The use of a 40mm dynamic driver isn’t unusual, but this one uses a Japanese silk diaphragm which is at least a little bit interesting, although 40mm silk tweeters can often be found in speakers they can give very nice results actually. The frequency response is quoted at 10-20kHz but that really is completely meaningless.
As before, the u-JAYS are pretty balanced compared to a lot of the bass emphasized headphones in this price range. I consider these to have a very pleasant more natural sound with a little boost in the mid bass and upper mids – low treble, slightly rolled off sub bass and very unfatiguing, relaxed treble.
It really is remarkable how similar these sound compared to the cabled brother, with just a little added warmth.
The bass is probably the area of all audio related equipment to divide opinion the most, if you like a really warm hard hitting thumping bass this headphone won’t necessarily be for you without a little EQ-ing. Right at the bottom end we don’t extend right down low well but I am yet to hear an on-ear design that does, so believe me when I say this is kind of a trade off with on-ear headphones. The mid-bass has a good amount of body but it isn’t a lump hammer to the skull, which is actually quite nice considering the market this is aimed at. The most impressive things about the bass are the relative speed and the lack of bleed into the mid-range. Bass notes are able to dance and dive rhythmically and keep composure throughout. The vocal band remains unaffected unless you really do push the EQ (they really don’t need it) in favour of the bottom end.
Mid-range is really well handled, it is very clear and importantly very open and separated from the rest of the soundstage, the openness and naturalness accompanied by a touch of richness in the lower mid-band is really lovely. The upper mids are slightly forward but this has two effects, one positive and one not so. The positive is that it gives the sound a real energy and vibrancy in the mids that I like a lot! Unfortunately, it also shows the treble to be a little rolled off if I’m being harsh. In reality, there is plenty of treble information to keep your music in check; it also makes for a very comfortable listen. Not once have I found them fatiguing which is a huge plus for this kind of headphone that is likely to be worn on the go for longer periods of time.
The soundstage is pretty good for this type of headphone with good width and decent height, just lacking in that 3rd dimension to give the sound that extra depth.
All of this in taken to the ‘nth’ degree with added refinement if you pair the u-JAYS with an APTX capable device like many of the newest flagship smartphones are. It really does come as a surprise to me to say that over the past 6 months the u-JAYS are the audio product that has gotten the most listening time from myself – read into that what you will!
These are a really lovely headphone, the style, quality and sound come together to give the full package. If you want a bass driven headphone then something like the Meze 99 Classics will be more for you, if you are after a more balanced presentation with great mid-range qualities I would take a long hard look at these! They look great on and off your head and are the perfect size for travelling, it’s an easy recommendation from me!
Fingers crossed for more to come from Jays in the future!