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AWEI ES-16HI In-Ear Stereo Earphones Review

Good design and performance on the budget – that’s exactly what we’re expecting with AWEI’s ES-16HI – but does it deliver? Is it worth checking out for its sub Php500 price tag? Read on to find out!

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Design & Construction

Upon receiving the ES-16HI, I already had prejudice – I’m going to love this. The earphones had flat cables, an L-shaped jack and a design that’s matte black for the most part – things that I enjoy with any brand of earphones. These mean that it won’t tangle as much, the jack won’t pose trouble when I put my smartphone in my pocket, and its color scheme will blend with almost anything.

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But it’s part blue too – and I think the shade is a tad too cheap for my taste. Some glossy parts of the earphones such as the volume control are also giving off a non-premium vibe, but I’m not really complaining since these aren’t positioned to be premium audio equipment. On the positive note, I really like how the wood looks like on these since it’s very refreshing to the eyes. Sadly, they don’t blend well together with the blue, but that’s a minor complaint.

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The volume control and the mic work really well too, and they’re nice to have for earphones this caliber. Some more expensive earphones don’t even have these, and some aren’t as reliable. If there’s one weird thing I noticed, the control was on the left cable when it’s usually on the right, but that’s basically it.

Audio Quality

Listening to the ES-16HI was, at most, a good experience. I listen to a variety of genres on the go, and even some podcasts at times, and I’m glad to say I didn’t miss a lot of detail listening to songs like Uptown Funk, Arctic Monkeys and The 1975 records, and even the 50 Shades of Grey soundtrack. I can hear the same instruments equally, only with a slight bias for bass – but that’s it. Sound is just the way I want it to be – mostly neutral.

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Where the AWEI ES-16HI fails however, is volume intensity and how rich the quality is. Usually, when I plug in audio equipment to my laptop, my ears should already start exploding at 100% volume, but with the ES-16HI, I felt like I was listening to my phone at my normal listening volume with other earphones (max). And then, when I plug the ES-16HI to my phone at max volume, I felt like I was listening to other earphones at 50% volume. I tried to max it out so that I can’t hear outside noise, but I just can’t.

Richness, I think we can overlook, especially when you’re given the price of just Php390. I’d like to think of the AWEI ES-16HI as the jack of all trades in audio quality, but it’s surely the master of none.

AWEI ES-16Hi specs:
In-ear bass stereo headphones
Volume Control
8mm driver
Impedance: 16 ohms
Frequency Response: 20Hz-20kHz
Sensitivity: 85dB
3.5 mm L-shaped audio jack
1.2 m cable length, flat


I’m not so sure what to feel about the AWEI ES-16HI. I like a lot of things about it, but the design and the volume intensity are deal breakers for me. The design is functional in almost any way that I want it to be, but it lacks sophistication. As for the sound output, I personally don’t think I can live with earphones that allow me to hear noise because the volume is too weak.

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However, I do like the details that I find in the music, and most of all, I think the price of around Php390 is great! The AWEI ES-16HI may not be for everyone, but it’s going to be great enough for some.

What we liked about it:

  • Flat cables
  • L-shaped jack
  • Matte colors
  • Wood design
  • Detailed and complete audio, almost neutral
  • Affordable price

What we didn’t like about it:

  • Wood and blue don’t match
  • Lacks volume desired

Bob Freking occasionally contributes articles to the website. He is a UST Graduate of Commerce & Business Administration, Major in Marketing Management, and a full-time Sith Lord with three dragons.

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7 Responses

  1. John Dominique Amara says:

    Where could I buy this?

  2. Audiophile says:

    Wow! wood and blue is a perfect match. I would buy two of these sh1ts! nice!

  3. meme1983 says:

    Bought this pair at droidhero at di ako nagsisi. P390 ? damn parang mamahalin yung earphone ko.

  4. wew says:

    Hi, can you review g cube active ibuds talk? I saw it in the store, but sadly I can’t see any review on the internet. I’m not sure if it’s worth it, since I’m not a hardcore audiophile.

  5. Shawie says:

    does this have a microphone? Thanks

  6. Liessa says:

    i have this earphone https://www.goods.ph/awei-es-10ty-3-5mm-super-bass-noise-isolation-in-ear-earphones-grey-70716.html and so far i’m satisfied with sounds and looks. super cool. been using it since march 2017.

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