Jays In-Ear Headphones

Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been road testing some of the range of Jays in-ear headphones.

Going back a couple of steps, I need declare that I don’t like earbuds. I find them fiddly to use and horribly uncomfortable, often with poor sound quality. In the studio I have a pair of studio quality headphones that I can wear for hours and hours, without noticing that they’re on. They’re obviously very comfortable, the sound quality is very flat – which I need in the studio – but they’re a little on the big side.

So, let’s look at the Jays products. There’s a range of four model types – A-Jays, T-Jays, D-Jays, and Q-Jays, and within the A-Jays and T-Jays there’s also a few different models, that come with slightly different finishes, accessories, and specifications. Pricing starts at sub $50, and for your money, you get quite good value.

t-Jays 1

t-Jays 1

The first thing that struck me was the quality. Packaging is different from anything on the market, and appears to be of a very high quality. That quality in the packaging would count for nothing if it didn’t carry through into the actual products, but fortunately it does. These feel to be very well made, with quality components all the way through, and that applies to the whole range.

The second thing that struck me was that they’re comfortable. Very bloody comfortable: please see my disclaimer above. I can wear these for hours (I have) and they’ve been very comfy, and they have not felt as if they were going to fall out every time I moved my head. And as good as the silicone buds were, I just loved the foam earpieces that came with the higher end units.

But ok, comfort, build and packaging quality aside, these are audio devices, and they also need to be able to reproduce the sounds that you’re wanting to listen to, and do so in a pleasant but clear way. How do they sound?

Excellent. In listening to, for instance, some of the digital remixes of The Beatles, I was hearing some very familiar music in a manner that I’d never heard it before: I was listening to what was, effectively, all new music, such was the experience that these provided me with. Yet this was music with which I am intimately familiar. Music that I’d been listening to since my teenage years. Music that I know so very well. Or so I thought.

a-Jays 3

a-Jays 3

Crystal clear, with great separation and wonderful imaging of the instruments.

I’ve already mentioned the packaging, but let me elaborate on this. Most headphones, of all varieties, come in some form of blister packaging, and the pack includes the bare minimum that you need. And all too often the plastic is that really horrid stuff that’s sealed along all edges and you simply cannot open without a jackhammer.

Not so here: The packaging is solid and attractive, but it’s neat, black, and easy to open. You won’t bleed to death after cutting yourself on the plastic here. Inside the package you will find the headphones and a good instruction manual, and depending upon the specific purchase you’ve made, you might also find a double adapter (allowing you to share your music with a friend), an adapter for use in aircraft, an extension cable (or two), and several alternate sets of sleeves for the earpieces.

And a carry case. Sadly, if you want to carry the headphones, the adapters, and the extension cables, then not all of this will fit into the carry case. If you’re wearing the earphones, fine, but if not …

My one other criticism is that as well equipped as these packages are, there is no 6.5mm adapter. Not a deal breaker, and probably not too important for many people, but given the comprehensiveness of what’s already included, this omission surprised me.

All in all, these are very impressive headphones, with great specifications and quality, and sound to match. Highly recommended.