MEElectronics A151 (Black) review: MEElectronics A151 (Black)

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4 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

5 stars 4 user reviews

The Good The MEElectronics A151 earphones offer comfortable fit and very detailed sound for an affordable price. They also come with a carrying case.

The Bad No integrated microphone for making cell phone calls; bass-lovers will probably find the bass a little too thin for their tastes.

The Bottom Line At around $50 online, the MEElectronics A151s are among the most affordable balanced-armature earphones out there and deliver very good sound for the money.

8.0 Overall
  • Design 7.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Performance 8.0
  • Value 9.0

We've reviewed several MEElectronics headphones and generally have been impressed with their value proposition. They tend to deliver good bang for the buck and the company's A151 balanced-armature in-ear headphone is one of the better sounding earphones in its price range of around $50 online.

The first thing you'll notice about it is that it has 47-inch-long braided cable that looks like the wires used on expensive custom in-ear models from Ultimate Ears and JH Audio. No, you don't get the build quality of higher-end models, but it's decent enough for a $50 headphone and I found them comfortable to wear and it was easy to get a tight seal.

The A151 comes with five sets of eartips (small/medium/large silicon; double flange; large triple flange) and a clamshell carrying case, which is nice, but I could have done without the big MEElectronics logo (it screams "Made in China"). One other small gripe: while the cord is very flexible it does have a tendency to get twisted up easily.

I was impressed with the A151s' sound -- they offer very detailed, transparent sound and can dig pretty deep on the low end, though I felt the bass could have been a little punchier. I also didn't think they were quite as open or dynamic as more expensive earphones from Shure and Audeo, but those models cost more than twice the price (and in some cases, three times as much or more).

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The A151's braided cord looks like the wires used on expensive custom in-ear models. Sarah Tew/CNET

CNET contributor and audio guru Steve Guttenberg also really liked the A151s. He featured them in a piece titled, "Two awesome-sounding, yet very affordable in-ear headphones." He thought they were a great value and and highlighted the earphones' bass-to-treble tonal balance and excellent definition. "In the end," he said, "it was the A151s' resolution of fine detail that made it a winner for me."

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The case is nice extra, but the logo's a little big. Sarah Tew/CNET

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