Is the BTH-260 from Kinivo better the second time around? The BTH-260 was originally released by Kinivo before Thanksgiving 2015. Kinivo sent me a BTH-260 to test last year, and they had some issues. I guess I wasn’t the only one having issues because Kinivo pulled the 260s off the market. Well, they’re back! Let’s see if they’ve improved since the first round.
The BTH-260 (V2) is a sports style Bluetooth headphone with a wrap around neck loop to hold the headphones together. The 260 is listed on the box as “Premium Bluetooth Sports Headphones.”
Setting up the BTH-260 is very easy. I opened up the box and popped the headphones out of the included carrying case. The headphones already had a full charge as reported by the headphones when I turned them on. A micro-USB cable is included for charging, but with a 400-hour standby and 25 hour play time, I haven’t had the need to charge them, yet.
The headphones have no visual way of reporting information, so instead it talks to you. When I turned them on I was informed “BATTERY HIGH.” When I went to pair the headphones, which you do by holding the multifunction (play/pause/answer call/end call) button for about five seconds and you’ll hear the announcement “PAIRING” and the LED on the headphones will flash red/blue.
I was able to immediately start listening to music, and it was a much better experience over version #1 (V1). The first version had really bad audio clipping. If I moved my head, the audio clipped. When I went out for a walk, the audio clipped. When I jumped up and down, the audio clipped. With version #2 (V2) I was able to use it on my Chromebox, Nexus 10, and LG G4 without issues. I even went out and mowed the lawn and had no issues. There was some minor clipping, but it would be hard for me to fault the headphones. When I was mowing the lawn, I had no way to carry my phone (someone, please send me an armband phone case to review!), so I just left my Nexus 10 on the patio while I mowed and I’m sure I got out of range. The large buttons on the right “ear cup” are easy to access and control play/pause/answer/end call, volume up, volume down, previous track, and next track.
Believe it or not, there is a reason why I chose to mow the lawn with the headphones on. Kinivo says the headphones are sweatproof. Since I don’t work up a sweat on a regular basis, I took them out for a spin. I’m pleased to report that the headphones did not melt as a result of me working outside in 80-degree temperatures.
These headphones are not noise cancelling headphones. When wearing the headphones, I can hear everything going on around me. I guess that’s good, because when out walking or running, you’re going to want to be aware of your surroundings. When I was mowing the lawn, the lawn mower overpowered the headphones, so I had to turn up the volume to hear my music. I turned the volume to the maximum on the Nexus 10 and on the headphones, and there was no distortion. Of course, if I stopped the lawnmower, the music was too loud, and I had to lower the volume or start the lawn mower again.
The BTH-260 can also be used for phone calls. When someone calls you, all you have to do is press the “multifunction button” to take the call. During my tests, I had a friend give me a call. We carried on a regular conversation, and he said that it sounded like I was on a regular cell phone. There were no voice quality issues. The microphone for the BTH-260 is on the right headphone. There’s no need to shout, just speak at normal conversation levels, and the BTH-260 will pick up your voice. I also tried testing while listening to music. When I accepted an incoming phone call, the phone was answered, but the music continued to play, albeit at a lower volume.
If you’re an active person, and you like listening to music while going on walks, your morning jog, or while working in the yard, then the BTH-260 Premium Bluetooth Sport Headphones are for you.
If you’re looking for something that’s going to give you better sound, I recommend the URBN also from Kinivo.Get it on Amazon