Skip to main content



Featured Post

Honor 20 Pro Review

Honor's most ambitious phone yet, the 20 Pro packs quad cameras onto the rear and a 32Mp selfie camera in a tiny punch-hole in the screen. We put this top-of-the-range contender through its paces.
Should I Buy The Honor 20 Pro?
The Honor 20 Pro goes all out on cameras, and it's a great choice if you love taking selfies in particular. We don't yet know the UK price (it's 599 €), but it should undercut the Huawei P30 and OnePlus 7 Pro, making it decent value.





Urbanista Stockholm Review

The Urbanista Stockholm wireless earbuds look like AirPods while costing an awful lot less, but can the quality compare?

Should I Buy The Urbanista Stockholm?
The Urbanista Stockholm earbuds are really guilty of what Apple's worst critics accuse it of: style over substance. They look great, but an uncomfortable fit (at least in my ears) and so-so sound hold them back. If you get lucky on the fit and you're more worried about headphones that look the part than sound it, then check these out, but otherwise it's worth spending a little more.

Price When Reviewed
  • $99
The AirPods are arguably the last product Apple released that had a really transformative effect on the tech industry, and since then countless companies have come out with their riff on the basic concept, with wireless (or 'true wireless') earbuds now available from almost every audio company out there.

The Stockholm earbuds are the first attempt on the format from Swedish company Urbanista, and the focus here is on nailing the look of Apple's AirPods while keep the price much more accessible. But are the compromises in audio quality too severe to recommend it?

Price And Availability
The Urbanista Stockholm earbuds are available now, and will set you back £89 in the UK or $99 in the US. Depending on your headphone habits that might sound like a lot, but for wireless earbuds it's a competitive price.

AirPods themselves cost £159/$159, and most of the other true wireless headphones we've reviewed cost a similar amount, with some even costing double that. There's not much other competition below £100/$100 yet, and most other cheap headphones are either wired or neckbuds, which is going to be the main draw of the Urbanista Stockholm for most people.
Swedish Style
The first thing you'll notice about the Urbanista Stockholm earbuds is that they look great. Available in black, white, pink, or green, they exude a muted, minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic that leaves them looking a) great, and b) much more expensive than they really are.

They use the same music note design as the AirPod, with a small round section that goes into your ear and a thin vertical part that dangles vertically below. There's a single small LED on the stem that's used to indicate power and pairing, and a very subtle Urbanista logo that also serves as the main input: this marks out the touch-sensitive part of each earbud, which you use for all the controls.

Whichever colour you pick the slim charging case will match. The earbuds clip into the case magnetically as they charge, and the whole thing is as sleek and minimalist as the headphones themselves - there's an engraved logo, a Micro-USB charging point, and a single LED to indicate charging, and otherwise the whole design is pretty much un-interrupted.

Essentially, these look great. Maybe not quite AirPods-premium, but the design is similar, the colours are a nice touch - especially the green of our review unit - and so if style is one of your main concerns in a pair of headphones, and AirPods are out of your budget, then these have a lot going for them.

Fiddly Fit
You might noticed I haven't mentioned the tips of the earbuds yet, and that's not by accident. The Urbanista Stockholm buds follow in Apple's footsteps in fit too, as there are no squidgy silicon tips, you just put the plastic earbuds straight into your ears.

That means they're very much one-size-fits-all, but in my case it was one-size-doesn't-fit. I found the Stockholm earbuds incredibly uncomfortable, essentially facing a constant choice between letting them sit comfortably in a spot where part of my ear blocked the speaker and muffled the sound, or jamming them in to get the full audio but leaving myself with aching ears after just a few minutes.

Now this is not to say that you'll find the Stockholm's uncomfortable: every ear is different, and for all I know mine are a particularly weird shape. But without a set of removable ear tips you're stuck hoping that the earbuds will be a comfortable fit, and if they're not then there really isn't much you can do about it. That's a problem with any non-adjustable earbuds of course, but it's always worth being aware of.
So-so Sound
Finally, what are the Stockholm earbuds actually like to listen to? They're basically fine, but they really don't excel. As I said earlier, you'll first have to get them into the right position to get the most out of the sound, but once you do they're decent, but not exciting.

