It’s been some time now since Jaybird released their original Jaybird BlueBuds X which I had the pleasure to review. At the time, they were one of the best earbuds I had used, especially in the wireless earbud category. Today, I get the pleasure of reviewing their follow up product, the Jaybird X2 Bluetooth Earbuds.
In The Box
First up, let’s get into the box. The packaging is very similar to its predecessor, the BlueBuds X. Opening up the side flap will reveal the headphones and accessories. The first item you’ll encounter are the interchangeable ear tips, which now include an assortment of Comply Foam tip for maximum sound isolation and comfort. These are quite possibly my favorite tips for any earbuds. You’ll also get silicon tips, but those are nothing in comparison to these premium squishy foam friends.
Pulling out the tray, you’ll find a carrying case which is also an improvement over the clam-style case from the original version, and the X2 earbuds secured with some tabs. Inside of the hard case you’ll find the ear-fins that will help keep these earbuds in your ear. They work very well thanks to the matte finish on the outside, they won’t slip and slide at all, which is an issue I often had with my BlueBuds X.
The look of the sweat-proof X2 is, appropriately, very sporty. Available in six color combinations with Game of Thrones-style nicknames (Alpha, Charge, Fire, Ice, Midnight, and Storm), you can choose from fairly muted tones to neon yellow. The flat, linguini-style cable is black on all of the models and features an inline remote control with three buttons, two for controlling volume (the volume works together with, not independently of, your mobile device’s volume) or navigating tracks (depending on how long you press the buttons), and a central button that controls playback, call management, and power.
Let it never be said that Jaybird doesn’t care about a secure fit, the X2 can be worn two ways, and ships with six pairs of eartips (small, medium, and large pairs in both silicone or Comply foam), three sets of ear fins that stabilize the fit against the ear, and three cable clips to eliminate cable slack. Jaybird cares so much about fit that it’s committed a cardinal no-no for audio snobs—it doesn’t specify the left or right earpiece. The online manual tells you to use the earphones with the inline controller on the left side when wearing them with the cable looping up and over the ear, but a video demonstrates them being worn with the controller on the right side when the earphones are on with the cable descending from the ears and resting on the neck, behind the head. Sure, this is to facilitate a great fit, but for anyone wanting to hear the mix the way it was intended to be heard, this is a very annoying oversight. (Our tests show that the earpiece that has the controller closest to it is the true right earpiece.)
Now that we have our audio geek complaint out of the way, it’s time for some high praise, the design otherwise gets everything right. If you can, try to use the Comply foam ear tips, they block out such a tremendous amount of room noise that these might as well be noise-canceling earphones. And Comply foam tips, which expand gently inside the canal, like memory foam, provide the securest fit you’ll ever get from earphones that aren’t custom-molded.
Jaybird claims the X2 gets roughly 8 hours of battery life, but your results will vary with your volume levels. The earphones can store up to 8 different Bluetooth devices in memory—they will automatically re-pair with the most recent device connected when powered up. They will also go into standby mode when music is paused or stopped for a long period of time. Jaybird X2 inline
In addition to the ear fit accessories, the X2 ships with a USB charging cable (the micro USB end connects to the earpiece near the controls, the port is protected by a snap-shut cover when not charging). There’s also a well-intentioned but bizarre carrying case, the lid pops off, but can also pop inward accidentally, and then you have to fish it out of the rubberized, semi-flexible container. Still, the case is large enough to hold all of the included accessories.
On tracks with intense sub-bass content, like The Knife’s “Silent Shout,” the X2 delivers some serious thumping low-end. At top, very unwise listening levels, the lows do not distort, and at moderate volumes, you get a definite sense of powerful bass.
As for form and function, these are a dream to use. The battery life is rated at 8 hours and I have no trouble believing that number. It’s a rare occasion that I’m greeted with a low battery warning and charging them up is a quick and simple process. The charging port is located under one of the earbud caps and charges up with the included Micro USB cable.
There’s an inline remote control for changing tracks, play and pause, power, pairing mode, and even a microphone built-in that will allow you to take calls on-the-go. If that’s not enough these are sweat proof and guaranteed for life if they’re ever damaged because of that. Don’t go taking a shower with them, but they are sealed up with Liquipel and should withstand the most sweaty conditions.
Just like when I reviewed the Jaybird BlueBuds X, I was very impressed with the product and found myself using them all the time. In fact, I still have a pair of them to this date and now that I’ve got the Jaybird X2’s, I have to admit that my BlueBuds X will be replaced.
The reason being is because to me the Jaybird X2’s have slightly better sound quality and are a bit more comfortable when I’m wearing them. Of course at the moment the price is a bit high at about $179.95 as compared to around $120 – $135 for the original year one version, but in my opinion they are well worth it in so many ways.
You can pick a pair up for yourself via the link below and we ask that if you do, please let us know what it was that made you purchase a pair of the Jaybird X2’s.