Of all the unexpected surprises lurking amid the pre-CES fervor flooding my inbox, this little gem from MEElectronics is perhaps the most interesting. The lesser-known earphone manufacturer garnered my attention over the past year with its inexpensive, decent-sounding, and--perhaps most importantly--tiny earbuds. Now, the company has blown my mind a bit with the launch of its SP51 "sound preference" in-ear headphones ($69.99 with inline remote; $59.99 without).
What's so intriguing about the SP51 earphones, which don't look all that exciting from the photo, is the inclusion of adjustable, removable rear plates. MEElectronic asserts that "simply changing the rear plate alters the sound in a very natural way, without the sound degradation that can occur with an equalizer." Thus, giving users the ability to play around with the actual design of the earpieces allows them to adjust the audio at will, depending on the genre of music or general preference of the listener.
Whether the SP51 earphones actually work as advertised remains to be heard--the set is scheduled to become available sometime during the first quarter of this year. What is certain is that sound quality is a very personal experience, so MEElectronics deserves serious props if it is indeed successful in its endeavor to offer natural-sounding, on-the-fly audio adjustment from the headphones themselves.