HELM's 5.0 TrueWireless Earbuds-Review (MSRP $129.99)

     The newest models from all the different smartphone manufacturers donít include a headphone jack which is necessary to plug-in wired earphones. So like it or not you will soon need to go wireless. The Helm 5.0 True Wireless is a set of earbuds you might want to consider. They are a newer model with many advances since the original HELM True Wireless Earbuds were released. They will work equally as well with your Apple or Android smartphone. See photos.
     When you look at photo 1 the first thing you probably noticed is these earbuds have ear wings. These appendages help keep them from falling out during hard workouts on a running path or in the gym. See photo 2. You also receive a selection of ear gels to use and if you select the ones that give you the best fit then the wings and gels perform together to keep these buds in place during the hardest workouts. These HELM 5.0 earbuds are IPX4 rated which makes them resistant to splashing water, sweat, and mud. If you are a marathon runner they might be the perfect fit for your activities.
     Of course small technology has to have small batteries but fully charged these buds gave me a little over 6 hours of play time which included two phone calls. Their carrying case is a charger, see photo 3, and when you place the buds back into the case they quickly replenish their charge to be ready for their next use. The case has enough power to bring total use time to about 30 hours before the case will need to be recharged. Each earbud has one button and the chart on the left explains how you use these buttons to answer calls, adjust volume, and switch tracks.

Reasons to Drool
During testing I found them to be very comfortable to wear, easy to pair with your phone, good sound reproduction of my music and videos, and they also had good volume. When you take them out of their case they instantly turn on and automatically reconnect to your smartphone and the charging case automatically shuts them off when you place them back inside. The HELM manual illustration shows you specific specifications that will be of interest to those of you who are audiophiles.

Not So Cool
With only one tiny button on each earbud you need to single, double, or even triple press the button to control different features. See the illustration again it shows you when a single double or triple press is needed to control the buds functions. I found this minimalist approach to control very difficult to use when I tried to raise or lower the volume and switch tracks and this factor alone pulled my rating down to 3.5 stars. I also found the case hard to open and kind of large to slip into my pants pocket.
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By Alan J. Pierce EdD
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