JBL Flip 3 Review

JBL Flip 3

The JBL Flip 3 is an affordable, ultraportable small Bluetooth speaker with great sound a good battery life. While eclipsed by newer Bluetooth speakers, the JBL Flip 3 is a solid option because it gets all of the important things right.

JBL Flip 4 Review

JBL Flip 4

The JBL Flip 4 is firmly in the ‘small speaker’ category, which comes with its own sets of pros of cons. It fits easily into your hand, has phenomenal battery life, and weighs just 1.13 pounds (515 grams), but we can’t expect it to compete with a larger Bluetooth speaker when it comes to filling a large room with sound. Of course, those larger speakers typically command a price nearly double the Flip 4’s competitive price, so there’s no doubt the Flip 4 fits many people’s needs perfectly.

Anker SoundCore 2 Review

Anker SoundCore 2

Anker is perhaps best known for its chargers, power banks, and cables, but with the release of their SoundCore Bluetooth speaker range, they’ve taken the portable Bluetooth speaker market by storm.

The Anker SoundCore 2 is a budget Bluetooth speaker that gives you as much bang for your buck as possible. Rivaling much more expensive small Bluetooth speakers in sound quality, battery life, and features, the Anker SoundCore 2 impresses on a number of fronts.

Bose SoundLink Micro Review

Bose SoundLink Micro

The Bluetooth speaker market is full of devices that can be described as small Bluetooth speakers, but few are as slim and p¬ortable as the Bose SoundLink Micro. Can such a tiny speaker offer comparable sound quality and features to larger devices like the JBL Flip?

Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Review

Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 - Sound Quality

The Momentum 2.0s are a good-looking piece of equipment, no doubt about it. But the wireless headphone market is tough. Let’s take a look in this Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 review and see if the rest of the product can match the quality of the leather covering and overall aesthetic.

Bose QuietComfort 35 Review

Bose QuietComfort 35

The Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones are a staple of noise-canceling headphones and for good reason. While there are more modern headphones available for purchase that might have a few extra bells and whistles, virtually all other noise-canceling headphones are compared against these classic earcups and for good reason.

Bose QuietComfort 25 Review

Bose QuietComfort 25

Most top-tier headphones are wireless these days, but there are a few holdouts, like the Bose QuietComfort 25s, that still retain their wired functionality. Let’s examine them in this Bose QuietComfort 25 review and see if they can compete with their more modern, wireless brethren.

Audio Technica ATH-M50X Review

Audio Technica ATH-M50X

Wired-only headphones are rapidly starting to vanish from the market. But the M50Xs stand against the tide of change, making their mark without transitioning over to Bluetooth connectivity. In this Audio-Technica ATH-M50X Review, we’ll examine whether or not they can measure up to more modern competition.

JBL Xtreme 2 Review

JBL Xtreme 2 Styling

The original JBL Xtreme released in 2015 was a smash hit and became JBL’s most popular portable Bluetooth speaker. It sounded great, it was versatile, and it was super durable.

It’s for good reason then that it’s sequel — the JBL Xtreme 2 — has been hotly anticipated. But is it as good as the original Xtreme and should you consider upgrading to the new version?

Bose SoundSport Free Review

Bose Soundsport Free

Bose Soundsport Free Review

The SoundSport Free ‘buds are built with endurance to satisfy an athlete.

Bose Soundsport Free Review

Plus

  • Organized charging case
  • Excellent battery life
  • Comfortable fit

Minus

  • High-end sound can irritate
  • Clunky aesthetic

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Introduction

While splurging for a pair of truly wireless in-ear headphones sounds like a great idea, it’s harder to find a good experience when you actually get to testing buds out. Wouldn’t you know it, but it’s difficult for manufacturers to pack excellent audio equipment with a Bluetooth receiver into a small earbud casing.

This is an even harder balance to appreciate for earbuds for athletes. These buds have to be comfortable and functional, all without ballooning in size.

The Bose SoundSport Free Wireless Earbuds are the latest attempt to balance all of these aspects. Though they’re pricey they do have a lot of excellent qualities to justify every dollar. While there’s nothing revolutionary about the earbuds, all of its features have been designed with intent.

What’s in the Box

Once you’ve opened the box, you’ll see everything tucked neatly into the charging case. The Bose SoundSport Free Wireless Headphones are packaged in this stylish, tubular container with pre-sized slots for the earbuds themselves and the included accessories. It has a micro USB port to build up a charge; it’s this charge that eventually powers your SoundSport buds once you slot them into place.

