AppleTell’s latest review from the Scuderia Ferrari line is the R100i, our first in-ear canal model to be reviewed. Like its on- and over-ear brethren, the R100i puts that distinctive Ferrari shield logo front and center, while the sound delivers the same punch you expect when flooring it in one of Ferrari’s cars.
These make a much more subtle statement than the P200 and R300 models we’ve reviewed previously, thanks in part to their smaller design. So, if you’re a Ferrari fan but don’t want such an overt display of your brand loyalty, the R100i will give you the branding with a dose of restraint.
The R10oi still delivers the distinctive black/white and red color scheme that characterizes the Scuderia line, but it does so in a much smaller package and with more visual restraint. Red is limited to a subtle stripe around the outer edge of the headphone body, and there’s no faux carbon fiber print in sight (except on the included carrying case). The headphone body is mainly plastic, which is unusual for in-ears in the sub $200 price range, but the construction is solid. The clamshell carrying case is the best in the entire Scuderia lineup, with a soft fabric lined interior and small mesh pouch that lets you carry additional items such as earbud tips or an extra headphone cord. The inline microphone and volume controls are also in the perfect spot near your chin for easy use and microphone pickup.
For some reason, the idea of driving a Ferrari remind me of Ferris Beuller’s Day Off, which puts me in the mood to rock some ’80s music. The R1ooi were happy to comply, delivering deep bass and clear mids that showed off the electronic bass in songs like “Axel F,” while David Bowie’s voice shone with breathy melodrama in selections from the Labyrinth soundtrack such as “As the World Falls Down” and “Magic Dance.” More modern songs work well, too, and whatever music you listen to will be delivered with great clarity, as the R100i has an effective ported design that eliminates muddiness. The sound overall is warm, not bright, and the warmth increases during the burn-in period.
The R100i’s design has been described as snub nosed, which is accurate. This design could lead to some potential discomfort, as the headphone body itself is fairly tall and the audio channel is not very long (meaning the stubby body will be pressing into the bottom of your ear). Logic3 made a great design decision, though, by including not only the usual circular tips, but also a set of small and large double-flanged tips that provide additional noise isolation and (most importantly) a longer bridge between the headphone and your ear canal. I wasn’t able to achieve a comfortable fit with the regular tips, but the double-flanged tips held the headphones just far enough outside my ear so the body didn’t press against my ear.
The R100i is a five-A rated set of headphones based on their sound quality, clarity, and comfortable fit. Unfortunately, there’s one drawback to them, and that’s the cord design. It’s a braided nylon tangle-free cord, but as with all in-ear noise isolating headphones, the cord transmits sound directly into your ear canal. That scratchy nylon generates a great deal of sound, and it’s enough of a flaw to dock the R100 one rating point. While all in-ears suffer from this problem, some manufacturers compensate by deadening the sound where the cord meets the headphone body; the R1ooi is lacking such a design feature.
Otherwise, these are great headphones that deliver stellar sound.
Provides: In-ear audio reproduction with inline remote and microphone
Developer: Ferrari by Logic 3
Compatibility: Any device with standard 1/8″ headphone jack; remote is compatible with most Apple devices