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Review

Bragi The Headphone Review: Truly wireless, but how’s the sound?

From the company that introduced the concept of the truly wireless earphones, The Headphone is Bragi’s second product to work magically without any wires at all. We’ve reviewed this unique product which is now available officially in India.

bragi the headphone main

Bragi The Headphone 3 5
BGR Rating :
3/5

Highlights

  • The Bragi The Headphone is available in India for Rs 12,999.

  • It's the world's first truly wireless headset, with absolutely no wires.

  • The Headphones charges through it's dedicated storage and charging case.

Bragi burst onto the audio scene back in 2015 with The Dash, which was a revelation in audio. This small German company had beaten the best of the best in introducing to the world the first ever truly-wireless earbuds. Although the product range has grown and improved since then, Bragi is still a niche company with a small but interesting product line up.

Launched in India through HeadphoneZone in December 2017, you can now buy The Dash Pro and The Headphone officially in the country. Bragi The Headphone is the more affordable of the two, and is priced at Rs 12,999. We’ve reviewed The Headphone from Bragi, and here’s what we think about this new pair of truly wireless earbuds.

Bragi The Headphone Design and Specifications

While the entire concept of The Headphone may seem magical, it’s really just some innovative design and smart use of existing technology. Both earphones of The Headphone are independent devices, with individual batteries that charge and function together. The right earphone is the dominant one; this is the earpiece that receives the Bluetooth signal from the source device. Pairing is fairly simple, and once you’ve paired the right earpiece, it communicates with the left one through Near Field Magnetic Induction.

This essentially means that the left earpiece will only be able to play back audio when it’s close enough to the right earpiece, but the same doesn’t apply to the right earpiece. Moving the right earpiece out of your ear and away from the left one will mute the audio on the left, but moving the left earpiece away won’t interrupt playback on the right. Charging uses the carry case and contact points on the earphones. Unlike with other products such as the Apple AirPods, the case itself doesn’t have a battery to wirelessly charge the headphones. You can therefore only charge the headphones when the case is plugged into a power source.

The controlling right earpiece also features a small set of buttons, which are so small that they’re admittedly a bit hard to use. You will have to use the power and pairing button when necessary, but it’s admittedly easier to control the volume on your smartphone or source device. Fit and comfort are also tricky, and getting a good fit that manages to cut out ambient noise is often a tricky proposition that takes some getting used to. There is also a microphone on the earpiece itself, letting you use it for hands-free calls.

While The Headphone is slated to run for about six hours on a single charge, I was realistically able to get about five hours of run time from it. Charging is also claimed to take about 80 minutes, but realistically takes a little under two hours even if you’re using a wall adapter. The headset has a frequency response range of 20-20,000Hz, and uses Bluetooth 4.0 technology with A2DP profile for audio connectivity with devices.

Bragi The Headphone Performance

With its form factor and Bluetooth connectivity, there’s only one way to use the headphones – connect them to any device with Bluetooth. In most cases, this is likely to be your smartphone. I had The Headphone connected to an Apple iPhone 8, and setup was fairly easy. Most of my listening is streamed or downloaded via Apple Music, and some of the focus tracks for the review were The Establishment’s Love Like This, Fuego by Alok and Bhaskar, and Barry White’s Never, Never Gonna Give You Up.

Starting with Love Like This, I found the sound to be a bit too warm. There’s a definite bias in the sonic signature towards the lower-end of the frequency range, and this could be a bit bothersome depending on the genre you’re listening to. Since Love Like This is a house track, it wasn’t much of a bother, and the boosted low end sounded alright. However, the boost is only in audibility, rather than in thump and excitement. There’s also a sensitivity spike towards the high-end, but on the whole there’s a lack of excitement in the sound. It’s warmth without any real drive.

Next up was Fuego, although this version by Alok and Bhaskar is a remix of the famous opening credits music of Netflix’s Narcos. If you turn the volume up, you’re doing away with any definition and tone as a result of the overbearing low end. While I did hear a bit more thump and drive with this track, it simply wasn’t at par with what I’m likely to hear with other high-end wireless headphones. The sound, while certainly not bad, isn’t up to the mark when you consider that The Headphone costs Rs 12,999. The sound is all over the place, with very little dependability when it comes to definition.

That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy my time with the Bragi The Headphone. Tracks with less happening, such as the sensual and gentle Never, Never Gonna Give You Up sound decent enough for everyday listening, but don’t expect ground-breaking sonic abilities from this one. With The Headphone, you’re paying for the form factor over sound quality. You won’t be disappointed with the sound, and considering the excellent design and true wireless ability, on the whole you’ll be please with the Bragi The Headphone.

Verdict

The Bragi The Headphone isn’t new, but it does hold the distinction of being the first truly wireless headset. There are no wires here at all, and that’s what makes the product so good. However, Rs 12,999 is a lot of money, and if you have an Apple iPhone, you’re likely to prefer the Apple AirPods that cost only a little bit more. The product isn’t helped by its sub-par audio quality either.

While the more expensive Bragi Dash Pro might be a better option, The Headphone is a decent enough start into truly wireless headphones. The connection is stable, the form factor is great and the battery life is decent enough considering the size of the device. However, if you want a better level of audio quality, you’re better off looking away from the truly wireless concept and buying capable wireless headphones such as the Sennheiser HD4.40BT, which costs a bit less and sounds much better.

  • Published Date: January 18, 2018 4:28 PM IST