Roughly one year ago, we were introduced to the Plantronics BackBeat FIT wireless sport headphones at CES2017. Since that day, we had been hoping to get our hands on these Bluetooth headphones to review. A couple of months ago we hit pay dirt. The word on the street (and in the land of reviews) was that these headphones were the perfect choice to wear during a workout. We had to determine this for ourselves. Want to know if this headset hit the mark? Without further delay, let’s take a closer look in this Plantronics BackBeat FIT wireless sport headphones review.
• Very good sound quality
• Well constructed, flexible design
• Many color patterns available
• Stable, comfortable fit
• IP57 waterproof rated
• IPX5 rated charging pouch
• Uses micro-USB port instead of USB-C
• Lacks Hi-Res Audio capability
• Lacks wear detection
Plantronics BackBeat FIT Wireless Sport Headphones Review
Per Greg Miller, Director, Portfolio Business Management at Plantronics, “The BackBeat FIT Family provides a variety of styles and features designed with sport in mind. There’s a sweat-protected, stable and comfortable pair of BackBeat FIT headphones that’s right for any level of fitness – whether you’re looking for a dedicated sport headphone with on-demand coaching, or just want something comfortable and stylish to wear throughout the day.”
BackBeat FIT Design
Many of you who are familiar with the BackBeat FIT probably don’t know that since September 20, 2017, there has been a refresh of the product line. On that date, two new editions were introduced: BackBeat FIT Training and BackBeat FIT Boost editions. With the Training Edition, you get unlimited access to a dozen pre-selected workouts from the PEAR Personal Fitness Coach app (available on Google Play and iTunes) plus a six-month membership to PEAR+.
The Boost Edition includes everything with the Training Edition along with an IPX5 rated water-resistant, quick-drying, sport mesh fabric charging pouch. This pouch adds up to 10 hours of listening time. There’s even a touch-sensitive battery meter which displays the status of the headphones and pouch.
So…what do you need to know before operating these wireless sport headphones? Simply stated, next to nothing. The beauty of this headset is that it requires but a few steps to operate.
- Touch the power button located on the right side.
- Pair the headphones to a mobile phone.
- Hit the audio (play/pause) button located on the left side.
Button features like play, pause, skip to next track, play previous track are all controlled via the audio button, and reliably work as advertised. The same goes for muting a telephone call.
Firmware and voice alert language updates are handled without the need of a cable via the BackBeat FIT Companion app available on Android and iOS platforms.
The headphones fit well around the ears and don’t fall off while running. This is true when sweating a lot. The wire doesn’t get in the way either.
Overall, the headset’s construction is well executed and assures high quality. The Boost Edition headphones are currently available in three colors: Sport Grey, Black Core, and Power Blue. The Training Edition comes in Fit Fuchsia and Stealth Green in addition to the same three colors. Should an additional color be introduced, this post will be updated. And each color of the BackBeat FIT has a reflective finish.
• Speaker Size: 13 mm Neodymium
• Frequency Response: 50 Hz – 20 kHz
• Waterproof Rating: IP57
• TDH: < 3%
• Charging Time: Up to 2 Hours
• Standby Time: Up to 14 Days
• Operating Distance: Up to 33 Feet
• Weight: 24 grams/0.85 oz
What’s In The Box?
• Wireless Charging Pouch
• User Manual
I repeat this with every audio review, but when reviewing speakers and headphones, the most critical factor is the quality of sound.
When covering audio performance, we usually put forth a music playlist we tested the headphones with.
For this review, we decided to break from tradition and have our sports physio friend Smiley test a broad range of music on-the-fly. Never working out to a set list, Smiley tends to listen to a variety of genres depending on her workout. After two weeks of some hardcore training, her feedback was that all genres sounded as they should. The sound quality was high, and you could truly hear each song.
According to Smiley, the fully charged battery lasted 7-8 hours getting her through five 1.5-hour workouts. The recharging of the battery took approximately two hours.
One Thing Worth Mentioning
Now, I wouldn’t be much of a reviewer if I didn’t find some fault(s) with the BackBeat FIT. The feature I disliked the most is the old style micro USB charging port. It’s late in 2017, and many mobile device makers have been eliminating this port in favor of the newer, more versatile USB-C style connector.
In our testing, the feature-rich BackBeat FIT wireless sport headphones with the water-resistant charging pouch performed quite well. The audio reproduction of vocals and instruments was high.
From first- and second-hand experience, we recommend the BackBeat FIT for any-and-all workout activities. We tested them on long runs, as well as during cross-fit and weight training. The headphones were quite comfortable throughout each workout. Depending on the length of your length, you could see one charge lasting 4-6 workouts. And if the battery life is near its end, you need not worry as a 15-minute charge produces an hour of listening time. Plus, there’s the water-resistant charging pouch that can hold an additional 10 hours of power.
Available in five colors, the stand-alone BackBeat FIT Training Edition lists for $129.99. The Boost Edition, available in three colors, includes the PEAR app, six months membership to PEAR+, and the charging pouch for $159.99. See the links to Amazon at the bottom of this post if you’re interested in purchasing either edition.
Since its introduction, the BackBeat FIT headphones have been and continue to be among the best in-ear wireless sport headphones in the marketplace, and are well-priced against their often more expensive competition. We highly recommend you consider this item before purchasing your next pair.
What do you think of this Plantronics BackBeat FIT wireless sport headphones review? Do you agree or disagree with our verdict? Let us know in the comment section below or via social media. We’re eager to hear your thoughts.
FTC Disclosure: Plantronics provided Beantown LLC with one (1) BackBeat FIT sport headphones Boost Edition sample for review purposes. This writer’s opinion is 100% his own and not a paid product ambassador.
All photographs are the copyrighted property of Beantown LLC © 2017.