Ultimate Ears 700 (Dark Silver) review: Ultimate Ears 700 (Dark Silver)

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MSRP: $149.99

Ultimate Ears 700 (Dark Silver)

(Part #: IF-P5PSM0001-02)

See a price from Amazon.com

4 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

3 stars 5 user reviews

The Good Logitech updates the Ultimate Ears 700 noise-isolating headphones with seven new ear tip options and a tougher travel case while preserving the headphones' lightweight design and nuanced sound dynamics.

The Bad Logitech no longer includes the attenuator and splitter cord that came with the first version.

The Bottom Line With a sleek design, a range of ear tips, and supreme sound reproduction, the Ultimate Ears 700 headphones are worthy of an audiophile's ear and earn our recommendation.

8.0 Overall
  • Design 8.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Performance 9.0

Logitech purchased the California-based Ultimate Ears back in 2008 and set to work on repackaging its entire line of headphones, including the UE 700 Noise-Isolation Earphones. The updated model features new packaging adorned with Logitech branding, a more protective hardcover box for storage, and a combination of foam and silicone ear tips. What hasn't changed, however, is the 700's dual armature driver design that puts two speakers in each earbud--one to accent high- and midlevel frequencies, and another that delivers thumping, natural bass. The result is a headphone that can reproduce the sparkling high notes and smooth bass tones of your music with a three-dimensional soundstage that practically commands you to relisten to your music library, note by note. If it's not clear already, the $150 Ultimate Ears 700 headphones deserve a listen if you're an attentive music listener who demands brilliant sound at an affordable price.

Design and features
The Ultimate Ears 700 headphones are smaller than most, purposefully slim for comfort and style at only 11.6 grams per earbud. The wire lacks the heavy remote control that normally adds weight to smartphone-friendly headphones, making them comfortable to wear for long periods of time, to the point where they become unnoticeable through a full day of work. The tiny earbud housing also allows you to easily push them farther into your ear canal, which is important for creating a proper noise-isolating seal.

The reflective silver earbud housing is complemented by a smoky red hook with a small circular ridge that secures the ear tips into place, and Ultimate Ears offers both silicone and foam ear cushions by Comply, a company highly regarded by the audiophile community for its softly padded material and universal fits.

The Ultimate Ears 700 headphones come with five sizes of the silicone cushions and only two variations of the foam version for comparison. Choosing between silicone or foam tips is ultimately a personal decision, but it's usually easier to create a seal with the foam by compressing it prior to insertion. We should also note that foam is more susceptible to dirt and grime, so you may find a more hygienic solution in the silicone. Logitech also includes a protective hard shell case that has ample room for the headphones and all the ear tips to go with you.

We feel shortchanged by the lack of a remote control and microphone on the 46-inch long cord, and it's a surprising oversight by Logitech given the number of users who listen to music on Android and iOS smartphones. Since neither of those devices has a tactile button that lets you change tracks manually, the omission of an in-line remote may dissuade potential owners of these earbuds looking for hands-free music navigation.

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