Samsung has taken a courageous decision. He did not knock timidly on the door with the words “World of Headphones,” but only kicked them so that they flew together with the door frame. Instead of designing the next five “headphones” and placing the product in a huge pile of economic models, he decided to hit the premium shelf right away.
One must admit that this is a move that requires considerable “cojones”. Samsung is a well known company for smartphone and tablet manufacturers, but I do not recall sensitive people exchanging it when planning to buy more expensive handsets.
Now they have a chance to revise their views because the producer has released three interesting constructions – large, rounded Level Over, medium, eardrum level on and small, intrusive Level In. Personally, I have the pleasure of testing two extreme models, and I must admit that they do not appear to be designed in a hurry just to get the last money out of our wallets. The Level In studios stand out as three converters built into each handset (two with one balanced anchor + one dynamic). The quality of reproduced sound crushes the vast majority of competition. They will, however, be the subject of a separate review. For now, I’m going to focus on the highest Levels.
Noise reduction made as it should
The large Samsung Level Over headphones that play the main role in this review also have their ace in their sleeve (and not one). The first one is the noise reduction. Here we deal both with passive and active reduction of unwanted noises coming from the listener’s surroundings. Looking for Skullcandy earbuds? Click here.
Passive is based on physical isolation of the auditory canal. At Levels this role is played by large shells with thick cushions made of soft leather. Already putting the headphones on your ears causes a significant reduction in decibels generated, for example, by traffic outside the window, train wheels or aircraft engines. Passive reduction does not adversely affect the sound quality of the headphones. It is worth adding that the ear shells in this model are large (about 102×78 mm) and deep (about 23 mm). Overy can be worn for hours and will not cause more discomfort.
The other way is already a bit more advanced and requires the use of special electronic modules that intercept external noises and reduce them actively. How it’s working? The microphone built into the handset receives vibration (mostly low frequency) from the listener’s surroundings. This signal then goes to a processor that processes it and adds it to the movement of the membrane so that the amplitude is close but the opposite phase.
Sound is just a pressure wave. If at the right moment we add a similar counterpart to it, the sound that really reaches the human ear will be much quieter (or completely eliminated).
Samsung’s art has been excellent. Level Over headphones have built-in high-sensitivity microphones used inter alia. Via ANC (Active Noise Canceling) function. Active reduction can be switched on and off manually. It supports passive reduction, creating a well-muffled environment around the ear, ideal for listening to music or making phone calls.
Phone calls, touch pad
Built-in microphones not only serve for noise canceling. If, while listening to music, someone calls a smartphone paired with Samsung Level Over handsets, we can make a phone call just like a regular headset (wirelessly).
There are several functional elements in the right ear casing. In addition to the already mentioned microphones there is also a switch, a button for activating noise reduction, a signal cable connector (wired audio transmission), and a touch panel on the outer surface of the smooth panel.
Moving your finger up or down causes a change in volume, if you move your finger horizontally, you switch the song, double (quick) touch stops or resumes playback (while answering a phone call or stops) while holding your finger for 3 seconds turns on the S -Voice. The latter would be very useful, as it would allow you to issue a variety of voice commands to your smartphone, but … But it is hard to blame it on the handset itself.
Bluetooth connectivity, NFC pairing
In the case of the left earphone, in addition to the microphone, there is a micro USB port for charging the battery.) The NFC proximity communication module is located under the outer panel. Thanks to it, you can quickly connect headphones to your smartphone (Bluetooth will be activated automatically).
The design of the headphones is solid. The headband was made of metal. The head rest is covered with soft leather (the pillow is quite large and thick). The outer lining is plastic and matt. In general, the Samsung Level Over provides better comfort from the more expensive Beats Studio Wireless headphones.
Wireless or cable
The battery in the headphones should withstand at least a dozen hours of continuous listening. But what to do when it is gone? We pull out the cable with 3.5mm mini jack plugs at both ends and listen on. It is true that in such a situation there is no active noise reduction, but we still can count on passive. Wired time is actually unlimited (the limit is only the player’s working time).
The cord is 1.2 m long. Plugins are simple and gold plated. In the cable itself there is a small remote control with another microphone, volume control and a receive / play button.