There’s Something to Smile About Here — The Marley Smile Jamaica
The House of Marley brand is one to watch these days. I recently got my hands on one of their lower priced headphones–the Marley Smile Jamaica in-ear headphones. Priced at $30 dollars, my expectations were pretty low. As it turned out, they gave me something to smile about.
The way in which The House of Marley presents themselves is amazing. They have a long-term plan in place to preserve the environment, and they stick to it. They practice this plan in three ways:
- They use recycled materials for their packaging.
- They use FSC-certified wood in the backings.
- They use precision milled aluminum to make sure none of the materials end up in the waste system.
They make recycling cool in this way.
When I first received the Marley Smiley Jamaica earbuds, I knew I would need some convincing right off the bat. You see, I don’t usually use in-ear headphones when listening to music. There’s something about the way in-ear headphones fit where they don’t usually work well with my ears. The Smile Jamaica earbuds came with two sizes of ear tips to compensate a little bit for the wide array of ear shapes. Most earbud models come with three sets of tips. I found I didn’t have to adjust their pair at all. There were no earbuds falling out of these ears.
Then there was something about the color patterns and the FSC-certified Sapele wood backing that drew me in the rest of the way. To be perfectly honest, these are one pretty pair of headphones. They don’t ask for much attention. The way that the whole product comes together with design and feel is awesome.[Tweet “What you’re getting for $30 with these Smile Jamaica headphones is quite impressive”]
Color patterns shown above are in order from left to right. They are the following: Sky, Rasta Black, Purple, Mint, Fire, and Copper. Not shown are Tan, Black, and Rasta. In 2016, two new colors, Teal and Denim, are set to be introduced. Feel free to check out these color varieties they offer. You won’t be disappointed.
The outer layer of the cord is braided fabric, 52″ in length. This reduces noise interference and keeps them from getting too tangled. While using the Marley Smile Jamaica, I found the cord often gets bent and stiff. It’s the same challenge one sees with a tangled pair of headphones. They’ll need some breaking in for the better cooperation.
One observation that may present a problem is with the 35mm gold-plated 90-degree jack. Although its build quality is high, it may present a problem with bigger/thicker mobile phone cases. It plugs in flat and rests against the side of the phone, so it may not work correctly if there’s something that were to get in the way.
Wrapping up the look, the Smile Jamaica has a standard mic and universal music control button to pause, skip forward, skip back, etc. It does, however, lack volume control.
Like I said, these are one good looking pair of earbuds. Furthermore, what you’re getting for $30 is pretty amazing.
Let me restate the following: what you’re getting for $30 with these Smile Jamaica headphones is quite impressive and that stands true for the sound.
During my tenure at Beantown, I’ve tried out many headphones. A lot of sounds blend together. The mediocre ones are immediately noticeable while the great ones stand out. So with this $30 price, I wasn’t anticipating much.
When I took off another brands earbuds, replaced them with the Marley Smile Jamaica, and pressed play on the new Night Beds album I had been listening to nonstop, my heart jumped.
The bass was rich, the highs were tangible, and even though they didn’t perfectly isolate noise, they packed a punch! I felt like I could hear all these new layers to the same songs I’ve been listening to. The higher mid-tones didn’t sound as well as I would have liked, but it was acceptable.
This led me to double check the price and desperately look into the headphone system to see how it was making such pure sound. For those who are curious, the sound is derived from a 9mm high-performance micro speaker.
From the style to the sound, these earbuds proved they’re offering the whole package. On top of that, the price makes this an almost a no-brainer buy.
With all this said, as a potential buyer of the product, you should first consider what you would be using it for. From my experience, I can see the Smile Jamaica earbuds best used on walks around the city, rides on transit, or while relaxed on a sofa or bed. They’re appropriate for nearly any situation. The braided fabric cord creates minimal noise when walking. And with all the personalization options, they could become like any other accessory to your street attire.
The only thing you should be weary of is taking them to the gym or on outdoor runs. These headphones are not aimed at the sports training market. Despite the lightweight and versatile design, there’s no guarantee on how they will react to water or sweat. The risk of damaging these headphones rests in your hands, or better yet, your ears.
The price of $30 has been something I’ve focused on throughout this review, and I want to end by stating how amazing this price is. I was quite impressed with the Marley Smile Jamaica earbuds. I would also definitely suggest them to a friend looking for a quality pair of earbuds at a competitive price.
Have you tried the Marley Smile Jamaica headphones out yourself? Were you surprised by the lower-than-expected $30 price? What do you love about them? Let us know over on the Beantown Review Twitter or Facebook pages. And don’t hesitate to head over to The House of Marley website. Feel free to check out their 2016 product lineup, as well as any sales they have going on. They’re doing something great over there! One doesn’t have to look beyond the products they offer or the booth traffic during the recent Consumer Electronics Show.
Editor’s Note: My writer Tom liked these headphones so much that I won’t be receiving them back. I believe this speaks volumes.
FTC Disclosure: House of Marley LLC provided Beantown LLC with one Smile Jamaica headphone sample for review purposes. We’re not paid ambassadors. Our opinions are 100% our own.
All photographs are the copyrighted property of House of Marley LLC and/or Beantown LLC.