Urbanears bring the party straight to your ears [review and giveaway]

By , Nov 6, 2012

Having admired Urbanears from afar, on the shelves of local retailers, I was blown away when I finally got my hands on a pair of the new Zinken over-the-ear headphones. Urbanears is clearly a company priding itself by paying attention to the little things and even places a 63 page booklet in their headphones’ box to prove it.

As a reviewer, I come across a lot of products for iOS devices on a regular basis and I can count, on one hand, how many times I have been impressed with product packaging (excluding actual Apple products). I must say, when it comes to accessories, often, a book should be judged by its cover and Urbanears spares no expense. Let’s open the box on this pair of Zinkens my friends at Urbanears sent over and you too have a chance to grab a pair of your own…

Designs, and ZoundPlugs, and TurnCables, oh my!

Let’s get serious. Packaging makes a huge difference in presentation, but most importantly, it tells me how seriously a company takes its products. Opening the Zinken box and slowly unveiling the headphones was just as fun as slipping them on my ears the first time. Even the included book, binding and all, is vibrant and interesting, great images of all product lines are included with a playful splash of color.

Urbanears boasts the Zinken is a full size on-ear monitor, designed both for the serious at-home amateur or the professional DJ. The ear cups provide a noise isolated environment next to the ear through which vibrant, rich music is pumped. The collapsable design is appreciated due to the size of the headphones, making them easy to throw in a bag or case, but the actual headband is not flexible. Once on, they are immediately comfortable, but after extended use, I started to notice some ear ache at hour 2 or so. The cushioned ear cups greatly improve wearability and help provide the isolated chamber for your tunes. The hardware as a whole seems extremely durable and ‘solid,’ as if the Zinken could take a beating on a nightly clubbing tour in your DJ bag.

With the professional or serious music fan at heart, Urbanears designed the ZoundPlug system which places a 6.3mm jack on the left ear and 3.5mm jack on the right… but, why? The included straight and coiled cable is also another small detail not overlooked. The included TurnCable is 6.3mm on one end and 3.5mm at the other. Matching the TurnCable and ZoundPlug system allows the user to plug into something as small as an iPod Nano or as large as a professional sound board or mixing table. Like a cheap car salesman, “But wait! That’s not all you get.” The ZoundPlug system pushes audio both directions, which means your friend can plug their headphones into the 3.5mm jack and listen to your music simultaneously. Yep. Details.

Sound

Zinken uses 40MM handmade dual diaphragm drives to provide a frequency response between 20Hz and 20KHz. The impedance is 85 Ohms with a sensitivity of 98dB. These tech specs combine to provide a rich full sounding ear monitor that is perfect for casual listening or in front of your turntable. From a rounded listening schedule from hip-pop, to classical, and electronic, the Zinken took all genres in stride.

Hip-pop / Rap: Running through Chris Brown, Ginuwine, Usher, and Wiz, the low range deep hits on the bass felt full and whole. The punch is definitely there if you crank it up a bit and vocal range is not distorted by the heavy bass of the track.

Rock: Taking it back to American classic rock with Supertramp, The Eagles and some 1980′s rock with Autograph, the guitar is strong and mids are clearly defined and rich. Actually, the headphones made me wish I had clearer recordings of some of my music because I could tell there was room for growth on my tracks. It was almost as if the headphones could have done better had some of my tracks been crisper recordings or higher kbps.

Electronic: A dub-step fan and aspiring electronic bandwagoner with Skrillex and Passion Pit, I am happy to report Zinken produced the desired effect with the heavy handed bass blaring the boom of Monsters And Sprites plus, floated like Moths Wings.

Conclusion

Overall, I would say these over-the-ear monitors drive music the same way a pair of quality earbuds get music straight to your ears. Sometimes headphones do not provide that straight through sound, instead offering a tin can feeling to the music as the drivers fail to produce enough sound to fill the space between the ear cups and the ear drum. The Urbanears Zinken certainly fill the gap and offer an affordable price tag of $99 for the quality. I am disappointed they do not come with a travel case, but would rather keep the price low and the sound quality high without compromising one-or-the-other for a case.

