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Apple AirPods vs BeatsX – Which Should I Buy?

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Today I’m going to compare the Apple Airpods to the BeatsX. I’ve always been the person who walks around with their headphones on. I recently upgraded to the iPhone 7 Plus and…. no headphone jack. That’s crazy talk.

So I began my search for blutooth headphones. There were so many options out there but I landed on the Apple AirPods and the BeatsX. I’ll add a few more to a future video so if you’re interested, please subscribe.

Design

From a design standpoint I want to talk about the aesthetics and fit. The AirPods look, well, like EarPods with no wire. I think the actual design of the AirPods is beautiful, very sleek and clean. And the case is also pretty cool and I really like the magnetic cap. We’ll talk more about the case later. Some people make fun of the way they look when you wear them and I guess I can see that, but I don’t think they are that bad.

The BeatsX, which apple engineers and designers also worked on, have a more traditional in-ear earbud look. There is this wire that goes down and then loops around your neck. So this basically makes look like “regular” headphones.

As far as fit, the BeatsX come with several different size eartips options which are designed to fit a bigger range of ears. Now, it’s probably me, but none of the sizes ever stayed in my ear. First, I would have to push them way it for them to initially feel snug, and after pretty much any type of movement, at least one would come out.

Maybe I just didn’t push them in far enough because it wasn’t comfortable or maybe I just have weird ears, but if I kept them where they were comfortable to wear, they fell out. If I pushed them in beyond where it was comfortable for me to wear, then they would stay in.

The BeatsX do have secure-fit wingtips which I tested out and did keep them in my ear, but after prolonged use they would hurt my ear. The AirPods on the other hand fit great. I’m aware that this is a personal choice, but like the EarPods, they feel like they are just resting in my ear. I should mention that because they are “one size” they won’t fit everyone, so for example the kids couldn’t get them to stay in their ears.

I was initially worried about them falling out, but then I thought, the EarPods never fall out, why would these? I’ve played basketball in them and worked out in them and they have never fallen out during activity. The only time the AirPods fell out of my ear was if I took my shirt off and forgot they were in, they would sometimes catch on the shirt and come out. The advantage of the BeatsX is that when they came out of my ear, the wire would keep them around my neck so there was pretty much no chance of losing them.

The AirPods were so comfortable for me, that I suppose one could come out (while not in use) and I would lose it because I wouldn’t notice. I know that you can get a lanyard that would attach the AirPods to each other, but I’m trying to compare the two products as they are sold.

Connectivity

Both headsets have the new W1 chip so pairing them with your devices is super easy. The BeatsX have a button you press after you turn them on and they pair with your device. The AirPods pair as soon as you open the case.

The bigger issue for me was not the initial pairing but the fact that after I paired the BeatsX I had to turn them on each time for them to re-synch whereas AirPods did it automatically. For me that gives the edge to the Airpods.

Features

Ok, this is a clear win for the BeatX. Because they have a built-in controller on the wire, you can control the volume, change tracks, start voice control, answer calls, and do all the things you’re used to doing with the original EarPods.

The AirPods on the other hand are extremely limited. You can answer calls and hang up by double tapping the AirPods, but that’s pretty much it. All other functions must be completed from the phone itself. You could double tap on the AirPods to summon Siri and then ask her to turn the volume up or down, but…. Really? Argh. While I do make fun of this feature, I actually use it when I’m shooting around and don’t have the phone on me.

Battery Life

The AirPods will get 5 hours of battery life vs the BeatsX which get 8 hours. The AirPods have a 15 minute quick charge which will give you 3 hours while the BeatsX have a 5 minute quick charge which will give you 2 hours of battery life.

The BeatsX are charged using a lightning cable which is convenient since you probably have a bunch of those laying around. The Apple AirPods can only be charged using the case and the case itself is recharged using a lightning cable. A fully charged case will give you 24 hours of battery life without actually having any access to power. How you view the case is a matter of preference I guess and it brings me to another point which is really about bluetooth headsets in general.

My first concern when switching to a blutooth headset was the fear that I would lose them. I lose things…like, all the time. I had a tough enough time keeping track of my EarPods which is why I had about 10 of them. I would misplace some of them, some I’d run through the laundry…

The AirPods are clearly easier to lose, and if you count the case you now have to keep track of 3 items instead of 1. However, I find that I never put them down. They are either in my ear or in the case. The BeatsX are nice in that I can wear them around my neck when they are not in use, so it’s less likely that I would leave them behind.

Back to the case. I really like that I can just pop them back in the case and charge them wherever I am. I can totally understand someone else not wanting to carry the case with them but I feel like it keeps them protected, charges them and I kinda like the way it looks.

One thing that bothered me about the BeatsX is that you can’t use them while they are charging. So if I’m at my desk and the charge runs out, I can’t plug them in and continue to use them. The second you plug them into the lightning cord they disconnect from your phone. What I do with the AirPods is that if I’m down to 5% for some reason, I take one out and put the other in the case. Then 5 or 10 minutes later I switch them, and I’m now I’m set for a while.

Basically, I like the ability to have continuous access if needed. I would love to see wireless charging on the next AirPods case, but then I would like to see wireless charging on the iPhone too…

Sound

There are 2 aspects that I want to address here noise blocking and sound quality.

The BeatsX are designed to go deeper into your ear than the AirPods which means they will naturally block out more outside noise. This may be a positive or a negative.

If my goal is to get the best audio quality then I’m probably not using either of these, I’d use an over the ear set. These are for wearing around during the day and during my workout. Well, I’d actually like to stay somewhat connected to the outside world while I have these in and so I prefer the AirPods which let in a little more ambient noise. I completely understand that this is a personal preference.

Let’s talk sound quality. I’ve heard several people say that the BeatsX have a better, fuller sound than the Apple AirPods. I don’t know if I got a bad pair of BeatsX or what but I was so disappointed in the sound quality. Yes, If I push them way into my ear the sound is good, but the moment they move out even a bit they sounds extremely tiny. The AirPods sound about the same as the EarPods which maybe I prefer because it is what I’m used to.

Conclusion

Both BeatsX and the Apple AirPods have some excellent features and it ultimately comes down to what’s important to you. I currently use the AirPods because they are more comfortable and I like the fact that I can charge them using the case.

I would love to hear from you about what you think about each of these. If you have any questions please let me know. If you like this video give it a thumbs up and subscribe to our channel and remember to check us out on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @techgeartalk.

See you soon.

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