Best workout earbuds of 2018: Jaybird, Jabra, and more

By | 4th September 2018

Chances are you’ve already put in a lump sum of cash towards a pair of decent everyday headphones and feel it’s fine to use them for exercising, too. While that may be the case for some earbuds, more often than not, you’re better off getting a specialized pair that’s designated for exercise. Today we present to you the best workout earbuds you can buy.

If you have the chance, be sure to read the in-depth article at SoundGuys which breaks down the best options in greater detail. If, however, you’re in need of a quick read, we present to you an abridged version of the best workout earbuds.

Related: Best true wireless earbuds

Best all-around: Jaybird X4

Best workout earbuds: Jaybird X4 earbuds on a white table with part of a ukulele in teh background.

If you want the best of the best, go ahead and try out the Jaybird X4 earbuds.

Reasons to consider the Jaybird X4:

  • The X4 have a slimmer profile compared to previous iterations.
  • Unlike previous models, it’s IPX7-rated.
  • The control module is easy to operate blindly.
  • You can change EQ settings via Jaybird MySound app and apply your preferred profile to other source devices.
  • Through SoundGuys‘ objective testing, battery life was recorded at 7.5 hours — more than enough for a week’s worth of workouts.

Buy at Jaybird

Best true wireless: Jabra Elite 65t

Best workout earbuds: The Jabra Elite 65t in Adam Molina's hand. He holds the carrying case that the earbuds are resting in.

If you’re in need of truly wireless earbuds, the Jabra Elite 65t are durable and provide 5.85 hours of playback.

Reasons to consider the Jabra Elite 65t:

  • The earbuds are IP55 dust and water-resistant.
  • Battery life is excellent at a recorded 5.85 hours of playback.
  • Due to the internal four-mic technology virtual assistant commands and on-the-go calls are easy to make.
  • The earbuds attenuate external noise due to a proper fit.
  • Ambient noise passthrough can be adjusted via the Jabra Sound+ app.

Buy at Amazon

Best bass: Under Armour Sport Flex Wireless by JBL

Best workout earbuds: The Under Armour Sport Flex Wireless by JBL on a light wood table with water droplets on and around the earbuds.

If you need bass emphasis, the Sport Flex Wireless by JBL are the neckbuds to buy.

Reasons to consider the Under Armour Sport Flex Wireless by JBL:

  • Emphasized bass for the athletic basshead
  • There’s reflective trim on the back of the neckband, which is an excellent safety precaution for outdoor exercise.
  • Magnetic earbud housings keep things tidy when the Sport Flex Wireless aren’t in use.
  • The earbuds include a one-year premium membership to MapMyRun.

Buy at JBL

Best durability: Plantronics BackBeat Fit

Best workout earbuds: The Plantrnoics BackBeat Fit balled up in Lily's hand with a cement background.

Whether you’re a swimmer or a runner, you can’t go wrong with the Plantronics BackBeat Fit.

Reasons to consider the Plantronics BackBeat Fit:

  • IP57 dust and water-resistance
  • They’re great for swimmers and runners alike.
  • The earbuds are safety-oriented and outfitted with a reflective accent.
  • You get an armband to hold your phone and accessories during workouts.
  • They’re a great value for a pair of sub-$50 earbuds.

Buy at amazon

Best sound: Bose SoundSport Free

Best workout earbuds: The Bose SoundSport Free in the case with the extra StayHear+ ear tips on a pink comforter.

If you still want high quality sound while working out, the Bose SoundSport Free true wireless earbuds are an excellent option.

Reasons to consider the Bose SoundSport Free:

  • IPX4 water-resistance
  • The right earbud houses tactile controls that are easy to operate while exercising.
  • Despite the bulk, the StayHear+ ear tips provide a secure fit.
  • Battery life is superb for true wireless earbuds.
  • Great sound reproduction
Again, if you’re still looking, be sure to click through the full article for excellent alternatives and more information regarding how we chose and tested the awardees.

What you should know about the best workout earbuds

The Plantronics BackBeat Fit held under running water.

The Plantronics BackBeat Fit can withstand full submersion due to their IP57 certification.

Why you should trust SoundGuys

Not only is the SoundGuys site Adam’s, Chris’, and my nine-to-five, but  each of us have multiple years of reviewing consumer audio products. We’ve kept tabs on the ever-changing world of audio, giving us the ability to parse apart the gimmicks from the gems in creating this list of the best workout earbuds.

Lily wearing the earbuds to show the housing size.

We at SoundGuys try and get our ears on as many products as possible for real world and objective testing so you don’t have to.

We want you to be happy with your purchase — none of our writers see a dime from partnership deals or referral purchases — and nobody here is allowed to benefit from steering you towards one product or another. To get a more in-depth understanding of the inner workings, feel free to visit the SoundGuys ethics policy page.