The Jaybird X3 is a considerable improvement over its predecessors and is near good enough to join the elite products churned out by top rivals aimed at the sporty/enthusiast crowd.
With the Jaybird X3 the manufacturer shows it has taken to heart -and brain- user complaints, whispers, and head-shakings over the other iterations of the Jaybird series. Which incidentally were unspectacular and adequate enough performers in the field, with no stand-out feature worth the name or rather a steep price tag. The newly reborn series sports a much smaller form factor, new -and dramatically improved- batteries as well as drastically upgraded 6mm drivers in the earbuds. Fins -3 sizes for all manner of odd ears- come provided and help ensure a secure, confident fit whatever you are doing or whomever you are doing it to. As well as a clip-on thoughtfully present for attaching to your attire as needed. Varied ear tip sizes aplenty of either rubber or foam construction as desired for both ear comfort and sound fidelity make up the rest of the show and help ensure that your sole attention is to the music and the music only, rather than the usually chaotic environment. Which can be quite a problem, especially while jogging or engaging in other athletic activities when you most definitely need to hear the frighteningly big and fast meteorite some damn fool just hurled at you from Olympus, for being a sinfully ignorant heathen. And yes you can take it jogging, what with it being sweat-proof and all.
Charging is done via a proprietary 4-pin accessory that connects to a micro-USB cable and provides a maximum of 8 hours of blissful use with the volume set at moderate levels. Lose the accessory -and it really seems perpetually easy to lose- and you get another or others free, until the end of the year that is. After that, prepare to fork over small amounts of cash for it as you can’t charge your shiny new possession otherwise.
Connectivity is via Bluetooth 4.1 capable devices, and should you wish to you can easily pair 2 Jaybird X3’s to your device, or just a sole X3 to 2 devices simultaneously, whichever strikes your fancy bud. I found the Bluetooth connection to be a total blast and truly one of its prominently positive features. The control module sits just a li’ below the earbuds with a trio of buttons that performs usual tasks like raising, lowering the volume, skipping tracks and pausing/resuming the music.
Extensive sound customization options are available for the inveterate tinkerers who desire to mess with the default sound settings via Jaybird’s MySound app for both Android and iOS. Sound quality is pretty good, even fantastic with everything sounding as it should. Don’t expect a choir of angels intimately serenading your ears though, at least not at that price point. Making or receiving calls is adequate if unspectacular, but the mics does have trouble picking up your voice in noisy environments.
Price is $130, a little steep but worth it, for the exercise crowd at least.