Banging Bluetooth earbuds lose the wires without sacrificing sound [Reviews]

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Fantastic-sounding audio without all the cable tangle.
Fantastic-sounding audio without all the cable tangle.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Lust List: NuForce BE6i by Optoma

Earbuds are essential for activities like running or working out, and they’re fantastic for those times when I don’t want to be wearing a heavy set of cans on my head.

Still, running when wired is an exercise in frustration for me, as I usually end up flailing at some point and yanking out the headphones in my ears via the trailing cord.

These NuForce BE6i Bluetooth earbuds solve both problems: they’re fantastic-sounding, good-looking in-ear headphones without the cord issue.

Sound matters

These Bluetooth earbuds also sound surprisingly good. I don’t pretend to understand how tiny speakers are made, but these can handle any music I throw at them, from the heavy bass of Trip Hop to the clear highs and lows of classical music. They faithfully reproduce rock and EDM music equally well, and have enough bass and mid- to high-range that I never felt like I had to mess with the EQ settings on my iPhone or Mac.

The back of each earbud housing is magnetized, which lets me connect them together when they’re around my neck, minimizing any worry of them falling off when not in my ears. They’re light and fit in my ears easily, thanks to the six silicone tips and four soft foam tips that offer more isolation than the soft rubber ones.

Connect with confidence

Connecting the NuForce BE6i headphones to my iOS devices was a cinch; simply holding down the play button on the inline remote powers them on. Holding the same button down for a few seconds puts them into pairing mode with a flashing red/blue light to indicate they’re looking to pair. I had a little trouble connecting them to my MacBook Pro, but I chalk that up to my OS X El Capitan beta system than anything wrong with the earbuds. They also successfully connected to all three iPads we have in the house.

The inline remote is a wonder — each button has at least two uses to keep the design minimal but functional. The volume buttons (plus and minus) double as a skip forward or back button when held down for a second, while the play button is power, pairing, play, pause, and will answer calls for you. The remote also has a micro-USB port built in that’s covered by a soft rubber door to keep it out of sight when not being used.

Charging is quick, and the battery lasts all day; Optoma claims eight hours of continuous use; I’ve used them throughout entire workdays without needing a charge.

The NuForce BE6i headphones (available in gray or gold/white) are a welcome addition to my daily routine, giving me the freedom of wireless audio and a tangle-free connection for running, biking, and just hanging out around the house playing games on my iPad, Mac or iPhone.

Price: $129

Buy from: Amazon

Optoma provided Cult of Mac with a review unit for this article. Check out more Lust List reviews. Read Cult of Mac’s reviews policy.

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