Tags plantronics

The best Apple Watch headphones and earphones

Up until now, Bluetooth wireless audio was purely optional for Apple’s devices: every iPad, iPhone, and iPod has shipped with a 3.5mm audio port to connect with wired earbuds and headphones. The Apple Watch is different: it’s Apple’s first fully wireless device, with no user-accessible ports to connect accessories. That limitation is actually a positive for headphones, since tethering your wrist to your head with a cable would look silly, and isn’t ergonomically ideal. Thankfully, Bluetooth headphones have come a long way over the past few years, shrinking from gangly and boxy earmuffs into earphones comfortable enough for workouts.

Since one of the Apple Watch’s major selling points is fitness functionality, this quick guide to the best Apple Watch headphones and earphones focuses mostly on accessories that can work anywhere, rather than options you can’t wear while exercising. But I’ll include some larger options, too, just in case you’re picking a pair for non-athletic use, or to share with your iPad, iPhone, iPod, or Mac…

 

One of Apple’s official options, Beats by Dr. Dre’s Powerbeats 2 Wireless ($200), is stylish and specifically designed for athletic use. IPX4 sweat- and water-resistant, it uses ear hooks to keep the dual-driver earphones close to your ear canals no matter what. You’ll get 6 hours of battery life from a full charge, with a quick charge feature to restore 1 hour of run time in only 15 minutes.

backbeatgo2

Plantronics’ BackBeat Go 2 ($60) is an ultra-affordable pair of Bluetooth earphones with some limitations. Put aside the wonderfully appealing price point, and you’re looking at very lightweight, comfortable, sweatproof in-ear headphones that can be left around your neck and used anywhere. On their own, they promise 4.5 hours of battery life — a little optimistic — but a charging case (sold in a premium bundle) can keep them going for 14.5 hours. While they have an integrated microphone, it doesn’t work well outdoors, and the ear stabilization isn’t as resilient as in some rivals.

bluebudsx

JayBird’s BlueBuds X ($126-$156) effectively redefined the Bluetooth earphone category, as the first pair of wireless in-ears to look and feel virtually identical to wired in-ears — like the BackBeat Go 2, they squeeze their wireless transmitters and an 8-hour battery into relatively small housings. BlueBuds X has the edge on optional ear stabilization, though, as well as microphone performance, and has a lifetime warranty against sweat damage. The prices vary based on the color you pick.

 

mdr-ex31

If ear stabilization isn’t critically important to you, but you want to filter out ambient gym noise, Sony’s new MDR-EX31BN ($90-$92) uses a clip-on capsule to offer active noise cancellation and extended run time. The noise-canceler promises 98% reduction of nearby sound, with a nearly 10-hour rechargeable battery. White, red, and black versions are available, all with very good audio quality for the price point.

 

bosesoundlink

Bose hasn’t yet released a pair of in-ear wireless headphones, but its SoundLink Around-Ear ($250, left) and SoundLink On-Ear ($250, center and right) are very highly-rated larger headphones, obviously not designed for athletic use. Both have built-in microphones for phone calling, though they notably don’t have the active noise-cancellation circuitry found in Bose’s QuietComfort wired headphones. The On-Ears offer 15 hours of play time, versus 7 hours of play time for the larger Around-Ears.

 

Apple’s over-ear Beats Studio Wireless models ($335-$360, left and center) are some of the most expensive Bluetooth headphones on the market, but they’re also amongst the best-looking. Like the Bose SoundLinks, they’re not designed for athletic use, but have plenty of other assets, including active noise cancellation, a collection of great colors/textures, and a 20-hour run time between recharges. They’re also ultra-comfortable. The smaller Beats Solo 2 Wireless ($236, right) preserves much of the same styling in an on-ear footprint, delivering 12-hour battery life without active noise cancellation.

Check out our other Apple Watch roundups:


Filed under: AAPL Company, Apple Watch, Buying Guides, General, iOS Devices, Reviews Tagged: Apple watch, Backbeat Go 2, Beats, bluetooth headphones, Bose, earphones, Jaybird, MDR-EX31BN, Plantronics, Powerbeats 2 Wireless, Solo 2 HD, Sony, SoundLink, Studio Wireless

For more news on AAPL Company, iOS Devices, and Reviews continue reading at 9to5Mac.

What do you think? Discuss "The best Apple Watch headphones and earphones" with our community.

Comments Off on The best Apple Watch headphones and earphones

Photo

Jeremy Horwitz

April 16th

Apple

Mac

Plantronics BackBeat Go: The Tiny, Cheap Bluetooth Headset-Buds You’ve Been Waiting For [Bluetooth]

For $100, the new Plantronics BackBeat Go Bluetooth headset isn't just super-cheap—it's probably the best-designed, most-convenient set we've ever seen. This is a headset that thinks it's a set of earbuds. More »


Comments Off on Plantronics BackBeat Go: The Tiny, Cheap Bluetooth Headset-Buds You’ve Been Waiting For [Bluetooth]

Photo

Mario Aguilar

April 3rd

Uncategorized

The Best Bluetooth Headset [Battlemodo]

You know those jerks that walk around with little satellites coming out of their ears, feeling all superior? Well, you could be one of them! And why not be be the most superior one, with the most superior headset? More »


Comments Off on The Best Bluetooth Headset [Battlemodo]

Photo

brent rose

November 3rd

Uncategorized

The Best Bluetooth Headset [Battlemodo]

You know those jerks that walk around with little satellites coming out of their ears, feeling all superior? Well, you could be one of them! And why not be be the most superior one, with the most superior headset? More »


Comments Off on The Best Bluetooth Headset [Battlemodo]

Photo

brent rose

November 3rd

Uncategorized

Nuance Dragon Dictate 2.5 for Mac review

Voice recognition. Or, more specifically, speech recognition. It's one of those technological wonders that we all seem to take for granted, while simultaneously throwing laughter its way for not being nearly sophisticated enough. Anyone that's used an early generation Ford SYNC system -- or pretty much any vehicular voice command system -- knows exactly what we're getting at. While processing speeds and user interfaces have made great strides in the past handful of years, voice recognition has managed to continually disappoint. It's not that things aren't improving, it's just that they aren't improving at the same rate as the hardware and software surrounding them. Even today, most new automobiles have to be spoken to loudly, pointedly and directly, and even then it's a crapshoot as to whether or not your command will be recognized and acted upon.

For as much as we complain, we totally get it. Teaching a computer program how to recognize, understand and act upon the movement of human vocal chords is a Herculean task. Throw in nearly unlimited amounts of dialect and regional variation with even a single language, and it's a wonder that programs such as Nuance's Dragon Dictate even exist. Teaching a vehicle how to route calls, adjust volume and tweak a radio station is one thing, but having a program that turns actual speech into presentable documents requires a heightened level of accuracy. The newest build of Dragon Dictate for Mac (v2.5) allows users to seamlessly combine dictation with mouse and keyboard input in Microsoft Word 2011; it also gives yappers the ability to more finely control how Dragon formats text such as dates, times, numbers and addresses, while a free iOS app turns your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch into a wireless microphone. We recently pushed our preconceived notions about this stuff aside in order to spend a solid week relying on our voice instead of our fingertips -- read on to see how it turned on.

Continue reading Nuance Dragon Dictate 2.5 for Mac review

Nuance Dragon Dictate 2.5 for Mac review originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 06 Sep 2011 16:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |   | Email this | Comments

Comments Off on Nuance Dragon Dictate 2.5 for Mac review

Photo

Darren Murph

September 6th

Apple
line
May 2016
M T W T F S S
« Apr    
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031