Published on May 1st, 2017 | by Varuna Singh0
Bose SoundSport wireless in-ear Headphones Review
Bose makes some of the most widely credited headphones. Every angle from sound quality, build quality, comfort and wireless performance in their wireless sound products gets good reviews and is a brand that one can recommend. Their flagship travel headphones the QC35 does really well in every angle. Bose didn’t have many outdoor sport headphones that went truly wireless in a way that the QuietComfort series allowed you to. That is, until the SoundSport in-ear wireless headphones today.
Your workouts. Made wireless.
The Bose SoundSport Wireless are in-ear headphones that are only wireless. Each headphone pod is connected to each other with no other wire or extension apart from the volume and button control bulge. These headphones do not have noise cancellation but offer isolation in their ear pods. They are water resistence only to a point where they are resistant to only sweat.
In typical feature fashion, lets cover the features that ough to be in a sport focused wireless earphone.
- Comfort, Ergonomics and Movement
The Bose SoundSport is just in on its own two headphone pods connected by the volume button control rocker. Its light at about 27 grams. Wearing them is as easy as taking it out from its bag friendly pouch and travelling it over your neck to fit in your ears. The headphones at first look like a task to get into a snug comfort, but with time you get to know exactly where they are supposed to be in and around your ears. The Rubber around the pods is comforting and don’t push way too much. I can shake my head, jump around and they still stay in place. The rubber grips that protrude out of the pods help in keeping the SoundSport headphones fit nicely.
The right ear pod has a single button. Press it once and you turn these on. A feminine voice dictates battery life and even the devices its connected to. So, yes you can connect and pair these with more than one device. I had mine connected to my iPhone, and my Windows laptop. I’ll talk about music playback handle a bit later.
The microphone in the volume button rocker has a microphone in as well. When placed around your neck, the distance between your mouth and the control is just apt enough for voice calls and dictation.
Bose nails it in this section. The microphone, volume controls and the length is perfect enough to run with, jump around and the quality of rubber along the headphones is neutral and it never feels alien. The only issue and discomfort is over 2 hours of use. The pods can get a little more snug in your ears. Luckily, you have different sizes that come in with the device.
- Bluetooth Connection
The Bose SoundSport Wireless is um, wireless and it works via Bluetooth. The connection is solid. Surprisingly solid. It uses Bluetooth 4 and it enables you to keep your device in one room and still listen to music when you’re in the toilet. Bose excels here really well. You can use the iOS or Android App to connect and manage connections if you don’t want to, you can long press the button on the right ear pod to have the earphones in pair mode.
Bose also has a share music feature where you can share music from your mobile device to two SoundSport headphones and share the music. You can even control your music within the app. It offers you the track name and offers controls to forward to the next and previous tracks. It works well with streaming apps as well.
Recently Bose has been accused of knowing what you listen and hear, and that’s really not cool if true. So far this hasn’t been settled. It doesn’t hurt the experience at all, but its important and you should know.
Pairing is as straight forward with the least number of steps – that’s how it ough to be. The earphone voice even dictates the devices that it has paired with. If you are connected to a phone and you get a phone call, the voice even attempts to pronounce the name of who is calling. That’s a pretty neat feature. You can literally throw your phone in your bag and not have to worry about who is calling you. This just works in calls and pairing but doesn’t work in notifications. I don’t think BOSE intended you to hear every notification that comes on your phone. For what its worth, I found this feature very useful.
On iOS, the battery meter is displayed along side the Bluetooth icon on top. This is always a great feature of iOS and the Bose SoundSport supports it, how good is the battery life ?
The battery isn’t all that great
- Battery life
Here is where the Bose SoundSport is different from BOSE’s other wireless headphones – the battery isn’t all that great. In fact you get about 6 hours of battery life. That’s okay for one days use during the day, however if charging your headphones every day or two is a horrible thought for you, you might want to stay away from it.
The right pod has a flap that reveals the micro USB slot for charging. I wouldn’t recommend you to charge the SoundSport and listening at the same time as the experience isn’t ergonomic. Charging from 0% to 100% takes a quick hour, but remember you’re going to be doing a lot of this.
- Sound Quality
Lets get one thing straight. This isn’t an audiophile level earphone. They don’t have amazing sound quality. But they do have good sound quality. The SoundSport wireless sounds good. In-fact better than most fitness specific earphones. They also do NOT offer noise cancelling. However the pods have a comforting noise isolation. I’ve taken them cycling and they offer good sound amongst the traffic around me. Here is the problem – they aren’t all that loud. While I don’t advise listening at max volume setting, the SoundSport’s volume gets exponentially louder in the last two levels of the volume spectrum.
During calls, the microphone is a good comfortable distance away from your mouth. Calls go well, there is almost no noticeable lag in music or calls.
The SoundSport can very easily shift between two devices and prioritizes the music played last from your devices. I can listen to a podcast from my iPhone while working and if I stumble upon a video on my PC while working, I can pause the podcast, play the video on my PC and I start hearing the video. When the video ends, I can continue my podcast on my phone . It works really well without the need to jump cables or shifting headphones.
- Price and availability
The Bose SoundSport delivers what is a great all round sport earphones that work and stream really well. They sound decent and upon some time, can offer great comfort. For a price less than AED600, it’s a good value. I’d recommend the Bose SoundSport earphones if you prioritise wireless uninterrupted sound. If you ride a cycle or bike, this is a great product. If you want to listen to your music seamlessly between your phone and PC and other devices, I’d highly recommend these.
However, if you don’t want to charge your earphones every one to two days and the thought of that scares you, that’s unfortunately one of the biggest disadvantage of the SoundSport wireless earphones. I wish BOSE had a better way to charge these. While micro USB is great as almost every one still has a spare cable, nothing beats charging as elegant as how Apple does it with their wireless ear pods. However you’re not getting all the other benefits on other earphones as these. It’s a tradeoff that has its benefits. I’d also recommend you try these earphones out in person at BOSE’s store before you buy them as your ears might be a little different.