Adidas recently launched its line of sports wireless headphones here with the over-ear RPT-01 and the in-ear FWD-01.
We tested the FWD-01 (available on Amazon and Lazada), to see if it is the perfect pair of sports headphones for workouts.
Available in a black/dark grey colour scheme, the FWD-01 has a rather unique design with a knitted tangle-free cord connecting the earbuds that looks like a shoelace – a tribute to Adidas’ running shoes heritage.
The earbud itself looks like a pentagonal-shaped pebble with a rough texture and the Adidas logo. It looks pretty bulky when worn – not exactly a fashion statement.
Conveniently, the earbuds can be magnetically attached for you to wear the headphones like a necklace. Doing so also automatically pauses music playback.
Each earbud comes with a silicone ear-tip and ear-wing to ensure it fits snugly in the ear. Four pairs of different-sized ear-tips and ear-wings are provided. I have to go for the largest size for the earbuds to fit my ears.
Near the right earbud is a three-button inline remote for music playback and volume control, while an action button is sited near the left earbud. Pressing this action button by default activates the connected smartphone’s voice assistant.
To turn on the FWD-01, press the middle button of the inline remote for two seconds. Press it for four seconds to start the pairing process. Pressing the upper button increases the volume while pressing the lower button decreases the volume. I find these physical buttons much more intuitive to use during workouts compared to the touch controls of some headphones.
I recommend downloading the Adidas Headphones app to get more out of the FWD-01. This app allows you change preset equaliser settings such as Rock or Hip-hop to customised ones so you can tweak them further. You can also customise the action button – for instance, you can set it to activate your favourite Spotify playlist by double-pressing.
Music quality is decent for a pair of sports-centric headphones. In its default Adidas equaliser setting, the audio output is pretty balanced. The vocals are defined and the bass not too overbearing. The highs are distinct and sharp.
Changing to the Rock equaliser setting and playing songs by Hong Kong rock band Beyond, the vocals sounded muffled with the bass lacking oomph but the electric guitar highs sounding sharper. For most music, I think the default setting is probably the best one to use.
With these headphones, you will be able to hear ambient noise while jogging but this allows you to stay aware of your surroundings and keeps you safer.
On the downside, the FWD-01 only has a water resistance rating of IPX4. In other words, it is only sweat resistant, so don’t wear it into the shower. However, I like that it supports USB-C charging, instead of needing a proprietary cable for charging.
Its very long battery life rating of 16 hours of playback on a full charge proves to be accurate in my testing.
– Knitted tangle-free cord
– USB-C charging
– Long battery life
– Intuitive physical buttons
– Bulky earbuds
– Low water resistance rating
CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth 5.0
BATTERY LIFE: 5/5
VALUE FOR MONEY: 3.5/5
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