The wired variant of the Bose SoundSport in-ear headphone model found many fans, not least because of its stylish appearance and appealing sound. With its wireless update, Bose again want to shine, so it’s of little surprise that the wireless SoundSport comes presented in a premier package. The StayHear+ earbuds are designed with sporting in mind, with three sizes available here to ensure you’ve a perfect fit to pick from. Coupling with the music player in iOS is an absolute breeze, with sound instantly convincing after only a few bars of music. There’s also a handy carrying case included, while a dedicated app can be downloaded for more enhanced refinements and adjustments.
What More Could You Want?
Once these headphones are popped in and you take a look in the mirror for the first time wearing them, a clear issue becomes instantly apparent. On the left and right sides, there are two rather large looking blocks protruding from the ears. It’s a bit of an eyesore and does make you question why, with all the internal tech development that’s happened recently in terms of miniaturisation, this kind of shortcoming is still a thing.
General tech specs should reassure most users. User-friendly controls are stripped-back and simple, with a main switch and two function lights. There’s also integrated technology to allow for Bluetooth connectivity and NFC. After a full charge, you can expect approximately six hours of operation.
There’s another unpleasant item to note about the unsightly design of these in-ears. A side-effect of the shape of these protrusions is that unpleasant booming sounds are produced when carrying out more intense activities, which pretty much extends to all sporting applications. You’ll also note the effect if you encounter any headwinds. It’s very noticeable and smothers incoming sound, spoiling audio enjoyment to no end. It’d be a severe drawback in any instance, but is particularly problematic for a pair of in-ears being marketed as something for sports specifically.
Engineering Wins Out
In short, it seems these in-ears are the result of a stand-off between engineers and designers. The final result makes it abundantly clear the engineers won out. However, there’s a few aesthetic areas where design has been allowed to run wild. For one, the controls are eye-catching and attractive, with a banana-shaped form that actually contours to the face very well. Everything you’d expect of control functions can be found here, with back/forward, play/pause and call acceptance all represented. What’s more, all performed their jobs fine in the test.
The earbud inserts are great as they don’t completely seal the auditory canal, combining an airy comfort with enough of a snug fit so they stay in place. The silicone wings ensure the fit is absolutely firm when you’re on the move, ensuring sound can be transmitted more accurately and negating the chance of the in-ears slipping free. This is true even in the most strenuous of situations.
In a suitable environment, one that’s nowhere near a busy main road or construction yard for example, the sound you experience with these headphones is more than pleasant. It’s not too bass emphasised, not too thin. In all, it’s a rather balanced and full affair, with a sense of clarity you’ll enjoy.
An app suitable for iOS and Android devices lets you pair two headphone devices to a single source, which is becoming more popular with everyday listeners looking to share their media on the go. With the app, you can also switch off the rather unwelcome function feedback voice. Other than this, there’s FAQ references included and some eye-catching imagery to enjoy as you listen to selected songs. Is the app all that? It’s a mundane take and falls in the middle. Most of the functions it provides can be solved with on-board adjustments, which may in fact prove to be a faster way to go as the app itself is slow to launch.
The Bose SoundSport Wireless is a quality product, with sweat and splash protection keeping internal tech safe and sound. The cable also reassures with its solid and robust design. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see how things fare a year down the line here, but signs look good for a resilient result.
All in all, the Bose SoundsSport Wireless leave a good impression, except for that annoying noise problem you’ll experience for yourself should you run into windy weather. Oh, and let’s not forget that rather unsightly aesthetic issue once you’ve slid these into your ears and given yourself a quick glance in the mirror. Other than that, things are good. The StayHere+ earbuds are incredibly robust, with a sound that’s incredibly impressive as far as I’m concerned. Controls are user-friendly, while a runtime of approximately 5 hours is more than sufficient for most sporting applications. What’s more, Bluetooth and NFC pairing makes tangling cables a thing of the past. As long as you can learn to love the look of those earpieces, the Bose SoundSport Wireless is a real winner.
- Ear couplingIn-ear
- Transducer principledynamic
- Weight with cable23 g
What's in the box
- StayHear+ sports ear tips in 3 sizes
- USB charging cable
- Transport case
- available in black, blue and yellow
- Bose Connect App for iOS and Android