Although it’s not normally one of our topics, Paul and I recently received a pair of wireless earbuds from xFyro to review. While it may not strictly be related to menswear, we are a lifestyle website after all.
Despite my vintage facade, I am paradoxically something of a geek when it comes to technology. So the prospect of writing a headphone review was quite exciting and a refreshing change!
I had never heard of xFyro before they reached out. Therefore, you will discover the brand and their updated xS2 earbuds with me as we explore the following topics:
- Bluetooth Chipset: V4.2 [old version], 5V [new version]
- Range: 30 ft (10 m)
- Power Bank Capacity: 850 mAh
- Earphone Capacity: 45 mAh
- Standby Time: 1000 hours
- Play / Talk Time: 4 hours [old version], 8 hours [new version]
- Waterproof: IP67
With offices in Hong Kong, New York and Los Angeles, xFyro is an international audio brand catering to all music lovers. Taking advantage of the latest trends and advances in technology, their devices are said to be state-of-the-art.
Their flagship xS2 earbuds have received critical acclaim by a number of tech websites and intend to provide a veritable wireless experience. In this review, we actually received both the older and newer version of the headset. Therefore, this review explores both and compares them too.
Buy The xFyro XS2 Now
Style & Appearance
At first sight, the earbuds are stylishly presented in their small power bank. The older version has a brushed steel effect that is capped with gold-coloured plastic on the ends, which comfortably house the earbuds.
However, the updated version has a more matte finish with black ends rather than gold. I’d hasten to say that the updated model is vast improvement over the original as the gold was somewhat garish while its finish attracted fingerprints.
This is no longer the case and the newer version is also available in blue and red if you fancy a little colour. Furthermore, it feels somewhat lighter in the hand!
A single button on the power bank turns it on and off for charging. Meanwhile, a hidden rubber panel reveals the mini USB port for charging the power bank. Meanwhile, a second panel on the other side conceals a large USB port so the power bank can charge other devices!
This is a particularly useful and thoughtful addition. Although the power bank won’t deliver much juice with its 850 mAh capacity, it will be enough to add about a 30 to 40% battery to an iPhone X.
Furthermore, the charging light on the power bank has been upgraded too. Originally, this was a single USB dot on the front of the casing, which would glow red when charging the earbuds and green when fully-charged.
It wasn’t particularly useful so it has fortunately been updated with a charging bar of several LEDs that appears next to the micro-USB port. Therefore, it’s now much more practical for everyday use!
The earbuds on both the updated and older version of the xS2 are identical and haven’t been upgraded in a way that I can see. However, they perform very well so this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
They easily pop out of their housing but not too easily that they may fall out. Their rubber frame is attractive but unfortunately collects dust very easily. Leaving the bank and earbuds in your pocket coats them in dust and they may come out looking like they’ve been sprinkled with flour.
While this wipes off relatively easily – or could even be washed under the tap thanks to the IP67 waterproofing – it is somewhat annoying.
Meanwhile, the entire back panel of the earbud is a single button that can be used to power it on and off. The same button is used for pairing and stop/starting tracks. However, you’ll have to place the earbud in your ear to hear the voice tell you what’s happening as the LED lights can be somewhat confusing.
Otherwise, the whole setup looks great and is rather intuitive save for the few very minor inconveniences mentioned above.
Fit & Comfort
Probably the most irksome aspect of these earbuds is that the smaller eartips wouldn’t stay in my ear. I’m not sure whether this was due to the tips themselves or the earbud’s shape but I had to opt for the largest ones available for them to stay in.
As I have relatively small ears, this wasn’t overly comfortable but it created a good vacuum so the buds wouldn’t fall off. However, it did cause my ears to ache after a few hours.
My recommendation would be to buy eartips separately and use them instead of the ones supplied with the xS2.
Performance & Battery
Overall, the sound was quite pleasant and not at all as underwhelming as most wireless headphones. The treble was crisp without being overbearing and the bass was present enough to be appreciated.
As the earbuds have in-built microphones, I tried a few calls to see how they fared. While my voice wasn’t as audible as some other headsets I’ve used, it was certainly functional and convenient.
In fact, it was somewhat reminiscent of older bluetooth headsets when the technology first became available! Remember those?
Being used to larger wireless headsets, my expectations were a little high when it came to the battery life. However, I’ve realised that was an unfair given that the latest generation of Apple Airpods provides 5 hours of battery life.
With the older version, I rarely got the full 3 hours indicated in its user guide. However, the newer model provides at least 6 of its 8 hours promised on paper.
Furthermore, the earbuds charged very quickly in the battery pack and after a short break, I was good to go again. During a long-distance flight, I actually overcame this with the older model by charging one earbud while using the other and then swapping them out every now and then so they could charge.
Meanwhile, the power bank itself performed valiantly and provided a lot of battery life to the earbuds!
Overall, I found that the newer model easily outperformed the older one when it came to the bluetooth range and performance.
When using the older model, I sometimes found that the secondary earbud would disconnect and I would momentarily lose the sound before it automatically joined again.
This is likely because they’re connected separately with a primary earpiece paired with your device and the other earpiece paired to the primary one. Indeed, it was an unusual and sometimes unreliable approach.
Rest assured that the newer version overcomes this by both earbuds pairing to your device together, which skips the confusing pairing process altogether.
However, I still felt that the range fell somewhat short of the 10 metres it originally promised. Instead, I found that it would begin to cut out when my phone was in my trouser pocket.
In order to ensure that a reliable connection was maintained, I would keep the device in a breast pocket if one was available.
I confess that I didn’t exactly test these earbuds under water. According to xFyro, they say that these are waterproof for rain and showers but despite some reviewers stating that these can be used for swimming, they wouldn’t recommend it themselves.
Personally, I’ve always seen IP67 as a fail safe in case your phone is dropped in water. Therefore, I tend to refrain from intentionally giving my devices a bath!
Nevertheless, these should be good as long as you don’t go too deep. Still, I have to ask where you’d put your phone if you decide to take these for a swim?
Value For Money & Conclusion
While the xFyro earbuds do offer a new experience and convenience for listening to music, they are a little expensive. Nevertheless, I believe that the newer version does offer value for that price.
Before I had received the new model, this review was concluded by stating that I was disappointed by the xS2’s performance for its price. Fortunately, the upgraded model arrived before this could be published and I was relieved that it had corrected these faults and provided a very functional experience.
Strangely enough, while searching for the xFyro headphones on Amazon to check the price, I stumbled upon the Ivosy earbuds for $42.
Given the identical design to the older version, I reached out to xFyro to ask whether there was a difference between the Ivosy and their xS2 earbuds. A representative swiftly responded and informed me:
“The item you shared is an imitation, possibly a Chinese Knockoff with internal components that are of lower quality in comparison to our original earbuds.”
Not being an expert in the subject area, I can’t verify the differences of each earbud’s internal components myself. I will, however, take xFyro’s word for it despite wondering why one would imitate a somewhat niche brand.
Now that you have read this review of the xFyro XS2, consider checking out some more of our men’s lifestyle content:
- Men’s Shoe & Footwear Reviews For All Budgets
- Luxury & Best Value Suit Reviews For Men
- Affordable & Premium Watch Reviews
- Bespoke Unit Home
"A revelation. It's easy to get used to the benefits offered by these earbuds. Thanks to the improvements of the newer model, they've realised their potential and provide phenomenal value for money."Rating: 4.0 ★★★★