Logitech-owned Jaybird has been designing Bluetooth earbuds since 2007 and has established itself as a manufacturer known for creating quality headphones ideal for working out.

Jaybird's latest product, Freedom, is the culmination of years of design refinements. The Freedom Wireless Buds are Jaybird's smallest and most comfortable yet, with a sleek sweat-proof design, multipoint pairing, and up to eight hours of battery life. As with most products, there are some downsides, so make sure to read on to find out what to expect from Jaybird's latest product.

jaybirdbox

Design and Fit

Jaybird's Freedom Buds are tiny, a feat achieved by moving many of the audio components from the earbuds themselves to the remote control. Jaybird sells the Freedom in a range of colors from white and black to red and blue, with the earbuds themselves made from metal with plastic accents.

Visually, they're smaller than any other earbuds on the market, but they look and feel like a quality product thanks to the metal design, a deviation from previous plastic earbud designs from Jaybird. These are wireless headphones, which means there's no wire to plug into your phone because they connect via Bluetooth. I loved the look of the gold and white Freedom earbuds I tested -- they're small and sleek, the perfect companion to an iPhone.

jaybirdboxopen
There's a cord that connects the two earpieces together, and on the right side of the cord, there's a remote. Unlike the earbuds themselves, there's nothing small about the remote. It houses all of the electronics normally located in the earbuds, and while it's not heavy, it is bulky. It measures in at nearly two inches long and 1/4 inch thick.

jaybirdearbudsremote
When it comes to earbuds, comfort is my number one priority. I have small ears and with most headphones, Apple's EarPods and UrBeats included, the insides of my ears start aching within a half an hour. The Freedom Buds are small enough that I barely feel them in my ears, even when using them for a couple of hours at a time.

jaybirdearbuds
With the wide range of tip options that come in the box, I suspect most users will be able to get a comfortable fit. There are silicone ear tips in small, medium, and large, plus Comply foam ear tips, also in small, medium, and large. I used the silicone tips while testing the Freedom Buds because the sound was better, but the foam tips were also comfortable.

jaybirdwhatsinthebox
The earbuds fit well in my ears, but getting them to stay in my ears was another issue. The bulk of the remote on the right earbud caused the earbuds to continually slip out of my ears and I was never really able to get a secure fit. Jaybird does include a set of ear fins with the earbuds, made of a soft, supple silicone, and that was the only way I could get them to stay put when moving around.

Jaybird says the Freedom Buds are sweat proof, and I didn't have any issues. I didn't run them under water or anything, but they definitely held up during regular activity.

Jaybird's earbuds can be worn in two ways, depending on user preference. You can wear them like standard earbuds under the ears, or you can wear them over-ear with the cord wrapped behind your ears. Wrapping the cord around the ears alleviates some of the bulk of the remote, and two cord management clips can customize the cord length and further relieve the remote weight to make the earbuds more comfortable.


Shortening the cord of the Freedom Buds meant the remote hung down a bit less and was less in the way, but no matter what, it always pulled on the right earbud and was a consistent irritation. With heavy activity, the earbuds had a tendency to slip out of my ear a bit because of the remote's weight, but clipping them to my shirt helped with the slippage, as did adding the fins.

jaybirdearbudsshortcord

Battery

The earbuds alone have a battery life of approximately four hours, but there's an extra charging clip you can clip on to the remote to extend battery to eight hours. Theoretically, you can use this clip while the earbuds are in use, but it was just too bulky, heavy, and silly looking for me to use the charging clip this way.

jaybirdearbudsremoteandcharger2
Made of black plastic, the charging clip snaps right onto the back of the remote. It's a battery in of itself, and it's also what's used to charge the Freedom Buds through a micro-USB port. The earbuds ship with a small micro-USB cable that can plug into any USB port or USB charger.

Frequent charging is one of the biggest downsides to wireless earbuds, and while I wasn't a fan of using the clip while wearing the earbuds, it was a clever accessory for charging on the go. Snapping the clip onto the earbuds while they were in my purse was a quick and easy way to recharge them without needing to plug them in and it ensured I was never stuck with dead earbuds. 20 minutes of charging offers an hour of music playback.

jaybirdearbudscharging
My one qualm with the clip is its size. It's small and easy to lose, and as far as I can tell, Jaybird isn't selling replacements yet. It's also worth noting that when you attach the clip to the remote while music is playing, it'll cut off and need to be restarted.

Jaybird put a lot of thought into making charging as easy as possible, even down to the user interface. When the earbuds are turned on, the battery level is announced, and it's also visible in the MySound app and in the Notification Center when connected to an iOS device.

