Monday, April 1, 2013

TECH REVIEW: Plantronics BackBeat 216 Stereo Headphone Earbuds with Mic

Deep base and noise canceling in a tiny fashionable package...

Three to four times a week, I try to do a 1.5 mile walk around my work complex to keep in shape. To keep motivated and moving, I listen to music that I stream on my smartphone. Usually I wear my trusted wireless bluetooth headphones which still work after many years of use. They are perfect for a 30 minute walk, but not so great for watching a 90 minute movie on my iPad since they tend be uncomfortable for wearing for long stretches of time.

I have been thinking about buying a pair of really good earbuds to supplement my regular bluetooth headphones. So I was very excited when sent me a pair of Plantronics BackBeat 216 Stereo Earbuds for review.

I have really small ears so I was happy when I opened the package and found that the Plantronics BackBeat 216 comes with 3 sets of earbud wraps in sizes ranging from small to large. The small size is still a little larger than is comfortable for my ears, but I know my ears are not standard size for any earbud manufacturer.

The Plantronics BackBeat 216 is very fashionable with its black body that is trimmed in a gold colored metal which coordinate very well with my new Nexus 4 Rearth Ringke Discover Leather Wallet Case also from But looks are only part of the goodness of these earbuds.  They also really bring out the bass in the music and seem to cancel out lots of background noise. I listened to a playback of the TV show "Scandal" using these headphones and the show sounded great.

I think the noise canceling of these earbuds makes them perfect for using on a plane for listening to music or a movie, but not great for wearing while walking outside since I was not able to hear traffic sounds that well.

The earbud cords are also tangle resistant which is great for me since I tend to always tangle up the cords on my electronics. There is also a mic on these headphones for answering phone calls. But I did not test out that feature since I don't see a need for wearing headphones while talking on the phone.

Pros -
- Very fashionable with the black body trimmed in gold
- Tangle resistant cords
- Helps cancel out lots of background noise
- Brings out deep base sound when listening to music or movies

- None of the 3 sizes of ear wraps really fit my tiny ears so they are not comfortable for my use
- Noise canceling makes these earbuds not a great fit for wearing while walking/running outside since you won't be able to hear traffic that well

The Plantronics BackBeat 216 Stereo Headphone Earbuds with Mic are available for $35.99 on the website as well as other accessories and cases for the Nexus 4.


Disclosure: I was sent a complementary pair of Plantronics BackBeat 216 Stereo Headphone Earbuds for review. All opinions are my own.

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