Your Wireless Earbuds Are Trash (Eventually)
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Photo: Rozette Rago
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I love my wireless earbuds. Putting them on is akin to slipping into my favorite sweatpants—I instantly feel comforted and insulated from the outside world. My headphones provide me with motivation when I’m working out, help me focus at work, give me information when I’m commuting, and help me relax before bed. But as much as I love them, something has been gnawing at my conscience lately: Is there a hidden dark side to my favorite earbuds?
In the third quarter of 2019 alone, 33 million true wireless earbuds, the style with no connecting cable between the earbuds (think AirPods), were sold. And that sales number is expected to grow. According to a report by Futuresource Consulting, true wireless earbuds are expected to account for two-thirds of the earbuds market by 2023.
It’s no surprise: Advances in technology have made true wireless earbuds smaller, lighter, and more affordable. For most people, the first time you try them, you instantly love how freeing they feel. But here’s the awful truth: In a few years, nearly every one of those millions of pairs of earbuds will be in a landfill.
The hard truth about rechargeable batteries
Even if your Bluetooth earbuds don’t physically break, their batteries will eventually lose their ability to charge. This isn’t due to an evil corporate plot. All rechargeable batteries eventually die. It’s just physics. Batteries lose capacity over time due to a layer of crystalline buildup that slowly coats the battery’s inside walls. This aging process increases electrical resistance and results in a gradual reduction in the amount of juice the batteries have available every time you fully charge them. Wirecutter senior editor and powering expert Mark Smirniotis wrote an explanation of this phenomenon, and the short version is this: Every time you recharge your earbuds, they get a little less listening time. At first, the effect is barely noticeable. But over a few years, you may find that your wireless earbuds, which played music for five hours per charge when you first got them, now provide you with only an hour of play time. Eventually they simply won’t hold a charge at all, and in most cases you can’t just swap out the battery—it’s glued in, and getting to it effectively destroys whatever parts you might hope to salvage.
The reason earbud companies use non-replaceable rechargeable batteries is simple: It makes the earbuds smaller. Earbud buyers generally prefer more compact devices, but that means the earbuds have less room inside for all the necessary components. Designers need to cram a Bluetooth chip and processor, an antenna, a battery, drivers, controls, and microphones into something that’s often the size of a thimble. Replaceable battery compartments require more earbud real estate, and in a competitive field where tiny is currently king, companies don’t want to risk their earbuds being flops by making them bigger.
The small size of true wireless earbuds may be great for comfort and convenience, but it doesn’t leave much room for a battery—and the smaller the battery, the shorter its lifespan. Photo: Rozette Rago
How long should you expect your earbuds’ batteries to last? It depends. As Mark explained to us, a lot of factors can impact battery life—including how often you use your earbuds, how frequently you charge them and leave them plugged in, how often you expose them to extreme temperatures, and how often you take calls or use active noise cancellation (both of which draw a high amount of power). So the same pair of headphones that craps out on one person after two years might last another person closer to four years. But it’s only a matter of time before the technology grim reaper comes calling.
This information may come as a shock to folks who are accustomed to the lifespan of wired headphones. I’ve known people who have owned traditional wired headphones for a decade or more, provided they did some mild maintenance now and again. When you realize that the $200 earbuds you love may last you only three years with daily use, it can feel like a punch to the gut. Then again, with the progression of technology, many people have grown accustomed to the obsolescence of their gear. They accept that phones and laptops aren’t lifelong purchases. For headphone lovers like me, the value per year of regular use may seem worth the purchase price.
But what’s eating at me is the environmental impact. Very often, people just drop broken earbuds into the trash (which you shouldn’t do, as it could lead to a literal trash fire). And even those who endeavor to recycle properly may find that the system they trust to reduce and reuse is deeply flawed. A 2017 United Nations Global E-waste Monitor report (PDF) stated that, of the world’s nearly 45 million metric tons of e-waste, only 20 percent was recycled through proper channels. Many “recyclers” ship the e-waste abroad, where much of it isn’t truly recycled. A small amount of usable parts might be repurposed, and valuable minerals are extracted, but this process has negative environmental impacts of its own. The prevailing methods can lead to unsafe conditions for workers and the surrounding areas. For example, the process for recovering gold (which is commonly used in electronics due to its conductive abilities) involves “bathing circuit boards in nitric and hydrochloric acid, thus poisoning waterways and communities.” Whatever is not deemed useful is dumped in the ground.
