The Best Bluetooth Earbuds From $80 to $200

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Unless you're one of the luckiest people alive, you're all too familiar with that embarrassing, sometimes painful moment when your earbuds cord gets caught on something and rips them out of your head. Now, thanks to Bluetooth connectivity, there are plenty of options for wireless in-ear listening, with many specifically designed for exercising.

The Best Bluetooth Speakers From $400 to $100

All seven models below we reviewed feature the ability to take calls, control the volume, and skip or fast-forward through tracks without having to touch your device. Using a short playlist to objectively compare the audio, we tested them while both moving around and exercising to see how they held up, giving extra credit for any special features.

Jabra Sport Pulse

Price: $199.99

Listening time: 5 hours

Sweat-Proof: Yes

While the comfort and resistance to sweat might be equaled by others on this bunch, it's the added features that set the Sport Pulse apart. They're compatible with a variety of fitness apps, can measure your heart rate, and have a variety of options that monitor and update you on distance, calories burned, and much more as you work out. There's also a free Dolby app that lets you enhance and fine tune the sound, an option that none of the others here have. If you're willing to part with the $200.


Jaybird Bluebuds X

Price: $169.96

Listening time: 8 hours

The ear-stabilizing cushions make these the most comfortable pair we tried. The sound is excellent, clear, and comparable to the best of this lot. For exercise purposes, there's an optional clip to tighten the cord, and its thinness allows you to flip the buds upside down and wrap the cord over your ear for a snugger fit for more active use.


Sol Republic Shadow Wireless

Price: $99.99

Listening time: 8 hours

Sweat-Proof: No, but they're sweat-resistant

Easily the best value of the bunch, this Sol model has a lightly weighted collar that rests comfortably on your neck for more stability. The sound is balanced and crisp, though the buds don't have any fitted options that will keep them in your ears if you're moving around too much. The water-resistance design is good for days you might get a little sweaty or caught in the rain, but you won't want them if your main use is for working out.


JBL Synchros Reflect BT

Price: $99.95

Listening time: 5 hours

Sweat-Proof: Yes

While the sound isn't as great as the equally priced Sol model, it's still very good. And the design is much better for exercise. The cable comes with a built-in tensioner that lets you adjust the length, and is also reflective for added safety at night, a big bonus considering it'll be that much harder to hear any cars behind you. And whenever you're done listening, you can magnetically clasp the earbuds together so they don't just dangle around your neck.


Beats PowerBeats2

Price: $199.95

Listening time: 6 hours

One of the consistent knocks on Beats headphones is that they amplify the bass and compromise the overall sound. The PowerBeats2, however, still have plenty of low end without sacrificing clarity of the midrange and treble. Out of all the models tested, they include a flexible, over-ear clip that makes them the most ideal of all these models for vigorous exercise. Depending on your ear shape, you'll probably want to try them on beforehand because the only thing you can adjust here is the size of the silicone earbud tips.


Phiaton BT 220 NC

Price: $179

Listening time: 17 hours

Sweat-Proof: No

This Phiaton model is the real outlier in this round-up. Its big selling points are its noise-canceling ability, optional foam ear tips for maximum comfort and added noise canceling, and 17-hour battery life. And even if you somehow expend all that battery, there's a cable that allows you to plug them into your device like traditional headphones. The most unique feature, which can be a good or bad thing depending on your tastes and needs, is that the controls are found on a clip-on fob that's about the size of an extra-thick USB drive. It makes them the least ideal for exercise, but the noise-cancelation and power options might be worth an extra half star if that's what you want.


Plantronics BackBeat Go 2

Price: $79.99

Listening time: 4.5 hours

Sweat-Proof: Yes

We had the most issues with Plantronics' offering. The sound was thin and muddled, and the fit stabilizers were so flexible that they fell out of our ears even when working at our desk. The upside is that for an extra $20, you can purchase a special charging case that extends the battery life by up to 14.5 hours, making them the longest-lasting, exercise-friendly buds of the lot.



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