I’m not a fan of Bluetooth. Most of the time, it’s poorly implemented and plagued with frequent disconnects, not user-friendly setup procedures — basically, more pain than gain. Because of that, I generally steer away from Bluetooth earbuds. However, when my existing earbuds broke, I went on a hunt for a nice, affordable pair that sported a minimal design. Enter the Anker SoundBuds Slim, and answer to my problem.
The SoundBuds Slim are exactly what I was looking for. The earbuds themselves aren’t much bigger than a pair of wired earbuds, and they even have a rubber “fin” that keeps them secure in my ears while I’m running, biking, or just sitting at a coffee shop and working. They do have a wire that connects both earbuds and contains the inline controls and microphone, but that’s exactly what I like. I’ve tried three pairs of truly wireless earbuds, but I never liked them because they often would fall out or get uncomfortable. Plus, these earbuds aren’t a pain, at all, to turn on and connect to your device. They will reconnect right away, and the connection itself is quite strong.
So how do they actually sound? Absolutely great. I’m not an audiophile, but I can appreciate good audio. While they won’t beat my Audio-Technica M50’s, they are amazing for Bluetooth sport earbuds. The bass is strong, and the mids and highs are nice, too. The great part is that they block out plenty of sound. I use these while working at a coffee shop, and they block out the right amount of noise. I can hear if someone is talking right near me, but the general drone of music and distant talking can’t be heard.
One great aspect of the SoundBuds Slim earbuds is the microphone. I often take calls while working, so being able to go hands-free is essential. Thankfully, the microphone is high quality, making these great for long calls. Speaking of extended use, these are — by far — the most comfortable earbuds. I’ve used these for fairly long durations (around three hours), and they stay plenty comfortable. The inline controls are also a nice touch, with volume up/down, play/pause, and skip forward and backwards with a long press on the volume buttons. You can also press the play/pause button to answer or hang up calls.
Even though I don’t use for more than a couple hours at a time, that doesn’t mean the battery only lasts that long. No, not at all. On several occasions have I forgotten to charge them, and they still have enough juice to last me through another call. Anker advertises seven hours of playback on a single charge, so you should be set for the better part of the day. Even if you have to charge them, the 110mAh battery charges quite fast via micro USB.
So, I’ve had a nice, positive experience with these. What’s not so good? Well, the biggest part is that the inline controls are a little bulky. It has a significant weight compared to the rest of the earbuds, so if you’re only using one earbud like I sometimes do, it will drag the loose earbud a bit. But if you’re using them normally, it’s not so bad — it just will hand down a little lower than I’d like.
What are my final thoughts on the SoundBuds Slim? They’re amazing. These are my go-to earbuds that I use whenever I go out of the office. Plus, they will only set you back $26. For the value that you get out of them, that is quite affordable. If you’re looking for a new set of Bluetooth earbuds that isn’t a pain to use, get these — you won’t look back.Get the SoundBuds Slim