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Fairphone earphones available now

The Fairphone shop is listing their modular headphones now at 34.95 Euro.
Cable available seperatly as well (for replacement).
See the posting below by @urs_lesse

Some resellers list them equally as available:

(I haven’t checked all resellers though.)
They are not available at memolife.de / memo.de

Edit:
Here they are (picture taken from Faircustomer.ch):

Edit 2:
Updated, since they are available from Fairphone directly now as well.

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How well are they working sound quality-wise and modularity wise?

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I’m really itching to get me a pair (once they are available at Vireo – seems they are still waiting for stock or they sold out instantly after Bert’s post :wink: – or Fairphone themselves). :slight_smile:

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Sorry, I didn’t double-check.
On the listing-page, they are said to be available (“verfügbar”):
https://www.vireo.de/fairphone/zubehoer/
CircleShop on the other hand expressly claims to have 3 pieces in stock, though not in the shops.

@JeroenH
I would like to know as well, once they are on the market.
Though I will not order them, since I have headphones, that are working perfectly fine.

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After all … they have arrived in the Fairphone Shop!

Earphones are €34.95.
Includes microphone and remote control for volume, skipping audio tracks and taking calls. Plug has an unusual 45° angle to reduce stress on the cable.


And spare cables are €12.95

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Has anyone used them? How is the sound?

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To add to the catalogue of questions:

  1. Do the remote and the microphone work on the FP1 and on the FP2?
  2. Do the earphones come with just one size of earpads (the flexible silicone parts)?
  3. Are earpads from other manufacturers compatible?
  4. Technical specs, esp. frequency range and decibels?
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Just checked the list of resellers.
Those selling the headphones or advertising them for pre-order don’t have more information than Fairphone themselves.

First impressions:

  1. Basically audio as well as microphone and remote work on all these devices (I actually did test it - very briefly! - on all four): FP1, FP2, FP3 (and iPhone 5 :wink: ). Unfortunately, I’m getting to hear some slight, but unmissable sort of stuttering film projector background noise (exclusively) on the FP1 when playing audio (to make it absolutely clear: not on the FP2, FP3, iPhone 5). These background sounds continue for another 2-3 seconds after music playback stops. Anyone familiar with such effects?
  2. Package includes three pairs of earpads (S, M, L), as usual with such earphone sets; plus a separate “memory foam” that can probably be inserted in your chosen earpad pair for better sealing.
  3. My cheapo Sony MDR-EX15AP earpads don’t really fit. The FP earphones’ tubes that the earpads sit on have a slightly bigger diametre than the Sony earphones’ tubes.
  4. Frequency range: 20 Hz - 20 kHz (see photos for this and further technical details)
  5. Volume controls work somewhat consistently reliably. Pause button (simply the space between the volume controls) appears to work just every once in a while - I might be doing something wrong. I also haven’t figured out yet how to skip between tracks.

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@urs_lesse what’s the sound quality like?

Frankly, I don’t want to evaluate this as it’s far too subjective (and too early anyway). Sorry. :angel:

Hi Urs_lesse, I wanna know if earphone wear fit for differents type of ears ? (if you can send pictures)

I don’t own the headphones; but on the last picture from @urs_lesse you can see the different earpads in the foreground and the adjustable memory-foam earbuds in the background.

The text on the box says:

Optional in-box memory foam earbuds adjust to the shape of your inner ear for improved isolation.

So, I guess, one could say, that they are made to fit different types of ears.
I have no idea, how well that works; and it migt be subjective as well.

Edit: Just corrected a typo.

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To follow-up on this: I have come to hear this stuttering sound on the FP2 as well soon after I wrote the above, but in recent days I only noticed it on the FP1 anymore. I seem to have detected a clear pattern yesterday: When my FP1 detects the FP earphones as a headphone only Headphone_icon (i.e. just audio playback), the sound output is undisturbed. However, once the FP1 detects the FP earphone as a headset Headphones_icon (i.e. adds the microphone symbol to the icon and is responsive to remote and microphone input), the stuttering is constantly there in the background. It’s not massive, but you can’t really ignore it once the music goes quiet or has ended.

