I spend a good deal of time listening to music; as a result, I’m always on the lookout for an extra pair of Bluetooth headphones. I like to keep a pair in my gear bag, a pair in my gym bag, and an extra set or two around the house because I’m always forgetting to keep them charged.
Most recently, I was given the chance to review the Mpow Magneto Bluetooth sports headphones. They have a unique feature that allows you to pause and play music or answer and end calls with magnets inside the headphones. Does this feature set the Magnetos apart from other headphones…let’s find out.
In the box
- Magneto headphones
- Micro USB charging cable
- Ear stabilizers
- Ear tips
- User manual
- Bluetooth version – 4.1
- Bluetooth profiles – A2DP, AVRCP
- Range – 10m
- Talk time – up to 8 hrs
- Playing time – up to 8 hrs
- Stand-by time – 300 hrs
- Charging time – 2 hrs
The Magnetos are your standard “cable behind the neck” headphones.
The cable contains the headphone’s controller. The front of the controller has 3 buttons and a LED notification light. The plus and minus buttons adjust volume and skip tracks. The center button acts as a power button, pause/play button, and an answer/end call button. The back of the controller contains the microphone.
The earpieces for the headphones are very well designed. I found the silver exterior very pleasing to the eye. The right earpiece conceals a micro USB charging port.
Even though they appear rather large, they are very comfortable to wear thanks to several very comfortable ear tips. They also come with several ear stabilizers that prevent the earpieces from falling out of your ear.
Finally, the earpieces have magnets built into them that can be used to control music playback and phone calls.
My plan for the Magnetos was to use them while running. I was hoping the ear stabilizers would keep the earpieces from falling out during my run.
The first step to using the Bluetooth headphones is to pair them with your device. To do this, you hold down the center multi-function button until the LED indicator flashes orange and white, and the voice prompt says, “pairing”. You then select “Mpow Magneto” from your device’s Bluetooth menu and enter the passcode. If pairing is successful, you will hear a voice prompt stating “connected”.
Once the headphones were paired, I decided to go for a run. Unfortunately, I immediately ran into problems. The Bluetooth connection was extremely poor, it kept cutting in and out to the point where I couldn’t even understand the song I was listening to.
When I run, I keep my phone in a runner’s belt. I had to move my phone all around the belt until I found a location where the Bluetooth connection was functional. Once I found a suitable location, the connection was fine, but I had to do this every time I ran. It was burdensome and took away from my run. After a while, I gave up using the Magnetos while running.
Before moving on, I will say the ear stabilizers did an excellent job of keeping the earpieces from falling out when I ran. In fact, it was better than any headphones I’ve ever used aside from the AfterShokz I previously reviewed.
I also tried using the Magnetos while working around the house. When doing this I didn’t have any issues. I was able to walk around the house and music played just fine without losing the Bluetooth connection. Bluetooth range was about as advertised – 10 meters.
As I said previously, when playing music, the plus and minus buttons adjust the volume and skip tracks, while the center button pauses and plays music. These functions work exactly as promised.
What sets the Magnetos apart from other headphones – and where they get their name – is the magnets built into the earpieces. These magnets are designed to allow you to play and pause music or answer and end calls depending on whether they are separated or not.
If you are listening to music and need to speak with someone or remove the earpieces for any reason at all, connecting the earpieces via magnet should pause the music you’re streaming. To restart the music, you pull the earpieces apart.
When I tested this feature out, it partially worked. Instead of pausing the song at its current location and resuming it when I was ready, this feature stopped the song and reset its progress. When I was ready to stream music again, the song played from the beginning instead of picking up where I left off. It’s not a huge issue, but isn’t the ideal way for the headphones to function.
If you are wearing the headphones and receive a call, pressing the multi-function will answer the call. The manual says holding the multi-function button down will reject the call, but in my case the headphones just powered off. You can end calls by pressing the multi-function button a second time.
As with music streaming, you can use the magnets to answer and end calls. If the magnets are connected when a call comes in, separating them will answer the call. To end the call, you just reconnect the earpieces. When I tested this feature, it worked exactly as it was supposed to.
The Magnetos claim to work with voice dial, but I was unable to get that function to work.
The Magnetos produced great sound. While streaming music I didn’t hear any distortion, static, etc.; everything was crisp and clear. The range of volume was very good as well.
Call quality was great too. From my end, sound was as clear as sound from my handset. My wife indicated the sound on her end was crystal clear as well.
Overall, I was very impressed with the sound quality. As long as your experiencing a quality Bluetooth connection, sound should be superb.
I’ve gone back and forth on my opinion of the Magnetos several times. On one hand, they have excellent sound quality and can be tailored to fit any ear. The ear stabilizers and ear tips make for a secure and comfortable experience.
On the other hand, they don’t always work as described. Between a sketchy Bluetooth connection when running and functions that don’t always do what they should, it’s hard to call the Magnetos reliable.
If you aren’t looking to spend a lot of money and only need headphones to do some work around the house, the Magnetos may be a wise investment. If you are a serious runner who relies on music and a quality connection to keep you motivated, you may want to invest in another pair of headphones.