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The Plantronics BackBeat Fit Wireless are good for sports but not so much for daily use. They have a durable and versatile build standard, as well as safe ear-hooks that will protect them from dropping during even the most strenuous workouts. Regrettably, their audio quality is poor and inconsistent. They also have a semi-open nature that won’t block any noise, but on the plus side, it makes them a good choice for outdoor runners so you can keep an eye on traffic.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit has a simple design but a cheap feel to it. They have a thickly coated neckband that can be folded and stowed in your pocket. This neckband is designed to blend in with the ear hooks. Unfortunately, since these are sweatproof headphones for sports, the heavy use of rubber and lack of metal accents make them appear cheap, particularly since the rubber collects dust and grime as you use them. On the plus hand, they’re relatively small and come in a number of color schemes.
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Plantronics BackBeat Fit headphones aren’t for everybody. Unlike conventional in-ears, they do not reach the ear canal. Unfortunately, unlike the Bose SoundSport Wireless or the Sony WI-SP500 Wireless, the earbud tips don’t yield as well, causing soreness and exhaustion during extended listening sessions. They also have a one-size-fits-all design, so no extra tips or comfort fins are included to help tailor the headphones for your ears.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit has a mediocre control scheme that provides all of the requisite functions but feels claustrophobic. A dedicated play/pause/track skipping button, as well as a call/multifunction button, are included. Unfortunately, they also have these thin, difficult to use buttons for volume controls, turning the headphones on/off, and pairing mode that are slightly raised, but at least they’re pretty simple to locate by touch alone and provide good feedback when pressed.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit are a little bigger than traditional in-ear headphones, but they fold up small enough to fit in your pocket. They’re easy to keep on your person at all times, and they come with a good case that makes them travel and commute-friendly.
When the Plantronics BackBeat Fit are in your pocket, they come with a good soft case that adds some bulk but should protect the headphones from most impacts, scratches, and normal wear and tear. Unfortunately, it won’t protect the headphones from water damage, and since it’s a soft case, it won’t provide as much protection as some of the better hard cases we’ve reviewed, such as the Anker SoundCore Spirit X Wireless.
Because of their semi-open architecture, the Plantronics BackBeat Fit have poor isolation efficiency. They gain little separation in the bass range, where the rumble of bus and aeroplane engines can be heard. They isolate by 7dB in the mid-range, which is insufficient for cutting out expression. They isolate by around 23dB in the treble range, which is above-average for sharp S and T sounds.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit’s battery life is adequate. They won’t last all day in the office for listening, and they don’t help passive replay. A fast charge feature offers an hour of playback on a 15-minute charge, which is excellent. They charge in around 100 minutes and can be left on standby for up to two weeks.
These wireless headphones are restricted in comparison to more modern models because they use the older Bluetooth 3.0 protocol. Some newer phones, including the iPhone X, have been reported to have compatibility issues. They don’t endorse NFC and must be paired by pressing and holding the power button, but they recall the last system with which they were paired and can easily switch between them.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit, like most Bluetooth headphones, has too much latency when watching videos. They don’t support the aptX codec, which has a lower latency.
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Verdict & Ratings
For mixed use, the Plantronics BackBeat Fit are mediocre at best. With a robust, sweat-resistant build quality and a decently compact form factor that slips into your pockets while being slightly larger than standard in-ears, they’re decent and stable for sports. Unfortunately, because of their one-size-fits-all semi-open earbud nature, they won’t be the most comfortable headphones for everyone, and they don’t isolate well enough in noisy environments to be a good commuting choice.
Plantronics BackBeat Equipped headphones are suitable for sports and fitness. They are very stable and have outstanding breathability, so they are unlikely to fall out during brisk movements. They’re a little larger than some other in-ear headphones, but they fold up small enough to fit in your pocket.