Wires? We don’t need no stinking wires! Polk’s latest on ear headphones, the Hinge Wireless have done away with wires and it is indeed for the better if you ask me. In a world where there is a new set of headphones dropping on the daily, it’s hard to know which ones are worth the price tag, and which ones aren’t. As the headphone guru that I am, I’m going to help you out.
Today we have the Polk Hinge Wireless On Ear Headphones. That is a mouthful. These are the latest headphones from the fine fine folks over at Polk Audio. Polk Audio has been around since the early 70’s, and have really made a name for themselves in the world of home audio. These headphones are a great example of Polk keeping up with the times. We want; no, we need to take our music with us wherever we go. We tend to listen to music or other media from our phones or tablets for hours on end and whether it’s just for commuting, or studying they need to be comfortable. They need to almost be non existent when we’re wearing them.
On Ear headphones typically are comfortable at first, but after the first hour the become irritating and can actually hurt your ears. I found that the Polk Hinge were actually quite comfortable, and after the first hour I wasn’t finding any irritation or pain. I had no problem wearing them through the city, and onto the Subway. These headphones have plush ear cubs which are nice because they cause a passive noise isolation, keeping out a lot of the outside noise. I prefer the passive style of noise isolation because it it barely allows me to hear the outside world, but it isn’t so sensitive that I can hear my heartbeat which is truly annoying.
The second most important feature about a set of headphones is the sound quality. Normally here I would discuss drivers and what not but Polk actually introduced a something totally new for them.
“With the Hinge Wireless, Polk has taken a new approach to headphone system design called POET, Polk Optimized Electro-acoustic Tuning. This design process refines the drivers even further to improve overall performance balance…”
With that said they have pretty good sound. Above average, but if you are an audiophile you will find yourself disappointed. Then again, if you’re an audiophile you wouldn’t be interested in a set of headphones that are only $199. With that said, the sound is definitely above average. I find that they are a little on the bass heavy side which a lot of the newer headphones are. They aren’t as bad as many others though. If you enjoy a lot of the current music then you may actually enjoy it.
The aluminum hinges are a nice feature. They allow you to fold the headphones up for easy storage. They even come with a nice carry bag if you’re too good to toss them in your backpack. The hinge seems relatively durable, but you would still need to be careful with them because they aren’t meant to be tossed around, sat on, or disrespected in any way.
The left ear cup is where you will find a 3.5mm headphone jack. You may be saying to yourself now “I thought these were wireless?” and you are not wrong. What is nice about these is that when you forget to charge them, you can plug in the included audio cable with inline control. This didn’t change the quality of the sound in any way. They are not precharged (most headphones aren’t) so when I first received these I used the cable until I was able to charge them properly.
The right ear cup is where the micro USB jack is located. Also on this cup is the is the wheel which operated as the volume control, pause/play and is how you can receive and end a phone call. I prefer having a couple different buttons to do the different actions because it is easy to skip/pause a song when all you are trying to do is change the volume. Not a deal breaker though, after you do it the first time you probably won’t do it again. Unless you do it again that is. They have an up to 12 hour battery, honestly that’s usually a little but lower so I would estimate about 10 hours if you’re just pressing play on your phone and calling it a day.
Overall these are a nice choice at the $199 mark. I do prefer these over several other headphones in or near that price. They do come in three different color styles and if you’re into that classic look that these have then I would consider checking out the camel colored ones. I did find them to be a little bass heavy, but as I mentioned before a lot of headphones as of late are. Maybe I’m just getting old. You can pick them up at numerous places including the Polk site.