SoundPro Bluedio headphones provide a decent option for mid-range earbuds.
I have recently travelled from Western Kentucky to North Carolina, to enjoy time with my parents and for some much needed vacation. Since my wife is not that fond of driving, I tend to serve as the primary driver. I have honestly never been a fan of hands-free, as I have never truly found that device that is comfortable inside or on top of my ear. Alas, the laws change and I need to adapt.
I often like to listen to music or audiobooks, specifically using the audible app. My car is Bluetooth capable, however, my children are often watching movies or listening to their own music. It never fails that either they are distracted or I am distracted by the others media. Thus, I am in need of some device that can play privately. I have been given the Bluedio N2 to review, which does potentially serve this role.
Upon initial impression, the packaging is professional and appealing. Unboxing the product, yields the Bluetooth device, a bag of 2 sets of extra ear tips, plastic inserts and a user manual. The user manual provides instruction in multiple languages and really does not provide much additional information beyond that showcased on the back of the packaging. I find it puzzling that the company logo states that it is probably the lightest headset on the market. Nothing like saying, “you do the research.” Removing the device from the packaging is quite easy. The device looks light and feels light. However, this does not hold true when placing the device into my ears. This particular device has an inline control system instead of an at the ear control system. This puts extra weight along one of the ears and makes the device feel lopsided. The ear bud fit well into the canal initially and actually felt quite comfortable. Unfortunately, the earbuds would not stay in my ear canal, especially the side with the inline controller. I tried the other two included tip sets (one seems to be the same size and one pair larger) without success. If standing still or sitting they would barely remain in my ears, yawning and chewing gum was enough to push the tips out of my ear canal. I do not think that I have a weird canal shape, so this was a bit irritating. So far I’ve had few issues with other earbuds to include the proprietary Apple earbuds.
To pair the device with your phone, go to settings and activate Bluetooth on your phone. Next find the Bluetooth headset device and hold the central disc button for two seconds. You will be greeted with a female robotic voice stating “power on,” followed by “device connected.” Once connected you are in business and ready to listen to movies or music or other media of your choosing. There is a volume up and volume down button on the side of the controller, which is convenient. Although the buttons did seem a bit laggy, they did their job and allowed me to make changes without accessing my phone. On an interesting note, when you have an incoming call, you can tap the circle button on the controller or if desired, you can hold this button down for two seconds to deny the call. Additionally, during regular use, you can hold down the same circular button and access voice commands on your device. This was a neat feature.
My wife noted that the speech was clear during calls. It does have some wind noise canceling ability for the microphone, but I did not really appreciate any for the actual earpieces. The sound quality is average with reasonable highs and mids but does have some room for improvement in the base department. I have tested multiple ear buds and find this to be on par with the $15-$20 range earbuds. This is reasonable. The earbuds are noted to be sweat proof, again another feature missing on some of the competition./
I do enjoy these headphones, and they tend to work as expected in their price range. There are some negative aspects of this device to discuss however. I noticed that if I left my iPhone 6s Plus idle, I would lose connection. I would then have to turn off the device (“Power Off”) and turn it back on (“Power On, Device Connected.” Twice now, I had to select forget the device on my phone and pair it again to regain function. This is not unlike every so often having to set the iphone into airplane mode and then turning this off to fix wifi issues. The voice commands do not seem to work as often as I would like, and the volume buttons on the headset are very slow to respond. The biggest negative that I’ve seen, is the weight and fit of the earbud. I did add the included plastic retainers. This did provide additional support in the ear. However, even the step did not allow for improved holding power when jogging or doing any kind of motion. I do not think I’ll be able to use these for physical activity. It will work well for driving and for sedentary listening. The device lasted approximately four hours, which is on par with the listed specifications. It can be charged in just a few hours. It is not a Qualcomm 2.0 quick charge device. The device is charged by a micro USB, which is included. This is a very tight fit, due to the plastic casing of the micro USB. It was quite difficult to place and remove the micro USB.
All in all, the device is reasonable. I would give this three out of five stars based on function, sound and overall design. I wish the tips fit better into the ear, so that I could use these during exercise or activity. I also would like for the micro USB to fit a little less snug. I have not yet tried these with a Samsung device, laptop or other iDevice as I used them for my iPhone on my most recent trip. They worked when I needed them and I would recommend these earbuds to those looking for a decent low to midrange Bluetooth earbud set. Again this is not only a headset but has a microphone too, allowing for call/car use. Before anyone asks, I do not drive with both earbuds in place. It is one or the either. In this case I used the lighter of the two in my ear. Overall rating, 3/5. You can buy this through Amazon.
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