<img src="http://www.dossaudio.com/upload/201711/06/201711061749209380.jpg" class="bbCodeImage LbImage" alt="[&#x200B;IMG]" data-url="http://www.dossaudio.com/upload/201711/06/201711061749209380.jpg" /><img...

Doss ANC BE2 Active Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones

Rating:
2.5/5,

Recent Reviews

  1. alex2750
    Only good for strong ANC
    Written by alex2750
    Published Dec 31, 2017
    2.5/5,
    Pros - Good build quality
    Immersive soundstage
    Powerful ANC blocks up to 90% of low frequency noise
    Good battery life
    Cons - Constant crackling noise in the background
    Have to be played at very high volume to have no crackling
    I would like to thank Liang from Doss for sending me the Doss ANC BE2 to test and review. Despite receiving these in exchange for my review, all opinions expressed are completely mine and I always write reviews as unbiasedly and honestly as I can.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I'm a 20 year old college student who listens to music at every possible opportunity. I generally prefer IEMs to cans and wear them on the subway, between classes, doing school work, working out, and any other time it's socially acceptable to (as well as a few times it's not).

    I listen to a bit of everything but usually prefer male vocals and strong bass. I don't know how to describe my tastes by genre so I would say somewhere in the middle of Hozier, early Maroon 5, Bruno Mars, Queen, and Mumford and Sons is my sweet spot.

    I hold all of my music on my Samsung S8 and use Poweramp as my main player.

    Some of my test tracks are:
    Sail - Awolnation
    Somebody That I Used To Know - Pentatonix
    Centipede - Knife Party
    In One Ear - Cage The Elephant
    Hallelujah - Rufus Wainwright
    All I Need - Awolnation
    Killer Queen - Queen
    Crazy Little Thing Called Love - Queen
    Hundred - The Fray
    Welcome to the Black Parade - My Chemical Romance
    Someone Like You - Adele
    Gasoline - Halsey
    Seven Nation Army - The White Stripes

    At the time of posting, the Doss ANC BE2 is out of stock on Amazon and Doss Audio but is regularly $69.99.

    Packaging and Accessories:

    The BE2 (I don’t know whether the model name is actually ANC BE2 or just BE2 but I’m gonna pretend it’s the latter) comes in a pretty standard box - the front has a picture of the headphones and the model name while the back has specs and more in depth information. The box opens to reveal a fold-out user manual and a black hard clamshell carrying case with the DOSS brand name on it, which is sitting in a foam insert.

    20171106_181532.jpg 20171106_181555.jpg

    This carrying case (or, as DOSS calls it, “portable protective box”) is not small - roughly 7” x 6” x 3” - but is just large enough to fit the BE2 folded up and is much more portable than the box it came in. It is made of a hard but malleable material - I’m not exactly sure what it is - and the inside is coated with a soft, almost felt-like fabric. The top has a mesh pocket that takes up approximately ⅔ of the case and has a small pat of velcro in the middle of the elastic band at the top of the pouch. This pocket has a plastic bag inside that holds two cords - one aux and one micro USB - the only non-case accessories the BE2 comes with.

    20171106_181620.jpg 20171106_183703.jpg


    Build:

    The BE2 are the most comfortable over-ear headphones I own. The soft leather earpads are over 0.5”/1.5cm thick, covering my ears completely and making sure that the drivers sit a comfortable distance away from my head. A thin metal band separates the ear pads from the housing, which is made of a hard black plastic. The headband has a thin layer of the same padding as the ear pads; this padding covers just over half of headband and stops at almost the exact point the headband no longer touches my head. The rest has no covering and is made of the same hard plastic.

    20171106_183831.jpg 20171106_183837.jpg


    A panel on the outside of the left and right housing feels more rubberized than the housing, which allows you to find them easier without looking. The ANC button is in the middle of the panel on the left housing. There is a small LED above the button that glows blue if ANC is turned on and red when the headphones are charging. The panel on the right housing has music controls - volume up/down on the top and bottom, song back/song forward on left and right, and pause/play/power in the middle. The bottom of the right housing has the aux input, micro USB input, and microphone.

