Impressions: Advanced Sound's Model 3

Advanced Sound sent me a review sample of their higher-end IEM, with a very innovative design, and pretty great sound for the price and use-case.

Please excuse the single photo here, I am currently out of town, and only had the time to snag that single picture. The full review will include many more, including of the included accessories and the packaging.

I'd like to initially commend Advanced Sound on their design. Beats, Jaybird, and Playtronic all have a fairly similar design, aside from the IEMs themselves. Advanced Sound departed from that, as visible in the picture, with the IEMs going into your ears (over), then a magnetic battery pack snapping around the back of your neck, leaving the controls hanging directly in front of you, like a necklace. The micro USB-A female charging port is accessible on one side of that magnetically-meeting battery pack. This design seems very well thought out, to me. It puts the cord out of your way, with the controls accessible right where they need to be. The over-ear design, when combined with the foam tips lends great staying power, with even the most intentionally vigorous head-banging not moving these headphones a millimeter.

Onto what actually matters, sound. The headphones have a particularly thin nozzle, which I think was intentional. It acts acoustically as somewhat of a low-pass filter, bumping the low frequencies fairly significantly. This produces a noticeably V-shaped, but still pleasing, sound signature. Mids are noticeably recessed, but vocals come through fairly well. Instruments fare slightly worse, fading a little further back, but not disappearing by any means. Treble is well-extended, but does feel a little bit closed in, partially as a result of the very small soundstage that these IEMs create. The bass, as I was starting to mention above, is very powerful. It's well-rounded, with a good balance of speed and ability-to-slam. I will detail the sound signature more than this disorganized jumble in the full review, but I will say that for the above critiques, I have found myself enjoying these headphones a lot in my use thus far, especially considering their price point ($80).

Just to give a brief and final word to accessories included, there is a micro USB charging cable, short and green, a cable that snaps into the MMCX connectors on each IEM that terminates in an 1/8" TRRS auxiliary connector (with a 3-button remote and a microphone), a plethora of foam and silicone ear-tips (3 sizes of foam, 3 of silicone), and a semi-hard, faux-leather, zippered case for carrying with you.

I'll continue to listen to these over the next couple weeks and come back with a much more detailed, and hopefully more organized review that better encompasses them as a product.