1M301 is like unboxing a pair of luxury headphones. Sliding off the outer cover reveals a box with 1MORE’s logo.

IMG_20180527_171326-min

Taking off the lid, you will find the headphones in the iconic 1MORE/Xiaomi box wrapped in plastic, as well as a compartment containing the accessories. Inside, you will find a black cloth carrying pouch of pretty good quality, as well as a metal shirt clip.

 

Moving on to the box containing the headphones. The layout is similar to what we have seen in the past: On the top layer, we have the headphones, with cable coiled around the cushion. Below, you will find 3 additional pairs of ear tips of various sizes.

IMG_20180527_171841-min

This kind exquisite unboxing experience on budget headphones is unique to 1MORE and it is the thing I look forward to most when getting 1MORE products. It may not affect the quality of the headphones, but leaves a really good first impression.


Design & Build Quality – Easily One of the Best

1M301’s sleek metal body, as well as the Kevlar braided lower half of the cable, makes it one of the most “premium” looking headphones under S$100.

From a distance, you will easily recognize that this is a pair of 1MORE in-ear headphones. The design of the metal body is very similar to those on some of 1MORE’s costlier in-ear headphones, including their ever so popular E1001 triple driver.

IMG_20180527_172319-min

The lower half of the cable, before the Y intersection, is Kevlar braided so it doesn’t tangle easily and even when it does, you can undo it with ease. The outer casing of the Y intersection and 3.5mm connector are made of metal. Looks beautiful!

IMG_20180527_172050-min

The housing for the volume controls is made of plastic, but the buttons are metal so it doesn’t ruin the looks of the 1M301. These are no ordinary volume and play/pause buttons and we will be taking a closer look at them in a short while.

IMG_20180707_201158

Overall, the 1M301’s design is a lot more elegant and premium-looking than what you would find from similarly priced in-ear headphones by other major headphone manufacturers.


Sound – Unsurprisingly Amazing

1MORE is well known for producing headphones with sound quality comparable to much costlier headphones from competitors. The 1M301 is no exception.

As the 1M301 is priced similarly to the Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro and Pro HD, both of which I have reviewed (both performed very well against similarly priced products from other manufacturers), I will be comparing them to the 1M301 in this review.

The level of details of the 1M301 is somewhere in between the Pro and Pro HD. Using my favorite track to test on Spotify (当爱来敲门 by 张碧晨), the 1M301 is missing a bit in trebles compared to the Pro HD, but still excellent level of details for its price.

In terms of sound signature, the 1M301 is closer to the Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro, with slight emphasis on the bass, but mids and trebles are still very clear and vibrant in the foreground.

IMG_3407-min

Which to choose between the 3? Each are amazing in their own ways, so you will have to test them to decide. For me, the Pro HD would be my first choice due to its clarity, followed closely by the 1M301 as I generally do not listen to music with too much bass.

The 1M301 stayed in my ears pretty well, even with quite a bit of movement. I did not experience any discomfort wearing it, so thumbs up for ergonomics. Noise isolation is just average and at moderate volume you can still hear the background.

Compared to 1MORE’s more affordable Piston Fit, the 1M301 produces mids that are cleaner, richer and more filling, resulting in a much more immersive experience. Bass is also much deeper, so the >2x price difference is more than justified.


Microphone – Not Too Shabby

1M301’s microphone may not be the best at eliminating background noise, but it is loud and clear.

In my 1MORE Piston Fit review, I was really shocked at how good the microphone quality was, especially when you consider its super low price tag. Is the 1M301’s microphone as good, or even better? The audio below is recorded with the 1M301.

Below is a recording with the Piston Fit for comparison. 1M301’s audio is louder, but the audio recorded with the Piston Fit gets rid of background noise better. The microphone on both are very clear though, which is pretty rare on budget headphones.

To make this more fun, here are short recordings of me trying to sing 九张机 by 叶炫清. In this case, the difference in quality of recorded audio actually narrowed, and I would say that the microphones on both headphones are equally good.

