With the official presentation of the new iPhone without 3.5mm jack, the debate is on the table: is it now time to retire the cables? The smartphone has become one of the main centers for music, anywhere, anytime. But are wireless headsets meet all minimum requirements and sound quality?
2016 has been a turning point and more wireless headphones that are sold cable. Beats, a leading global manufacturer acquired by Apple, has long forgot cables for the best models of its fleet. In any case, the trend seems to veer towards the new USB-C Digital Audio protocol, more efficient and more future possibilities.
A major technological leap
Wireless headsets have always invited mistrust. Encoding technology, until recently, was not up to the circumstances. Radiofrequency had to bluetooth and NFC (near field communication), which has not been a path of roses.
Any modern handset supports the A2DP profile (Advanced Audio Distribution) profile. THE SBC (Subband Coding) is the coding system used by default. aptX is the second most known – that can reach qualities of DVD, 96KHz and 24 bits – usually almost all stereos, and then would the AAC algorithm, a more advanced compression but smarter than MP3, for example. A good headset will include compatibility with all of them.
What we should be clear is that the bandwidth of the new Bluetooth and WiFi protocols, doubt about the quality no longer valid. No more, extreme compression or delay in the audio. Moreover, moving to wireless models implies in most cases make the jump to models that include its own DAC. The DAC is the hardware responsible for transforming digital information to analog. In other words: take all those zeros and ones and becomes audible interpret our hearing aids. So if the DAC is up, in the case of digital music, the quality can be 1: 1 with respect to the emitting source. In theory, at least.
A hearing by the PERFECT
Beats, Bose, Jaybird, Skullcandy … everyone knows the best-not necessarily the most popular brands, such as seeing-we will. First we must focus our search. We could classify wireless headphones into three subcategories:
- Sports: For any outdoor activity, with tolerance to rain and sweat, to endure the stake and abuse inside and outside the home. The key word is waterproof.
- Domestic: Designed to go from room to room headphones, one office. Study or retransmission YouTube to play without hindrance or be lying in bed playing the audio from the desktop to another room.
- HiFi: Headphones for the more technical ears. High – performance systems that complement a DAC High Definition. And, of course, with a station at the height source. Forget Spotify.
Regardless of the type of handset, the three values that we must consider when choosing a good wireless model are:
- Autonomy: Most are between 5 and 10 hours. But here also we depend on our smartphone, tablet or system. We must find a headset that does not sacrifice quality when the battery is running low or increase the weight / size disproportionately.
- Construction: Most wireless headphones include some type of restraint for the head or ears: neck, clip, rubber band, and so on . Comfort is absolutely key and must be able to operate in more hostile environments than just two meters from the couch.
- Features: Pairing, support for codecs, and so on . The ultimate goal of a headset must always be the quality of transmission and reproduction. Everything else is accessory.
The range is something that worries many users, although not as severe; any current standard handily reaches 8-10 meters and rarely split up over that distance from the sending device.
By sheer practicality, let’s focus on e – ear earbud, with some isolated exceptions. They are more comfortable and versatile than -those supra – aural covering most of the pinna but are the No.1 enemy of users with glasses -. Indeed, as a matter of convenience we do not recommend models of good performance as the Koss BT540, BÖHM Wireless BH or a small scale, the Creative Sound Blaster GH Jam, appreciated by some gamers. You know, you cannot be all they are, but they are all that are.
We start with a model that is a gift by the capabilities it has. We brought a model compatible with HFP, A2DP, APTX + EDR (up to 96KHz), with standard Bluetooth 4.1, Noise Cancelling CVC 6.0 which results in environmentally intelligent filtering noise and the possibility of matching with two independent devices simultaneously. They are not very comfortable, although flexible, lightweight (only 18 grams), 80mAh battery that supports up to 7 hours of playback and an operating range of up to 10 meters away.
A slightly outdated but fairly stable and solvent performance model for we have a model of technical performance identical to the previous mentioned, with two important notes: are much more comfortable -the box includes 5 pairs of stabilizers (earbuds), three of them impermeable- and offer a more powerful sound, more packaging. On the contrary, they go to almost 60 grams, the battery rarely reaches 6 hours and receives signal to 9 meters. As for qualities not have much of what worry: operates in the range of 2.4 GHz, Bluetooth 4.1 standard (in addition to the 4 official profiles) and include a CSR PLC chip with a very capable performance.
