We recently had the opportunity to check out the FIIL Canviis Pro wireless on-ear headphones. We were impressed, mostly.
These $349 headphones not only look beautiful, they also sound good. They also include some nifty listening tools not seen on other headphones, including the ability to store songs. However, these extras might not be necessary for most people.
What’s FIIL, you ask? Find out here in our review of the FIIL Canviis Pro wireless on-ear headphones.
A New Player
Long popular in China, FIIL recently unveiled its first lineup of audio products for the U.S. market. Among these mid-priced products are the over-ear Iicon, in-ear Carat, and on-ear Canviis and Canviis Pro.
Like many in the U.S., I had never heard of FIIL before receiving a marketing email from them a few months ago. Because the Canviis Pro looks a lot like Apple’s popular Beats Solo 3, at least from a distance, I decided this was the pair worth reviewing.
My decision was a good one. Primarily made of durable plastic and metal, the Canviis Pro cans are well-made. Better still, the leather cushions feel great and remain comfortable, even after hours of use.
After some digging online, I realized the Canviis Pro was first sold in China and as a successful Kickstarter project as the FIIL Diva.
I haven’t figured out why the name changed once it launched stateside. Nonetheless, both products look the same, right down to the logos on both cups that glow softly when the device is on. This is a nice touch, although not one you can see when wearing them, although your friends might like them.
FIIL Canviis Pro: A Review
The FIIL Canviis Pro includes some useful features that make it worth considering. These include the ability to listen to music for up to 33 hours between charges. During testing, I needed to recharge my review unit twice. The battery lasted 31 and 34 hours on each charge.
I was also impressed with the product’s touch controls. From the right earcup, you can adjust volumes and skip tracks by just sliding your fingers thanks to the built-in sensors.
Auto Play and Pause is another useful feature. When you take the headphones off, they pause automatically, which activates the power-saving mode. Once you put the headphones back on, the music continues.
The FIIL Canviis Pro’s biggest selling point over the less expensive Canviis headphones ($249) is the ability to store up to 1,000 songs directly on the headphones thanks to the built-in 4GB of storage.
The headphones support a lot of different song formats, including lossless FLAC and ALAC files. To add and remove this local music, you’ll need to connect the Canviis Pro to your computer and drop and drag files onto the USB drive that appears. You can find out more information about each track through the FIIL app.
Being able to add music to your headphones is an interesting idea. However, it’s probably one not necessary for most users. Few of us are ever without our smartphones, even on walks or runs, and music streaming services already offer offline listening.
The Canviis Pro’s more impressive (and practical) feature, “My AudioFilter,” allow you to adjust the music based on your surroundings. The available modes are Active Noise-Canceling (ANC), Open, Monitor, and Windy. There’s also “3D Sound” DSP effects.
On-ear headphones don’t always play successfully with ANC. In this case, the combination works mostly well although I did notice occasional drops. Open mode maximises ambient sound awareness with much success, while Monitor mode highlights voice frequencies.
Finally, with the Windy mode, the headphones attempt to lessen the noise caused by Mother Nature by adding more clarity. This mode mostly works, although I’m unconvinced it would benefit most users. Do you enjoy listening to music when you’re physically in the middle of a storm?
You change the DSP effects for your headphones via the FIIL app. In doing so, you can emulate listening spaces of different sizes. Currently, this includes hall, theater, or living room. You can also turn this setting off.
This feature, like local storage, is a worthy add-on. Is it necessary, however? Probably not. During my tests, I mostly kept the DSP effects in the off position.
What About the Overall Sound?
I was mostly impressed with the sounds the Canviis Pro provided. Notes were clear, but not overpowering. If you obsess over bass, you’d be wise to look elsewhere, however.
The Bottom Line
While I loved reviewing the $349 Canviis Pro headphones, I do question whether they’re worth the premium price of admission.
For $100 less, you can buy the regular Canviis headphones which ship without “3D Sound” DSP effects and 4GB of storage. At $249, these sound like a better choice for most users.