Otium PowerPods Review

There are literally countless true wireless earbuds on the market. But somehow, we, at HeadphoneDungeon, have managed to review every god-damn one. The Otium PowerPods. Selling for $33.99 on Amazon, are the PowerPods a major bang for your buck? Or are you going to wish you spent the cash on a bottle of okay tequila? Let’s take a look at how these earbuds perform in this Otium PowerPods Review.

Otium PowerPods Review

IN the BOX

FIT

The PowerPods’ major problem lies in this department. If the fit isn’t just right, you’ll lose a lot of sound quality. I found that I had to really shove the earbuds deep in my ears to get the bass frequencies just right. In fact, I spent most of this review pressing the earbuds against my ears. Now, you may not have the same problem, depending on the shape of your ear canals. But if you are hearing a slightly tinny sound, then try to push the buds in further for a snugger seal.

DESIGN

Controls and Functionality

The PowerPods offer all the standard functionality using the touch controls on the earpieces. The earbuds allow you to play/pause, skip tracks, adjust volume, answer/end calls, reject calls and activate Siri. I found the touch controls responsive and easy to use. So, no complaints in this category.

Battery and Charging

You’ll get about 4 hours of playtime in a single use. The case holds more charge, but neither the website nor the user manual specifies how many extra charges you’ll get from the charging case. (They do mention that the PowerPods have 90 hours of standby time). That being said, the battery indicator is kind of neat.

The charging case employs a micro-USB connection for charging. You’ll also find a regular USB connection on the other side of the case. Again, no mention of what the purpose of this other USB input is. Perhaps it’s another way to charge. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a cable with 2 USB-A terminations to test this theory out. So, I’ll have to leave it up to you guys to play with.

Call Clarity

The caller sounded very distant. That being said, we had an argument the night before. Still, the caller could hardly comprehend what I was saying. That being said, the caller’s English is very poor.

Water Resistance

The PowePods perform well in this category, offering an IPX7 rating. This means that these earbuds can withstand buckets of sweat and perhaps even a splash under the faucet. But don’t quote me.

SOUND

Low Frequencies

I got sick of pushing the PowerPods in my ear canals. So, leaving the PowerPods at their natural fit, the bass feels distant and underwhelming. No oomph listening to pop, now warmth listening to rock. I don’t necessarily require a heavy bass. But when I feel that I’m not getting the true performance of the drivers, there’s little else I can say about the low-end here.

Middle Frequencies

The balance is relatively inoffensive in this range. Vocals don’t sit too far forward and the lower-midrange gives tracks a little depth.  But again, I feel like I’m hearing the music from miles away. The result is a tinny and incomplete sound. Sure, it’s clean enough. That is I didn’t hear any muddiness, and the level of separation was fine. But a tiny Bluetooth speaker sitting 15 feet away could probably perform just as well.

High Frequencies

A little snap and crispness here. Percussion sounds clean. So, the highs don’t feel blunted at all. Still, the high frequencies often sound like they’re coming out of a tin can.

Soundstage

Eh. You get the idea.

PROS and CONS

Pros: Responsive touch controls; battery indicator is a nice touch.
Cons: Poor sound quality; poor call clarity; bad fit.

SUMMARY

If I could just get the fit right, perhaps the sound quality would have greatly improved. So, if you’re a satisfied owner of the PowerPods, you can just blame my ear canals. And listen, you can’t expect too much from a pair of true wireless earbuds for under 50 bucks. Or can you? In terms of sound quality and fit, I’ve tested far better options. And if you don’t mind spending another $20 or so, you can get an exponentially better product. Strauss & Wagner’s TW401 is a prime example. Call clarity is also a little lacking on the PowerPods. So, I can’t in good conscience recommend the Otium PowerPods to my disloyal readers. There are just too many better deals out there.

 

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1 thought on “Otium PowerPods Review

  1. Dude,
    I am an absolute audiophile, and having spent the last 50 years immersed in music, I have to say you are cutting the PowerPods short. I’ve got a pair and I absolutely love them. I have no trouble hearing during calls, and no one has ever remarked poorly on how I sound.
    The battery life between charging is a little on the short side, but honestly given the size they can’t have much of a battery.
    Music wise they really impressed me. They sound amazing throughout the entire volume range and never distort. They are on a scale equal to the wired Etymotic’s I used to buy for work. I’ve also got a pair of Bose wireless earbuds, and these easily sound 3 times as good. As far as the fit, I can use them while working in the shop, on the boat, and even on my ATV at 70 mph, and I’ve never had one fall or blow out. For the price i think they are awesome.

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