I recently gifted myself the JayBird BlueBuds X Bluetooth Sports Headphones for listening to great music during my multi-hour sessions of running, cycling and stairclimbing. I loved them so much, I decided to write a nice big detailed review about them and also help other fitness freaks in finding the best headphones for their training sessions. They are really awesome, I am listening to music on them right now, while typing this article for you, grab one for yourself quickly, as Amazon.com is currently offering $30 discount on the BlueBuds X and free shipping!:-)
When I started looking for headphones for my workouts, I had a few things in mind:
1. Wireless: They should be wireless and have great signal quality, as my old Nokia headset used to have problems in connecting to the phone and the connection used to drop a few times.
2. Long Battery Life: They should have a long battery life, enough to last marathon or longer runs and full-day cycling rides.
3. Sweatproof: They should be waterproof or at least water-resistant, as I sweat a lot.
4. Secure Fitting: They should have some kind of secure fitting mechanism that makes them stay in the ears during runs and stairclimbing sessions.
5. Background voices and vehicle horns: They should allow me to hear sounds, like of people calling me, or of car horns. And still yet have awesome sound quality and noise reduction.
6. Answer and Make calls: They should allow me to talk on the phone will cycling, slow running and stairclimbing.
I was worried whether a single earphone will be able to fulfill all of these requirements as the earphones I was finding initially, were only fulfilling 2 or 3 of these requirements, but thankfully, the BlueBuds X perform great in all of the above areas!
Here’s how the pair of JayBird BlueBuds X fulfill each and every requirement stated above:
1. SignalPlus™: JayBird’s SignalPlus™ technology claims that it allows us to keep the device on left/right side, above/below waist and even in the bag when working out in a room or in a gym. They claim that even at a good distance there won’t be any signal droppage.
Personal Experience: I was so excited about all these features that I tried this feature within an hour of receiving the product. I kept the phone that was streaming the music to the earbuds in my bedroom and then walked till the living room with the BlueBuds in my ears and the music kept playing perfectly until I was about 30 feet / 9 metres away from the phone. This was achieved even though there was no direct line-of-sight, the bedroom door was open though. Even during my runs, they were connected and playing music 100% of the time, they were perfect!
2. 8 Hour BatteryHD™: JayBird BlueBuds X promise 8 hours of music play time/calls’ talk time. That sounds really awesome if you consider their small size and their ultra-light weight. The battery and micro-USB charger are all placed inside the earbud. There’s no other piece of equipment between the wires except the small remote control which gives us many controls (more on that covered later). Another nice thing about the BlueBuds X is that when you pair it with an iPhone, you can view the remaining battery on the top right corner. And if you are using some other device, like an Android phone, you won’t be able to see the remaining battery, but Jenna(a girl’s voice used for voice prompts like “power on”, “headphones connected”) will tell you that only 20 minutes to go before the headphones will power off automatically.
Personal Experience: I used the BlueBuds for a 5 hour run (32 km / 20 miles) which was scheduled just one day after I received my BlueBuds from Amazon.com. I used them for around 4+ hours during those 5 hours and also while cycling to and fro from the jogging track, in the end, my iPhone was still showing more than half the battery for the BlueBuds X in that small battery status icon on the top right corner of the screen.
3. Sweat-Proof (Lifetime Warranty Against Sweat and are Liquipel™ coated): All of the products of JayBird, including BlueBuds X, include a Lifetime Warranty against sweat. I found it to be true as a person had written in an Amazon review that he had damaged the BlueBuds X twice and both the times, he got a free replacement for his product. And there were similar things said about it in more reviews and comments, so it is thus true that they will replace your product free of cost if you are able to damage it with your sweat! The other reason to believe why they’ll be sufficiently waterproof is that they come coated with Liquipel Sweat Repellent Nano Technology which costs $59.99 if you want it done for any other pair of headphones, so BlueBuds X being sold precoated with Liquipel does save some money and gives the users more peace of mind. I had Googled about the Liquipel technology and found out they do make the devices almost waterproof for accidental situations, like cellphones coated with Liquipel have even survived complete immersions in water, it is suggested though that you do not submerge the device purposely or for fun and let the Liquipel layer be there for only accidental water contacts or sweat.
Personal Experience: During my 4 hour+ usage in the long distance run, I sweated profusely as it was hot, and many times during the run I even walked through water sprinklers that were watering the nearby garden to wet myself completely till the waist (I held the iPhone in my hand and raised my arm above head to save it from the water) and lot of water did reach the torso and head too, creating an artificial rain like situation for the BlueBuds X, but neither the sweat nor the water from the sprinklers had any effect on the pair of JayBirds and I kept enjoying skip-free music all the time, even when walking through the sprinklers! So that’s a big thumb’s up for the headphones as I heard from friends that long runs or rain damaged their other brand’s pair of headphones permanently
4. Patented Secure Fit for Sport and X-Fit™ Over/Under-ear Fit Options: This is another premium feature available in the BlueBuds X which is one of the most important thing a person involved in any sport needs, a secure fit! One of the biggest problems I used to face while running with normal headphones was that the earbuds used to slip out of my ear due to the constant jumping action while running/jogging. BlueBuds X have two features for helping us in getting the most secure fit. They come with three pairs of patented sports ear cushions and three pairs of earbuds of varying size: Small, Medium and Large. You have to choose the size according to your ear size by trying out all of the combinations. It may sound like a lot, but it is easy and it’s the best thing JayBird could do for our ears as everyone one Earth has a different sized ear and ear canal and I feel there cannot be one perfect fit that would suit all.
