(Contributing Editor: George Straton)

 

Cutting the Cord isn’t simply about cancelling cable TV or Ma Bell telephone land lines anymore. Wires are a proverbial ball and chain to the current active lifestyle trend.

 

The latest to get snipped is the wireless smart phone headphone cord.

 

Apple first did away with the 3.5 millimeter audio headphone jack on its iPhone 7, combining wired sound output and power supply from the single multi-pin Lighting connection. Ditto for Android devices with the recent adoption of USB-C charge ports. An added benefit: higher end smart phones earning IP68 water submersion resistance.

 

2015 saw the first trickle of consumer available Bluetooth wireless connecting earbud headphones with fairly hefty price tags approaching $300.00 and struggling on playback per charge time.

 

Electronics start-up, Padmate, offers consumers a more affordable wireless earbud headphone alternative.

 

When Padmate recently sent an audition pair of their soon the be launched 3rd line, PaMu Scroll Bluetooth earbuds, Roadblazing.com was all ears.

 

IN THE BOX:

  • PaMu Scroll Bluetooth wireless earbud stereo headphones – 1 pr. Left and Right
  • Scroll leather bound cylindrical micro-USB / Qi charging case (in choice of 3 finishes)
  • Micro-USB to USB cable
  • Rubberized earbud sleeves – 3 sizes
  • Wireless charging receiver USB end cap

 EARBUD SPECIFICATIONS:

  • $39 USD – Introductory 30 day price starting September 12, 2018 then increasing to an M.S.R.P. of $149.00 USD
  • Bluetooth version 5.0
  • Frequency response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, Sensitivity: 97 dB, Impedance: 16 Ohms
  • Playback time: up to 3.5 hours, Talk time: up to 5.0 hours, Standby time: up to 100 hours
  • Charge time: 2 hours @ USB / Qi inductive
  • IPX5 moisture / splash resistance
  • Passive noise cancellation
  • Touch activation and control w/ phone call interruption
  • Microphone for Siri and phone calls
  • User manual w/ illustrative pictures
  • Weight: (earbuds) 5.0 grams;
  • Dimensions: (earbuds) 19.5 x 17 x 27 mm LxWxH; (charging case): 37 x  96 mm

SET-UP:

  • Connect Scroll cylindrical charger to USB charge port via micro-USB to USB cable
  • Insert Left and Right PaMu Scroll earbud into corresponding marked well
  • EZ magnetic docking
  • 4 Blue LEDs indicate percentage of charge – Solid blue LED = charge percentage complete
  • Remove earbuds from Scroll charger
  • Activate Bluetooth on wireless source, then Search for Devices
  • Locate PaMu in Device list, then Connect
  • Insert PaMu earbuds into ears with microphone oriented lowest
  • Check for fit in outer ear canal – select another of the 3 supplied earbud sleeves for improved fit

 

EARBUD CONTROLS:

  • Left or Right earbud
    • One Click – Play / Pause, Answer phone call (in call mode)
    • Two Clicks – Decline phone call (in call mode)
  • Left – Double Click for track advance
  • Right – Double Click for Siri activation

AUDITION:

  • Wireless Audio Source: HTC 10, featuring HTC Boom Sound, w Dolby noise reduction and theater mode and user customized equalization
  • Music Selections
    • “And I Love Her” – The Beatles – melodic Harrison acoustic guitar and Lennon McCartney harmonics
    • “Not Fragile” – Bachman Turner Overdrive – deep Fred Turner bass rhythm
    • “Eye Level” – Simon Park Orchestra – brassy horns
    • “Love to Love” – UFO – rich string refrain
    • “Trampled Under Foot” (live at O2 Arena, 2007)  – Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Jason Bonham – soulful Hammond organ, Bonham quads
    • “Beautiful” – Gordon Lightfoot – vocal range, melodic 12 -string acoustic guitar with backing strings

SOUND IMPRESSIONS:

  • Acceptable though not super wide soundstage
  • Modest volume
  • Distortion free
  • Cavernous bass, snappy percussion
  • Plucky strings
  • -1 Overly brassy horns
  • -1 Favors mid frequency vocals, cutting off some highs

EARBUD USE IMPRESSIONS:

  • Simple Bluetooth pairing
  • Simple Unplug and Play use
  • -1 Moderately light, but not feather, weight
  • More compact and concealed than some competitors (Are you listening Apple Airpods?)
  • Good earbud sleeve fitments
  • -1 Earbud position adjustment can accidentally trigger touch actions
  • Acceptable ear comfort wanes after 30 minutes
  • Secure fit during light jogging
  • Commendable passive noise cancellation
  • -1 Occasional Bluetooth signal interruption

ROADBLAZING.COM VERDICT:

  • A worthy alternative to the established major brand wireless stereo earbuds at a fraction of the price.
  • Unique charging caddy and magnetic charging capability

 

Beginning September 12, 2018, interested consumers can take advantage of the $39.95 introductory pricing for PaMu Scroll Bluetooth earbuds via Indiegogo marketplace crowdfunding. There is also the opportunity to register for a free giveaway.

 

****The manufacturer provided a courtesy sample of the product used in this review. Roadblazing.com makes no warranty representations other than those by the manufacturer.****