Much of the global recycling process is driven by profit, so the viability of recycling a given item is based on the value of the raw materials that can be extracted—but margins are slim. Since earbuds are so small, the value of extracted materials may be only a fraction of a cent, which may not even cover the labor-intensive cost of the recycling process. As a result, many recycling companies don’t bother recycling earbuds, so they end up in the landfill anyhow.
What you can do
As a reusable-bag-toting, organic-produce-buying vegan with a kid, I struggle with this information. I love using wireless earbuds, and I recommend them to people every day. But I also want to be a responsible global citizen. Thankfully, there are some things that everyone can do to extend the life and value of their wireless-headphone purchases.
First, you can maximize the lifespan of the earbuds you already own. To do that, you should practice good battery-health habits. Keep your electronics at room temperature as often as possible—never leave your headphones in a hot or cold car, wear them in a sauna, or store them outdoors. (Chances are, if you’re uncomfortable with the temperature, so are your earbuds.) Turn your headphones off when you aren’t using them. Don’t leave your earbuds or charging case plugged in indefinitely. Once they’re fully charged, unplug the cable. And if you are going to set aside your headphones for a week or more, check to see if the manual has any specific storage instructions. According to Mark, the sweet spot for storing lithium batteries is often in the middle, charged between 30 and 70 percent.
Second, when shopping for Bluetooth headphones, consider models that you can also use with a cord. For now, that may mean choosing something other than true wireless earbuds. Wireless headphones and earbuds with an optional cord still can function passively after the batteries die, as long as your mobile device has a headphone jack (or you have an adapter cable). Even if they cease to be your daily go-to headphones, they aren’t garbage. I like to keep a pair like this for use in a pinch when I forget to charge my favorite earbuds. You can also store them in your desk, use them for travel (so you won’t stress as much about loss or theft), or keep them as a handy loaner pair for friends and family. Alternatively, you could buy a wired-only pair as a backup, knowing that they’ll likely outlive current Bluetooth options by years.
If your heart is set on true wireless earbuds, consider the initial battery capacity when you make your purchase. That is, note how long the earbuds hold a charge. The newest Bluetooth chipsets draw less power from the battery, which means longer listening times per charge, and the recently announced Bluetooth LE Audio spec should improve things even further. Increasing battery capacity could, in theory, lengthen the headphones’ lifespan because you charge them less frequently. So if you’re able to delay purchasing a new pair of earbuds, you may be rewarded with a purchase that lasts longer. However, as we mentioned before, this requires following good charging practices.
What you need to know about Bluetooth audio
What manufacturers can do
According to Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit, incorporating replaceable batteries into true wireless earbuds is absolutely doable—if the manufacturers get on board. While some true wireless earbuds, such as Apple’s AirPods and AirPods Pro, are unrepairable once the battery dies, others, such as Samsung’s Galaxy Buds and Jabra’s Elite 75t, would need only minor alterations in design to make them fixable. Taylor Dixon of iFixit took apart several Bluetooth earbuds and found that often the only hurdle preventing battery replacement would be a change in glue or using battery clips rather than relying on solder.
iFixit has taken apart many wireless earbuds to find out which batteries could become replaceable with a few design modifications. Often the only hurdle preventing battery replacement is a change in glue or the use of battery clips instead of solder. Photo: iFixit
Ideally, headphone manufacturers could tweak their designs, institute battery-swap services, create authorized repair centers, and even offer branded repair kits for the ambitious DIYer. Then, as the technology becomes obsolete, they could reduce their ecological footprint and reward brand loyalty by providing free recycling programs and discounts on new earbuds with the recycling of an old set, similar to what JLab does. (Apple and Bose offer recycling, but not a trade-in incentive.)
