Treblab XR100 Bluetooth headphones review

{ 15 comments }

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Do you have a hard time finding a good pair of headphones? I do. I’m really picky when it comes to sound quality, but I’m also really critical of the way headphones fit. If I stick a pair of headphones in my ears and they start bugging me within a few minutes, they immediately go in a drawer to collect dust. Usually it’s the fit that is the main problem because I have sensitive ears. But I also get annoyed by cords rubbing against my clothes or pulling when I move. Lately I’ve been on a quest to find a really good pair of wireless headphones because I’m tired of cords. The latest Bluetooth headphones that I’ve had the opportunity to test are the Treblab XR100 Bluetooth headphones. Let’s take a look.

Hardware specs

Bluetooth 4.1 CSR with APT-X compression
Bluetooth profiles: HFP, HSP, A2DP, AVRCP
Noise-Cancellation СМС 6.0
Operation time: up to 9 hours
Standby time: up to 250 hours
Operation range: 38 feet

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What’s in the box?

Bluetooth headphones
3 sets of ear buds (different sizes)
Zippered storage case
USB charging cable
User’s manual

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The Treblab headphones are wireless because you don’t have to plug them into your phone using the 3.5mm headphone jack. But they aren’t completely wireless because there is a flat cable connects that connects the two ear pieces together.

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The headphones are plastic with a dark grey soft touch silicon-like covering. There’s a non-removable earhook that isn’t adjustable and does not have a wire inside that will let it hold a form if you want to customize the shape.

On the outside of the of the right ear piece is a multi-function Home button that is used to power on, power off, play and pause music. It is also used to answer and end calls.

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The ear pieces have been designed to go into your ear canal and there are several sizes of ear tips included with the headphones.

The volume adjustment rocker button is located on the top edge of the right ear piece. The volume switch can also be used to switch to next and previous tracks in your media player by holding down the button in either direction.

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On the bottom of the right ear piece is a protective flap that covers a micro USB port that is used to charge the headset.

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Pairing the headphones with my Nexus 6P smartphone was quick and easy, so I had no issues there. As far as comfort goes, I found that the Treblab XR100 Bluetooth headphones fit well when I used the smallest ear tips. Although I wouldn’t want to wear them all day, I had no problem wearing them continuously for 1-2 hours with no discomfort. Being able to get up from my desk to walk around without removing the headphones or taking my phone with me was nice and the range of these headphones seemed about the same as other Bluetooth headphones that I’ve tested in the past.

Treblab advertises that the XR100 headphones have Hi Def sound and are noise canceling. First of all, the sound quality did not impress me at all. Music and phone calls both sounded muddy and muffled to me. I even tried an EQ app to see if I could improve the sound quality, but I wasn’t able to. I would not enjoy listening to music all day while wearing these headphones. * Read update below.

As for the claims that the Treblab headphones are able to cancel noise, they don’t have any active noise canceling technology built in to them. The only way that they cancel noise is like other in-ear headphones, just from having the eartip stuck in your ear canal.

Treblab XR100 wireless headphones are relatively expensive at $80, but they have 9 hours of battery life, easy to use controls and come with a nice zippered pouch to store them when they are not being used. But when it comes down to it, it’s almost impossible for me to get past the disappointing sound quality. If you just want to use them as a handsfree headset for calls, they will work fine, but if you’re into music, my advice is to look elsewhere if you’re shopping for a pair of Bluetooth headphones. You’ll be glad you did.

Update 03/11/16

After I posted the review complaining that the sound quality and noise cancellation feature of these headphones when used with my Nexus 6P was very disappointing, Michael left a comments explaining the reason for the sound quality problems:

Based on my research, your phone doesn’t support the Apt-X codec, so you wouldn’t be able to take advantage of this technology, which is designed to provide much better sound quality than what is usually streamed over Bluetooth.

I then did my own research and was really surprised and disappointed that Google didn’t include that codec.

To see if a different phone would sound better, I just connected the Treblabs to a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge and I’m happy to report that they sound MUCH better. I won’t say they are fantastic, but they sound pretty good.

As for the noise cancellation issues, Treblab is saying that they never claimed that the headphones have active noise cancelling and say that the headphones have passive cancelling. Ok… but I think that’s misleading and think they shouldn’t mention it at all.

Source: The sample for this review was provided by Treblab. Please visit their site for more info and Amazon to order.

 

Product Information

Price:$79.99
Manufacturer:TrebLab
Retailer:Amazon
Pros:
  • No wires
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Easy to use controls
  • Zippered pouch
Cons:
  • Poor sound quality with the Nexus 6P
Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Bluetooth Gear, Reviews
{ 15 comments… add one }
  • Howard Sneider March 10, 2016, 5:33 pm

    I recently bought a pair of earbuds promising the same noise canceling technology and was equally disappointed. This is what I found out after some searching: the chipset in the earphones contains features of CSR’s Clear Voice Capture (CVC) echo and noise cancellation technology. It is a software based noise filter that will suppress most types of sound going into the microphone, including: babble, road noise, background music, and competing voices. So its noise cancellation for the microphone used when talking into the headphones or buds, but not for the person listening to them. I agree that this is deceptive given that noise cancellation has, in the past, been a technology which eliminates the noise interfering with listening to headphones.