An orange light is displayed when the earbuds are charging, and it changes to green once charging has completed. In my experience, it took just a couple of hours to charge the earbuds from dead to full.

Sound

I'm not an expert on sound, but as an average earbud user, the Jaybird Freedom sounds great -- better than other wireless earbuds I've tried and better than many of the wired earbuds I own.

Noise insulation and blocking isn't great, but because the earbuds are so small, it's possible to get a good seal in the ear for the best possible sound. With a tight seal, all of the music I played was crisp and balanced, especially after I adjusted the equalizer to my tastes with the MySound app. The only negative I noticed was somewhat muddy bass on bass heavy songs.

jaybirdapp
Volume wise, the earbuds got loud enough to block out almost any ambient noise while still sounding clear and non-distorted.

Using the app, it's possible to make minute adjustments and download sound profiles like "Bring the Bass," "R&B" Jams, and "Warmth." There are even sound profiles created by pro athletes like Sonya Looney and James Lawrence.

While sound is good, I wasn't impressed with the range of the Freedom Buds. Jaybird says optimal range is about two feet, and that was about accurate to me. Direct line of sight also seemed to be required for clear sound - stepping into another room could cause it to cut out, and holding my phone in certain positions outdoors also sound to cut out once or twice. Jaybird recommends an armband that keeps the iPhone above the elbow when using the earbuds outdoors.

I had no trouble connecting the earbuds to any Bluetooth device, from my Mac to my iPhone to my Apple Watch. It was all seamless and simple.

Other Features

In addition to offering volume up, volume down, and power buttons, the remote also incorporates double presses for additional functionality. Holding down on the volume up button goes to the next song, while holding down on the volume down button goes back to the previous song. A short press on the middle button initiates a redial, a longer press ends a call or activates Siri, and an even longer press turns the earbuds off.

There's a built-in microphone so the earbuds can be used for making phone calls, and the calls I made with it sounded loud and clear with no interference. When on a call, the buttons on the remote can be used to switch a call over to the Freedom, mute and un-mute, or place a call on hold and answer a second call.

A built-in "Multipoint" feature lets the earbuds pair with and connect to two different Bluetooth devices at once, allowing for quick switching. You can use the earbuds to listen to music on one device, like a Mac, and then switch over to answer a call, and there's also a sharing feature for listening to the same music on two sets of Freedom earbuds from one device.

Bottom Line

$200 is a lot to spend on earbuds. It's more than i normally spend because I'm prone to losing them, and I have mixed feelings on whether or not the Jaybird earbuds are worth the purchase price.

On one hand, I love the size, comfort, and long battery life, but that bulky remote was nearly a deal breaker for me, constantly getting in the way and pulling the earbuds out of my ears. It's entirely possible that due to my small ear size and ear shape, I wasn't able to get a good enough fit with the Freedoms to keep them in my ears, so others might have a different experience.

jaybirdearbudsfinalpic
If you can get a good, secure fit with Jaybird's latest earbuds, I think you'll be happy with them. The sound is great for the average user and they're undeniably comfortable, but you'll definitely be paying a premium for these features. At $200, the Freedom earbuds are pricier than quality options from competitors.

We all have different ear shapes so not every set of earbuds is going to fit every ear. I'd recommend giving the Freedom a try if you're looking for a set of premium wireless earbuds, but buy from Amazon so you have an easy way to return them if they don't work out.

Pros:

  • Tiny
  • Comfortable fit, even in small ears
  • Fins keep earbuds secure
  • Fins are comfortable to wear for hours at a time
  • On the go charging with battery dongle
  • Can customize sound with accompanying app

Cons:

  • Remote is bulky, weighs earbuds down
  • Remote pulls earbuds out of ear
  • Battery life is limited
  • Extra battery dongle is heavy/bulky
  • Battery dongle is easy to lose

How to Buy

Jaybird's Freedom Wireless Buds can be purchased from the Jaybird website or Amazon.com for $199.95.

Note: Jaybird provided the Freedom Wireless Buds to MacRumors free of charge for the purposes of this review. No other compensation was received.