The quality and price line up nicely enough for me to recommend them to friends who are casual listeners looking for some extra oomph or even to a professional music entrepreneur looking for a set of road warriors. They come in a wide variety of colors and styles which vary by season and you would be happy if you nab a pair for the upcoming holiday season. Oh and one last thing, stop trying to compare everything to other branded headphones. Just because they have a “B” logo on the side, doesn’t mean they are the cream of the crop.

Pros:

  • Affordable for the quality
  • Mic and one button control for answering calls
  • Reversible coiled cable
  • Share music with your neighbor using headphone jack
  • Noise isolation
  • Swiveling ear cups

Cons:

  • Hurt your ears after extended play
  • Do not fully collapse
  • No carrying case provided
  • Cannot change the song from the earphone cord

Giveaway

What do you have to do to win?

Yeah, that’s right. We have teamed up with Urbanears to make sure one of our readers gets to experience the excitement! One lucky winner who follows the next steps will be chosen to win a pair of Zinkens of their choice:

Thanks again to Urbanears for the chance to draw a winner from our readers! The winner will be contacted via Twitter DM by week’s end.

And the winner is…

And the winner of our giveaway is @DJZiller. Thanks to everyone for participating, and thank you to Urbanears for making this giveaway possible. Don’t go anywhere as we already have more giveaways lined up.

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  • Kwagg006

    I love the choice for colors, the design of the product and the comfort they offer. The noise isolation is nice and makes the music easier to hear the crispness. Great overall sound! Twitter- thewagg

  • http://twitter.com/CrazyProgrammer Muli

    twitter: @Crazyprogrammer

    I love the share the music with the person next to you and the design is awesome.

  • http://twitter.com/leereichardt Lee Reichardt

    twitter: leereichardt

    The TurnCable is definitely exciting. Being able to walk around with one set of headphones listening to my music, and then using the same set, being able to plug into a sound desk to mix… Pure Brilliance!

  • Zach Goldman

    I’ve never really found “the perfect” pair of headphones. When I found out about Zinken over-the-ear headphones, I was hooked. The fact that they are so modern and engineered to perfection make them nearly irresistible. I absolutely love the ZoundPlug feature. I’ve always had to use one of those headphone splitters which can get very annoying. Anyways, I appreciate the giveaway and I really do appreciate all you’ve done for the iDownloadBlog community.

    Thanks again,

    Twitter: @ZachGoldman94

  • http://twitter.com/AnthonyGilera Anthony Gilera

    My favorite feature is its durability, I tend to completely destroy headphones on the 2nd to 3rd week of use. Having this would come in handy when I’m on the go editing.
    Twitter: @anthonygilera

  • http://twitter.com/OmarRobi Omar Rob

    I like all the features, but the design/color is too good
    twitter: Omarrobi

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.winebrenner Chris Winebrenner

    Well i guess i cant honestly say i need them but they would be nice and i would be them to good use every day. I use my iPhone headphones all the time and really should and want to get better ones but havent got to save up for them yet.
    twitter @chrisw329
    fb: /chris.winebrenner

  • http://twitter.com/trevordebus Trevor DeBus

    These headphones’ ability to both block outside noise while at the same time contain and maintain sound makes them crystal clear, and allows you to experience the whole song, the way the artist intended. My Twitter handle is @trevordebus

  • Steven Darhower

    Facebook: Steven Darhower
    Twitter: stevend07

    I like how these headphones have good bass and it doesn’t distort the audio! And the variety of colors is nice too..

  • http://twitter.com/acdawg07 Not Me

    The coiled cord looks very convenient and useful.

    @acdawg07
    /ACDawg

  • http://twitter.com/gianpac Giancarlo Pacheco

    I love the TurnCable. Zinken’s all I will ever need. Perfect for my privacy at work, for my iPhone talks and my electric acoustic guitar studies. Those times of multiple headphones are gone. Welcome Zinken!!
    twitter: gianpac

  • http://twitter.com/rewritable_w M João Koch

    Twitter: M João Koch

    I think they look amazing!

  • jskurkis

    Can’t beat the price and the colors. They look great!

