BassBuds Earphones Review

VIVACOVA was recently invited by BassBuds to review BassBuds in-ear headphones. A pair of BassBuds was sent to us free of charge  and we were very excited to open the package. It retails for CAD$85. If you buy online, you can save $30 with discount code BB75257.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We got our in-house guest writer Tom, who was once a recording engineer and now a earphone enthusiast. He personally owns about 8 sets of in-ear earphones and over-ear headphones in addition to a few more sets of Apple earphones came with of his iPod collection. Tom often uses Boss, Monster, and Sennheiser to enjoy his music. Who better to do review this product, right?!

The product appeared in an attractive gift box which included the in-ear buds, several tips, a velvet carrying pouch, and user instructions. The provided tips included 6 sets of silicon single flange tips (small/medium/large in black and clear colours) and 3 sets (small/medium/large) black memory foam or “marshmallow” tips.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overall the buds have a good balance and feel. The various included tips will ensure a comfortable fit, and the memory foam is extremely comfortable for long sessions. An Aluminium housing, protected cable and weight gives a good fit and finish to the buds. I was presented with a “platinum” colour “Classic” set of buds which had an element of bling (as advertised) as they included a Swarovski crystal, however that colour in particular helped dress down the buds for those looking for a more conservative look. BassBuds are also available as a “Classic Collection” in various finishes including silver, blue, red, pink, black, gold, purple, and yellow. The buds also come in a “Fashion Collection” with several other colour combinations, some rather striking and unique with interplay between the colour of the buds and their tips. Although the fashion or bling element of these buds is clearly a marketing focus of the product, it is refreshing to see some colour available for those who wish to add a little flair. How many black headphones have you owned in your time? For me: too many.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BassBuds contain a mid-cable control button which acts as a toggle switch to answer calls on your Smartphone using the buds. I found this to be a handy feature and although many other buds offer this, it is typically at an additional cost over mere headphone buds. This control button not only gives some welcome weight to the cable for proper placement but it also serves as a great control feature for your music. The button acts as a play/pause (1 click), advance to next track (2 clicks), or revert to prior track (3 clicks). The control button also toggled play/pause for movies and other video files on my new iPad, which I enjoyed. While the audio control feature is useful it took some getting used to for timing to avoid accidentally switching between play/pause when attempting to navigate between tracks. Once learned it was a great feature while enjoying the mobility of the buds. The cable also contains a microphone on the right side which is in-line and at jaw level (on me anyway). The microphone does as promised and allows me to quickly respond/access my Smartphone and I was advised it has good clarity for the person on the other end of my calls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The cable weight of the BassBuds is a little light compared to some and has a plastic feel. The lack of weight tends to create potential for snags when on the go but the cable is advertised as durable and double wrapped and it seems to be the case. Cable length is 1.2m, or approximately 4 feet, which is a typical length. My view of cable length is that it is a personal preference and I like this cable length offered by BassBuds. Simply put, I can extend the cable should I wish, but I tend to use in-ear buds when I wish to be mobile and do not want to struggle with excessive cord. Cable damage from snags comes to mind (e.g. at the gym). With the BassBuds the cable is integrated into the buds and is not detachable so any damage presumably renders the buds useless – but it is rare to see otherwise at this price point and again the cable appears to be double wrapped and durable.

The buds themselves have a 3.5mm gold plated jack and 9mm dynamic drivers with neodymium magnets. They are advertised as providing a distortion free bass with a crispy treble range. Initially I found the response to be bass favoured with the mids somewhat flat adding to a limited mid-high range. This mix often works well with Pop or bass heavy Club/Dance, Rap, or Hip Hop tracks but tends to lose something when listening to more acoustic music or music with greater dynamic or harmonic range. As I spent more time with the buds I found more detail and overall response, but often the bass weight limited the dynamics of more expressive content. It is not really that the mid to highs lack clarity, it is that the weight of the bass reduces presence and dynamic range in some tracks. It simply defeats the depth of the finer (e.g. harmonic) points of some music. This was far less noticeable when listening to spoken tracks, e-books, pod casts, movies or other videos etc. in which the audio stayed within a narrower band of frequency. That said, despite the accent of the lower frequencies, I found good overall presence for the price point. I have used many sets of much more expensive buds and I found the BassBuds to be more open, tonally balanced, and defined then many buds at twice (or more) the cost.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pros: Overall good balance and feel with presence and detail in response. Handy in-line phone/audio control with microphone.

Cons: Clearly a bass mix with flat mids but still manages to produce surprising clarity on various tracks.

Bottom Line: BassBuds have an attractive product with quality included accessories. Good fit and finish with sound response, presence and clarity as good (or better) than several higher price buds on the market. If you prefer bass oriented audio you will enjoy these buds. At the price point BassBuds are a great buy.

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15 Comments

  1. Jessica Lee December 6, 2012 at 9:06 pm #

    Tom: excellent review write-up! Great details!

  2. Barb Lillie Barelka February 18, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

    Don’t buy BassBuds ear buds if you plan to use them while running. The control button is so sensitive that it will skip songs or activate the mute option as soon as you start running, and BassBuds won’t return them. The BassBuds look good, but save your money for ear buds that work.

