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Gadget Review

Zip Earphones


Manufacturer: Thumbs Up!
RRP: £9.99
Ages: TBC
5 060280 492594
Available now

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Thumbs Up! release Zip Earphones to the UK market. Nobody likes the mental challenge that is untangling headphones, so put a stop to those annoying knots with these Zip Earphones. Whenever you're not listening to your tunes, simply zip them up to avoid a mangled mess of wires in your bag or pocket. The zip function also means you can adjust the length of the wires so that your earphones fit perfectly in your ears...

The one thing that always annoys me about portable earphones is the fact that they get in such a tangle when you leave them lying around. Several years ago I found a set that had a small piece of plastic that could be slid up and down to join the two earphones together. When they broke I was never able to find another similar set.

So, Thumps Up!'s new Zip Earphones sounded like a great idea and to be honest they work much better than I expecting. Reading some of the online customer reviews the biggest issues seemed to be that the buds didn't fit in the ears comfortably enough; that the zip was pointless and that they didn't last very long.

Firstly these are bud earphones. If you've never used them before they do take a bit of getting used to. Thankfully my last pair were buds, so this new pair fitted comfortably. Secondly, the zip is useful (and not heavy as some claim) it's the whole point of the design and it works perfectly. And the final point, that they don't last for long. Well, this I've found seems to be a problem with earphones - they're cheap and cheerful. And, as you sling them around in your bag, car, desk, it's hardly surprising that they don't last long.

In addition, the zip acts as a handy guide for which earphone goes in which ear. I bought a pair of expensive earphones (which incidentally lasted for two months) where it was almost impossible to tell which bud went in which ear. I did eventually find the "L" and "R" but they were so tiny that it took four of us about 15 minutes to find.

The ones we were sent for review were plain old, boring black (which oddly enough would have been the ones I'd have bought), but they come in a range of funky colours.

If you're looking for a new pair of earphones, then I strongly advise you to pick up a pair of these. They are novel, sturdy and very, very useful.

Technical info:

Length - 130 cms
Frequency - 20-20KHz
SPL (sensitivity) - 105dB+/-3


Nick Smithson

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