Bluetooth headsets is another one of those devices that have become an integral part of our lives because of the convenience that comes with it. First off, there are no messy wires hanging out and you don't have to hold the device or strap it in your arms all the time. Rather your device can be in your bag at the gym or at a table at home and you can continue doing your work and listen to music!
This convenience is what has made Bluetooth headsets so popular today.
Many companies are trying to hustle and bustle to enter this market because it is lucrative. One of the best companies that have already established themselves in this sphere is Jaybirds. They have a series of headsets that offer some of the best sounds and battery life, and they also look chic to go with your personality.
In this article, we will be reviewing two of their well-known products – Jaybird Bluebuds X and Jaybird X2 to see which is better.
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Jaybird Bluebuds X vs Jaybird X2 – A Comparison
Jaybird X2 is the next version of Jaybird Bluebuds, that is also called as Jaybird X. Here is a detailed comparison of the two products.
One of the prominent changes is in the name. The earlier version had the name “bluebuds” to it, while the subsequent version just says X2, and no mentioned of “bluebuds.”
Both the models look fairly the same in terms of design. In fact, if you keep both the models side by side, you'll be surprised at how similar they look right down to the Jaybird logo embossed on the sides.
In both the models, the two earpieces are bridged by a flat cable about 21″ in length and the earpieces are cylindrical in shape. The whole weight of both these products average a mere 13 grams, making it ideal.
However, ensure that the wires do not get tangled at the back of your neck during a heavy workout. To ease this aspect, Jaybird has included a trio of cord-management clips with each product and using these clips you can shorten or lengthen the wire to match your preferences.
Probably the only difference is the finish. X2 are in a matte finish while its predecessor is glossy. Maybe the difference is just to show that these are two different models! Apart from that, there is no reason for any change considering that Jaybird bluebuds X were a hit among users. This change could also be due to reviews that pointed out the plastic finish of Bluebuds. So, to give it a more refined look, Jaybird could have given it a matte finish. Though it is definitely a refinement, it is not significant enough to make it a central point of difference.
Another area where there is a difference in terms of design is the choice of colours. The X2 comes in more colours than Bluebuds and this could make a difference to those who are specific about colour preferences.
Build quality is fairly similar too, as both the models are sweat-proof and come with a lifetime guarantee against water damage. This means you can sport them during your run, even if it rains outside as your headphones will not get damaged!
One more aspect is the carrying case. Though this is a good feature in both the model, the case in X2s is made of silicon when compared to the clamshell-style of Bluebuds. The advantage is the X2 case shuts down more tightly than Bluebuds and this means, the headphones get better protection from dirt and dust.
The verdict – Since the design changes are minor, both the models score well on this front. However, if you have been looking for a particular colour, the chances are you'll find that in X2 than in Bluebuds. Also, the carrying case is better in X2 and that's another aspect to consider.
Another key difference, though minor, is the fit options. Both the headphones come with earpieces that are slightly larger than your conventional wired headphones, but that is understandable considering that it is wireless.
In addition, it is also easy to install the ear pins in both the models. They slide over the earpiece snugly. However, it makes a little bit of time to get familiar with the orientation and donning, but once you get it right, the sound quality is great. All that you have to do is lock the tip of the rear fin in the top part of the ear. The ear fin should touch the lower side, back and top portions of the ear bowl to get a snug fit.
If you're looking for the “R” and “L” letters to know which side each earpiece should go into, you'll be disappointed. The manual clearly says that you'll have to figure it out by the angle of the ear tip. Well, Jaybird could have had those letterings in both the models to make life easy for users. For some reason, they left it out!
While Bluebuds X came with three pairs of ear tips, X2 comes with six tips, out of which three are silicon tips while the other three are foam tips. This means X2 is sure to feel comfortable if you had problems getting a good fit from Bluebuds X.
Also, if you found Bluebuds a little comfortable, X2 is the choice for you as it comes with more fitting options.
The winner in this category is X2 because the earplugs are definitely more comfortable and give a snug fit when compared to Bluebuds.
The controls are identical in both the models.
The USB charging port is located right under the right earpiece's end cap. When you plug it in, the headphones will be charged.