But for these advancements to occur, the folks buying the earbuds need to ask for them. Legislation in Massachusetts, though focused on cars, is intended to compel companies to make electronics more repairable by requiring replacement parts to be available for sale and manuals to be accessible for free online. However, a right-to-repair law can be difficult to implement and slow-moving in effecting change, especially when compared with consumer-demand-driven movements. The trouble is, shoppers can’t speak with their wallets and buy earbuds with replaceable batteries until companies start producing them and supporting the repair process.
Despite the current state of affairs, progress is possible. One startup, The Swap Club, is a business based on refurbishing the millions of AirPods that need new batteries. Wirecutter’s Jon Chase wrote about his experience exchanging his first-generation AirPods for another pair with a new battery. (The company currently only can only replace first- and second-generation AirPods.) While this is only one model of one brand of earbud, it’s a proof of concept that could make a significant impact in the lifespan of battery-powered earbuds, should more companies or brands adopt a similar methodology.
Wireless earbuds aren’t going away, but they must become more sustainable. Perhaps with some encouragement from everyone, brands will begin to make changes that can make a real difference.
The Best Wired Earbuds
by Ian D. White
The FiiO FD3 Pro is our favorite pair of wired earbuds under $200 because it offers excellent sound and build quality, plus a ton of helpful accessories.
The Best Earbuds Under $50
by Lauren Dragan
The 1More Piston Fit BT wireless earbuds are comfortable and solidly built, and they sound far better than they should for the money.
Wirecutter is the product recommendation service from The New York Times. Our journalists combine independent research with (occasionally) over-the-top testing so you can make quick and confident buying decisions. Whether it’s finding great products or discovering helpful advice, we’ll help you get it right (the first time).
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Earfun’s New Air Pro 3 Earbuds Deliver Impressive Sound — and They’re Already 30% Off
The Earfun Air Pro 3 feature one of Qualcomm’s latest Bluetooth audio chipset.
Earfun/Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET
Earfun has put out a series of wireless earbuds over the last couple of years with one important commonality: They’re very good values, made more so by frequent discounts. I’ve highlighted previous deals on its Air Pro SV and Air Pro 2, as well as the more recent Earfun Air S. Now the company has released its new Earfun Air Pro 3 earbuds, which feature the latest Qualcomm QCC3071 system-on-a-chip with aptX Adaptive for Android and other devices that support it. They’re available for $56, or 30% off their list price of $80 at Earfun’s website or at Amazon by activating the instant 10%-off coupon, then adding the code EAP3CNET at checkout.
See at Amazon
Lightweight and comfortable to wear — I got a good seal with the largest ear tip size — these aren’t a huge upgrade over the Earfun Air S, but they are clearly better. They have slightly larger wool-composite drivers (11mm versus 10mm), slightly improved noise canceling and better battery life (up to seven hours with noise canceling on, according to Earfun). They also support the new LE Audio standard and LC3 audio codec, which is superior to the SBC codec (they also support AAC for Apple devices). Their transparency mode seems to be a touch more natural sounding than the Air S, too.
Read more: Best Wireless Earbuds for 2023
In short, the Earfun Air 3 deliver strong performance for their modest price, with robust bass, good clarity and a relatively wide soundstage. They also pack in a lot of features, including a wireless charging case and “multidevice” connectivity. (I could pair them to two devices simultaneously but had to pause the music on one device and hit play on the other for the audio to switch. )
They’re IPX5 splash-proof and have touch controls that could be a little more responsive but work OK. And, finally, the buds connect to the Earfun Audio app for iOS and Android, which allows you to update the firmware and tweak their sound profile.
The wireless charging case isn’t tiny, but it fits in a pocket easily enough.
Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET
I listened to the buds using an iPhone 14 Pro and an Asus ROG 6 Android smartphone that’s powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 mobile platform. With the Asus, I was able to stream high-resolution tracks from Qobuz (with aptX Adaptive) and the sound had a bit more depth and detail and the overall sound was impressive, again given the price.
However, they can’t compete with high-end buds like the new $400 Bowers & Wilkins Pi7 S2, which offer better definition and more accurate sound. I know that’s an unfair comparison, but I only mention it to say that while the Air Pro 3 sound quite good for relatively cheap earbuds, they do have their limitations, particularly when it comes to bass definition — the bass is a tad overemphasized at the default setting.
If you’re wondering where these stand for voice calling, they perform well, with decent background noise reduction in noisier environments (like the streets of New York, where I tested them). But I wouldn’t say they’re excellent for making voice calls; callers said my voice sounded “reasonably” clear outdoors, not crystal clear. You can use either bud independently of the other and use a single bud to listen to audio or make calls.
Here’s a quick look at the Air Pro 3’s specs, according to Earfun. They were originally only available on Earfun’s website, but have now hit Amazon.
- Compatible with Earfun audio app
- Multidevice connectivity
- Qualcomm QCC3071 system-on-a-chip with aptX Adaptive
- QuietSmart 2.0 hybrid active noise cancellation up to 43dB
- 6-mic array
- Bluetooth 5.3 + next-gen LE Audio & LC3 codec
- 11mm wool composite drivers
- <55ms ultra low latency mode for better video and gaming experience
- IPX5 sweat and water resistant
- Up to 7 hours of battery life with ANC on and 9 hours with it off (extra 4 charges in the case)
- Get 2 hours of playtime from a 10-minute charge
- Wireless charging case with USB-C
- Price: ($80 list, $56 sale price)
Top 10 Bluetooth Headphones – Selection TehnObzor
Author Vasily Hi-tech Reading 6 min 0
900 02 And once the best wireless headphones were among the most expensive outside the audiophile genre, available only to people with deep pockets and enough patience to deal with the then limited wireless technology and short battery life.
Over the past few years, the entire headphone industry has gone through more than one renaissance, and wireless headphones have especially benefited from this. Now, you can find the best wireless solution for all your needs, with high quality sound, reliable wireless connectivity, and convenient use.
To make your search for the perfect headphone easier, we’ve put together a list of the top ten Bluetooth headphones you can buy today, with a variety of prices and uses.
Read also our 2021 wireless earbuds ranking.
Phiaton BT 100 NC Headphones
Phiaton have been at the forefront of charging Bluetooth headsets for years and for that reason their headphones are among the best. When it comes to wireless options for your ear, the BT 100 NC stays true to the company’s reputation for excellence.
The Phiaton BT 100 NC headphones are equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 and APTX support, they provide not only excellent sound quality, but also the ability to connect multiple devices at the same time. What else? You’ll be able to focus on what you’re listening to thanks to noise cancellation and silicone eartips that create a great in-ear seal.
BT 100 NC can give you high quality and quiet music listening experience.
Sol Republic Shadow Headphones
Sol Republic Shadow have meaty suction cups. These headphones have a noticeable tapering towards the ends, changing the bass of what you’re listening to, but not at the expense of mixing it up.
Bass, mids, and highs sound crisp and clear—almost as comfortable as the headphones themselves.
Sol Republic Shadow design is located around the neck, there is a chip, as well as volume control, microphone. They behave perfectly during long-term use. Plus, the price is not so high compared to competitors.
Tip from TehnObzor – which wireless headphones to choose
Optoma NuForce BE6 headphones
Optoma NuForce BE6 managed to avoid the use of additional elements by placing electronics in the headphones themselves. This approach has historically meant either large earpieces or short battery life.
But the BE6 are wireless in-ear headphones that are neither bulky nor short-lived. The Optoma NuForce BE6 is capable of being compact and lightweight yet comfortable with an impressive 6 hour battery life.
Of course, the most important thing here is the sound quality, and here the BE6 excel, APTX compatible AAC codec, with plenty of power, solid dynamic range, and a well-balanced, slightly bubbly sound with adequate bass.
