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Listen up: mixing music with your sprints will boost performance. Here are the newest wireless road-ready buds to tune up your runs.
1. Beats PowerBeats 2 Wireless
A powerful Bluetooth transmitter means your tunes won’t cut out when the going gets tough. Coupled with RemoteTalk controls that allow you to field calls and switch music on the fly, this device packs a lot tech into a small, sleek package.
These buds produce crisp sound while amping up the bass. But that sound quality doesn’t come at the cost of comfort. Not only did the pair fit snuggly (there are four sets of different ear tips to make sure they’ll sit friction-free in your earholes) but the controls are intuitive and easy to work. The downside? All those perks come at a hefty price tag and the cost of precious battery life. R3 600, takealot.com
2. SkullCandy XTFree
SkullCandy’s new and sweat-resistant tech are blended into the silicone ear gels to keep your gear feeling fresh. The XTFrees are sonically welded shut, blocking out sweat, rain, and other types of moisture that would otherwise ruin your gear.
Definitely the best look- ing buds we tested, and the sound quality is top notch. However, the comfortable fit fails a bit when you start ramping up the intensity. At slower paces, they’ll stay glued in place. But start gunning it? Your tunes will cut out as these Bluetooth buds plummet. R1 320, webantics.com
3. JBL Reflect Mini
These wireless sweatproof buds were engineered to be streamlined, keeping cabling to a minimum and cutting down on external frills. Under the hood it’s packing a punch, with 5.8mm drivers that boast premium sound and a powerful battery that’ll give you 8 hours of playback off of a single charge.
Light, non-intrusive and resilient, the JBLs are a perfect fit. “They never once felt like they were slipping out,” commented one of our testers after a gruelling session on the tarmac. However, if you’re looking for an audio heavyweight, these cans leave a lot to be desired. While it hits the high notes, the bass tends to buckle out, leaving you without much oomph in the final stretch. R1 799, myistore.co.za
4. Plantronics Backbeat Fit
Built to withstand a beat- ing, these headphones are bundled with a reversible armband to secure your phone on the tarmac and store your headphones when you’ve maxed out. On-ear buttons allow you to wirelessly switch tracks, or hit pause when you’re taking a breather.
Decent sound quality and intuitive controls make this a solid set. But what really makes them stand out are the voice notifications regularly keeping track of battery levels and Bluetooth connectivity. However, our testers noted this set never sat just right. Bottom line: they’re an awkward fit, but they look the part. R1 599, takealot.com