EP Aukey Sport
Also compatible with A2DP, AVRCP profiles and Bluetooth 4.1 protocol, this small is especially beloved among some users for its ergonomics. Li-Polymer battery rechargeable 120mAh- offers 5 hours of music and a charging time below 2 hours. Its maximum range is 10 meters and, if we had to highlight an item, would your perfect sound consistency: not too sharp severe stable, nice mids and highs.
Philips MyJam Fresh Tones BT
Close call this model, strain the smallest of the SHB family. Good headset and best friend, offer drivers above 10mm (14.2 to be exact) which results in thicker bass and greater sensitivity (107 dB) . The finish is something more care than most cited: flat cable (Flexi-Grip), does not reach even 3 grams design “classic” (intraural with vertical drop) and support Bluetooth version 4.1. Yes, the battery runs out in a jiffy: just 4 hours.
There should in this price spectrum, some headphones with micro: the Sony SBH20 and Philips SHB 5100 take some time between us and are ideal to handle calls and, while not offer the sound packaging of other models are more versatile thanks Multipoint + connectivity to NFC.
Samsung Level U
This is a good model to start with. The entire family of Samsung EO render effectively and balance and said you can find it. The Level U is a headset with guarantees, one of the most pampered by the company: gummy body, two magnets to retain its structural integrity, 10 hours of battery life and very comfortable to wear. Among its features is the volume control, play / pause, forward track calls and compatible with most smartphones. Its range is somewhat limited (a little over 5 meters will lose the signal) but in return you get on a headset of exceptional design.
You may also like to read another article on YellowTube: Who is winning the war for wearables market?
Motorola MOTO Surround
Motorola also has its own wireless headset, and the truth is that they are very complete. Like any previous model, it is compatible with Bluetooth 4.1 and aptX, including the classic track and volume controls, a clever design that hides a tremendous battery of nearly 15 hours of battery life. With comfortable and are stylistically related with LG models that we will see later. A headset value very adequate, with three-config audio profiles for different -only recommend the Signature Sound-.
A classic just 23 grams that has a lot to prove. This, sweat resistant and water sports headset offers a fairly stylish design – and a variety of colors-, with a range of up to 8 meters, and a rechargeable battery of just over 7 hours. The new model is compatible with Bluetooth version 4.1 and HSP / HFP / A2DP / AVRCP and hides a notorious drivers of 14.2mm. I know no one with them has been disappointed.
Plantronics BackBeat Fit
The BackBeat take several years garnering good reviews. They are a favorite pair of headphones. For just over 20 grams and liquid repellent coating P2i, this model is designed for the sport since its conception. Compatible with any smartphone using Bluetooth, 8 hours of autonomy in reality -more, stores up to 8 different devices. As far as sound is concerned, they may be somewhat limited compared to what is coming on, but certainly offer this wealth of nuances of the – ear that will not shut from the outside, allowing breathing in her ear.
Philips SHQ 7900
I think I should be honest with the reader: I have never tried these headphones, but I know that are especially beloved among runners. In fact, these in-ear performances have been compared with Fidelio, one of the best representatives of the marker. This model is the highest in the SHQ and their specifications are quite generous family: per 23 grams, we have a model of good construction, supports A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP profiles, high water tolerance and a range of up to 10 meters.
LG Tone Active
The LG Tone Active are part of a large family -LG Ultra (I and II) and classics infinitum only these, in particular, offer a plus bass and acoustic power combined with all specifications and compatibilities of these earlier . Type collar – ear design, it includes 2 internal batteries 90 mAh which translates into about 10 hours of battery life, and Micro USB charging port. They are very resistant to water and sweat, include a warning call by vibration and, if you are interested, you tell your main problem: its retractable cable system is not very reliable. Otherwise, great.
JBL by Harman Reflect Response
A step above Everest in comfort and not just best in performance, these Reflect Response include drivers and are 8.6 mm, regardless of price, which offer better sound of his band: warm, solid, unusual. They are resistant to sweat and water, its frequency response 10Hz to 22KHz comprised of technology and include gestural control. You can listen to 10 hours of uninterrupted music with a range of up to 10 meters away.
