I dislike people asking me what kind of music I like. I know very well by now that my answer of country music gets me a lot of ahhs and whys.
When I give pop music as the answer, people would think that I have no personality. And they’d be right. It’s funny how people (around me) who love hardcore rock music tend to think that only rock is true music, while other genres are just playing around.
I can go on for a while on this topic, but you’re not here for that. Let’s talk about the X-Boat Pro earphones. Regardless of our music preference, the one thing we’d agree on is the importance of a pair of good earphones.
True Wireless Stereo (TWS) Bluetooth earphones are nothing new, but there aren’t many TWS earphones with LDAC in the market. X-Boat tries to make itself look innovative by claiming to be the first open-case TWS earphones with LDAC. Since it can’t be the first in TWS and LDAC tech, it tries to catch your attention by being the first to use what it claims to be a futuristic design.
Sorry, they actually called it Futurism design, not a futuristic design. A wild claim? Read on.
What is it
X-Boat Pro is a pair of TWS Bluetooth earphones by YOBYBO, a Shenzhen company that specialises in making earphones. The X-Boat Pro features an open casing that YOBYBO calls Futurism design. It is basically an open casing that makes it easy to remove the earphones. It has nothing to do with what we call Futurism design. It just has a futuristic look that gives a cool and tech-y vibe that the young generation would love.
It comes with LDAC, a new audio technology from Sony that allows you to enjoy high quality wireless audio via Bluetooth. Audiophiles would know that Bluetooth audio is still inferior to wired due to latency issues and poorer quality streamed over Bluetooth. Sony tries to solve it with LDAC codec that streams at a higher quality.
Without getting into technical details, it means you get to enjoy the convenience of Bluetooth earphones without having to compromise on the audio quality. That said, you might want to check out this review by SoundGuys on the quality of LDAC.
The X-Boat Pro is rated IPX4, making it water and dust resistant. Just make sure you don’t dunk it in water.
What problems does it solve
The main selling point of the X-Boat Pro is its open casing. It touts itself as a better option compared to what’s available in the. market. Most Bluetooth earphones come with cases that require you to pop open the hood. Hoods are no-brainers since earphones are prone to go missing even when they are in our ears. But this means you need two hands to get the earphones out.
Sure, you can pop open the hood with one hand, but you still need another hand to take it out of the case. Most earphone cases secure the earphones with magnets, so you it is hard to get them out with just one hand.
X-Boat Pro uses magnets to hold the earphones in place, but makes it easy for you to slide out and wear with one hand.
Who is it for
The X-Boat Pro is for people who want a pair of TWS Bluetooth earphones that they can operate with one hand. People who find themselves having to pop out the headphones when they are carrying things, or when one hand is occupied.
It is also for anyone who’s looking for a pair of TWS earphones, especially if they value good audio quality. It promises better audio with LDAC so you can enjoy your music or podcasts.
People who find themselves in noisy environments would also benefit from the active noise cancelling (ANC). However, I don’t buy YOBYBO’s claim that this is the most advanced ANC algorithm. Any proof to back up such a big claim? Still, it will still block the world’s…
Is it innovative
I don’t think it’s radically innovative but it tries to solve a problem that some people face. If you have experienced more than once being unable to get your earphone out because you only have one hand free, then X-Boat Pro might just be the answer for you.
For those of you who, like me, are skeptical of how this open case design keeps the earphones in when not in use, this unboxing video might convince you.
Other than that, I don’t see anything that’s too special. I think even for earbuds, you have to learn to accept your commonness.
Another useful feature, albeit not truly innovative, is the ability to charge the X-Boat Pro with your phone. I don’t know about you but I won’t need this function. My only wish for my phone is the same as my parents’ for me – to not die. Helping other devices stay alive would be a tall order.
Is it worth it
Good question. The cheapest price you can get the X-Boat Pro is via the Kickstarter super early bird at $99, that’s 38% off its retail price. Early bird price is $109. That’s reasonable compared to brands like Beats, Sony.
Now let’s take a look at behind the scenes.
X-Boat Pro is YOBYBO’s second Kickstarter project. They launched their first one on 31 December 2019. The follow-up comments from backers seem to indicate that the product seemed to have some functionality problems.
Some comments stated that the earphones looked cool but worked poorly. To be honest, these comments put out my enthusiasm for one. We don’t know if this new product will fare as poorly as the previous one. I’m not sure if it is a risk I would take.
What are the alternatives
We’re talking earphones Tons of choices out there, even if we are just looking at those with TWS Bluetooth and ANC. Your options narrow down if you also want LDAC support.
If you are not a person who is too particular with sound quality, you won’t need pricey ones. For example, these Dizo Bluetooth earbuds might be a good alternative. It retails at only $34.99. And based on most of the comments, it is money well spent.
If you value audio quality, you might be want to spend more on earphones with LDAC. There are still a good selection available in the market.
A third alternative is to stay weird and listen to your songs without earphones in public. Yikes. But hey, that’s a way to beat your commonness.
I need earphones to keep people away. Even without music on, I wear them in public. But a good pair of earphones helps. X-Boat Pro focuses more on the design. It has a cool look while the quality is a bit worrying.
I’m not picky when it comes to audio quality but I hate it when my wireless earphones don’t connect well. Good noise-canceling quality is my thing. But spending more than $100 for a pair of earplugs is not what I had in mind.
I’ll wait. If the earphones are meant to be mine, they’ll find their way to me, right?
Hi, I’m Rainee.
I’m a reindeer that identifies as a bear. I’m the Critical Bear that does standup comedy.
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