Tag: Jaybird

Top Rated Comments

BeefCake 15 Avatar
102 months ago
Too bad their logo looks like fallopian tubes.
Nothing wrong with that
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OLVFD Avatar
102 months ago
Too bad their logo looks like fallopian tubes.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
spinedoc77 Avatar
102 months ago
I'm a HUGE jaybird fan, starting with them on the original Freedom's I think about 6 or 7 years ago. Currently I have a couple of pairs of the X2's and find them amazing. I'm very tempted by these new ones, especially because they are smaller. My only caveats are the battery life, and the price is just way too much. If I usually wait a few months I would expect to see many sales on them, probably in the $120 range based on the sales I saw on the X2's 2-3 months after release. I think they are worth $120, but not $200.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
s15119 Avatar
102 months ago
$200 and 4 hour battery. I'll pass. I agree with above poster, $20 is more my price range for ear budz
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mr. Donahue Avatar
102 months ago
200$!??!!!! For what?! Hindu cow! That's a lot of money.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bigjnyc Avatar
102 months ago
I would have to charge my x2's after two workouts so its not too much worse. I see a benefit in always keeping them in my bag and just charging the clip now. Every day to every 2 days difference. A Trade off for comfort/size/sound/look and customizability.
good point I can charge them while sitting at my desk at work. aaah who am i kidding I'll probably get them with the first price drop I see :D
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iphone se 4 modified flag edges

When to Expect the Next iPhone SE to Launch

Friday May 17, 2024 2:03 pm PDT by
It has been over two years since Apple released the third-generation iPhone SE, and rumors continue to surface about a new model. The latest word comes from The Information, which today reported that Apple plans to release a new iPhone SE with a design similar to the standard iPhone 14 in the spring of 2025. If this rumor is accurate, the iPhone SE would finally gain Face ID and a notch...
iOS 17

iOS 17.5 Bug May Also Resurface Deleted Photos on Wiped, Sold Devices [Updated]

Friday May 17, 2024 12:24 pm PDT by
A bug in iOS 17.5 is apparently causing photos that have been deleted to reappear, and the issue seems to impact even iPhones and iPads that have been erased and sold off to other people. A Reddit user wiped an iPad following Apple's guidelines in September of 2023 before selling it off to a friend. That friend updated the iPad to iPadOS 17.5 this week, and began seeing the Reddit user's old ...
iphone se 4 modified flag edges

iPhone SE 4 With Face ID Said to Be Priced Below $500

Monday May 20, 2024 3:43 am PDT by
Apple is targeting a sub-$500 starting price for its upcoming fourth-generation iPhone SE model despite a raft of rumored upgrades coming to the more affordable device. According to leaker Revegnus on X, the U.S. launch price of the fourth-generation iPhone SE will either remain at the same $429 starting price as the current model, or will see an increase of around 10%. Either way, Apple's...
iOS 17

Apple Releases iOS 17.5.1 With Fix for Reappearing Photos Bug

Monday May 20, 2024 10:11 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS 17.5.1 and iPadOS 17.5.1, minor updates to the iOS 17 and iPadOS 17 operating system updates that came out last September. The 17.5.1 updates come a week after the launch of iOS 17.5 and iPadOS 17.5. iOS 17.5.1 and iPadOS 17.5.1 can be downloaded on eligible iPhones and iPads over-the-air by going to Settings > General > Software Update. According to Apple's...
iPhone 16 Camera Lozenge 2 Perspective

iPhone 16 Lineup Rumored to Come in These Two New Colors

Sunday May 19, 2024 11:08 am PDT by
Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo today outlined his expectations for the iPhone 16 lineup's color options, revealing that two new colors should replace two of the existing shades. Kuo outlined his expectations in a post on X (formerly Twitter) earlier today. He believes that the iPhone 16 Pro and iPhone 16 Pro Max will be available in black, white or silver, gray or "Natural Titanium," and rose....
oled m4 ipad pro grainy display reports

OLED iPad Pro Users Report 'Grainy' Displays, But It May Not Be a Defect

Friday May 17, 2024 5:57 am PDT by
Some new M4 iPad Pro models are exhibiting a visible static grain pattern across the OLED display, according to several user reports on Reddit (1, 2, 3) and the MacRumors Forums. Image credit: MacRumors user bk215 Users who see the grain generally report that it is most noticeable in dark environments with the display set at a low to medium brightness while viewing content with gray or muted...
microsoft surface pro qualcomm

Microsoft Says New Surface Pro is Faster Than 15" M3 MacBook Air

Monday May 20, 2024 3:19 pm PDT by
Microsoft is going all in on AI, today introducing a series of Copilot+ PCs that have AI-focused hardware. The new Surface Pro is one of the first Copilot+ PCs, equipped with Qualcomm's Arm-based Snapdragon X Elite processor. Microsoft is already pitting the Surface Pro against Apple's M3 MacBook Air, and in marketing materials, claims that the Surface Pro has superior processing power and...