Page 4 - Conclusion
As I have mentioned from the start, consistency in electronics is not an easy thing to find, especially with the changing nature of technology as a whole. After taking a look at Creative's Outlier Air today, there is a mostly positive set of outcomes. From the outset, the Creative Outlier Air gives off a good impression. Its build quality is a strong point with the durable hard-plastic earphones and large rubber sides on each side to help users identify the multi-function button on each side. The metal charging case is also smooth and slides open in a polished fashion. Overall, the Outlier Air earphones are a bit bulkier than I would like, as they protrude out quite a bit. However, they do fit generally well. Support for a wide variety of codecs, sweatproof IPX5 rating, and long battery life are all present features that are pluses in my book. They may not have hit the rated ten hours, but the Creative Outlier Air still last the longest on a single charge compared to other true wireless earphones we have tested. In terms of sound quality, the Creative Outlier Air are a bass-forward pair of headphones. The Creative Outlier Air's bass-heavy V-shape sound signature is still a fun sounding pair of earphones, but there are some deficiencies here, including the lacking soundstage and concerns about brightness in the midrange. However, my biggest concern with the Creative Outlier Air are found in day-to-day use. For one, the large multi-function buttons required quite a bit of force, which often meant jamming one side into the side of your head before the button would respond. Due to the force required to actuate as well, double clicking or holding down the button was both inconvenient and uncomfortable for the wearer. I would have preferred some sort of tap interface instead. Secondly, the pairing process is a bit quirky and I could only ever get one side's battery life to report. Finally, latency for casual video watching is not too bad, but it is noticeable for other applications like videos or games. At press time, the Creative Outlier Air can be had for around $60 USD, which puts them in a pretty competitive price range, but improvements in its execution would really cement the Outlier Air above the rest.
Creative provided this product to APH Networks for the purpose of evaluation.
APH Networks Review Focus Summary:
7/10 means Great product with many advantages and certain insignificant drawbacks, but should be considered before purchasing.
6/10 means A product with its advantages, but drawbacks should not be ignored before purchasing.
-- Final APH Networks Numeric Rating is 6.6/10
Please note that the APH Networks Numeric Rating system is based off our proprietary guidelines in the Review Focus, and should not be compared to other publications.
The Creative Outlier Air is a fun sounding, bass-heavy pair of earphones.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Subjective Audio Analysis