    • Jessie February 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm #

      Thanks for your insight!

    • Anand September 26, 2013 at 7:26 am #

      This is potentially variable. I’ve used mine for running/working out for 6 months and haven’t had a single problem like this.

      • Marlies February 4, 2014 at 6:26 am #

        I have mine since 6 month now and they started skipping songs a few weaks ago without touching the button. I’m not even running, I actually can’t move if I don’t want to skip a song. That’s really annoying when you’re listening to an audiobook. I have to buy new earphones now, but not the bassbuds again.

  3. Cher Chen February 25, 2013 at 6:19 pm #

    Here’s hoping BassBuds release sports edition in the near future. I for sure will be watching. :)

  4. Leslie March 9, 2013 at 11:16 pm #

    I personally own the Red Bassbuds and they look and feel great. The one feature I really like is the superb sound quality that can be compared to Bose. I have noticed a considerable difference when listening to music between my Bassbuds and my Senheiser’s. The Senheiser’s have a dull sound to it. On the other hand,when listening to the same music using my Bassbuds, I notice instruments I have never even noticed before, with the rich sound. The other earbuds I have owned always fall apart in a 2-3 months. I have had my Bassbuds for over 6 months now and they are still holding up nicely. They look and feel new.
    Bottom line, I would always go with Bassbuds.

    • Pete May 2, 2013 at 6:41 pm #

      Hi Leslie. Can you expand on your comment “The other earbuds I have owned always fall apart in a 2-3 months”.

      Your comments seem a little biased towards Bassbuds, maybe you have an association with a company that you should disclose.

      You mention that you also use Senheiser, as do I. I doubt that these would fall apart in 2-3 months.

      Cheers, Pete.

  5. John McGuire May 8, 2013 at 1:51 am #

    Click ME for $20 USD BassBuds. Genuine

  6. Dan September 12, 2013 at 8:23 pm #

    Im on my 2nd set of BassBuds. I like heavy bass in my music and these suit me fine. Especially since most of the buds I have tried sounded like tin cans. I also needed a set that had in-line controls that work with Android. I have no issues with the controls. The only issue is that the cord is getting stiff from the buds themselves to about 6 inches down.

    Im guessing that because I use my buds under my motorcycle helmet, the oils from my face are interracting with the material used. Because the wire is stiffer, it ended up pulling out of the inline mic, but I was able to super glue it back in there.

    That’s with about 8 months of use as I got them last X Mas and it is now September.

    Over all I recommend them. So much so that I bought a second set last week.

    No, I don’t work for BassBuds.

  7. Em September 12, 2013 at 10:47 pm #

    I bought a pair as a groupon deal for $20. They came in the fancy packaging which is their only pro. They are rubbish. Poor sound quality, tinny and the music and cuts out like there is a loose connection. I would be seriously unimpressed if I had paid full price. I am a genuine buyer and this is my personal opinion

  8. Callie March 12, 2014 at 6:23 am #

    I have LOVED these for the last few months! I got them around Christmas, and have used them every single day until March. But one day, I put them in, and the right ear bud wasn’t working! I was really confused because I thought I had did something, but my brother also got one at the same time, and his stopped working about a week before mine did. I have loved them, but now that they don’t work it is annoying.

  9. Dave November 13, 2014 at 1:33 pm #

    Sounds seems pretty good – sometimes. The button seems like it interferes with the sound going to the ears. Just touching the button, not pressing, makes it sound like you are listening underwater. Playing around with it a bit can get the sound back, but since it came like this out of the box yesterday I’m glad I got these through the groupon, can’t imaging paying full price for something this flakey. Should have just got the Sennheisers.

  10. Ismail Nakhuda January 20, 2015 at 12:46 pm #

    I love my Bass buds but the control button stopped working. Its only been 6 months or so since i bought them. Bass buds said i have to send them to the UK. But theyre 20 $ on Groupon i rather just buy a new pair. Any of you no what I can do? I have proof of purchase.
    Thanks

  11. Chris August 12, 2015 at 7:26 pm #

    I was really annoyed when I found out that my mom had purchased this brand without consulting me. And it was some gold-plated version for $200! Not sure if she was talked into it while buying her new iPhone or what, but the packaging smacks of worthless marketing speak – just look at the box, or even the name _bass_buds_ – both of those terms are overused. When she excitedly pulled them out, she did so with the same vigor one would bring out a christmas present to be given to someone, yet at the same time this was news because she was too embarrassed to have used them in the past month, due to the price. I was listening on my Shure SE846 IEMs – the top-of-the-line. Real bass, even sub-bass, and that isn’t even the best part about them. I was speechless at the gaudy gold-plated fake-jewel encrusted wires in front of me (from a brand I’d never heard of) and knew I was in for some disappointment. A quick fit and listen – both terrible – was all I needed to confirm it. They’re clearly worth no more than $20, and however much bling is worth to you on an item you should be already be aware is disposable, due to the non-replaceable cords. Stay away if you have any sense! Buy Shure SE315 IEMs, or move up the line if you don’t want to waste any time. I’m angry that my mom allowed herself to be swindled like this.

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