These Headbones have landed, who said that there is no space for earphones bone conduction? This model falls short of its cost resistant to water, sweat and dust, if you get to try all you sure you stay. They are slightly heavier than average (80g) and offer 8 hours of battery life thanks to its lithium-ion battery integrated. Of course, they have microphone, volume control, Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity and sound quality and very remarkable isolation. Soon this type of hearing aids will conquer the market – its benefits are obvious in health- issues.
The Jaybird could not miss. These Bluetooth – ear resist sweat, water and dust. Its sound quality is slightly below what could be asked -Les needed plus enhancer, offer 8 hours autonomy music uncut and fit comfortably inside the ear thanks to silicone fins. Despite its release they are not the model we recommend at first sight but as far as regards construction are suitable for long distances with a mountain bike or any kind of sports getaway.
If any reader misses the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC 40: I tried them while researching this article and are quite disappointing. Sound very dim and poor performance. If you want something more packaging featuring a intraural, we recommend these three models: Noontec Zoro II, Beyerdynamic DTX 350 pypopular Beats Solo 2, both compatible with and without cables.
Turned into little more than a legend, these sturdy headphones to any envite has compatibility with AAC codec and aptX, mic noise cancellation, full control of track resistance to dust and water (certified rating IPX5), auctions bathed gold, the independence incredible 30 meters s, up to 7 different plugs and 10mm transducers capable of bursting any ear. What would a 5 stars.
Sony MDREX 750 BT
With a slightly inflated price, these Sony MDREX BTB offer their own LDAC technology, a type of DAC high transfer rate. They are also compatible with the rapid pairing and the current Bluetooth standard. Up to seven hours of uninterrupted audio in just 36 grams and best of all, a wide responsiveness, 5 Hz to 40,000 under diagrams of 9 mm that respond to serious blast. As usual, they are offered in a variety of plugs and colors (up to 5)
This is an excellent example of headset wireless with good performance and features: Fast pairing via NFC, Bluetooth and sound top quality, clean and powerful, with several dynamics- equalizers, for about 6 hours. They are specially designed to withstand any battle and not break away from the ears. Your favorite headphones for jogging … if you can afford them.
Beyerdynamic Byron BTA
Repeat the German company that is currently showing at IFA their Byron. This model has premium price only: it is a true delight Wireless, Qualcomm aptX updated codec, AAC, fully enclosed sound, 7.5 hours of battery life and 10 meters range. Nominal value (SPL) is 90 dB and frequency range between 10 and 25,000 Hz, in the model specifications Beyerdynamic IDX wiring 160 iE.
B & O Play H5
I still wonder how much power house in so little space. Part of its bad press due to its low autonomy-for hair reaches 5 hours, and their drivers are somewhat small for depending on which ear (6.4mm). I will just say that, as a user, try them in any shop.
Bose QuietControl TM 30
Presented as a novelty last spring, this model falls short of what we can ask: Bluetooth and NFC pairing, upgradeable drivers, different types of equalization, a very comfortable type design choker and 10m hours autonomy. Bose has the new model of the QC family, one of those exceptions we needed toinclude. With its powerful battery offers 20 hours of battery life if you use -40 cable- and are recommended for both gamers and for audiophiles. Forget serious distortion supercharged and stupid: either models will leave you satisfied with your balanced frequency control and robust construction.
Parrot Zik 3
The popular signature Parrot -what cannot make – last year launched a headset that responds EXACTLY the same with and without cables. A portent engineering and design (with models in up to 8 colors) offer 18 hours of battery life, thanks to a 830mAh battery , total noise suppression, its own application Surround 5.1 control, these are matched on the fly Circumaural with any compatible device and for its 328 grams, are the most comfortable of the entire list.
Sennheiser Momentum 2.0
Now for a favorite: if the Sennheiser Momentum already achieved a press full of praise, this model is, without going to the craft models on request of some brands, one of the best existing wireless headphones. Circumaural design and folding headband, this model is worth the money. Its glasses with somewhat larger than the previous model, resulting in greater comfort and better sound balanced.
As for electronics, 2 simultaneous matches and saves up to 8 devices in its memory, provides up to 22 hours of battery life and a plug for those who think not break away from its 3.5 mm jack connectors. Integrates two microphones external noise canceling but not with the same effectiveness as the Bose and be able to get a snag, it would be its price. The wireframe model has dropped to half, something that makes consider whether it is really worth making this leap. At least they not cost what a Fischer or Ultrasone.