Also a very cool idea are the magnets to hold the headphones together.
Jabra Sport Pulse Wireless Headphones
Admittedly, the Jabra Sport Pulse Wireless headphones are out of the trend of most others on this list when it comes to sound quality. What we love about these headphones is that they double as a fitness tracker, complete with a heart rate monitor.
As we mentioned earlier, the sound quality is not very good, and this is due to a poor seal on the tips of the headphones.
Phiaton BT330 NC headphones
Looking for a wireless listening option? No need to look further, there is Phiaton in the BT 330 NC. Phiaton has put great noise canceling in your ear, thankfully, the collapsible design means the BT 330 NC is still a great option for those who like to listen on the go.
Plus, all the important hardware is stored in the headphones themselves, eliminating the need for cords hanging around your shoulders.
While the Phiaton BT330 NC is more expensive than its in-ear counterpart, the headphones are no less viable as a simple wireless solution.
Plantronics Backbeat Sense headphones
Plantronics Backbeat Sense headphones are some of the best wireless headphones on the market. They’re light and simple, and while they probably won’t win awards for their unique headband design, they’re comfortable, and offer some of the best sound quality for a wireless headphone in any price range.
Backbeat Sense sounds slightly fluctuating at higher levels, but thanks to noise reduction, any genre sounds great. You’ll be able to listen to them for long sessions thanks to the 18-hour battery life.
The headphones also offer one of the best wireless ranges on the market.
Sennheiser Urbanite XL headphones
This wireless version of Snnheiser’s Urbanite XL gets rid of the cord, not the sound quality.
Urbanite XL wireless delivers beefy bass that’s no worse than rivals like Dre or 50 Cent. Unlike other brands, this is no compromise on balance sheet.
The Sennheiser Urbanite XL headphones are a bit bulky, but still comfortable for long listening sessions.
Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless Headphones
Another product from Sennheiser, gets the most for superior comfort. While you could splurge on more punchy bass in the Urbanite XL, you get decent noise levels with a stylish design in the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless.
But the Momentum 2.0 Wireless isn’t bad sound quality – quite the opposite. In fact, the Momentum 2.0 produces detailed sound, with no noticeable amp noise to interfere with your favorite music.
Bose SoundLink Wireless Headphones
In the previous incarnation of this pair of wireless headphones, Bose took their SoundTrue model, trimmed the excess, added Bluetooth to create a clunky design.
Fortunately, the new version of the Bose SoundLink Wireless has a more attractive form factor and is more comfortable to wear thanks to the memory foam ear cups. The warm, natural sound is clear and inviting, provided you stick with the wireless mode, as the wired mode leaves a lot to be desired.
That said, the SoundLink Wireless is one of the best general Bluetooth headphone options in its price range.
JVC XX Elation Headphones
The JVC XX Elation is an amazing set of great wireless headphones, especially considering their relatively low price.
Design and rugged construction are what keep the JVC XX Elation comfortable and safe while you’re doing what you love. Clear, balanced sound and bass boost are a welcome feature. 9The 0007
JVC XX Elation may fall short of the more expensive wireless earbuds we’ve listed above, but for a comparable price, few devices can beat them.
Best Bluetooth Earphones for Outdoor Ear Protection in 2021
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prolonged exposure to noise of at least 70 dB can cause hearing problems. On the other hand, loud noise above 120 dB can quickly damage your ears. Unfortunately, there are professionals in various fields who are always exposed to such dangerous levels of noise. This includes musicians, construction workers, airport ground staff, gardeners, farmers, and even barbers. However, they do have one solution to protect themselves: Bluetooth headphones.
Prolonged exposure to noise levels of at least 70 dB may cause hearing problems. On the other hand, loud noise above 120 dB can quickly damage your ears.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Earmuffs are known not only as noise protection accessories, but also as excellent protection against cold. If you find yourself in a bustling New York City in the winter, you know what we’re talking about.
