House of Marley Champion Review Eco-Friendly True Wireless Earbuds

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Now that people have more spare time, creature comforts are in higher demand, especially if they are really convenient and make your life easier! A pair of true wireless earbuds is a good example of convenience. No "darn wires" to worry about and best of all, the earbuds always look their best without dirt or pocket lint, thanks to the companion charging case.
The latest true wireless on the market are the Champion earbuds by House of Marley, which have a distinctive bamboo accent physical buttons similar to the touch controls on the Liberate Air true wireless. Like most physical buttons on earbuds, the button actuation on the Champion earbuds requires some force, which in turn pushes the earbuds into the ear canals.
The combined weight of the Champion earbuds and charging case is 50 grams. The earbuds alone weigh 5 grams each, while the charging case weighs 40 grams. The Champion charging case has a heart-shaped shell design with a dusty-looking finish due to the fact that the charging case and earbuds are made of wood composite, not plastic. The heart shaped bamboo stamp on top of the charging case is made of natural bamboo.
The charging case measures 6cm long, 5.5cm wide and 2.5cm high and, it opens upright via a plastic hinged lid. The docking area is also made of plastic and magnetic to keep the earbuds in place. The underside of the lid has a cutout of the earbuds, which helps secure the earbuds inside their pods during charging. The lid hinge has a nice resistance to it, allowing you to keep the charging case lid ajar.
At 50% volume, each Champion earbud can deliver 8 hours runtime per earbud, while the charging case can store 20 hours worth of power to recharge the earbuds twice over. The Champion earbuds have a charging time of 2 hours with quick charge support; hence you can get 4 hours of listening time with just a half hour re-charge. The internal 500maAh battery inside the charging case takes 1 hour to recharge.
Like most true wireless, the Champion earbuds charging case has battery leds, although these function differently to most. The charging case leds only display battery status when the earbuds are removed from the charging case; hence the charging case battery leds do not feedback status while the earbuds are in the case.
The button functions include power on/off, play/pause, skip tracks and calls (answer/end/reject). The Champion earbuds have no volume support. If you're looking for earbuds with volume control and don't mind cables, check out the Smile Jamaica Wireless 2
The House of Marley Champion earbuds support multipoint connection; hence you can connect the earbuds to two devices at the same time. You can also pair the Champion earbuds individually to separate devices and accept calls since each earbud is equipped with a microphone. The omnidirectional mics aren't noise canceling but do a good job of picking the voice without distortion and loud volume.
When pairing the Champion earbuds, you have to remove the earbuds from the charging case in order to trigger automatic bluetooth pairing. The status leds on the Champion earbuds blink red every 10 seconds during audio playback. The Bluetooth 5.0 chip does not support advanced codecs; hence not aptX or AAC support.
Once both earbuds are paired, you can seamlessly alternate between using two or one earbud in the charging case without audio pausing or bluetooth disconnecting, which can happen with some true wireless. That said, there is a 2 second re-connection delay when taking the earbuds from the charging case, which is not a lot since some true wireless have a re-connection delay up to 7 seconds. This said, some true wireless re-connect instantaneously without delay.
Audio-wise, there is good volume output (98dB), as well as vocals and instruments sound punchy and clear, while the bass is present, although a bit more subdued than expected compared to the midrange and treble. This could be due to the small driver size (6mm) or thin silicone tips, which are made of recycled silicone material. Using foam ear tips does help to improve the bass but foam tips do bulk up the earbuds, preventing you from fitting them back in the charging case.
Fit is comfortable and secure on the ears, thanks to the rubberized trim running across the body of the earbud. You can do exercise with them, although the Champion earbuds are only IPX4 rated. The nozzles have aluminium mesh tips and they are angled so, they insert naturally inside the ear canal. 
Just like all House of Marley products, the Champion earbuds come inside eco-friendly packaging without any plastic wrapping or plastic coated wire ties. There is a short charging cable made of stiff fabric material, as well as an extra pair of ear tips included but no different sizes.You can buy the House of Marley Champion earbuds on amazon. Check out the review of the Redemption ANC earbuds,  Exodus ANC headphones and Rebel earbuds

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