    20171106_183900.jpg 20171106_183916.jpg 20171106_183954.jpg

    The headband is also adjustable, allowing you to get the best fit possible. However, although (and most likely because) the BE2 folds to fit in its case, the housings cannot rotate telescopically. That said, they don’t need to rotate (at least for me) to secure a great fit thanks to the thick ear pads creating a great seal.

    Fit/Isolation:

    Thanks to the large ear pads, simply wearing these headphones provides a bit of passive isolation. This is nowhere near to the level of a decent IEM but still manages to make the background noises of everyday life a bit quieter.

    Part of what makes these headphones so comfortable is that they don’t squeeze my head tight, instead relying on the ear pads to make a seal. However, this means that they fit well when I’m sitting in one place but tend to jostle and wiggle when I move around at any pace more than a slow walk.

    Battery Life/Connectivity:

    DOSS promised a cool 20 hours of playback time, which I assume is without ANC. Doing hybrid testing (both with and without), I got about 12 hours of playback; I can assume that if I didn’t use ANC I would get about 16 or 17 hours. These numbers also depend on volume and a host of other factors that need to be taken into account but you will definitely have a good life of multiple days of music playtime with these.

    The headphones do take a while to charge fully - about 3-4 hours - but can provide over an hour of playback on less than half an hour of charge if you need to listen in a pinch. The LED on the left housing glows red when the battery is low and blinks while it is charging.

    The BE2 has pretty standard connectivity - Bluetooth 4.1 with a range of just over 10m. When my phone is in my pocket, the sound never skips or hiccups.

    Sound:

    While playing music, these headphones give off a low but constant crackling sound. Because of this, I listen to all of my music on these pretty loud - once you go above a certain level (~70% max volume) the music drowns out the crackling. However, you can still hear it in between songs. If you like to listen to music at any volume lower than ~70% or if you like to listen to podcasts or anything else where there isn’t a wall of sound in the background, these headphones are borderline unlistenable. Even at higher volumes, I still heard the crackle on any songs that have spoken parts (especially musical soundtracks) or parts with a lack of constant background noise. Without the crackle, these headphones would have been multiple times better. With it, I don’t see myself using these.

    Another problem I have with these headphones, albeit much smaller, is that they fade in after being paused rather than simply picking up where you left off. I understand why some people might like this feature - ensuring that music doesn’t start blasting in their ears out of nowhere when they play music - but personally it takes me out of the music and the extra few seconds it takes to fade in add to this effect.

    Normally, I analyze the sound part by part; however, due to the crackling, it’s not only hard to pick out parts on songs with lots of treble (such as Adele’s “Someone Like You” and The Fray’s “Hundred”) but I wouldn’t recommend them for anything but loud music and ANC. That said, I was moderately impressed by the sound - the bass is rich and punchy without being bloated, the mids don’t distort even at high volumes and vocals sound clear, and the soundstage is excellent, providing over 180 degrees of sound. Highs are slightly boosted but often get lost to the crackling in treble-heavy songs.

    ANC:

    DOSS claims that the BE2 can block 90% of low frequency noise, which seems lofty but intrigued me. By playing Celestial White Noise, I found that while the ANC didn’t block all noise, it basically eliminated all lower frequency noise and left only the higher register. Similarly, this blocks out most background TV noise (for example, the boos of sad Jets fans), but I could still hear voices. These headphones would likely be good for airplanes for this reason, although I haven’t had the opportunity to test how effectively they can block up to 85 decibels of low frequency noise. Additionally, the ANC works even when the headphones are off, making them a better option

    Comparisons:

    In terms of sound, the BE2 loses to any other headphone simply due to that crackling. In terms of ANC, I don’t currently have any of my other ANC headphones with me for comparison but I can update this section once I have them with me again.

    Final Thoughts:

    These headphones were so close to being great. They are built well, pack a good battery life, have powerful ANC, and a nice sound to complement a better-than-average soundstage. However, the persistent crackling in the background whenever anything is playing renders these virtually unlistenable unless you blast your music. Lower volumes are out of the question and anything without a full sound that engages all registers is prone to be interrupted by crackling. That said, the ANC works incredibly well for lower frequency noises (as advertised) and I highly recommend them for use on a plane, bus, or any other form of long travel.


    If it weren’t for the build quality and the ANC, I would give these 1 or 1.5 stars. However, they’ve earned 2.5 due to those two factors and those two factors alone.

Comments

To view comments, simply sign up and become a member!