Bass response is fairly thin, so these won't hold up well for hip hop or electronic stuff, but there's enough treble and mid response to do a better job with vocal-led pop and rock stuff. It's the sort of sound profile we've come to expect from cheaper earbuds, but at this price it's a shame that the Stockholms can't deliver a little more oomph.

It doesn't help that they share another design feature of the AirPods: terrible noise reduction. There's no active noise cancellation - though we wouldn't expect it either - but the design results in a lot of noise leakage, and you really will hear everything around you while these are in. That's annoying, but it's also likely to drive you to crank up the volume and risk hearing damage.

Controls are handled by touch, which is convenient, but it takes a bit of remembering what does what. Tapping, double-tapping, and long-pressing does different things depending on the earbud, so at first you'll spend a lot of time raising the volume when you want to lower it, or skipping ahead when you just wanted to pause.

Battery life is more impressive though: the earbuds last around three and a half hours per charge, and you can get a total of 14 hours out of the case, just as Urbanista claims. The only real downside is Micro-USB charging rather than USB-C or wireless, but that's a minor quibble really.

The Urbanista Stockholm earbuds are really guilty of what Apple's worst critics accuse it of: style over substance. They look great, but an uncomfortable fit (at least in my ears) and so-so sound hold them back. If you get lucky on the fit and you're more worried about headphones that look the part than sound it, then check these out, but otherwise it's worth spending a little more.

  • Driver: 10mm
  • Frequency range: 2.4GHz-2.48GHz
  • Range (unobstructed): 10m
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Charging (from 0%): 1h30 to 100%
  • Battery life: 14 hours, 3.5 hours per charge
  • Included in box:
  • Charging case
  • Micro-USB charging cable

View my Flipboard Magazine.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

Game Of Thrones Season 8 - End Game With Sinhala Subtitles

Huawei Mate 30 Pro Release Date, Price & Specification Rumours

Huawei's already working on its next flagship phone, the Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro, but will its recent spat with Google affect that upcoming smartphone's software? Here's what we know about the Mate 30, including when it will launch, how much it will cost, and what specifications and features you can expect.
Huawei had been on a roll with consumers in the Europe and UK flocking to buy its handsets, but now Google may have thrown a huge spanner in the works.

Screenlimit Review

We review the Screenlimit app which lets you control how much screen time your kids get each day on Android, iOS, Amazon and Windows devices.
Should I Buy ScreenLimit?
Screenlimit does its job well: it lets kids use various devices through the day and ensures they have only as much screen time as the parent allows. There’s room for improvement, particularly for warning kids that their time is almost up and in the ease of setting up schedules, but there are plenty of updates in the works. Overall, Screenlimit is an affordable service that does what it says.

Asus ZenFone 6 Review

Has Asus cracked the bezel-less design with the ZenFone 6? We think so - read our review and find out why.
Should I Buy The Asus ZenFone 6?
The ZenFone 6 is a phenomenal smartphone, offering an innovative Flip Camera system that not only provides high-end front- and rear-facing cameras, but allows for a full-screen display free of hole-punch cameras or notches. Combine that with high-end internals and all-day battery life, and you've got a great, all-round smartphone. 

What The Huawei-Google Spat Means For You

Huawei's addition to the US trade blocklist has been temporarily lifted, allowing Google, Intel, Qualcomm and others to do business with the phone maker once again. We explain how the news affects existing customers.
Huawei's future outside China is looking a little shaky right now following Google's decision to comply with President Trump's ruling over the company, which saw it added to the US trade blocklist. Google vowed to no longer support Huawei (or sub-brand Honor) phones and tablets, meaning future devices would not be able to run Google apps and services.

Like Fan Page