Cambridge Audio crafted top-of-the-line pairs of wi-fi earbuds you may get with its first try – the Melomania 1. Nicely, the agency is again with a brand new mannequin, not the two, however the Melomania Contact.
The headphones flip to a brand new design, contact delicate controls and a claimed whopping 50-hour whole battery life. There’s no energetic noise cancelling right here however the earbuds stay reasonably priced and nonetheless supply a transparency mode.
Design & Construct
Transferring on from the bullet design of the Melomania 1, the Melomania Contact have a form much like some rivals. They arrive in a form like a comma and are pretty compact and lightweight (5.9g every), albeit not as a lot as their predecessor.
Getting a superb match with wi-fi earbuds is extra vital than every other headphone model. In the event that they don’t match effectively sufficient, you threat them falling out of your ears. Not best if you happen to’re strolling residence from the grocery store in the dead of night carrying baggage (sure, this occurred to me).
To get the most effective match potential Cambridge Audio provides six pairs of silicone suggestions – two of every measurement. Then there are fins that strap across the earbud – once more in three sizes. Since they’re separate, in contrast to the Bose QC Earbuds, you need to use a mixture of various sizes.
That is vital if you happen to’re like me as I want the smallest suggestions potential, however the largest fins. With this combo, I used to be in a position to obtain a cushty and safe match. The earbuds would come slightly unfastened however didn’t fall out.
Because the fin is sort of a rubber band that goes across the earbud, it supplies a pleasant grip if you’re dealing with the headphones.
With an IPX4 splash ranking, you possibly can use these for health and working, though you’ll want a superb match to keep away from them falling out. Construct high quality, as you possibly can anticipate from an organization like Cambridge Audio, is excellent certainly.
The case is a typical tablet form and really compact – stunning when it could cost the headphones many occasions. Extra on that later. There are useful LEDs to point battery stage, however my minor criticism concerning the case is that there’s no lip to assist open it. It does use USB-C for charging now, although.
Because the title suggests, the Melomania Contact ditch the bodily push buttons of the unique design in favour of contact delicate buttons. They’re trickier to make use of however imply don’t find yourself pushing the earbuds into your ear canals when pushing buttons.
The button covers a big space of the earbud and the form of the buds imply you possibly can regulate them with out triggering more often than not. You are able to do quite a bit together with the apparent faucet for play/pause after which contact and maintain both left or proper to regulate the amount down or up.
If you happen to don’t need sure controls, then you possibly can handily swap them off within the app.
The Melomania Contact can be found in black or white and the case is constructed from microfibre leather-based, however word that solely the white choice is vegan pleasant.
Sound High quality & Options
When it comes to the core specs, the Melomania Contact use Bluetooth 5.Zero connectivity and inside comprise 7mm dynamic drivers with a ‘Graphene-enhanced Diaphragm’. They’ve a normal frequency response of 20Hz to 20kHz and use a trio of codecs: aptX, AAC and SBC.
Nothing right here is especially uncommon however Cambridge Audio touts ‘hi-fi grade amplification know-how’ and a novel ‘distinctive Excessive Efficiency Audio Mode’ to create ‘immersive audio high quality’.
Nicely, regardless of the agency has completed it really works very effectively and the Melomania Contact sound excellent certainly and are definitely up there with the most effective wi-fi earbuds I’ve examined over the previous couple of years.
By default, they sound clear and with a properly balanced frequency response that means they sound nice for a variety of music and different duties. No space is forgotten about, with sturdy and heat bass, wealthy mid-tones and a vivid prime finish.
Even if you happen to don’t prefer it, you possibly can head into the app and go to city as I’ll clarify in a minute. One factor that stood out to me is the way in which the Melomania Contact sound highly effective with out having to pump the amount up, which is nice information in your ears and the conflict on distortion.
Observe that the Melomania Contact do not need energetic noise cancelling (ANC) like some rivals. Nonetheless, there’s a Transparency Mode which makes use of the microphones additionally used for calls to permit the ambient sound into your ears.
It’s tad echoey and sounds barely odd if you happen to’re not used to it, however can actually assist if you happen to’re out and about and don’t wish to hold taking the earbuds out on a regular basis. It’ll imply you’re conscious of risks, bulletins or issues like somebody calling your title. And I’ve discovered it doesn’t influence the sound high quality a lot in any respect, which is a standard drawback.
