Review: Optoma NuForce BE6i Wireless Bluetooth In-Ear Headphones

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In a time when almost everything is wireless and always need updating, wireless headphones are one of the many tech items we’re looking to upgrade. Optoma Technology is doing just that with their new Optoma NuForce BE6i, an upgrade to their award-winning BE6 – same sleek design, but with some additional perks like a longer battery life and better weather protection. Nerd Reactor was sent a pre-release pair to review.

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Design

The design of the BE6i is pretty simple and made to look like it’s heavy material. Made from aluminum, these in-ear headphones are very lightweight, preventing weighing your ears down, and are actually quite comfortable. The color designs actually match the current iPhone designs and colors, including Rose-ish Gold.

Like the BE6, the ends of the earpiece are magnetized, creating a necklace to prevent losing it when you take them off. As for the cord holding them together, they are covered in matted plastic to prevent the wire from getting twisted.

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The three-button remote actually hides the micro-USB charging port and has a tiny pin-hole microphone for using the earphones for calls and commands (on your phone, not on the earphones themselves). There is an indicator light to show a Bluetooth connection, turning it on and off, and charging status. The instructions for the buttons use are pretty basic: pressing the + and – for volume control; holding onto the + and – for skipping and replaying songs; and, the middle button to resume the music or show and for answering and hanging up calls.

The earphones also come with a small zip-up canvas hard case with a micro-USB and five sets of custom-designed silicone ear tips and two sets of heat activated Comply memory foam ear tips for better noise isolation. The variety of the ear tips allows for greater variety to prevent earaches or strain. The Comply ear tips were actually useful when going for a long run outdoors, not once during the run did the earphones budge.

Sound Quality

We all know that looks aren’t everything. It’s all about the quality of the product and then we can care about the looks. After connecting the earphones to my electronics (Galaxy S6, Nexus 7, and iPad Air), I listened carefully to any problems with the sound quality. It was actually pretty good on all three, which is great to know that it supports Android, Windows, and Apple devices.

I depend on my devices to catch up on the latest television shows on-the-go and need something that would allow me to focus. With the right ear tips, the sound is accurate and crisp. Even when there was a knock on a door during a scene, I would turn around to make sure it’s not actually happening in real life.

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The Bluetooth range was also pretty impressive. According to Optoma, the wireless connection can go up to 30 m from the source. It actually worked pretty well during my time at the gym – getting up to get equipment and putting things away. The sound was still sharp, although, after returning to a TV show on my device, it may had seemed that the lip movement did not match the voice coming out of it. It was only when I went back 10 seconds did the lips and sound went back together.

As for making calls, there were no problems talking directly on the phone to people using the headphones. There was only a problem when the they were used to make calls over the data through Google Hangout and Skype. The phone kept disconnecting the conversation. It wasn’t until I disconnected the Bluetooth that it allowed me to join in on the conversations. It could have been a connection situation, but seeing that I had 4G LTE, I didn’t see that as the problem.

Battery Life

The problem with the predecessor, BE6, were the complaints about battery life. Optoma promises about 8 hours of battery life – 3 hours more than before – using IPX5 certified in-line remote (which also allows for more outdoor usage). After binge watching on several shows, the battery life was exactly that – about 8 hours. Charging the device didn’t take that long either – about two hours for a full charge.

Verdict

Overall, these BE6i in-ear headphones sound like the real deal. It could be because this is a second generation version of a good pair of wireless earphones. Although I may have run into some problems with the connection using this earphone, the pros outweigh the cons indefinitely. Optoma Technology listened to the reviews regarding the battery life from reviewers and customers and fixed it. They also kept what was liked from the BE6i, which was the lightweight design and the comfort from the variety of ear tips.

The Optoma NuForce BE6i Wireless Bluetooth In-Ear Headphones are available today at a suggested retail price of US$129. More information can be found here.

Rating: NR 4_5 Atoms - A-

 

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Laura Sirikul
Laura Sirikul 1849 posts

Trekkie. Jedi. Whovian. Sherlockian. Hobbit. Sanrio. Comics. I am Spartacus. Warrior Princess. Superhero. Nerd. Follow me @lsirikul