iFixit Dissects Apple’s New EarPods

While those of us who pre-ordered the new iPhone 5 last Friday are absolutely dying inside to get our hands on the device for personal purposes, the folks over at iFixit are eager to receive the new handset and put it through their signature teardown. To whet their appetite in the meantime, the website has gone ahead and dissected the newly-introduced EarPods, highlighting important, improved components that the headphones boast over their lackluster predecessors.

In an attempt to see just how well the new EarPods stack up against their predecessors, iFixit was the first to take apart the accessory. After the usual step-by-step guide, iFixit reveals that the EarPods introduce significant improvements in durability as well as in sound quality.

It seems Apple had a large focus on perfecting the durability of the EarPods. In comparison to their predecessors, the EarPods offer superior construction to reduce the overall strain on the wires. For example, the on-cable remote has thicker cable wrapping at the ends (see in the picture below).

A noteworthy change made to the design is the fact that the previous all-plastic design of the cones has been replaced by paper cones surrounded by a polymer.

- We also discovered that the speaker basket has a much more refined look than previous models (see comparison in next step), with a fine mesh covering the back and symmetrically-placed vents. The basket is a critical component, as it must be rigid to maintain consistent sound quality while still being open enough to not inhibit movement of air behind the vibrating diaphragm.

These two improvements seem to be the root origin for the advertisement of improved sound quality over Apple’s previous earphone models. Although the quality does seem as if it’s evolved from the horrible, ear-wrecking sound produced by the previous earphones, the quality is still far from being on a comparable level with other better offerings.

The EarPods will come standard with the purchase of an iPhone 5, and they’re also available for order online for $29.

[Via iFixit]