Earmuffs usually have a metal headband that should sit comfortably on the top of your head to secure the two cups that cover your outer ears. These cups are usually padded not only for protection but also to conform to the natural curve of your ears. This will allow the accessory to ensure that there is little chance of noise penetrating into your hearing. It also promotes heat so you don’t get cold in said area.
Now, to add more functionality, the earbuds now combine Bluetooth capability and other features that turn them into multifunctional accessories. They can work as headphones to make calls, listen to music, etc. However, the specifications of Bluetooth headphones vary from one set to another. We are confident that of all the Peltor Sport Tactical 500s we have tested is the best. In addition to being compact and handy, it has a gunshot suppression feature that reduces echo and noise around you. Also, it has a noise filtering issue, which makes it special as it is rarely found in headphones.
If comfort is important to you, you should try the LC-dolida Bluetooth winter headphones. In addition to supporting Bluetooth function for MP3 and phone calls, it is made of the finest materials, which can provide you with maximum comfort in cold weather. Really recommended for those who love skiing and hunting.
There are other options to consider besides those mentioned above. That’s why we’ve personally tested some of the best Bluetooth headphones on the market to give you the best possible experience. With the help of our experts, we’ve highlighted their best features to make your search easier and faster. Here’s what you should know about them:
Best Bluetooth Headphones Comparison and Rating
Features 901 83
2. WULFPOWERPRO ear protection
3. 3M Safety
-4DC Hearing protector
4. LC-dolida Bluetooth winter headphones
5. 3M Safety
-3DC Hearing protector
1. Peltor Sport Tactical 500 Smart electronic headphones
Batteries 2 AA
value for money
- Has an automatic shutdown function.
- Easily connects to any Bluetooth-enabled device.
- The buttons are tactile and intuitive.
- Comes with voice prompts for ease of use.
- Has good power consumption: 2 AA batteries can work more than 24 hours.
- Has a very compact design.
- Not the cheapest, but very effective at reducing noise.
If you’re looking for headphones that can handle noise efficiently, this smart model is the best recommendation we have for you. Renowned among shooters and airport professionals, it is equipped with 26dB NRR and automatic shot suppression. However, as the noise increases, the overall sound signature and echo decreases, which can be really helpful in protecting your hearing.
In addition, the Peltor 500 features noise filtering with clear voice tracking to help you get the best conversation experience. The microphones are recessed to reduce the effect of wind if you use it and the sound is crystal clear. The same goes for its MP3 function when connected to any Bluetooth-enabled device. When a call comes in, the volume of the music being played will be reduced.
On the other hand, they have one of the best headphones in terms of design and ergonomics. In addition to soft pads, the headband fits the head perfectly and is not as bulky as the 3M Safety models. Plus, it can be folded, which really helps save space in your bag.
2. WULFPOWERPRO Earmuffs
Colors 90 007
value for money
- Has a full range of features, making it very functional.
- Features separate buttons for ease of use.
- I can answer calls.
- Robust construction.
- Very convenient to use.
- Not discrete and not the softest pads.
These headphones from WULFPOWERPRO are a real winner when it comes to the best feature set. Complete from MP3 to radio to receive calls!
If its relatively bulky body isn’t a problem for you (and for good reason, by the way), this should be your best and most enjoyable hearing protection accessory. Its muffs have really strong padded cups. Although they are not as soft as the 3M safety models, you can be sure they will last for years.
One of the headphones also serves the device controls, which are very good. Compared to a single button 3M Safety
-4DC, this one offers separate buttons for power, call answer, mode switch, volume, forward and reverse playback. It may seem intimidating to get used to, but with all the controls you can get with this feature, it really is worth it! You’ll also love that it has a small screen that shows the time, Bluetooth, FM frequency, and battery status. Darling!
On the other hand, the real detail of the champion is that he can receive calls at the touch of a button. Reception is excellent, and while it only offers passive noise cancellation, its ability to deliver quality sound is still great. In addition, it has an NRR of 29db.
