I’ve just spent the last eight days traveling with the wife and kids, and one of the few constants of our travels is bringing along the iPads, a couple of phones, and a laptop for work. And chargers. Argh. Chargers left and right, all different types for a mix of devices.
In the car, the boys are playing mostly pew-pew games and all of them with really annoying music when they’re not watching a DVD movie on the fold-down screen in back. When it’s not my turn to drive, I’m usually watching a movie on my laptop or listening to my music on my phone. As you can imagine, the noise level in the car (and the hotel room) can get a little crazy at times. For this recent holiday travel period, I instituted a headphones-only travel rule. My boys will use the wireless headsets when watching a movie, and they also plug in a set inexpensive headphones to the tablets when playing games. They actually didn’t seem to mind, although the occasional “Are we there yet?” or “I need to go to the bathroom” were given at volume 11. You’ve been there, right?
And for dear ol’ Dad? Well, this last week I had the chance to try out a new pair of Life n Soul’s newest Bluetooth (4.0) headphones, the 8Driver (BE501). Not only did they easily connect to all three devices — iPad, mobile phone, laptop — but they provided some crazy battery life.
The 8Driver is advertised as having over 1300 hours of standby time and 25 hours of play time. I decided to leave the charging cable at home and take a chance and see if the headphones would deliver or peter out.
I’m happy to report that after eight full days of travel with at least a few hours of movie watching or music each day, the headphone are still going on the original charge. I’d estimate I put about 15-20 hours of listening time on them over the last week, so I’m expecting them to dry up shortly. But not yet. We just got home and I’m listening to them now (iTunes Radio — Zydeco Force Radio) as I write this. No wires, good sound, and very comfortable.
Soft pads run along the top and completely surrounding the ears. I know very little about speaker tech, but the description states “Powerful 8 neodymium dynamic drivers… with 2 woofers and 6 drivers.” I don’t know what it means, but it sounds cool. And so do the headphones. The bass is deep and the headphones don’t suffer from that “everything else sounds underwater” as I’ve experienced with other headphones that focus on bass. The headphones have a full range of sound, from the highest treble to the lowest bass, and movies and music sounded great. And the headphones collapse nicely for tucking into my laptop bag.
What would I change or improve about them? Only two requests:
1. At night, the blinking of the blue LED ring on the right side was slightly annoying to my wife. It reflected in a window when it was dark outside — I couldn’t see it, but a small bit of duct tape (you DO carry duct tape in the car, right?) solved that issue. It would be nice if the blinking Blueooth indicator could be disabled.
2. The On/Off button is tiny and matches the color of the shell — hard to see! Put an orange dot on it or somehow make it easier to find. My son spent ten minutes looking for it before finally hunting me down and asking how to turn them on.
Other than that… very happy with both the battery life and the sound quality. I only briefly tested the headphones with the cable attached so I could try out taking phone calls using them. It works… that’s about all I can say. You get a little beep when a call is coming in — music pauses and the phone call kicks in. As with other headphones that allow you to take phone calls, I’ve never quite enjoyed the experience — it’s not the headphones fault, just that I don’t like wearing headphones when talking on the phone.
Note: I’d like to thank Heather H. and Life n Soul for providing the 8Driver headphones for testing.