The case is compact, has a securing clasp, and provides enough room for everything. It’s a perfect portable carrier for the buds and everything else.

Shape and Build

Right off the bat, you’ll notice that the SoundSports are a little bigger and clunkier than you might expect from sporty earbuds. The bigger casing is part of what lets Bose pack decent auditory equipment inside. Athletes shouldn’t worry too much about the aesthetics of their earbuds, anyway.

Extra Tips

The only accessories are two pairs of StayHear+ ear tips. These wing tips are interchangeable with the ones installed on the buds by default. These are perfect for ensuring a great fit even if you have smaller or larger ears than average.

The tips are flexible and comfortable and are part of what make the Bose SoundSport Free buds a great choice for athletes. They’re not totally soundproof. But that’s actually a good point for runners or those who need to pay attention to the environment while they listen to a workout playlist. Safe exercise is just as critical as great music.

Material

The Bose SoundSport Free buds are made of durable plastic and high-grade IPX4-certified materials. Don’t get them wet, though. They’re not waterproof, aside from the usual sweat you’ll work up from exercise.

Features and Design

The Bose SoundSport Free earbuds wirelessly pair together quickly. In terms of connectivity, both buds can join together and reconnect snappily if they lose synch with one another. However, maintaining that connection is another story.

The left earbud, in particular, can sometimes lose connection or fizzle out of focus. But this is always fixable and breaks in music are usually minor. It’s not a huge deal for earbuds that are made for runners and athletes. We might not choose these earbuds for music majors, though.

Battery Life

The battery life offered by the Bose SoundSport Free buds is pretty great. Most true wireless earbuds only last for between three and four hours, whereas the Bose SoundSport earbuds can playback music for around five hours at a full charge. Lower volume can easily translate to a playback time of five and a half hours or more.

The charging base can provide two charges for the buds if it’s full on power, too. With this in mind, total playback time from start to finish with the SoundSports is around 15 or so hours before you need to plug the case in.

Fully charged, the base can hold two full charges for the Bose SoundSport Free  wireless earbuds.

Of course, it’s always a good idea to keep the earbuds plugged into their case slots when they’re not in use to achieve extended hours of battery life. But all this playback time is a great feature for those of us who forget to do that more often than not.

Be aware that the charging case requires a micro-USB port, so consider getting an adapter for plugging into wall sockets if you haven’t already.

The Bose SoundSport Free App

Any Bose SoundSport Free purchase comes with access to the Bose Connect app. While there’s the usual assortment of advertisements and personalization options, the biggest advantage is the “find my ‘buds” function. This feature sounds a loud “beep” from both earbuds, so be sure to remove either of the two in your ear before you try to find its lost sibling.

Sound Quality

So how do the Bose SoundSport Free buds sound?

Anyone who’s compared earbuds before will recognize that these produce excellent high-end sound quality. They also maintain a strong low-end performance that notably lacks bass. The higher sounds of your playlist tracks might seem too detailed for comfort depending on your preference.

The SoundSport Free buds give more power and attention to higher sounds rather than the mid-range.

The lows are particularly nice for workout songs that rely a lot on steady, deep beats. Like we mentioned before, the lack of real noise sealing is important for workout safety, so the SoundSports Wireless attempt to compensate by producing a lot of low-end sound profile with each replication to help reduce ambient noise.

Mid-range sounds aren’t super emphasized by the Bose SoundSport Free wireless buds, leaving more power and attention for the higher end of the spectrum. High sounds resonate satisfyingly, although the detail provided by the speakers can become a bit irritating on certain tracks. Voices and guitars sound excellent, while tracks with violins can grate on the ears a bit.

Conclusion

Overall, the Bose SoundSport Free Wireless Earbuds are a good choice for athletes of all types and styles. Their shape and comfort are appreciable throughout a workout session and they have some great features to make losing them or misplacing them harder than otherwise.

The battery life of the buds is noteworthy and the charging case is a nice organizational solution so you don’t toss the buds somewhere and forget them immediately after. The sound is more than acceptable for workout playlists, although something more robust and with a better sound seal is needed for proper music appreciation.

Overall, these are a pair of quality athletic true wireless earbuds with a chunky price tag. They’re worthwhile only if you’ll make good use of the charging station, battery life, and comfort StayHear+ tips.

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