The Rowkin Surge Charge wire-free headphones are the new version of the Surge wire-free headphones that I reviewed back in late 2017. Like the original version, the new Rowkin Surge Charge is aimed at an active lifestyle. What has changed in the second iteration? What improvements have been made?
Design And Features
The Rowkin Surge Charge earbuds are designed with complete and mirrored controls on each earbud. The controls include (+) plus, (-) minus and (o) power buttons, that control all of the call and music functions. The top (+) button works as “volume up” and “track forwards”, and the bottom (-) button works as “volume down” and “track backwards”. The (o) power button also works to stop and play music, and to answer and to disconnect calls.
Each earbud has it’s own microUSB charging port for when you need to charge them. This does of course mean that to charge them both equally at the same time, you’ll need access to two microUSB cables. This isn’t a big deal to me as I have many of them laying around, but for some people, this might feel like a slight inconvenience. What would have been nice is to have the ability to plug the microUSB cable directly into the case the Surge Charge come with and they charge directly within the case itself. Maybe Rowkin will add this in their next set of earbuds.
As far as the packaging, it’s pretty basic stuff. You’re given multiple size ear tips, USB-A to microUSB charging cable, and a carrying/charging case. The earbuds can function without the case if you’re looking to save some dough. Rowkin offers them sans the case for $20 less (just called the Surge).
The Rowkin Surge Charge are also sweat proof and water resistant, which is an important feature for most people as they will be using these in a situation where they are sweating. Such as working out, mowing the yard or gardening. Very important that a bit of sweat won’t ruin your earbuds and cause them to no longer work. If you’re out riding your bike and it starts raining, again, no worries, the Surge Charge won’t malfunction due to a bit of water.
Battery life is something of major importance when it comes to wireless earbuds and with the previous version, the Rowkin Surge, I managed to get about 5 hours of battery life. I was expecting to get about the same with the Surge Charge. I can say that on average I manage to get just under 5 hours of battery life using the Surge Charge. I was hoping for a bit of an increase over the original Surge, but just under 5 hours for wireless earbuds is decent especially considering again that you are paying just over $100 so it’s fair not to expect some massive 12 hours of battery life or anything crazy like that.
The Surge Charge’s audio quality didn’t really surprise me due to the fact that I’ve experienced other products of theirs and was expecting nothing but good sound quality just like in past products. Bass, in particular, is authoritative and robust. It does punch and have a memorable impact without being bloaty or interfering with the lower mid-range, a skill that many fail at. The mid-range is also nicely done. It isn’t pushed back like in the common V-shape frequency curve. While not as in-your-face as the bass, its contribution to the sound signature is significant.
As is always the case with any set of earbuds or headphones, I test with various genres of music such as alternative, a bit of 80’s music and some country. All genres that I tested work wonderfully and gave me an overall good to great sound quality.
The Rowkin Surge Charge are a bit large in size compared to a lot of wireless earbuds and this alone might turn people away from them. For me, I don’t mind as it’s more about sound quality and battery life, and that’s something that Rowkin is good at delivering. Throw in the fact that the price is only $119.99 and I feel you can’t really go wrong. You get a great, comfortable pair of wireless earbuds that can be used for working out, working around the house or many other things.