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Jaybird Tarah wireless sports headphone: Looks like the X4 but cheaper

With a $100 price point, Jaybird hopes its new entry-level model has mass appeal.

David Carnoy Executive Editor / Reviews
Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.
Expertise Mobile accessories and portable audio, including headphones, earbuds and speakers Credentials
  • Maggie Award for Best Regularly Featured Web Column/Consumer
David Carnoy
2 min read
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The Jaybird Tarah will be available in October.


In August, Jaybird, one of the early leaders in wireless in-ear sport headphones, introduced its new X-series headphone, the X4. Now we get the Tarah, which looks a lot like the X4 but costs $30 less ($100).

Aside from the price, what's the difference? Well, the buds themselves are shaped a little differently and aren't designed to be worn with the cord looped back around the top of your ear. Also, the Tarah has two hours less battery life than the X4.

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Otherwise the specs are similar. Not only is the Tarah sweatproof but Jaybird says it's fully waterproof, with an IPX7 rating (it can be fully submersed to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes). There's also the same fast charge feature that gives you one hour of play time from a 10-minute charge.

With this type of headphone it's important to get a tight seal to maximize sound quality and not lose any bass, and to that end, Jaybird has included new tips and fins that promise a more comfortable, secure fit. However, while the step-up X4 includes new "exclusive-to-Jaybird" Comply Ultra foam tips, they're not included with the Tarah. That's not a huge deal -- I was more disappointed that the Tarah doesn't come with a carrying pouch.

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The Tarah in action.


Thankfully Jaybird has a new cord management system called Speed Cinch that makes it easy to adjust the cord length.

I've spent a little time with both the X4 and Tarah and like them, but I also think that with so much competition in the sports headphone market they probably both need to come down in price by $30.

I'll have my full reviews of the Tarah and the X4 in coming weeks.

Key specs

  • Sweatproof
  • IPX7 waterproof rating (can be submerged down to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes)
  • New buds and fins provide improved comfort and ergonomics
  • Speed Cinch cord management system
  • Six hours of battery life
  • Slim and light weight controller
  • Customize bass and treble settings in Jaybird app
  • Available in three color combinations
  • Price: $100 (no word yet on international pricing, we'll add it as soon as we get it)
  • Shipping in October 2018