CNET First Look
Bragi beats AirPods on style, but not soundBragi's The Headphone is the latest fully wireless model to challenge Apple's AirPods.
Bragi, the German start up behind the dash a set of wireless, smart earphones that got a lot of publicity but didn't quite live up to expectations is back with a second, much more affordable model that is simply called The Headphone. This new model which costs $150 is essentially a stripped down version of the $300 dash Both in terms of features and materials, it's got an all plastic design and its included charging case is made of plastic instead of metal. It also doesn't have a built-in battery for recharging the headphones which is a bit of a problem. But let's start with the positives. The headphone works. And by that I mean the two ear buds maintained a steady connection. They also paired and repair with my phone without a problem. They're lightweight and fit in my ears well and stayed there. And the integrated microphone worked pretty well for making calls, at least in quieter environments. There are three tiny control buttons in the right ear piece for controlling volumes advancing tracks, forth and back. Holding down the universal control button gives you access to SIRI and Google Now. And holding it a little longer activates a hearing everything mode that allows ambient noise to leak in so you can hear the outside world. With the step up dash which is firmware upgradeable. There's an app to control a set of advanced features. But these wireless earphones have no app and they're not firmware upgradable. Battery life is rated at 6.5 hours, which is decent for this type of headphone, but you won't get that if you play your music at higher volumes. All that said, the biggest issue I have with the headphone is that it just doesn't sound that good. The sound is a little recess, it sounds a little harsh on the system, not that pleasant a bluetooth headphone to listen to, particularly when you throw bass heavy for more complicated music edit. You can find $15 wired ear buds that sound as good or better. That's too bad because there's a lot to like about the headphone but as it stands, you probably better of with Apple's Airpod which cost slightly more.