UNBOXED: Reviewing the House of Marley Liberate Air Truly Wireless Earphones
Seeing brands give back to the environment is truly admirable, and it’s something that is core to House of Marley’s mission. The audio brand creates all of its products from mindfully sourced materials including bamboo, FSC certified wood, recyclable aluminum, plastic and fabrics. In addition to that, they’ve contributed to the planting of 146,000 trees since 2017 as part of their partnership with the One Tree Planted Organization.
In July of 2019, House of Marley marked their first step into the truly wireless earbud market with the Liberate Air earphones. Like the brand’s other offerings, the earbuds are made from sustainable materials like bamboo, recycled silicone, and fabric. House of Marley calls them “the perfect companion on a hike or long bike ride by the beach.”
Unfortunately though, my first pair of Liberate Airs would not allow me to pair the earbuds to one another no matter what I tried. I was only able to listen out of one earbud at a time since the option to pair to the “headset” never appeared. House of Marley was kind enough to send me a new pair for review and a shipping label to return the faulty pair. I can only assume they had me send the earbuds back not only to investigate the problem, but also to avoid waste. Both reasons I totally respect!
Even before I was able to get the full listening experience, everything about the product seemed very well thought-out. The woven charger has a striped pattern that matches the aesthetic of the earbuds. It’s also a USB-C which is a much appreciated charging style. The case is also a direct reflection of the earbuds with a wood overlay against matte black. On the bottom of the case, you can see little brown fibers mixed into the design that really make it feel authentically eco-friendly.
On the second go-around, pairing and connecting both earbuds to Bluetooth was simple. Although I do prefer auto pairing, the extra step of connecting to one earbud then waiting for the “headset” option to pop up really wasn’t that bad. In the end, connecting to Bluetooth and pairing the earbuds took maybe 20 seconds.
The sound is what I’d consider to be a “one size fits most” listening style. It’s crisp. It’s clear. And you don’t feel like you’re getting too much or too little of something. In addition, you can reach pretty much any volume you’re looking for both high or low. The touch controls were easy to use but will definitely take some time to remember what does what. Phone calls came through just as clear as the music, and those on the other end seemed to have no problem hearing me.
The Liberate Air offers nine hours of playtime, which is one of the highest out there for true wireless. With the charging case, you’ll get another 32 hours of on-the-go listening. Not to mention the earbuds have an IPX4 water resistance rating and the total weight of the product is a mere 72 grams so it’s small enough to fit in your pocket and hold up against outdoor conditions.
The Liberate Air earbuds come in at $150, which puts them on the higher end for true wireless earbuds, but their sound, style, battery life and sustainability make them worthy of their price tag.