The entry of the Beoplay E8s into the truly wireless market; as in two physically independently ear pieces presents a very familiar, very charismatic, and by extension, very Bang & Olufsen impression. When considering the benchmark set by Apple’s Airpods is about $160 for what most consider as a generally undesirable look, fit, and sound, there’s a good case to be made for wiggle room in the expense department. This relatively new, truly wireless category of in-ear monitors isn’t cheap, and to compete against each other, differentiate by overall-size, weight, and naturally, the sound. B&O seems to have tackled these points while also incorporating some surprise features, including an EQ, and touch controls. A motion sensors allows pausing and playing with light taps, simply removing the ear peace has the same effect.
The price difference between the E8s and the Airpods makes the former an established tier of their own, and fortunately they do deliver. The intuitive EQ and easy to sync method provided by the Beoplay app, sets B&O apart as a brand while offering such noteworthy enhancements and features like music customization, and settings that allow outside sound to pass through so you can hear what’s going on around you.
The E8s are designed with an indiscreet look as the Bang & Olufsen logo covers the entirety of the touch control surface. The solid, snug, and encompassing fit, combined with a robust, slightly warm sound make a wonderful combo. The consistency in sound for B&O products is a part of their branding success. A natural sound runs across their headphones consistently. The E8s fall into a similar sound as other B&O earbuds; notably the H3s. Fortunately the ease of connectivity, and noise isolation make it easy for the listener get lost in their own music. The included foam tips are recommended for maximum comfort, they have the added bonus of solidifying the bass.
The bud’s overall were designed with a solid seal; there aren’t many points of entry for water or sweat seep in. B&O themselves describe the product as “sweat resistant”, and the lack of an opening is a likely cause. The carrying case for the pair is leather, fairly discreet, and mobile; they offer an extended 8 hours of battery charge as well.
Coming in as a later entry to the truly wireless category is an argumentative statement in and of itself, a statement longtime B&O fans will likely agree with. The E8s are a significant point in favor of truly wireless earbuds with a hefty $299 price, but you certainly get what you pay for, and we can confidently say the E8s are one of the most comfortable fits seems in the truly wireless market.