Tech Review: Jaybird Run True Wireless Sport Headphones
Getting rid of the wires has become all the rage these days and Jaybird is next to jump on the bandwagon with their new Run True Wireless Bluetooth headphones. Definitely one of the most premium headphones in their lineup, everything from the design to the packaging screams quality and while many are apprehensive about losing the wire simply because they are so small, they really shouldn’t be because these types of models are here to stay.
Out of the Box Experience
Like all Jaybird products, the out-of-the-box experience is uber premium. It is reminiscent of Apple, but with a sporty twist. There is a durability to the packaging that just makes you believe what’s inside is high quality. Inside the box, you will find multiple sizes of round and oval ear tips as well as multiple sizes of ear fins, a USB charging cable, a simple carry pouch, and the charging case which holds the headphones. The unit itself is simple and clean looking as you can see.
The Run headphones themselves are neatly docked inside their pill box shaped charging case and are right around 3/4 of an inch in height and depth and even smaller in width. They are sweatproof and water resistant, but definitely not waterproof. Clearly it takes some adjustment to find the right blend of tips and fins, but once you do these things get locked into your ear really well. They are definitely bigger than Apples AirPods, but not so large that they feel weighty in anyway. Once activated, the left and right pair together and then obviously you pair with your phone. The left side can activate Siri or Google assistant, whereas the right side can play, pause, accept, or end a call. A double press on the right side also skips forward or declines a call. You can also run with only one in ear at a time as they can work independently.
The Jaybird Run are using Bluetooth version 4.1 and initial connectivity was very easy. This is however where I experienced the most problems. Routinely during a run and more often as time went on, I would either have moments where the headphones would turn themselves off or I would lose one of the ears, primarily the left. This is supremely frustrating has the very thing you need to work, acts up quite a bit. There is also an app as well which allows you to manipulate the headphones, create sound profiles, download presets, etc. It works well, but I am not even sure it is necessary. We used it quite a bit without the app and they worked fine. The app adds some additional audio refinement which is a nice touch.
Battery Life and Charging
The battery life on the Run is 4 hours of continuous play time and then the charging case provides an additional 8. There is also a quick charge system where a 5 minute charge can get you back 1 hour of time. We found this timing estimate very close to actual.
Super simple clamshell design for charging and portability.
Style & Aesthetics
The Jaybird run comes in three different color options-black, white on black, or yellow and olive. They are so small in your ear that it’s really a personal preference. Because the actual design is so very simplistic, if you saw somebody wearing them you would need to do a double take to see if they were actually headphones.
The actual in run experience with the Jaybird Run is great. The headphones are very easy to throw in and just go and initial Bluetooth syncing happened very quickly. These are truly out of the case and go headphones. Even though the general consensus was strong, we did notice several quirks though.
The biggest one is the drop out and this would occur quite frequently especially with the left unit. You could be in-run and the Jaybird voice would come on and say power off and then a few seconds later power on, all with the battery at 80%, but in all of this we had done nothing except keep running. I thought it might be the jostling of the phone, but it only affects one ear and not the other. So while it sorted itself out, it was quite a bit frustrating for a few miles. The additional item here is the battery life, four hours is not a lot unless you charge pretty much every night. If you think about your long runs, then you’re probably in the 2+ hour range and if you forgot at all to charge prior then you’re going to be stuck and you have no recourse to charge on the fly unless you bring the large charging case with you. Note, the charging case is about 3 to 4 times the size of the AirPod charging case.
To be honest, we would say we love love love the fit of the unit as they never come out. The sound quality is solid, and again they just fit really well. They are totally unaffected by the run movement itself even at aggressive pacing.
The Jaybird Run is not our favorite headphone Jaybird has made by any stretch, the X3 still hold that title. The removal of the wire is interesting and compelling and honestly they are very easy to just throw in, however the connectivity issue is a massive gap. Having something that drops on you during a run is just not effective, so definitely some improvements needed in that department. They are worth a try though and they are better in our opinion than AirPods for running, so hopefully we’ll see some fixes from Jaybird to resolve these issues.
Technical Stats, Pricing & Availability
- MSRP: $179.99
- Available: Now