The headphone market is stacked with brands offering a range of wireless headphones ranging from the crazy priced Apple Airpods Max that are priced at £549 to the more budget-friendly Groov-e Ultra for £34.99.
In this review, we are looking at the latest creation from the Scandinavian brand Urbanista. The Urbanista Miami are a budget-friendly pair of ANC on-ear headphones costing £129.
Who Is Urbanista?
Sweedish brand Urbanista has been around since 2010 and all the products have been named after capital cities around the world such as London, Stockholm, Paris & Athens to name just a few, Since 2010 Urbanista can be found in 90 countries around the world. They have been inspired to design for urban people around the world all with a passion for colour, style and quality audio.
The Urbanista Miami have a striking style to them especially the Ruby Red & Teal Green versions if you want something a little toned down they also have a black or white version of the Miami headphones.
The key features are:
- Active Noise Cancellation
- Bluetooth 5.0
- On-Ear Design
- Ambient Sound Mode
- 50 Hour Battery Life
You are also given a hardshell carry case with a USB-C charge cable, 3.5mm AUX cable and aeroplane adapter for when we can travel again.
The Urbanista Miami are a well-built pair of on-ear headphones with a stunning style. The Miami comes with a matt finish aluminium design with a leather-wrapped padded headband and padded ear cups for that extra comfort. Urbanista has been very subtle with the branding with just the Urbanista logo on each cup.
The cups do swivel 180 degrees allowing you to place them on your chest when not in use or when placing them in the hardshell case. You also have an adjustable headband to offer that great fit. Unfortunately, the amount of padding on the earcup makes the cup itself a little small. So if you have larger ears the cup will press on ears meaning after long periods of use it will give you ear fatigue. However, If your ears are a good fit the padding adds to that noise cancellation as it provides a good seal around the ears.
Moving to the controls they are quite simple in design with the USB-C port on the left cup which also has that multi-function button that turns on your ANC & Ambient mode. You also have a small LED that displays a solid red light when on charge or flashing light when in pairing mode.
On the right cup above the 3.5mm AUX Port, you have 3 buttons close together with the middle button being the power, play, pause, call answering and smart assistant with a double press.
Between that control button, you have the volume buttons that also double up as track control. The buttons are close together but after a few days of use, you will find you get the hang of what each button does with ease. Urbanista has made the controls very simple to use which adds to the overall simplicity in design.
The Urbanista Miami has 3 main features: ANC, Ambient mode and an auto-pause function. This function allows you to pause the music when you lift the headphones off your ears and this will pause your music and when you place the headphones back on your head the music will restart but only when the pause has been for less than 30 seconds. Longer pause you will have to press play on the headphones and the music back on.
ANC within Miami’s is not as great as we would have hoped granted we could not do the level of testing we would do normally due to the current lockdown but testing it against unwanted outside noise and voices around my house mainly from my loud niece. The Miami did not block much of the noise I wanted it to I could still hear my niece which was a shame. If your looking for a pair of headphones with better ANC consider the Sennheiser 450BT which I feel offer a better quality ANC.
Also Read: Sennheiser 450BT Review
Switch to the Ambient mode with a press of the feature button and if you want to hear some environmental sound for example. When walking down a busy street and you want to listen to your music at the same time as having your senses of your surandings they do a very good job. It’s ideal if you want to hear cars approaching or if you want to hear a conversation your not supposed to hear.
When taking these out on a recent walk I found wind noise did bypass both ANC or Ambient modes. You get a bit of a howl in the ear which I felt affects the overall sound a little which is a shame.
A couple of disappointments when it comes to features of the Urbanista Miami you are unable to adjust the EQ like you can with the likes of Sennheiser or Jabra Products. We are told Urbanista is working on an app to allow you to adjust the EQ.
The other disappointment and what I thought was more surprising is the fact the Miami does not come with any IP rating which considering the weather patterns in the UK this seems like an own goal for Urbanista. However, they are well built so I expect if you got caught in a little rain you would be ok but if you’re expecting these to be sweat resistant for when the gyms reopen you might want to look elsewhere.
In previous reviews of urbanista products I have done in the past the audio quality has always been impressive and the Miami headphones are no different. You are given 40mm drivers that will please those who enjoy heavy bass but will also appeal to the general listeners.
When listening to tracks such as “No Roots by Alice Merton” Urbanista Miami offers a strong bass as well as really clear vocals. The guitar instrument in this song had plenty of power behind them to allow me to enjoy this song how I wanted to.
We listen to a number of different styles of music our Urbanista Miami offered a nice level of detail in the trebles. The midrange transitions nicely into the highs and the lows sound natural and well-judged. The only negative is the bass on some tracks can feel a little heavy however switch on the ANC and it quieten the overall sound which might solve that over powerful bass.
Not only can you listen to music it will come as no surprise the Urbanista Miami allows you to take calls and when I tested this I was very pleased the built-in mic was well-positioned. This allowed me to come across nice and clear to the person I was speaking to this was the case when making calls at home and also when I was on my walk.
When testing headphones I feel its such an important factor when it comes to battery life and Urbanista indicates the battery life is 50 hours when ANC is off and this drops to 40 hours when ANC is switched on. This gives the Airpods Max a run for its money which only offers 20 hours of battery life. So you’re getting twice the battery life for a fraction of the cost of Apple offering.
I have been using these headphones as my main pair for a good week now and I have only had to charge them once. You also get fast charging so a 10 min charge gave me enough battery for my trip home from work. We also get USB-C which is nice to see compared to some brands who still have the front to use micro-USB (You know who you are!)
I also found that the auto-pause sensor helped save the battery as the music did not continue when I took the headphones off for short periods. This helped keep that battery life just a bit longer compared to other headphones in the same price range. For example, the Sennheiser 450BT only offers a 30-hour battery life. So Urbanista Miami is cheaper and offers more listening time.
If you have looked at the Apple Airpods Max and like me can not justify the price I think you will be very happy with the Urbanista Miami which only costs £129 ( You can buy 4 pairs of the Miami and still have spare change compared to the Apple Airpods Max)
The Miami really looks great, offers that premium feel and also comes with that hard shell carry case that is always a tick in my box. They are also very comfy if you have the right size ears otherwise the padding can give you a little ear fatigue after a few hours of use.
Feature-wise the ANC is a little bit of a let down but they are ok considering the price but for a few extra pounds the Sennheiser 450BT offers a much better ANC offering. The Ambient mode worked well when you want to hear what was around you. Unfortunately, the lack of IP rating makes me think some people might consider this as a deal-breaker but as mentioned in this review if you get caught in some light rain I think you should be ok.
Where these headphones shine is the battery life you get a massive 50 hours when ANC is off and when ANC on you’re still getting 40 hours that is impressive. Sound-wise you get a nice overall sound profile even if the bass can be a little heavy at points but I feel for £129 I can live with that.
If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd when we can all get on that busy train to work again the Ruby Red or Teal Green colours will give you something different compared to the many pairs of black headphones you will see waiting for that train to arrive.
The Urbanista Miami are an excellent option to consider and when that app lands it will make them even better when you can customise the EQ and well worth buying.
Design: 5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Features: 3.0 out of 5.0 stars
Audio Quality: 4.0 out of 5.0 stars
Battery Life: 5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Value for Money: 5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Overall Rating: 4.4 out of 5.0 stars 4.4 Star Rating
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