It seems wireless headphones are becoming more and more common every day. Smart phones are the primary player for casual users, and with developers moving away from the inclusion of headphone jacks on their top of the line models, are somewhat forcing Bluetooth on us. Thankfully, tech is advancing rapidly and is further reducing the discrepancy in sound quality between wired and wireless products.
The Exo BT from plusSound that we’re checking out today permits some extra versatility from your MMCX earphones that normally remain tethered to your device. A huge thank you to Christian at plusSound for hooking me up with a sample of the Exo BT for the purposes of an honest and unbiased review.
First impressions are positive. Pairing was quick and easy as tends to be the norm for modern Bluetooth gear. Hold the power button until the light flashes red and blue, search for ‘plusSound’ on your player’s available devices list, and select it. Done.
I quickly tested three different earphones covering a variety of prices; the budget friendly TinAudio T2 (16 ohms @ 102 dB), the mid-tier Brainwavz B400 (30 ohms @115 dB), and the premium Campfire Audio Polaris (16.8 ohms @ 97.5 dB). The Exo BT had no issues driving any of them, though the T2 required significantly more juice than the other two to reach the same volume. Sound quality on all three was similar to their wired counterparts. The Polaris didn’t lose out on it’s deep bass and vibrant treble. The B400’s amazingly well-layered and imaged sound stage shone through, and the T2’s neutral character wasn’t lost.
Any qualms? Yes, actually. Background static, primarily on the T2. The Polaris suffered from a small amount of static too, but it was easily overshadowed once music was playing. The B400 was nearly silent and was my preferred pairing. The notification sounds are also painfully loud and need to be turned down…a lot. *Edit: Was advised notification volume can be adjusted with the +/- buttons when music isn’t playing.*
Minor issues aside, so far I’m enjoying the Exo BT and I can’t wait to spend more time with it paired to my B400. It feels tough, it looks good, and I haven’t run into any connection issues. It’s possible that’ll change in the coming weeks, but you’ll have to wait for the full review to find out.
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