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I Tried Cheap AF Bluetooth Headphones And They Actually Work

$20 people! So cheap!

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With the release of the iPhone 7, there has been a scramble to find affordable Bluetooth headphones that don't suck.

Apple / Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

The market is flooded with weird Chinese knockoffs and new companies that have no track record. It's becoming really difficult to figure out what's actually good.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

When you get into the really low price range , it gets into this ~weird~ array of headphones where companies have names that are clearly decided by dartboard.

Normally, I recommend pairs that are in the $100+ range, however most people are just looking for a cheap pair they can feel ok about losing.

Initially my idea was to compare a few popular ones on Amazon, but after using each set for a few hours, it was clear that there was one that beat out all the others: The SoundPeats.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

It’s kind of insane that there are wireless headphones that only cost $19.99... and don’t sound like shit.

The crowning feature of any headphones should be that they sound GOOD. Sure, they aren't going to blow any audiophile's mind, but they're $20! Across my usual playlist, I couldn't really find a lot to criticize. In every song I listened to, the sound was fairly comparable to my daily driver, the Jaybird X3.

The battery lasted anywhere from 6 to 8 hours. Which keeps up with the current line-up of more expensive Bluetooth headphones.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

If you're gonna use these while you're working out, a single charge should last you nearly a week, depending on how long your sessions last.

It was also nice to see that the battery life was shown in increments of 10%. Cheaper headsets will usually only show it either full, half, or near empty.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

There are controls on the side = a nice touch.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

You're able to play/pause, skip, and—of course—control the volume. It can be a little tricky clicking the buttons because the shape is super round. The play/pause button is also this tiny little thing that can be difficult to find when you're moving around.

It comes with a small case, a good amount of different sized ear molds, and small fins that nestle into the curve of your ear to help them stay in better.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

With enough fiddling with different sizes, they should fit most ears. They sit quite deep in my ears, and I haven't had an issue with them falling out. But this brings me to my biggest gripe:

They are kinda big and sorta ugly?

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

Notice how far they stick out compared to the Jaybird X3. You basically pay less, but you get a bigger form factor. For most, this trade off is totally fine.

If you don't care about how they look, or their size, then you're probably going to be pretty happy with these.

Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

When you pay more for headphones, what you usually get is more flexibility in ear fit, and a more compact size.

Quality aside, companies put a lot of time into making their headphones fit the most amount of heads. *cough* except Apple *cough* The SoundPeats include a decent amount of different fittings to accommodate most ears, but just be aware that your mileage may vary.

I should mention that they also have a microphone on them, but I seriously wouldn't rely on it to do much of anything. It sounded extremely muffled in my tests. If you're looking for headphones that *must* have that feature, these are not for you.

That all being said, for $20 the SoundPeats offer an insane value for so little money!

It wasn't long ago when Bluetooth headsets had such shit sound quality and signal range. Now you can have a pair of buds that stand up to the much more expensive ones for a small fraction of the price.

You can find a pair on Amazon for $20.

SoundPEATS / Jeff Barron / BuzzFeed

They also come in colors other than the really intense black/green combo I have.

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