The other feature is the patent pending X-Fit™, it allows the headphones to be used in two ways, the less secure under-the-ear fit in which the controller is on the right ear allows you to speak on the microphone, while the ultra-secure over-the-ear fit in which the controller is on the left side, takes away the perk of talking on calls and sending voice commands to your phone but makes it so secure that you could run, jump, mountain bike on a very rough terrain with the suspension locked or even head-bang vigorously to rock music with the headphones on and they won’t come out.
Personal Experience: I used the over-the-ear fit during my 4 hour+ usage in the long run and the fit was perfect, the only problem I faced was that the left earbud used to slip out a bit 2-3 times in an hour, it was due to a wrong size being used for the ear bud which enters the ear canal. I had used Small sized ear cushions which kept the thing in place pretty nicely the whole time and Medium sized ear buds, so I think I will have to use a Large or Small earbud for the left ear as right ear’s earbud was perfect and stayed inside perfectly the whole time. And as I feel that I used a wrong size for my left ear, there was little pain in the left ear canal after 2-3 hours while the right ear canal was totally relaxed and could listen to songs for many more hours!
Even though we cannot use the Over-the-ear fit for talking on phone calls, when I received a call, I just quickly plucked it out of the left ear and talked on the mic holding it in one hand and listening to the call only through my right ear’s earbud. More information on this in the 6th point below.
5. Background Voices and Horns: This is an important feature which every sports headphones should provide, for the basic safety of its users. There is no special mention about any such thing on their website or in the JayBird BlueBuds X Manual/Guide that were included with the product. But I read in reviews and later found out that the BlueBuds X are amazing at it as they cancel out all of the background noises like of traffic or other unimportant things but do let us hear sounds like vehicle horns, engine sounds and bicycle bells which are very important during cycling and also running on the side of a road.
Personal Experience: I used the JayBird while cycling and could safely hear the sounds of everything mentioned above when I kept the volume low, increasing the volume cancelled out the low-volume sounds like that of horns at some distance or engine sounds of cars passing nearby, but to be safe I kept the volume low the whole time, it wasn’t very low, but sufficient enough to listen to the music and vocals comfortably. Even while running I kept the volume at a comfortable low, so I could hear my father’s voice when he called me once, as he too was running on that jogging track for sometime. If you want to cancel out all nearby sounds, you can just increase the volume to a comfortable high, but I don’t recommend it as it can be very risky to be completely cut off from the world when exercising in some public place.
6. Answer and Make Calls: This was a criteria, I compulsorily wanted to be fulfilled by the sports headphones I was going through before buying the Blue Buds X. It may not be a necessity for runners, as they can still jog with the phone in one hand and answer important calls, but being an avid cyclist and a mountain biker, it becomes really risky to ride with just one hand on the handlebar and the other hand being occupied by the phone near the ear. Thus, I always stop the cycle and then answer calls and just 2-3 calls can slow down the entire ride a lot and can become frustrating, especially if you are going to join some other riders and have to call each other to know their current exact location. These pair of BlueBuds solved this problem very nicely.
During my rides, I wear the BlueBuds X with the Under-the-ear fit, which is less secure than the over-the-ear fit but it allows us to make calls. The less secure fit is not at all a problem as we don’t tend to shake vigorously when riding on the roads or smooth trails. While, during mountain biking on rough trails and running, it is not even advised to talk on the phone, so the over-the-ear more secure fit doesn’t matter. And wearing it in under-the-ear fashion, when doing slower rides or slow jogging/walking or during slow stairclimbing, I can keep doing the activity and call up friends and family and reconnect with them as our busy lifestyles don’t give us enough time to talk so much otherwise.
You can see that these pair of JayBirds have satisfied each and every requirement I wanted my dream pair of Bluetooth Sports Headphones to fulfil. I would rate them an almost perfect 4.5 out of 5!
You should grab one for yourself too if you too have similar requirements like I had and are involved in multiple sports. Do share your thoughts on the BlueBuds X in the comments section below and don’t hesitate at all to ask me anything about them that you would like to know from an actual user, just post your question as a comment below!
By the way, this was the first in-depth review I have ever written in my life, so I hope you all like it, and please give me feedback on my review in the comments below. Also share your experience about the BlueBuds X if you too own a pair of ’em!;-)