Pros: Good wirelsess range, smooth sound, fashionable
Cons: A little big, pricey,
This review is for Beats Powerbeats2 Wireless (white). First I would like to introduce myself I am 38 years old and have been into audio equipment since middle school. I don't consider myself an audiophile, but a audio equipment enthusiast. We all know how audiophiles feel about Beats brand, I have felt the same way for years until I listened to there updated Beats Studio and have been impressed ever since. It's well known Beats sells more headphones and ear buds then any other company if you like them or not. There target consumer is focused towards a younger generation and people with a fashion sense. I would like to say thank you to Erin from Apple for sending me out a demo unit to review, I am not an employee or am I being compensated for this review all pictures were taken by me and this review is based on my honest opinion. Powerbeats2 Wireless can be purchased directly from there website for $199.95.http://www.beatsbydre.com/earphones/beats-powerbeats2-wireless.html
Majority of people use there cell phones to listen to music for portability, more and more companies seem to be offering a wireless headphone or ear bud. The Powerbeats2 Wireless were inspired by LeBron James and are designed for athletes and active activities. I like to work out with weights in my spare time and usually use a pair of wired iem's, using a pair of wired iem's can slow your work out down. If you know anything about lifting weights you know you don't want to much time in between sets. I always found myself playing with the cord or it catching on something or trying to change tracks or having the whole ear bud falling out. The best solution to these problems would be to go wireless, before trying Powerbeats2 I have tried to use Plantronics Backbeat Go wireless ear buds. But they were nothing but a hassle they never would stay in my ear, and the volume at max was to low for me. I like to listen to music loud when working out yeah I know it's not good I listen to all my music loud. My daughter suggested for me to look at the Powerbeats2 since they have ear hooks for them to stay in place. So hear I am reviewing them lets start off with the packaging.
Weight: 24 grams
Wrap around cable length: 500mm
Beats is known for not putting specifications on there packages like SPL, impedance, and frequency response and pretty much leave it at dimensions of the unit. We all know there target consumer isn't audiophiles, but lets get with the program some real specs listed would be nice to see . I am not interested how much they weigh or how big they are, I would like to know if they would pair well with my DAP give us some real specs.
The Powerbeats2 come in a very nice box with hi-res photos on the back and side. The front of the package the ear buds are displayed through a clear piece of acrylic and are nicely fit into a preformed piece of cardboard. Underneath after removing the cardboard you are greeted with a small box containing the charging cable and ear tips with a hard shell case to follow. Below that you will find the owners manual and warranty information. Removing everything is very easy since they include pull tabs on everything it's a very nice touch for packaging. I don't know how many times I had to get a butter knife out just to get the stuff out on other products. Beats have always impressed me with there packaging with very thick cardboard and a memorable unboxing experience. A lot of other companies will use thin cardboard only to have the product damaged in shipping. I give Beats a A+ for packaging, and the box makes a really nice display case when your not using them.
Powerbeats2 wireless earphones with RemoteTalk
Hard shell carrying case
Universal micro-usb cable
Cable management clip
Quick Start guide
Ok for a wireless ear bud there really isn't many accessories that you would need but they did include the essentials. Powerbeats2 come with S,M,L silicone tips and a pair of flanged tips, the medium ones were factory installed pretty much standard practice. There is also a very nice black hard shell case for storage, it's nice to see they are not using soft pouch cases I can't stand them they do no good for protection when placing them in a backpack. Included is also a very short micro-usb for charging, everybody probably has a dozen but for the price I would like to have seen a wall part included. That's about it for the accessories everything you need nothing more nothing less, pretty satisfied.
BUILD AND FIT
Powerbeats2 uses a all plastic design for durability and sweat proof, with a tangle free flat cable. The front of them has there name and logo on them stamped in gray witch looks really nice. On the left side placed near your chin is a 3 button remote and mic for phone calls and music controls. The housing of the button is coated in a non-slip rubber material, the middle point of the cable there is a cable management slide also made from a non-slip material. On the left ear piece the charging port and power on button are on the top and bottom of the front housing. They also have an led light near the power button to tell if it's on or off and to also show you when it's in sync mode. The ear hooks are a non-slip material also and can be formed to fit your ear, each housing has airports for the drivers to breath also. Taking off the tips they have some kind of screen to ensure no wax enters the sound tube. It's good to see they didn't choose to go with Apples lighting cable for charging and stuck with a micro-usb.
First looking at the Powerbeats2 I was worried that they were going to be heavy and bulky, wondering how they would stay in place. They are actually pretty light weight and fit really well, the ear hooks really helped keep them in place. I really like the materials they have chosen for these I wouldn't want any kind of metal on these for what there meant for. Placement of the ear bud itself in your ear doesn't go in deep but sits right before your canal making isolation not that good. I would assume they did this since you don't want complete isolation during active activities and want to be aware of your surroundings. Even though they don't isolate that well sound leakage was at a minimum. Working out in these for about 2 hours they were very comfortable and never failed due to sweat. I don't usually run on a treadmill but I have seen a video of someone running with these on and having them fall out every couple of minutes. So I had to give it a try and they never fell out, I don't think the other person had the right silicone tips on or didn't bend the ear hooks right. Overall I loved these for what they are intended for, they performed flawless and they look good in my opinion. You wouldn't want to go the gym wearing something that looks goofy, being single you never know when you will meet someone. I wouldn't want to be at the gym looking like I have a growth coming out of my ears I need all the help I can get and these are pretty stylish. But what do I know about style I am a 38 year old man I like to think I am though.
Ok the part that really matters, but working out I am not looking for something for critical listening when doing an active activity. I want function and durability and something that is going to get loud to get me going. I mostly used my Samsung Alpha playing mp3's and tried it with my Astell & Kern AK100II using FLAC, and WAV files. I let my daughter demo them with her IPhone 6 and I am lucky she gave them back to me to review. So how do they sound for being wireless in one word I would have to say WOW, I was very impressed especially with so many negatives things said about Beats first offerings. They are definitely low end heavy but with control, they kind of remind me of my Shure SE215's but the Powerbeats2 mid bass is richer and smoother. Powerbeats2 midrange is very detailed with good clarity with vocals, they are laid back a bit witch gives them an intimate soundstage. The high end is were the Powerbeats2 lacks but it is above average of other Bluetooth headsets I have heard. Compared to Plantronics Backbeats the Powerbeats2 are more engaging with better clarity and smoothness.
Using the Powerbeats2 for phone calls was above average and work as I was hoping, you could clearly hear the other person, and the other end didn't no I was using Bluetooth. All the controls worked perfect with my android device for music and phone calls, it's great to see this since Beats is now owned by Apple. I have always run into a problem with controls that only worked with Apple devices so I was really happy. These things get loud just what I would want for active use, playing them at max volume there was no distortion at all. They are rated for about 30 feet from your device, I walked away from my phone and ended up about 36 feet before it broke up. They are also rated for about 6 hours of use, witch I didn't actually see but they last long enough for a full work out.
I would have know problem recommending these to anyone, the price might be off putting but they work great if your an athlete or practicing for some kind of sport and there sweat resistant . These are the only wireless ear buds that actually stay in my ear when I am working out. For the size I would have liked to seen a longer battery life. They also come in just about every color you can think off, and if you want to look good at the gym Beats is probably the only brand women know off (no offense to women). Beats has come along way from there first offerings so if you still haven't heard there new house sound, next time your at a brick and motor store give them a try. Bluetooth has come along way from the beginning of bluetooth's start, the Powerbeats2 sound better then some wired ear buds I have heard in the same price range. I hope I helped anyone interested in the market for a wireless ear bud for active users.