Arriva Leo (Black) review: Arriva Leo (Black)

The key thing the Leo ($69.95) has going for it is a secure fit. It's hard to find Bluetooth headphones that fit snuggly. Yes, the volume and power buttons are located directly behind your head while you're wearing it, but they're big enough to navigate by touch.

The only issue I had was that the hard-style earbuds (the kind that ship with your iPhone or iPod, for instance) just don't fit well in my ears. While the Leos come with a few different silicon covers, they weren't all that helpful in my case (they will be fine for a lot of ears).

When I presented the problem to Arriva, the company suggested I try Acoustibuds, silicon tips that slip over the top of hard earbuds and essentially turn them into soft earbuds. In my case, the Acoustibuds made a world of difference. The headphones became much more comfortable and I got a better seal, which had a big impact on improving bass performance.

About that sound: it's not great, but it's decent enough. Once I got a tight seal with the Acoustibuds, I was pretty happy with the sound, though these guys just don't offer a lot in the way of clarity. Some of that's simply because of the quality of the drivers and some of it's because of Bluetooth streaming, which compresses your audio. In any case, the Leo set is designed for gym and outdoor activity, where a secure fit rather than great sound is a higher priority.


The Leo will fit some ears snugly; others will need the Acoustibuds adapter, which the company will provide for free.

Starting in February, Arriva says it will ship a pair of medium-size Acoustibuds with the product and it will also offer Acoustibuds for sale on its site. But in the meantime it says it can offer the medium Acoustibuds to anyone who would like them ("free to all those who have ordered a Leo to date").

I mention all this because while I like the design of the Leo, it only becomes excellent for me with the Acoustibuds (as I said, others may get a perfectly good fit with the included silicon covers). So it's good to see that Arriva's willing to make good on its promise to have the Leo fit all ears well, not just most.

What you'll pay

    Pricing is currently unavailable.

    Editors' Top PicksSee All

     

    Join the discussion

    Conversation powered by Livefyre

    Where to Buy

    Arriva Leo (Black)

    Part Number: CNETv1
    Pricing is currently unavailable.

    Quick Specifications See All

    • Regional specs shown for US. UK specs are unavailable.

    • Color Black
    • Sound Output Mode Stereo
    • Headphones Form Factor Behind-the-neck
    • Additional Features Portable
      Built-in microphone
      Bluetooth 2.1