With the influx of Bluetooth earphones, the market is saturated with cheaper, better and comfortable headphones. This paired with the ease of access to the quality brands and options to compare and check across multiple media has brought with itself the niche problem of choosing the best one among the better alternatives.
Previously we had reviewed two active noise cancellation headphones- TaoTronics and MPOW H12 Hybrid. MPOW H17 is one of the new addition to an ongoing Holo Series. Does it stand against its competitors? Is it a worthy successor? Does MPOW H17 justify its cost? Lets checkout.
The product being reviewed in this article is
The MPOW H17 builds itself as a strong contender in the Over-the-head, wireless Noice canceling headphones. It is a worthy successor in the long list of MPOW H-series headphones and understandably, lives up to the expectation.
This is not a typical review of what each specification of MPOW H17 means in numbers; This is my hands-on experience after having used these puppies for a considerable amount of time.
What’s in the box
The headphone comes with a carry pouch, 3.5mm cable to use the headphone without Bluetooth, a charging cable, a warranty card, a quick start guide, and some promotional materials everything packed inside a red box.
Design quality out of the box
The headphones which I’m Reviewing is Matte Black. MPOW promises in their product advertisement, following key features:
- Genuine Protein Foam Ear Pads
- Rapid Charge: 10 min =2 hr
- Up to 45H Playtime
- Unrivaled Bass Effect & Hi-Fi Sounds
- CVC 6.0 Noise Cancelling
However, most of the above points remain to be seen.
The H17 comes with below inputs on the headphone:
- On Left ear pad
- A button to toggle the ANC (Active Noise Cancellation) on and off.
- The ANC LED indicator remains on even when the headset itself is powered off and remains so for a considerable amount of time too and potentially results in power wastage.
- A 3.5mm audio jack
- This is a simple 3mm connector that when connected, turns the headphone into a wired earpiece.
- A button to toggle the ANC (Active Noise Cancellation) on and off.
- On Right ear pad
- The control buttons to pause, play, skip buttons.
- Play/Pause Button
- Long press for 3 seconds: Turns the headphones on/off
- Long press for 2 seconds: Triggers Voice Assistant (OK Google)
- Short press for a second: Plays/Pauses the current song.
- Double press – Calls the last called number
- A Micro USB port to charge the headphones
- An LED light to indicate the status
- A CVC 6.0 Microphone for call handling
Pairing is straight forward. Long pressing the pause/play button for around 5 seconds will trigger the pairing mode. Open the Bluetooth settings on your phone or PC and look for a device named MPOW H17 and connect to it.
After you are paired, you should hear a tone with the message ‘Your Device is Connected ‘. If you need help with pairing, check out my recent guide on how to pair your headphones with any device. Though the model is different, the steps are almost the same.
Comfort and Feel of the product
The comfort, oh boy the comfort. It is the single most pleasing factor, yet also the main peeve too.
The earpads are made of genuine protein and are ultra-soft. The Headphone itself weighs around 200G / 7oz and is very light to carry. The Pads are big enough to cover even the ears of those on a wider scale.
But the pads are also relatively flat and the friction between the foam and ones’ ear generate some heat.
The over-the-head band is adjustable for quite a length and I had no qualms setting it up for my huge head until I was satisfied.
The pairing is quick, considerable Bluetooth coverage and multiple functions with minimal controls let you adapt to it quite fast. I got adjusted to it on the go and at times I’d even forget that I had the headphones on me while not listening to anything.
The only downside is that the headphones fold inward in an awkward position, with one earcup folding fully and the other one folding on the previous one. This will damage the pad in the long run.
The connection, as mentioned, is stable up to a fair range. I found some disconnects and lags when I tried going further away, but this is due to Bluetooth’s inherent weakness. The inbuilt Microphone can only be used in Bluetooth mode and not when connected via wire.
The audio quality very much lives up to the price. It isn’t an auditory treat but certainly carries itself as a daily driver. MPOW claims that the 40mm neodymium driver punches out deep, powerful, and natural bass that’s well balanced with mid-range and high frequencies. This does check out in my experience and let me tell you, listening to Chester Bennington on 320KbPS streaming service is a sensual experience.
The noise cancellation is quite ingenious. They only attenuate lower frequency noises like ones’ surrounding ambiance by generating counter frequency to cancel the incoming waves. While the closed-back over-ear design isolates the mids and highs.
This gives satisfying noise cancellation. One can completely ignore the outside traffic or sounds in general to an acceptable level.
This does come with two peculiar challenges. The low-frequency noise cancellation at times also cancels out the lower ranges of the song that one is listening to, giving off an altered sound to the music. And since there is no high-frequency attenuation, any sound, if loud enough, will disturb you.
The company claims 45-hour battery life and the actual usage does put the battery life somewhere there. I was able to use several hours a day for a whole week with a single charge before the battery ran out of juice.
As previously mentioned, the ANC button does not auto turn-off and will remain on even when the headphones aren’t In use. This will affect the shelf life of the battery.
As mentioned, there is a built-in CVC 6.0 microphone that can be used in Bluetooth mode. The Mic piece is relatively close to the mouth and there isn’t any sort of distortion or noise as heard from the other end and it picks up even the whispers easily.
Key points to take away
- Great in design, comfort, portability, microphone, and ease of use
- Good Audio Quality, Noise Isolation, Noise Cancellation, and Bluetooth connectivity
- Better than the headsets priced similarly.
- Good hinges, adjustable headband
- ANC can be turned on without turning on the headset
- Pairing is easy and supports multiple devices at once
- Optional 3.5mm jack to use it as a wired headset too
Mpow H17, being one of the lightest ANC headphones offers decent noise-canceling quality and fantastic audio quality. If I were to compare the audio quality with H12, H17 is much much better. Also, H17 is aesthetic, easy to carry and comfortable to wear. The only thing I dislike about this headphone is the noise cancellation. It is not as great as H12 but I think the other features outweigh it.
Finally, it is time for the recommendation. Let me put it this way,
If you are looking for battery life, good audio quality, best active noise cancellation but can compromise on comfort, go with Taotronics BH060
If you are looking for amazing audio quality, beautiful look, good noise cancellation but can compromise on battery life, go with Mpow H12
If you are looking for fantastic audio quality, amazing battery, nice look but can compromise on noise cancellation, go with Mpow H17 (the one reviewed in this article)
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Last update on 2020-10-26 / Links / Images from Amazon PAAPI