Top positive review
Exceptional Sound--But Only After I Replaced The Ear Tips
Reviewed in the United States on October 5, 2017
I have been in the broadcast industry virtually my entire adult life, and if there is one thing I am very aware of, its that Bose pretty much is the authority when it comes to audio quality. While in my studio, I use my Sony professional headphones (the industry standard), but part of me always wanted a pair of Bose. I finally decided for my birthday, I'd splurge.
I like to workout, and wanted some earbuds which would be perfect for the gym, and the SoundSport seemed to fit the bill, so I ordered mine. When they came I was pretty giddy, I'll admit. But that faded pretty quick as I plugged them into my mp3 player and started to exercise. The earbuds--in MY personal estimation, were kinda crap...but not necessarily for the reasons you might think. They SOUNDED great, but unfortunately, they were designed to allow ambient outside noise to creep in so those who wear them while exercising outside, possibly in traffic, can be hyper aware of their surroundings, which is perfect--except it let in SO much outside noise it was almost to the point of a distraction. I wear a Samsung Gear S3 smart watch which keeps track of my exercising. It reminds me every 5 minutes by telling me my heart rate, calories burned etc. using its pretty weak speaker. I could easily hear my watch every 5 minutes as I worked on the elliptical. Sorry, but for me, that is like way TOO much.
Since I workout in the gym, outside noise isn't a factor, but what do you do to fix it? I noticed while looking online that the eartips on the Bose QuietComfort Noise Cancelling earbuds were different...and I connected the dots and ordered a pair of eartips for the QuietComfort and they fit like a glove and the difference is absolutely phenomenal. Suddenly, audio that was completely lost before with the previous eartips was not only now easily heard, but the new tips helped to isolate the audio so much better. Honestly, Bose should include these kinds of tips for those people like me who don't need the outside noise to interfere with what I'm listening to. Seriously, the difference was like night and day. The old ones let in so much outside noise that you cannot fully appreciate the great Bose sound. But with the substitution, NOW I could hear the difference, and boy was it dramatic.
Let's be honest, Bose are miracle workers when it comes to audio reproduction. They do it pretty much better than almost everyone else. Suddenly my earbuds that I so badly wanted, finally lived up to the expectations I had hoped for. Bass is full, the Highs are crisp, the Mid's were just as clear. Almost like wearing my Sony studio monitor, and that, my friends is an accomplishment for such a small device.
The one area where I truly believe Bose suffers, almost more than any other audio manufacturer, is in build quality. You might think differently, but if you compared Bose headphones or earbuds to similar devices, you'll see it immediately, and if not right away, you'll definitely notice that when you use them frequently. I've always found their stuff to be nowhere as durable as almost any other pair of similar like devices available, and let's be honest, for what they make you pay, I honestly believe every possible effort should be used to make them as durable as possible. Even the Sport earbuds seemed a bit frail, especially the cords. I really felt that if I didn't take extra good care, they'd fray and break pretty quick, even though they are almost brand new. Being in the broadcast industry, I am pretty familiar with how to treat electronic equipment with kid gloves, so I think mine will last a bit longer than most, but that is just a guess. I know not everyone will share my opinion, but I am not just a casual audiophile when it comes to headphones/earbuds. I know my stuff, and it pains me to admit this, but the build quality just isn't as good as most others--even if the sound quality is just about as good as it gets.
In short, if you want truly superior audio quality, but you aren't afraid to spend the extra money for earbuds that may not last as long as you'd hope for, especially for the money, you really cannot do better. However, if you want better sound, order some additional eartips like I mentioned above (they weren't expensive, mine cost less than $6.00) and you'll find a whole new appreciation for their audio capabilities.