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20 July 2019

REVIEW: Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

"BackBeat, the word is on the street..."

Apple AirPods are a fucking nightmare. If you're one of many people who have forked out top dollar for a pair of Bluetooth cotton buds, only to have one fall out of your ear and get lost or damaged, read on. There is another way: one that offers far better sound quality and a design that will keep the buds in your ears no matter what you're doing. We check out such a pair in the form of the Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones.



Plantronics, a name you might be used to hearing in conjunction with Bluetooth business headsets, have slapped together a rugged and waterproof pair of truly wireless 'phones. Outwardly they have been designed as sports headphones, but from our experience that means they are great for everyday use, with the added confidence that they won't fall out during your walk to and from the office each day.

Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

Comfortable and easy to put on, the Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones feature an 'over-ear' hook which is the keystone of their stability. The hook is soft and flexible, yet firm enough to mean that even if you break into a sprint (to catch the bus) the buds stay locked into position.

That position is further aided by the design of the actual bud. Plantronics' 'Stay Aware' bud design means sound is directly funnelled into your ear canal, but will not plug it up completely, blocking ambient sounds. For sporty types this means you're still aware of your surrounding as you cross rounds or trek along quiet alleyways. For everyone else, it means you don't get that awful sucking sensation you do with earbuds that create a tight seal in your ear. You know, when you can hear your own pulse. Hate that.

Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

In terms of power, we weren't disappointed there, either. Charged up, the Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones will see you right for up to five hours of wireless music. However, charging comes via the very swish power case which holds an additional ten hours of charge. The case, which is rigid and features a power level indicator, is charged via Micro USB and also includes a little internal pocket to keep that wire handy. The clam shell case zips up and looks great.

Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

Actually, the Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones look really lovely. Although primarily sports headphones, they are black and grey, meaning you won't look like a twonk wearing these for casual listening or even for a video conference call.

And they sound great. The 13.5mm drivers throw out some crisp and clear highs, while bass and deeper tones are rich and textured. Although they can't compete with the likes of noise-cancelling earbuds of this size and spec, they really don't have to. We've never before reviewed truly wireless sports headphones that were quite as comfortable as these, and that's a huge win.

Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones

Regardless of if you're actually ever going to do any kind of exercise in these, the Plantronics BackBeat 3100 Wireless Headphones are sound all-rounders. Comfortable enough for everyday use, yet good enough quality for the pickiest of audiophiles, these are awesome.

£130

Available from www.amazon.co.uk


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