We have already reviewed SOL Republic’s over-ear Tracks headphones and were quite taken with them. Now we’re putting their in-ear Amps earbuds to the test. SOL, or Soundtrack of Life, Republic have an HD version of both their Tracks and Amps headphones, we are reviewing the regular Amps.
The Amps are in-ear headphones that feature Sol Republic’s ‘i4 Sound Engine’ and an in-line button and microphone. They have a curved design with a flat back that matches the natural shape of the ear. For an all-black pair of ear-buds, the design is quite flashy. The flat circular back is glossy with a swift looking SOL logo; the inline remote also has the same glossy finish. The Amps also come in a red model, which combines red and black features.
The remote has three buttons: volume up, volume down, and a universal button. The volume buttons may not work on all Android phones or Blackberrys, but they do work well with any iOS device. Depending on the phone, the universal button will pause and play music, skip tracks, take calls, end calls, and access voice commands. On the opposite side of the controls is the microphone, which works with most any Android, Blackberry, or iOS device. The headphone cable has a right-angle connector and is of a pretty standard thickness with a rubberized finish. The cable is actually pretty good with preventing tangles.
The Amps come with four silicone ear tip options for the buds. The headphones fit quite comfortably and don’t easily fall out. The curved design allows it to sit pretty nicely in our ears. While the buds are slightly larger than your standard ear bud, they’re quite light, which also helps them stick inside the ear.
Considering they play the Soundtrack of [our] Lives, how do they sound? They honestly sound pretty darned good. I am used to headphones compensating for mediocre audio with an influx of bass, this is very much not the case. At first I thought the bass was a bit light, but then I realized it’s pretty well balanced and shines through when it needs to. Voices are clear and the mids are detailed and crisp. This is a good pair of headphones for hearing finer details in your music that you may not have heard before. The high notes are rich and balanced. There was not a genre of music that we did not enjoy soundtracking our lives with.
The inline remote is one of the best we have used. There is no question whether or not you’re pressing the button you want; the universal button is raised with a volume button above and below it. You can clearly feel the button click so even double pressing and triple pressing is a piece of cake. Siri understood everything I had to say, as did all of my callers. Phone calls worked perfectly with the built in microphone.
The SOL Republic Amps are currently on sale for $59.99 (with free shipping from Amazon). SOL makes a similarly designed HD version of the Amps which are supposed to feature even better audio quality, as well as an actual “tangle-free cord” and a carrying case, for $99.99. Considering the regular Amps sound pretty darned good, we’re not sure the HD version is worth the extra $40, though we haven’t tried them. The SOL Republic Amps come with a one-year warranty and are available in black or red. For a good set of buds that sound good and come with an inline mic and remote, the Amps will make a great gift for the holiday season without breaking the bank.
The Good: Sound great, Stay in-ear, Look Nice, Remote Features Volume and Mic, Remote Works Well, Look Nice, Cord Does Not Easily Tangle