This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

Plantronics' BackBeat Go 2 stereo Bluetooth headset improves on the original: First Look

About Video Transcript

First Look: Plantronics' BackBeat Go 2 stereo Bluetooth headset improves on the original

2:51 /

The company brings better sound and some design tweaks to version 2.0 of its affordable wireless earphones.

Hi. I'm David Carnoy. Executive editor for CNET.com and I'm here with Plantronics next generation wireless stereo Bluetooth headset, the BackBeat Go 2. This about looks very similar to the original BackBeat Go, but Plantronics has made a few small changes to design. For starters, the inline remote/microphone has been tweaked so the buttons are easier to operate by feel. Also the earphones are now covered in a coating of P2i Moisture Protection technology that makes them water-resistant, so you can wear them while you're working out or when it's raining outside. The other changes are on the inside. The headphones now play louder and sound better. It offered good clarity and a decent amount of bass, though it's crucial to get a tight seal or they can end up sounding thin. As with all in-ear headphones, some people would be able to get a better fit than others. I was able to get a tight seal with the large ear tips and easily paired the headphone with both an iPhone 4S and a Samsung Galaxy S4 and stream music wirelessly from both devices with only minor hiccups. To be clear, while there's a cord that goes between the earpieces, these earphones don't plug in to anything. They're, indeed, wireless and you make calls with them. Like the original BackBeat Go, the new model comes with little stabilizers to get a more secure fit. While they work pretty well, I think Plantronics could come up with better stabilizers that really keep the earphones in your ears even more securely especially when you're running. As far as accessories go, these guys come with three different size of ear tips, plus a USB charger. They come in two colors, white or black, and there's also a version that comes with a charging case for $99.99 or $20 more. The idea behind the case is that it not only protects the earphones, but it has a built-in rechargeable battery for charging on the go. It's probably a good idea to get the version with the case because Plantronics didn't improve the battery life. You still only get about 4.5 hours of listening time. When fully charge, the case can charge the headphones twice which gets you up to over 13 hours of battery life, though you won't be able to use the headphones while you're charging them. I personally thought the case could stand to be slightly larger to more easily accommodate the headphones, but that's a small gripe. I do like the improvements Plantronics has made and it's $79.99. These are clearly a better value than the Jaybird BlueBuds X Bluetooth earphones which cost $179.99. Those Jaybird sound superior to the original BackBeat Go's, but the new Go 2's sound the same as the Jaybird's. I'm David Carnoy and that's the BackBeat Go 2, a nice improvement on the original and definitely worth checking out if you're looking for an ear bud style wireless headphone. Thanks for watching.

New releases

All the things Apple Watch can do without an iPhone nearby
1:33 April 18, 2015
You still need an iPhone to set up and use the Apple Watch, but it can do things on its own, too! Fitness, music, Apple Pay, and a...
Play video
The WD Elements portable drive is a great deal
2:23 April 17, 2015
CNET editor Dong Ngo sort of explains the difference between bravery and courage using the high-capacity low-cost WD Elements portable...
Play video
Forget maps and let leg electrodes guide you there, Ep. 200
4:54 April 17, 2015
Crave celebrates its 200th episode with a human cruise control system that's, well, pretty shocking. We check out a bicycle that claims...
Play video
Send Frigidaire's Professional Fridge back to the minors
2:24 April 17, 2015
The Frigidaire FPBC2277RF is priced in the big leagues, but fails to perform up to expectations.
Play video
Star Wars droid BB-8 is real, powered by Sphero
2:40 April 17, 2015
Get ready for rolling BB-8 toys. The droid in "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" is a real robot, based on the technology in Sphero's toy...
Play video
CNET Top 5 - Crazy looking smartphones
3:36 April 17, 2015
Round, curvy and two-faced: five phones that broke the mold and dared to be different.
Play video
Faster Roku 2 masters the streaming universe
1:45 April 17, 2015
A nearly perfect mix of speed, features, price and ecosystem make the Roku 2 our favorite streaming device yet.
Play video
The Garmin Vivoactive is an ultra-slim smartwatch with a few hiccups
2:15 April 17, 2015
CNET's Dan Graziano gives you a first look at Garmin's first smartwatch
Play video