The Atomic Floyd MiniDarts + Remote is the latest offering of in-ear headphones from British headphone company Atomic Floyd. These headphones aren’t for the faint of heart. They feature rich sound, a slick edgy design and an overall sumptuous audio experience. We reviewed the Atomic Floyd MiniDarts + Mic last year, and with this latest release the MiniDarts now flank a remote on the headphone’s kevlar cable instead of a mic with jog. This redesign makes it so much easier for answering and making calls with any of your iOS devices as well as the BlackBerry, Windows Phones and Android devices. Beside for the iPhone, the latter devices don’t take advantage of the MiniDarts + Remote’s full functionality, but they all work with the MiniDarts headphones for making calls.
Atomic Floyd knows how to make you excited about their headphones and that’s with its packaging that includes a colorful infographic that specifies exactly what you are getting with the MiniDarts + Remote. The MiniDarts + Remote might have a new hip design in regards to the remote, but overall the design of the headphones has stayed the same as the MiniDarts + Mic. Those bullet shaped earbuds with fine metal grooves, reinforced custom earplugs and red kevlar cable of the MiniDarts + Mic have been carried through to the MiniDarts + Remote.
Gone is the jog with mic that was smack in the middle of the MiniDarts + Mic which controlled incoming calls and music. The improved design of this new remote is welcome. Not only is it nicely placed on the MiniDarts + Remote, but it also feels well made and likely won’t break off or malfunction. The remote features the typical functions like answer/end calls, skipping songs and volume control. We did at times fumble for the volume control buttons on the remote since they are a bit small, but once we remembered its placement on the remote, all was fine.
While in use, the remote worked smoothly between calls without fail. The caller on the other side heard me very clearly as well. Once the call ended, the music resumed. Controlling incoming calls and accessing my music is a breeze.
The MiniDarts + Remote, just the like the MiniDarts + Mic are still super comfortable and won’t fall out of your ears easily. Sound isolation is superb when making calls or listening to music as well. You are definitely in the zone when you have the MiniDarts + Remote plugged into your canals.
So what about sound you ask? Well if you are looking for a balanced listening experience, than the MiniDarts can provide just that. There were no extreme highs, lows or mids. Everything outputted was sublime at different bit rates. Similar to the MiniDarts + Mic, these headphones are not for bass-heads. While at times I did think there was not enough umph to the music, the experience you get is certainly a balanced one, and depending on the type of tunes you listen too, the MiniDarts + Remote will flourish. Rock and classical seemed to be a MiniDart favorite while your typical bass and synth heavy tunes from Rihanna and Lady Gaga didn’t fair as well. But Journey sounded great!
The MiniDarts + Remote are certainly a welcome addition to anyone’s in-ear headphone artillery. These headphones are attractive, well made and super comfortable in your ears. The ease of use with new remote feature just makes you want to crave Atomic Floyd’s MiniDarts European allure even more. Currently, the headphones are available exclusively at Apple Stores in the UK, where they retail for £179.95 No word yet if and when they will be popping up stateside.
The Good: Comfortable; great design; durable remote; balanced listening experience.
The Bad: Switching ear tips can be more difficult than necessary; pocket pouch still is not that user friendly; sound output is sometimes TOO balanced; Pricey.