Recorded with 1M301

Recorded with Piston Fit

(Pardon the horrible singing. I have never learnt to sing and I rarely sing, so please 谅解. Now you know why I dislike KTV.)


Volume Buttons – Works on Both iOS & Android

Unlike other volume buttons, the 1M301’s is capable of controlling volume on both Android and iOS.

Volume buttons on headphones usually only work for either iOS or Android, a pain-in-the-ass if you use devices running both OS.

We have seen many different solutions for this, from having a physical switch to swap device type, like on the SenYeek earphones that I reviewed earlier, to having a built-in volume level setting, like what many Bluetooth headphones are using.

These solutions do work, but they all come with some kind of compromises. For example, if your headphone uses a built-in volume setting and your phone is muted, you will have to take out your phone to unmute it before you can listen to music.

1MORE’s solution is different. Through some mysterious magicking, they were able to make the volume buttons work seamlessly on both iOS and Android devices, and it can adjust your phone’s volume level directly on both OS. Sweet!


Conclusion – Excels in Almost Every Way

High recommend getting one!

While the 1MORE 1M301 may not be the best in all aspect, it does better than most of the competition in most aspects, if not all. There isn’t really anything bad about it, so you will not regret paying S$59 or less for the 1M301 in-ear headphones.

IMG_0123-min

 

Hands On with 1MORE Headphones

In celebration of Christmas, as well as to thank their fans, 1MORE organized a party in concurrently in multiple places around the world yesterday. I attended the one here in Singapore and got the chance to test out some of 1MORE’s latest products.

IMG_2543-min


There were two in-ear headphones on display: 1MORE’s famous Triple Driver, as well as the costlier Quad Driver. Both have metal housing, with the build quality we have come to expect from a 1MORE product. You will love them on first sight.

From my limited testing, both produce really detailed sound, but the Quad Driver had bass that was less punchy. A longer listening session may allow me to appreciate the Quad Driver more, but on my first impression, I prefer the Triple Driver.


Next up, we have the 1MORE Triple Driver On-Ear Headphones, whose design is absolutely stunning. Some may mistaken it for Mi Headphones, which are also designed and made by 1MORE.

IMG_2556-min

The sound from this is very detailed and bass is prominent, deep and clean, but not to the extent where it is overwhelming. It will make you go wow when you first listen to it, and then wow again, when you find out that it costs just S$299.

IMG_2573-min

The ear cushions and headband padding Triple Driver On-Ear Headphones is fairly thick. For a pair of on-ear headphones, these are actually pretty comfortable.


Now to the product everyone is waiting for: 1MORE’s Spearhead VR gaming headphones. The design of the Spearhead is clearly for gamers, dark and bold, with LEDs capable of 16.8M colors lighting up the 1MORE logo, retractable stick and circle accent.

IMG_2566-min

Again, 1MORE doesn’t disappoint when it comes to build quality – the Spearhead’s frame is made out of stainless steal, with zinc alloy hinges. Volume can be controlled via a scroll wheel on the side. There is also a switch for turning off the microphone.

IMG_2574-min

Comfort is very important if you are going to have a long gaming session. While the Spearhead is not exactly light, the ear cushions fits comfortably over my ears and the headband stretches really easily and fits my head comfortably.

IMG_2567-min

The key feature of the Spearhead is Surround Sound 7.1, which only works when you plug it to your computer via USB and when you do so, it works really well. When not gaming on your computer, you can switch the USB cable for a 3.5mm audio cable.

The Spearhead has Environmental Noise Cancellation, picking up noise from the surrounding using microphones for active noise cancellation. The condition at the event wasn’t very ideal for testing this, so I will not comment on how well it does yet.

IMG_2581-min

The Spearhead isn’t in Singapore yet, but it will be extremely soon, at a pricing that is very reasonable for a pair of gaming headphones that excels in so many aspects. (Not sure if I am allowed to share it so I will not, but trust me, the pricing is very good)