The top button is for increasing volume while the bottom one is for reducing the volume. The centre button can be used to take calls and to play or pause. A one-second push of the top button will allow you to navigate to the next song on your playlist while a one-second push on the bottom button will navigate to the previous song. A one-second push on the middle button turns on the headphones and can also be used to reject calls. Finally, a four-second push of the middle button turns off the headphone.
Since the controls are identical in both the models, there is nothing much to compare here.
Jaybird Bluebuds X and Jaybird X2 use the same Bluetooth version 2.1 EDR, and this might make you think that you've even bought the wrong product considering the newer Bluetooth versions that are available. In fact, most headphones released in the same year as X2 use Bluetooth 4.0 or 4.1. This might make you wonder why in the world does X2 not use any of the higher Bluetooth versions.
Well, that's because Jaybird insists that the higher versions of Bluetooth do not offer better audio quality when compared to version 2.1, so it found no reason to upgrade to a higher Bluetooth version. Is this a good move? Just depends on you!
If you've heard other headphones and if you think that there is a significant difference in audio quality because of the higher Bluetooth version used, then obviously it's not the right choice by Jaybird. On the other hand, if you find no difference and if you're unable to attribute it to Bluetooth version, Jaybird is justified in its decision. Frankly speaking, identifying this change and attributing it to a specific Bluetooth version is tough, but you're welcome to take this challenge.
The pairing process is identical in both the models, so there is nothing much to compare there. But, the one significant difference is the audio cues. Bluebuds have a lot more cues when you make changes and those are greatly reduced in X2. In fact, every time you increase volume in your headphones, you'll hear an audio chirp in Bluebuds, but that's gone in X2. In this area, X2 definitely scores over Bluebuds because if you increase the volume, you should just hear the volume change and not any notification associated with it.
Another significant aspect of connectivity is dropouts. Unfortunately, there were many instances of dropout in Bluebuds, even at a distance of four to five feet. Thankfully, that issue seems to have been resolved in X2 and there were no dropouts, even at a distance of five feet.
So, the winner? X2 because it has less audio cues and lower dropout rates when compared to Bluebuds X.
One area where X2 scores significantly over Bluebuds is battery life.
Though Jaybird claims that both the products have eight hours of playing time and need about two and a half hours to charge the battery fully, it was not the case. Repeated tests show that Bluebuds only reached about six to six and a half hours of playing time with a fully charged battery whereas X2 consistently reached the eight-hour mark.
This difference is probably because many reviewers pointed out to the lower battery life of Bluebuds, and Jaybird simply wanted to fix it in X2.
That said, eight hours of battery life has become more or less a norm in the world of wireless headphones today, so the eight-hour battery life of X2 is not something that should require significant attention.
Either way, X2 is the winner here because its battery life is consistent and accurate.
This is probably the most important parameter when it comes to comparing two headphones.
One of the aspects that make a difference to sound quality is the fit. When the headphones fit well into your ears, it greatly enhances your audio experience. Looking at the sound quality from this perspective, X2 is better because it offers more options to get a better fit. You can opt from the three silicon or the three foam tips to get the fit you prefer. Though in Bluebuds, you could buy the extra foam tips, it is still an extra job. Since these foam buds are included as a part of the product, X2 is better, though not that significantly.
In terms of quality though, both the headphones sound similar. Though some reviewers believe that the sound quality in X2 is much better than that of Bluebuds, it is debatable because when you pay more, you tend to believe that it is better. Besides this psychological difference, both the headphones seem to have more or less the same sound quality.
A good aspect of both the headphones is that they exclude ambient noise, so you can simply enjoy your music without any disturbance whatsoever. That said, these headphones are not always the best choice when it comes to cycling or running in the outdoors because you do need ambient sound for your own safety.
Also, both these headphones have a balanced sound with good undertones and clarity. In fact, they are comparable with wired headphones when it comes to sound quality, which is a surprise because wired headphones tend to transmit sound better. There are no visible sound distortions in both the models, and this makes them really good products to enjoy good audio wirelessly.
The vocals sound naturally in the ears while the mid-range is good too. Probably, one of the best aspects of any Jaybird headphone is its treble presence. The high-pitched details like your cymbals are clear and vibrant, and this is where both X2 and Bluebuds scores over other wireless headphones in the same category.
Overall, the sound is encompassing and immersive, and it is great to have both these aspects in a headphone of this price range. In fact, the sounds emulate a 3D environment and could give a soundstage feel.