It also supports FM radio, and despite this, its antenna is not as visible as the 3M Safety
-3DC. What’s more, Bluetooth can reach at least 10 meters, but if you want, you also have the option to use it with the included connector. The 800mAh rechargeable lithium battery can last a whole day of MP3 continuous use.
3. 3M Safety Hearing Protector
Built-in rechargeable battery
value for money
- By Comes with an additional 1/8″ jack for non-Bluetooth devices.
- Supplied with a very robust construction.
- Very discreet design.
- Turns off automatically when no device is paired.
- Connecting to your Bluetooth-enabled device is quick and easy.
- There is no volume control on the clutches.
- USB charger not included.
-4DC is similar in many ways to its sibling,
-3DC, but with a few improvements that make it more suitable and easier to use.
The fit of the pads and hair tie is really remarkable, and the good thing is that the pads can be replaced as well. The default pads that come with the accessory promise great quality and are soft. They don’t hurt your ears, and the headband’s ability to be adjusted is a good option to make it more comfortable. The sound quality is still the same as the other model, which is great. On the other hand, its ability to block out background noise is truly amazing, you need to remove it in order to properly talk to someone near you.
Headphones also have an NRR of 24 dB. Comparing the two models, you will get almost the same comfort in terms of noise protection. However, as already mentioned, the
-4DC has an improved design, which makes it generally preferable. For example, it is an antennaless unit, which means it is more compact than the
-3DC. The device is also equipped with a built-in rechargeable battery. What makes it a good addition? Quality. The battery promises better performance, especially when it comes to durability. Based on our test results, we have to admit that it took us longer than the “30-minute” time recommended by the brand. We actually had to charge it for over 4 hours to reach full capacity (it has an LED indicator btw!), but the battery performance – oh boy – lasts over 2 days of non-stop use. Of course, this is only for Bluetooth music connection. But given how long its battery can last you, it’s a really solid product. It also comes with voice prompt for low battery notification.
Also, while the unit does not offer the AM/FM features found on the
-3DC, its ability to answer calls with the touch of a button remains. The rest of the single-button controls are as easy as shelling pears: long press to turn on and off, double press for initial pairing, double press to advance the track, three consecutive presses to rewind the song. Easy. However, keep in mind that the volume can only work on the device with which it is paired.
4. Winter headphones with Bluetooth LC-dolida.
value for money
- The best option for the winter season.
- Can be used to receive calls.
- Offers the best comfort.
- Has a rechargeable battery that lasts at least 8 hours.
- Excellent value for money on offer.
- Also stands out for its aesthetics and is unisex.
- Not the best for noise protection.
Sometimes headphones are really needed not for noise protection, but for the warmth they can provide in winter. This LC dolid is a good example of such headphones. It won’t match the performance of the WULFPOWERPRO and 3M safety models, and it can only do very, very little to reduce the noise around you, but the comfort it can offer is truly UNRIVALED.
It is made of a very soft material that makes up its outer surface. As for the inner lining, you will have a faux fur texture that will hug both of your ears. The pads are oversized to provide wide coverage and protection. The texture is really comfortable, which without any other features is worth considering. Fortunately, the material is washable. Simply remove the Bluetooth module installed on the left side of the earphone and it will be machine washable.
The headphones can also be used as an MP3 player using the Bluetooth connection function with a range of 10 meters. Pairing is really easy and the controls are great. The model is equipped with three buttons that can be used to play, pause and move songs. The same buttons are also used to adjust the volume, as well as redial, answer and reject calls. The sound is also amazingly clear despite the lack of noise cancellation!
5. 3M Safety Hearing Protector
902 45 Brand
Batteries 2 AA
value for money
- Has a sound assistant that notifies you of the radio station You are at.
- Very comfortable on the ears.
- Battery life is really good, enough for a whole day.
- Audio input clear.
- Noise isolation is exceptional and the soft ear cushions completely cover the ears.
- Requires connection to jack to hear calls.
- A little bulky.
