Earjax Lyrics Review

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Reviewed Nov 2010

Details: Ergonomically-styled dynamic-driver earphone from US-based manufacturer Earjax
MSRP: $99.95 (manufacturer’s page)
Current Price: $66 from amazon.com 
Specs: Driver: Dynamic | Imp: 24Ω | Sens: 105 dB | Freq: 15-25k Hz | Cable: 4’ I-plug
Nozzle Size: 4mm | Preferred tips: Stock single-flanges, stock heat-activated foamies
Wear Style: Straight down or over-the-ear

Accessories (5/5) – Single-flange silicone tips (6 sets in 3 sizes), triple-flange silicone tips (2 sizes), heat-activated foam tips, shirt clip, carabiner, 3’ extension cord, and hard clamshell carrying case with removable cord winder
Build Quality (3.5/5) – The distinctive shells of the Lyrics are made of a matte, rubberized plastic and, though some molding artifacts are evident, generally feel quite sturdy. The cable used by the Lyrics is unique as well – sheathed in smooth, clear plastic above the y-split and woven nylon below. The casing on the straight 3.5mm plug is metal, which I’m not usually a fan of, but a flexible rubber grommet protects the cord from its sharp edges
Isolation (3/5) – The Lyrics are vented at the front and don’t lend themselves too well to deep insertion when worn cable-down but isolation is still sufficient
Microphonics (3.5/5) –Low when worn cable-down, nonexistent with over-the-ear wear
Comfort (3.5/5) – The shells are fairly bulbous in shape and not quite flush with the ear when worn in the intended, cable-down manner. They aren’t uncomfortable but they don’t just disappear, either. Worn cable-up the Lyrics stay comfortable much longer

Sound (6.4/10) – The flagship of Earjax’s product line, the Lyrics is a ‘pleasant’–sounding earphone: slightly bassy, a bit warm, and quite spacious. Signature-wise the Lyrics sound like a slightly more laid-back JAYS t-JAYS Three. The first and foremost thing noticeable when comparing the Lyrics to the lower-end Earjax Tonic is how much tighter and cleaner the bass is. The Lyrics has far less mid-bass bloat as well as better sub-bass extension. Naturally, more bass detail is revealed by the Lyrics. The bass remains punchy and tactile but never becomes overwhelming, reminding me of the Brainwavz M2 and M3, both in impact and tone.

The midrange of the Lyrics is free of bass bleed and quite clear. It is laid-back almost to the point of sounding veiled, in stark contrast to the Brainwavz earphones, but still carries good detail. The clarity is compromised slightly by the veil but the smoothness and fullness of the mids are impressive. Treble extension is good and the slightly veiled mids of the Lyrics make the high end seem a bit more prominent. Again, the sound of the Lyrics is ‘safe’ more than anything.

Perhaps the biggest strength of the Lyrics is the ambient presentation – it’s an earphone with a ‘big’ sound – the soundstage has good width, depth, and even height. The soundstage depth of the mid-forward Brainwavz M2 is clearly inferior and even the higher-end M3 is given a run for its money. Positioning and imaging are good as well, though the laid-back presentation does mean that you won’t get the ‘intimate’ moments with the performer that you may get with more forward sets. It’s a good sound for music that doesn’t hinge on vocals and benefits from a spacious presentation.

Value (7.5/10) – Like the lower-end Tonic model, the Earjax Lyrics is a very well-packaged earphone with solid build quality and great overall usability. It is much more refined in sound than the lower-end model but at the same time is pitted against far more serious competition by its price tag. The laid-back sound signature brings about a slight drop in clarity compared to similarly-priced sets such as the FA Silver Bullet but the Lyrics is still a good earphone for those in search of a smooth, balanced, and spacious sound and a good alternative to the pricier JAYS t-JAYS.

Pros: Excellent accessory pack; balanced, smooth, and spacious sound
Cons: Slight midrange veil, not the best at portraying intimacy


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About Author

Living in the fast-paced city of Los Angeles, ljokerl has been using portable audio gear to deal with lengthy commutes for the better part of a decade. He spends much of his time listening to music and occasionally writes portable audio reviews across several enthusiast sites, focusing mostly on in-ear earphones.

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