The Jaybird Freedom wireless Bluetooth buds are a pair of tough, sweat-proof earphones that look just as good in the gym as they do on the street.
The fifth and latest iteration of the Freedom series has been slimmed down, with tapered ends for a more svelte profile. The in-line volume control and the bud shells also come with matte metal accents, which give the earphones an elegant look.
Compared with the Jaybird X2, which I reviewed last year, the Freedoms are smaller and do not tug at your ears as much when you run.
However, in order to cut weight from the buds, Jaybird introduced a new in-line remote for all its latest wireless earphones, including the Freedom and the X3. This takes the form of a 4.5cm long oblong- shaped device near the right bud, with three buttons on it to control the volume and power.
Because of the weight of the in-line remote, I could feel it bouncing around when I ran on the treadmill. This, in turn, jostled the right bud around, working it loose over time. I tried to shorten the wire with the provided clips, but it did not make much of a difference.
It has eight hours of battery life, which is very good for wireless earphones of this size. However, do note that four of those hours come from an additional battery that can be clipped on to the in-line remote.
Users will also need this battery clip to charge their Freedom earphones, as it can no longer be charged directly via micro USB like the X2.
AUDIO FORMAT: 16-bit stereo
DRIVER SIZE: 6mm
RESPONSE BANDWIDTH: 20Hz to 20kHz
BATTERY: 125 mAh
PLAY TIME: 8hr (4hr with an additional 4hr if the charging clip is attached)
BATTERY LIFE: 4/5
VALUE FOR MONEY: 3/5
The Freedom provides great isolation, even with silicone ear tips, which is great for gym-goers who want an uninterrupted workout.
Users can also adjust the earphones' sound profile via the Jaybird MySound app, and their preferences will be saved on the earphones, no matter what device it is paired with.
Without any EQ on, the sound is quite bass-heavy, which is good for working out but not as great for everyday use. Users who want to use the Freedom just to listen to music should play around with the MySound app, to find the sweet spot for what they like.