Choosing to wear earbuds over headphones always seems to be about convenience and not about results: nobody can argue that most earbuds fit poorly and contain less than stellar technology in them. So that’s the starting point for the difference that comes from wearing the HelloEar Arc. Because it addresses both of these issues.
The first issue, of fit, is handled on a individual basis. The Arc’s earpieces are custom made to fit into your ear not by chance but by design. You follow a set procedure that results in a picture being taken of your ear alongside that of a quarter. This picture is then digitized by HelloEar, who uses an algorithm to configure the earbuds to fit your particular ear canals. That takes a short time (on average 3-4 weeks). The resulting earbuds then seat in the ear through an ergonomic design which grips and maintains their position firmly. As in not falling out, no matter the strain applied as one’s head moves to the music or accelerates through exercise or being on the move. Being made of a soft silica material with an “airbag” like construction, the earbuds not only enable longer listening sessions, but also creates a better seal between the outside world (i.e., ambient noise) and the listening experience.
But all of this wouldn’t matter if the audio drivers inside the Arc were of low quality. Fortunately that’s far from the case, because HelloEar teamed up with Denmark Sonion, known for its expertise in miniature acoustics. So what you’re sticking in your ear (so to speak) are balanced armature drivers with a response rate similar to that of a pair of headphones. This makes for Hi-Fi sound quality, where the bass lies low and blends like dark coffee with sweet mid-tones that benefit from a sound field whose strong clarity is immediately apparent.
All of this is good, but HelloEar wanted more. So they designed the Arc with a modular approach in that these wired earbuds don’t have to stay that way. The earbuds can be modified by the user — meaning their back ends can be removed and a Bluetooth module connected in their stead. This eliminates the wired cable, which can now be put away so that the Arc now function as Bluetooth wireless earbuds. And as you might imagine, the Bluetooth module replacement has a small controller for starting/stoping the music and controlling volume and tracks, as well as having a microphone for making/taking calls.
The wired Arc earbuds features an On/Off button on the cabling and retail for $149.00 (in a choice of three colors – white/black/black+white). This includes having them custom fitted for the user. Adding the Bluetooth module enacts an additional charge (or they can be bought with the Bluetooth already in place or using an Apple Lightning wired connector). Regardless, you’re getting a custom fitted pair of earbuds with high quality sound ready to be listened to. And isn’t’ that the reason for listening in the first place?