These 3M Safety
-3DC earphones are some of the best reliable hearing protection accessories you can ever find on the market. Best suited for household jobs where there is always loud noise, including lawn mowing and leaf mulching. Also great for workshops when dealing with ear-piercing noises from grinders, miter saws and other power tools. It has a Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 24dB.
The earcups are incredibly thick and comfortable around the ears for over 6 hours of wear. They do not leave marks on the skin and are quite comfortable even in hot weather. These pads are good because they can be replaced. However, with their quality, each pad is sure to last for years before you notice any signs of wear.
As for the functionality of the headphones, 3M Safety has integrated AM / FM radio capabilities into them so that you can enjoy them even without any additional training. The buttons are within reach and fairly intuitive. It requires 2 AA alkaline batteries, which can last more than 24 hours. We also appreciate that it has a voice prompt that will let you know if the batteries are already low. It will also ask you after hours of continuous use if you are still using it and ask you to press the volume button to answer. Otherwise, it will automatically turn off.
The Bluetooth capabilities are impeccable. The connection works great and works with any Bluetooth-enabled devices we’ve tried. It has a range of 10 meters, which is pretty good. You can also use it with audio input. This is a warning. While the description of the product ad says you “make and receive” phone calls with the accessory, it doesn’t say that it only notifies you of a phone call in Bluetooth mode. To hear, you must use a wired connection using a connector. It is also important to note that it has a very prominent antenna. It is very functional for a radio, and if its presence does not bother you, this will be an excellent choice.
Best Bluetooth Headphones Buyer’s Guide
Purpose and Design
Headphone models differ from each other, especially in terms of basic functions. Some of them are designed to reduce the noise around you, while others are designed for comfort during the cold season. It is important to evaluate what you really need.
Headphones designed for sound suppression are usually bulky. The pads they have are also often so softly padded that after an extended period of time they feel rather uncomfortable on the ears. However, it is important that the accessory can effectively cover your ears and prevent sounds from entering.
On the other hand, those designed to give warmth are often soft. In this type, you can be sure that no matter how many hours you wear the headphones, you will still feel comfortable.
Like the design of the headphones, their capabilities vary greatly. While all of the products listed above support Bluetooth, their ability to use this technology varies.
For example, all models can notify you of an incoming call. However, not all of them allow you to receive a call using a headset. For example, 3M Safety
-3DC cannot answer calls. It also doesn’t have a built-in microphone, although it can be used with a cable to hear the caller’s voice. On the other hand, there are much more capable models, such as the Peltor Sport Tactical 500, the WULFPOWERPRO safety earphones, and others, that can perform these functions.
There are also headphones with radio function (although not all offer AM options). This is a nice addition as it means you can use the headphones without your phone. However, be aware that such models often come with long antennas that you may not like.
Undoubtedly, Bluetooth headphones with built-in batteries are the best. They are economical and very convenient. Depending on the capacity of the battery, it may take one or more hours to charge the earphone. Moreover, the larger the battery capacity, the better.
On the other hand, battery powered headphones are also good. They usually require 2 AA batteries which will last for 24 hours depending on your usage. While not as convenient as rechargeable batteries, replaceable batteries can come in handy when you’re traveling without a power outlet.
The higher the characteristics of the model, the more expensive it can be. It’s somehow true. For example, Peltor Sport Tactical 500 is much more expensive than others. However, given its ability to effectively reduce noise and the integration of other impressive technologies such as dynamic rejection time and clear voice tracking, it’s well worth it. If you need such features, you can spend at this price. However, if that’s too much, you can always opt for lower performance modes. After all, there is no point in spending money on something you don’t even need.
Best Bluetooth Headphones – Frequently Asked Questions
What is the noise reduction rating of the headphones?
Headphone noise reduction performance varies greatly depending on the model. It can range from 15 to 30 NRR or higher.
Are all earmuffs washable?
No, it depends on the headphone model. Most Bluetooth-enabled headphones are not washable, although their eartips can be removed and replaced.