    • Julie Strietelmeier March 10, 2016, 5:35 pm

      Very good work finding that out! Thanks for adding this info. I agree, it’s deceptive.

  • Michael March 10, 2016, 8:05 pm

    Based on my research, your phone doesn’t support the Apt-X codec, so you wouldn’t be able to take advantage of this technology, which is designed to provide much better sound quality than what is usually streamed over Bluetooth.

    • Julie Strietelmeier March 10, 2016, 8:39 pm

      Thank you, I didn’t know that the 6P doesn’t support the AptX codec. That’s surprising but I also just did some research and you’re right. It’s funny because ever since upgrading to the 6P, I’ve felt that the audio quality through the Bluetooth adapter in my car sounded worse than my LG G3, but I thought I was just imagining it. I guess not.

      I just received the S7 Edge to review, so I’ll try the Treblabs with the S7 to see if the experience is better than with my Nexus 6P.

      • Julie Strietelmeier March 11, 2016, 9:39 am

        I have just tried the Treblab headphones with the S7 and it’s like night and day. They sound very good with this phone. So the sound quality issue was phone related. I’ll go update my review.

  • Treblab March 12, 2016, 10:05 am

    Thank you for your review.

    You are absolutely right the CSR’s CVC chipset has the function to block out ambient noise that comes into the microphone. But please let me explain why passive noise cancellation is not misleading in any way.

    XR100’s were specially constructed to maximize passive noise-filtering properties. They were designed with noise cancelling as an objective from the beginning. That’s why we used an angled earbud insert form, that was adapted to the actual form of the ear canal. Doing so made it possible for the earbud and the driver to be deeper inside your ear. This coupled with thick ear-tips made of special high-density silicone, provides a good seal that is deep inside your ear canal and this is what keeps the noise out. In general active noise cancellation does a better job at blocking out sounds, but that is a completely different technology with it’s own set of benefits and drawbacks and is mostly used in large over the ear headphones.

    There is lot’s of information that can be found online that explains passive noise cancellation in more detail as well. For all of the above reasons I hope you will see that passive noise cancellation is a real technology and it is not misleading for manufacturers to include it in the list of benefits of a product.

    • Dave October 24, 2016, 4:33 pm

      I can’t get the ear-tips to fit snugly in my ears. Any advice? What are the black tubes included in the kit for?

      • Michael October 26, 2016, 4:22 pm

        Hi Dave,

        Thank you for your question.

        Everyone has individual anatomic features, and that’s why there are some critical points in fitting earbuds that we should pay attention to. Let us understand the situation in a whole.

        First, the key to a proper earphone fit is using the right size ear tip. Better to try the various sizes of foam and silicone tips that come with your earphones. Foam tips (the black tubes included in the kit) are more forgiving for size differences, so are an excellent option for hard-to-fit ears. To find comfort and better fit, you might also buy specialized tips.
        Also, kindly note that one ear may be slightly larger than the other, so you may need to use a different size tip for each ear.

        Secondly, to seat the ear tip firmly try gently pulling on the outer rim of your ear to ease the tip into a comfortable position. You should notice a drop in ambient noise when the tip is seated correctly. And when you’re listening to music, you’ll notice more range.

        Hope this information will help you to find the best way in the fitting your earphones.

        Best regards,
        Michael
        Treblab

  • Treblab March 12, 2016, 10:08 am

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  • Alan Claver March 12, 2016, 10:56 am

    Meh. All of the top reviews were from people providing free product.

    Plus the product description makes NO mention of the fact that not all devices can take advantage of the high quality audio codec. Their description is written as to imply that all of the phones will get high quality. They even include the Samsung S6 which we now all know won’t play high quality audio.

    No way I’d buy a product that the manufacturer doesn’t describe honestly.

  • Alan Claver March 12, 2016, 10:57 am

    Sorry, typo. It’s Nexus 6P. Wish you guys had editing. Or at least deleting so I repost a corrected comment.

  • BL July 8, 2016, 12:36 pm

    I bought these headphones on Amazon for around $50. I am EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTED with both the reliability and durability of this brand. In only a matter of TWO WHOLE MONTHS the left ear bud broke, so I contacted customer support for advice. If there is anything I will praise Treblab for, it is their customer support. They eventually gave me an address to send the headphones off to, so I did. In three weeks I received another pair of the xr100. I charged it up and it was working fine, until the next day. The charger port/outlet is broken after just ONE WHOLE DAY.

    Bottom line, I don’t know how ANYONE can rate these things anything more than 3 stars. They are over priced, yet with little to no difference in sound quality. I have bought a cheap pair of plug in head phones from amazon for ONLY $7 to $8 and they sound about the same as the xr100. HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE?! How can my new cheap $8 headphones be better than a $50-$100 brand headset?

  • Doug Johnson July 8, 2016, 12:48 pm

    I got these back in February, and let me tell you these are awesome!! The sound quality blows by 170$ beats right out of the water. And the battery lasts 9 hours! They also come with expendable foam ear tips which cancels out external noise. I use them mostly for running and they stay in the ear the whole time. Very very happy with this product. Great job Treblab!!

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