I have also found that the remote seems to “prefer” each device’s default music app rather than the one you currently run. When I use the remote on my FP1, it won’t affect VLC as my music player of choice in the foreground, but will wake up and launch Music. The remote seems to be more responsive in VLC on the FP2 and FP3.

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Anyone know of a review of the new Fairphone modular earphones? Was wondering about their technical specifications - which are unfortunate missing from the shop page at https://shop.fairphone.com/en/modular-earphones
How good do they sound?

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Find some technical specs further above.

Soundwise, I have to say that after a couple of weeks, they’re not really my taste. Bear in mind my only comparison is a very simple Sony set of earphones (Sony MDR-EX15AP) and compared to those, the impression is clearly that the Fairphone earphones provide much stronger bass/lows which might be partly due to the much better physical seal their build ensures. In contrast, I miss some trebles (I am still wondering if the Sony’s imperfect seal just gives me a wrong impression of clearer trebles or if the trebles are really more pronounced on the Sony). My favourite song just won’t excite me that much with the Fairphone earphones. :wink: There is no distortion or the like though. I saw 1-2 other users praising the basses.

Despite my initial skepticism when I was reading the decibel specs on the box, the volume level is pretty decent (significantly louder than my Sony’s).

I had to get accustomed to the different way to wear these earphones (see the latest blog entry for a helpful photo). But in contrast to the ambiguous sound experience, this is something I grew somewhat accustomed to, although obviously, it is still a bigger hassle to put the Fairphone earphones on and take them off.

Very good: The cable isn’t just replaceable, it’s also more solid than on my Sony which makes for much smaller issues with entanglement. This cable hardly entangles at all from my experience (note: I do store them hanging vertically down their whole length from a shelf at home).

For more practical observations, see the link.

P.S.: Johan, allow me to – just once – recommend these folks in your town :angel:

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Thank you Urs for the detailed review of the earphones! I placed my order already yesterday - couldn’t wait. :slight_smile: And Alexander already reached out to me. Looking forward to the next Düsseldorf Fairphone meetup.

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I just got my pair of the “modular earphones” and the build quality is excellent. The “memory foam” ear plugs indeed give the best seal and the best “bass” experience. The plugs which are installed by default didn’t really provide a nice “seal” for me and made the music sound tinny. Disadvantage of the “memory foam” plugs is that they block out basically all outside sound - giving you a super immersive experience. Btw, testing the phones with Faith No More - Midlife Crisis :wink:

Update: tested the earphones on my bike ride home and I think these must have been designed (or picked) by Dutch as they are fantastic while riding the bike! Still plenty of traffic awareness and yet they block out most of the wind noise (with biggest plugs). The cord is just about the right size (I’m 186cm) and the material seems to prevent tangling.

Update 2: So even-though the earphones work well on Android, they don’t work that well when connected to a MacBook (Model 2016). The microphone works, but audio quality is not as good as with the standard Apple earphones. Also the remote control commands for setting volume are troublesome. This might mostly have something to do with Apple’s notorious proprietary specs which cannot always be implemented by other hardware manufacturers. The buttons on the Fairphone earphones a little hard-to-press in general. I often cannot find the actual buttons; the indentations are a little too shallow.

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Thanks Urs and Johan for your input here! I am in need of a new headset and am seriously considering buying the fairphone modular earphones, but I can’t find any other reviews on them, other than what you have both written.
If anybody else has any input (if if Urs or Johan have any updates) I would be very grateful to read it. Of particular interest to me is how well the microphone functions during calls. With past headsets I have found the weakness is most often the ability of my headset to transmit my voice clearly to whoever I am calling.
I have a bluetooth headset that works well, but I am more comfortable with a wired headset.

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So far really happy with the set. The only thing really getting used to is the irresponsive and hard to find buttons of the remote. So far everyone I talked to with using the earphones microphone have had no issues and were able to understand me loud and clear. It did pick up wind noises while I was cycling, but which mic doesn’t. The biggest issue is perhaps that these earphones don’t solve the issue with unplugged earphones and audio no longer working. That seems something to be fixed in the firmware or software of Android or the FP3 itself.

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