Xiaomi extended their range of products this year with the launch of the Xiaomi Piston earphones. Here are our impressions of these CNC alloy earbuds.
I love listening to music and feel my varied choice in musical genres gives me enough knowledge give my opinion on Xiaomi’s first home-brewed earphones. My ears aren’t tuned to the same degree as a true audiophile so I’m not going to give you the full in’s and outs, just my opinion on these affordable CNC earphones.
Whats in the box!
Xiaomi have employed the service of 1moredesign to create they packaging and (I believe) the look of the Piston earphones.
The plastic box consists of a clear removable lid and back plastic rear. There are studs moulded in to the rear where Xiaomi have included 3 paris of additional rubber tips. One set of tips are designed specifically for phone use, while the other 2 (3 including the pair already fitted) are for enjoying music.
When you open the lid of the box your will find your Piston Earphones wrapped around a specially designed rubber winder. The winder is available in different colours and even has it’s own set of instructions so you can safely remove and rewind the wires.
The Piston Earphones are made of high-quality materials which should see them outlast much equally priced alternatives.
CNC alloy ear pieces are on the large size, but they are lightweight and comfortable to wear.
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An machined alloy handle on the, gold-plated, headphone jack gives plenty of grip to price the earphones out even the most stubborn of 3.5mm headphone jacks. Actually the machining might actually be a little to abrasive, so watch you don’t slip while trying to pull them out!
As well as machined alloy, Xiaomi have also gone for a Kevlar cord to protect the wires. This allows the cable to be much more flexible and freer moving than a tradition plastic wire, while also being a lot stronger and more resistant to being pulled or caught.
The cord features a machined alloy remote with 3 press buttons. 2 on one side which are used to adjust the volume, and one on the opposite side for other functions. Pressing this single button once while listening to music will move you on to the next track, while a long press on the home screen will active Google Now’s voice search (if you have it installed) allowing you to use voice commands via the built-in microphone.
The Piston earphones are really excellent. Sound quality is excellent and they offer a rich deep bass. My preferred musical choice since using the Pistons has been House music and Drum N Bass, and the pistons have sounded wonderful!
There is no sound leakage from the rubber tips from either side i.e music isn’t getting out and exterior sounds don’t manage to disturb the music so extra vigilance is needed if you are walking around busy streets!
I would have liked the remote to come with a built-in clip as the flexible Kevlar cable does tend to bounce around more than plastic, but this is hardly a deal breaker!
Like all of Xiaomi’s products, they have managed to create something which performs better than the competition, offer great materials and quality and costs a fraction of what the competition is asking!
Xiaomi Piston earphones are available directly from Xiaomi (in China) at just 99 yuan ($16)!