    Twitter: @jskurkis:disqus

  • http://twitter.com/lolmian doss2007

    facebook: Tiago Mizuno

    twitter:@lolmian

    I really liked the mic and one button control for answering calls, that I always like on good headphones

  • http://twitter.com/JoBu3434 JoBu

    Twitter: @jobu3434

    The design of these Urbanears is my favorite feature. Awesomeness.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jtk13679 James Smith

    Twitter JTK13601

    I like how they are noise isolating headphones that can play rock and rap, especially Autograph, Turn Up The Radio is one of my favs. They seem to have everything else that I would love as well

  • keegandonley

    FB: Keegan Donley
    Twitter: keegandonley

    I really like the spiral cable!

  • http://twitter.com/Simon_Rpo Simon Restrepo

    Twitter: @Simon_Rpo

    I really like the color and the design of this amazing headphones and off course the good sound. Also, reversible colied cable and noise isolation are a good features

  • http://twitter.com/lobaj07 Lobaj Kaminaga

    the music sharing feature using the headphone jack is genius. but the best feature is that these headphones are sexy and they know it. i like sexy.

  • http://twitter.com/damienstarr austin arceo✪

    Facebook austin arceo
    Twitter @damienstarr
    I really lovin the diffrent colors and the comfort of over ear headphones rather then in ear.

  • Mike

    I like the colors

  • http://twitter.com/parthadhia Parth Adhia

    Love the design!!!! totally floored by it!! the headphones are really comfortable especially for a music freak like me…. keep hearing music all day…. the audio is awesome…. its nirvana.. that to at its best!!! :) :) makes you look at world differently…. the audio quality makes you feel the world around you musical!! thats why i love them!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1800568224 John Liu

    I like the design and the pricing. They seem well-made and great quality. I also like how you can share music in such a way. Great product. I’d love to win.
    Twitter: @John_CT_Liu

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000013739374 Alexander Genvarev

    I like quality and design. Facebook: Alexander Genvarev Twitter: @AlexGenvarev

  • Threebuddies

    I like the removeble headphone coiled cable.

    Twitter: threebuddies

  • http://twitter.com/bemeLeoven Leoven Morete

    My favorite Zinken features are the ability to share whats i’m listening to my friends, the ability to fold and stretch widly so i can put in my bag and portble and the last one is the mic because i need

    @chEatMeNow

  • http://www.facebook.com/fer.iss.14 Fer Iss

    I have to say: wow. Great earphones. Love the design and to top it all, the spiral coiled cable is a really cool feature of an already amazing piece of ingenuity.
    Twitter: @YasRulz

  • http://twitter.com/KarunaOUK Karuna Ouk

    Twitter: KarunaOUKi

    I really love how they mix up the colors. the cord is amazing, in which that it let others plug and hear it through the headphone. I really love to get one of this

  • http://twitter.com/torkle19 Robert Ruby

    Twitter: @torkle19

    These headphones look so sleek and cool. The solid color is unlike most electronics now days. I don’t have a nice pair now so I would be more than grateful to win these awesome headphones.

  • http://twitter.com/siddharth_setia Siddharth Setia

    ZoundPlug system is the best feature in this. Which pushes equal audio to both person listening.. Lets you share your music!

    “Sharing is caring”.. :D

    @twitter-252503645:disqus

  • http://twitter.com/YeahJLou Michael Louis

    Facebook: Michael Jason Louis
    Twitter: @YeahJLou

    Have the original Urbanears and these new Zinkens look awesome! The shares headphone jack is without a doubt the most useful feature, every headphone should have it

  • http://www.facebook.com/tmattman Matt Genuino

    Twitter: Matthew Genuino

    I like how it is very eye catching. Its design gives its owner an aura of fun and excitement. It may look simple but it really packs a punch, not just in design, but also in sound quality!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1430584103 Calvin Kun

    I like it when neighbours can connect to zinken headphones :3
    @iCalvinn

  • http://twitter.com/AppleTechTalk TheMacintoshStudios

    My favorite Zinken Features are the amazing and simple design! And also the sound quality for the price!

    Twitter: @AppleTechTalk

  • http://twitter.com/Igorcv13 Igor Coelho Vieira

    I loved the noise cancelation quality, its a must have for headphones!
    My Twitter is: @igorcv13