That said, the bass is a little disappointing in both the models, so this may not be the ideal choice for bass heads. Otherwise, there is no perceptible difference in sound quality between the two products.
One possible difference could be the presence of more bass in X2 when compared to Bluebuds. Also, there are some mild refinements in the midrange and this makes some tones have a pleasing signature to it. But, the difference is not really that significant enough and can be felt only in some tracks.
In general though, if you don't like how Bluebuds sound, the chances are high to not like the sound of X2 as well. If you were expecting X2 to have a better or different sound quality, you'll be disappointed!
The final verdict – both the headphones are winners because their audio quality is quite good. Clear tones and good treble make them better than many other expensive brands available today. Between these two models though, there is only a slight difference that may also be subjective, so it is safe to say that there is no difference in sound quality and both are equally good.
This is the most important aspect that could determine your choice. You can check the prices of Jaybird X2 and Bluebuds X by clicking the hyperlinks.
The difference is not much really, but is the extra money justified?
Not really. X2 is similar to Bluebuds in many aspects, except maybe the battery life. Is that money more worth the extra one or one and a half hours you'll get every time is a question that you should answer for yourself? If you think that one hour difference is significant for you, go for X2. Otherwise, Bluebuds is a good choice.
In fact, it is one of the most that offer the best value for money. With so many overpriced headphones out there, Jaybird Bluebuds offers a fairly similar audio quality at less than half the price. But, if you think the fit, case and battery life are essential, go for X2 (Bluebuds X were also discontinued by Jaybird).
Jaybird Bluebuds and Jaybird X2 – Pros and Cons
In this section, let's get a bird's eye view of the pros and cons of both these products.
Jaybird Bluebuds Pros
Below are some of the advantages of buying Bluebuds.
- Sounds quality is well-balanced and good.
- Great value for money
- Minimalistic and aesthetic design.
- Works well on iOS and Android.
Jaybird Bluebuds Cons
There are also a few cons that come with bluebuds, as with any product. So, let's quickly run through them as well.
- The battery life is only about six and a half hours and doesn't always come to the right hour mark that is being claimed by the manufacturer.
- It would be good to have foam tips as well for a better fit, as opposed to just silicon tips.
- The bass could have been better.
Jaybird X2 Pros
Here's a look into the positive aspects of Jaybird X2.
- Foam tips offer a much better fit, so the sound quality and performance is better.
- New case fits better and can keep out more dirt and dust from the headphones.
- Battery life is good and consistent at eight hours, but that has become the defacto standard in the wireless headphone industry.
Jaybird X2 Cons
Jaybird X2 also comes with some negative aspects, and they are:
- Leaves out the ambient sounds, which may not always be ideal.
- Battery life could be improved.
- Bass could be better, considering that it is supposed to be the next version of Bluebuds.
- It takes a little bit of time to get the right fit.
- The sound is marginally better than Bluebuds, but not significant enough for an upgrade from Bluebuds.
Verdict: Jaybird Bluebuds vs Jaybird X2
Now that we have reviewed both Jaybird Bluebuds and Jaybird X2, which is better?
The answer is both are great headphone products that offer good value for money. The sound quality is fantastic, as you can hear bass, midrange and highs quite clearly in both the models.
When you compare both the models, the difference is not really that significant, except in a few minor areas. The casing of X2 is better and tighter than Bluebuds, and this could keep out more dirt and dust from your headphones. Secondly, the battery life is slightly longer, though the manufacturer claims that both the products have an eight-hour battery life. In reality, Bluebuds has only about six and a half hours when compared to the consistent eight hours of X2.
One area where X2 is better is the fit. With six tips, three of silicon and three of foam, it is sure to give a great fit for anyone, when compared to just three tips of silicon from Bluebuds.
In terms of cost, X2 is a little pricier than Bluebuds, and this extra cost is not really justified because there isn't much difference between the two products.
So, which of these is better? Both are the same and there is not much difference between them. But, if you think that the fit, case and battery life are significant enough to spend an extra few dollars, go for X2. Otherwise, Bluebuds is great as well! But keep in mind that Jaybird discontinued the Bluebuds X and it's no longer in production.
Either way, both the products are excellent for this price range and offer good value for your money.