With the holidays right around the corner and the Headphone Dungeon overflowing with headphones of all sorts, I’ve been working overtime to crank out some juicy reviews. But today I’m taking a look at an interesting earphone, the iTeknic IK-BH004. Featuring a true wireless design and some decent specs, this $53 earphone might appear to be just another AirPods clone. However, the IK-BH004 packs some real punches.
iTeknic IK-BH004 True Wireless Review
The iTeknic IK-BH004 arrives in a fairly plain retail box. Inside, I find the earphones, a charging case, a micro-USB charging cable, and three pairs of eartips.
Appearance-wise, this earphone appears to be a matte-black Apple clone, but only at first glance. Once placed in the ear, it feels only slightly more comfortable than the original AirPods. For longer listening sessions, though, the odd shape of this earphone can lead to some fatigue or discomfort.
The BH004 runs on Bluetooth 5.0, and offers support for AAC and SBC codecs. And while that might seem fairly minimalist (they purportedly don’t even support basic A2DP), the sound quality still seems fair.
Battery life comes across as solid; iTeknic claims this earphone offers up to 8 hours of playtime on the earpieces. However, this would require sticking to 75% volume, so folks who like to listen loud should plan on getting less playtime. An additional 22 hours can be used on the charging case, enough for about 3 recharge cycles.
The earpieces themselves carry an IPX5 sweat- and water-resistance rating, so you could use these for exercise. Isolation also feels pretty competent – the IK-BH004 blocks out a good deal of dungeon chatter as well as street noise.
Call quality also offers another strong point for the IK-BH004. Thanks to the stalk on the earpieces, the mic is positioned closer to the mouth, meaning you won’t have to project your voice as much (like you would with other true wireless ‘phones).
Touch controls on the earpieces also allow for adjusting volume and playback, accepting or rejecting phone calls, and using the voice assistants.
I actually expected a worse low end, as a lot of true wireless earphones seem to either skimp on bass or heap it on. But in contrast to these two approaches, the iTeknic IK-BH004 takes a more subdued approach. There’s detail here, but not much. However, that detail isn’t too compressed or wildly distorted, leading to a fairly listenable sound. Bass appears where it should, but without the slam or lack of control you would normally associate with cheaper earphones.
In the mids, the IK-BH004 holds up fairly well. Delivering strong vocals, this earphone feels a bit more intimate than I was expecting. Presentation is good, without the sound feeling too forward or recessed. And there’s minimal compression and distortion here. As such, the mids feel surprisingly clean and neutral, even for a true wireless earphone. While not quite IEM-level mids, they’re still good – especially when you consider the price.
Slightly subdued, the highs on this earphone feel smooth and velvety. Female vocals come across as tempered, making the IK-B004 a solid option for pop and rock tracks. But instrumentation doesn’t suffer either, and though the detail won’t exactly sparkle, there still an ample amount of it. Listening to bluegrass and classical tracks, stringed instruments feel just a little emphasized.
Due to the in-ear and true wireless design, the sense of soundstage suffers a little bit. That being said, there’s a sense of depth here that does help separate different instruments. Overall, more complicated tracks may feel a bit narrow with overlapping sources. However, on simpler tracks, the soundstage actually holds up well.
With its low price and decent sound quality, the iTeknic IK-BH004 hits a sweet spot for folks who want detailed audio on a budget. However, comfort could be better, and I would still recommend my new favorite go-to for budget true wireless, the Strauss and Wagner SW-TW401. With only a slightly more detailed sound, this earphone still offers a more comfortable fit that doesn’t hurt my ears like the IK-BH004.
Headphone Dungeon Score
A brace of skulls! Due to the slightly uncomfortable and fatiguing fit, I had to ding this earphone one skull. That being said, the sound quality still feels decent – especially for folks who want to hear plenty of detail. While not overly heavy on bass or treble, the sound of the IK-B004 remains fun and engaging enough for daily listening. While nowhere near bad, this $53 earphone still feels like it might miss the mark in the comfort department, and I would still recommend the SW-TW401 for most folks shopping at this price.
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