The properly designed app for iOS and Android offers you a pleasant combine of knowledge and controls. The principle hub offers you the battery stage of every bud and likewise lets which codec is getting used. You may then do issues like regulate the extent of Transparency Mode and use a Discover My Earphones function (on a map moderately than if you happen to’ve misplaced them in the home).
The spotlight needs to be the equaliser, although, which has six totally different presets like Bass Increase and Rock. You may regulate the sound with the graph, with 5 sliders and save three totally different customized settings.
It’s glorious and even if you happen to don’t learn about EQ or frequencies, it adjusts in real-time so you possibly can simply muck about till your ears are completely happy.
One thing I’ve not seen earlier than is the flexibility to modify codes. Automated choice will apply by default however you possibly can go in and swap off a codec if you happen to actually don’t wish to use it.
Modes & battery life
Lastly is the selection of two audio modes – excessive efficiency or low energy. It’s the latter which you’ll want to make use of to get the longest battery life.
The Melomania Robust are on excessive efficiency by default and right here you’ll rise up to seven hours from the earbuds. Issue within the case and you may hit a complete of 40 hours which isn’t far off the superb RHA TrueConnect 2 at 44 hours.
Nonetheless, Cambridge Audio has gone additional in low energy mode with 9 hours from the earbuds and a complete of 50 hours. Virtually for sure, I haven’t needed to fear about battery life in any respect throughout my testing.
A caveat right here is which you can’t simply swap between the 2 modes rapidly. Every earbud requires a system software program replace which takes a couple of minutes they usually want 30% battery to carry out the swap says the app, though I managed to do it with one on round 16%.
There’s a noticeable drop in audio high quality if you swap to low energy, after all, which is why I’d go away it on excessive efficiency (40 hours is loads for me) until you’re going to wish the battery life.
Value & Availability
At £129.95 or $149.95, the Melomania Contact are, er, a contact costlier than their predecessor. It’s a type of mid-range value and you may simply spend double this on some pairs of wi-fi earbuds.
Whereas they’re extra reasonably priced than many, the shortage of ANC is extra obvious now in comparison with when the Melomania 1s arrived. It’s way more potential to get noise cancelling at this value and there are many pairs beneath £100/$100 with the function which can be half respectable.
One instance is the Huawei FreeBuds 3i with an RRP of £89 however obtainable for £65 or you possibly can spend slightly extra and get Sony WF-1000XM3 earbuds for round £140 as the value has dropped over time.
If ANC isn’t vital, you possibly can all the time get the Melomania 1 for simply £79 now. They don’t have the identical options as this new mannequin however are one thing of a cut price however.
Try our chart of the most effective true wi-fi earbuds.
Just a few minor caveats apart, the Cambridge Audio Melomania Contact are a superb pair of wi-fi earbuds.
Like the unique, they’re top-of-the-line pairs I’ve examined however it’s a aggressive market so it actually relies upon what you’re in search of. Energetic noise cancelling (ANC) was uncommon again then however is much extra widespread now so that they don’t symbolize fairly the identical cut price.
If ANC isn’t a should then the Melomania Contact have quite a bit to supply. Specifically glorious sound high quality which you can customise with an EQ function within the app, the place there may be additionally a number of different neat options comparable to codec choice and management over which contact buttons you wish to use.
There may not be any ANC, however there’s a Transparency Mode which may are available helpful and the design provides suggestions and fins making them extra versatile and prone to match higher than the earlier mannequin.
You’ll even be getting the longest battery life round for a pair of wi-fi earbuds at as much as 50 hours, though switching into the low energy mode is a little bit of a faff.
Cambridge Audio Melomania Contact: Specs
Driver: 7mm graphene dynamic
Frequency vary: 20-20,000Hz
Wi-fi: Bluetooth 5.0, AAC, aptX, SBC
Options: Contact buttons, Transparency Mode
Voice management: Siri, Google Assistant
Battery life: As much as 9 hours (low energy mode)
Charging case: Further 41 hours (low energy mode)
Ear suggestions: three sizes of suggestions and fins
Design: IPX4 sweat and splash resistant
Weight: 5.9g per earbud
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