There are thousands of references on the headphones market. To stand out from the crowd, some manufacturers emphasize the design or performance of their products. BeeWi didn't just produce headphones that are pretty to look at and capable of delivering good quality sound. The French brand has indeed shown originality by producing a smart and connected headset: the BBH300 . And if the latter was rewarded at CES 2014, it is obviously not for nothing.
BeeWi is a company based in Marseille. It has a number of products in its catalog. Headsets, of course, but also connected toys and even some peripherals. The BBH300, on the other hand, looks like a UFO because it presents itself both as a headset, and as a device capable of transmitting sound to another device. I've been having fun with it for a few days now, so it's time to tell you about the experience, with a nice video as a bonus.
As usual, before we go any further, we are going to go over the characteristics of the history helmet so that everyone knows what it is. This list of specifications will also allow you to compare the BBH300 to most headsets on the market:
- Power: S / N> 90 dB, 100 dB SPL Max.
- Frequency response: 20Hz to 20,000Hz.
- Bluetooth: 2.1 + EDR.
- Maximum range: 10 meters.
- Autonomy in use: 18 hours.
- Standby time: 80 hours.
- Charging time: 2h30.
- Dimensions: 59 x 168 x 153 mm.
- Weight: 148 grams.
- Price: € 109 on average.
The headset is sold with several accessories including a rigid plastic storage bag , a docking station (we will have the opportunity to talk about it a little later), an AC adapter with several sockets , a mini jack to jack adapter 6.5mm , 60cm RCA audio cable, USB cable and stereo audio cable with built-in microphone . Pretty outfit, right?
The BBH300 can be used wirelessly, but also as a simple hands-free kit using the supplied cable. It will then be possible to receive calls through it. Note that a microphone is also built into the headset. No need for cable to talk to loved ones.
The many included mains plugs should interest the most frequent travelers since they will be able to connect the headphones to European, American or English sockets. The package is rather provided and this is ultimately a good thing since few manufacturers go so far.
But what about the quality of the sound reproduction? It is obviously very subjective but the sound distributed by the headphones is rather pleasant, with very low bass. It doesn't go as far as my MDR-1RBT but that's no wonder since the two headsets aren't on the same price grid either. Sony's headphones are actually offered at 250 euros, which is one hundred euros more than the BBH300.
Design & Ergonomics
Some headsets are really eye-catching and the BeeWi BBH300 is not. Its lines are both clean and elegant. The manufacturer lent me the black model (it also exists in white) and it is worth admitting that I really liked it. If the plastics are shiny, they have the merit of not being too sensitive to fingerprints. The set seems rather solid and the rigid plastic cover will effectively protect the helmet when we travel.
The two cushions are mounted on a frame capable of folding towards the inside of the hoop to save us space during transport. They are also mounted on rails so they can adapt to the shape and size of any skull.
Unlike most builders in the industry, the BBH300's cushions are square in shape. They will not necessarily encompass the whole ear, but they are still comfortable to wear. During my test, I spent several hours with the headphones on my ears without feeling any discomfort. The only downside is that it sometimes has trouble reducing ambient noise. On this point, it is much less effective than my MDR-1RBT which effectively isolates me from my daughter's shrill cries. It is because she has the voice that carries, the naughty.
Rather of integrating physical buttons in the helmet, BeeWi has opted for touch controls directly integrated into the structure maintaining the left cushion. With just a few touches, we can navigate from track to track, pause playback, control the volume, take a call or hang up. Some adaptation time will nevertheless be necessary. At first, we do tend to type in the wrong place at the wrong time, but that's just a matter of habit.
Under the left cushion, we will also find a Micro USB port and a jack to connect the headset to its docking station, or to our smartphone.
The docking station delivered with the BeeWi BBH300 is perfectly capable of recharging the headset. All you have to do is put it on the base and plug the base into a power outlet to power it. Finally, this is not entirely accurate since it will be necessary to ensure that the top plug of the dock fits into the Micro USB port of the headset.
A manipulation not always easy. Let's say you have to aim well and not force too much. The best, finally, is to start by folding the right cushion under the bar and then connect the left cushion. When the latter is correctly positioned, we will only have to unfold the right part of the helmet and position it on the docking station. Personally, I would have really preferred a Qi-style wireless charging system. Maybe it will be for the next model.
But now, the really cool thing is that the docking station is not just for recharging the headphones. Thanks to its jack, we can also connect it to a HiFi system or even to any amp. To do what ? To stream music from our smartphone to our installation, let's see! No need to invest in a third-party solution, and the best part is that it really works with anything.
It's even very easy to set up.
The BeeWi BBH300 is a beautiful object, that's for sure. But its real advantage is that it can be used in three different ways, either as a simple Bluetooth headset, as a hands-free kit or as a streaming device. For a price around 100 euros, moreover! Difficult to do better, that's for sure.
I also really appreciated the care taken in the package. The manufacturers are often very stingy in terms of accessories, and this is not at all the case here since we will find in the box everything we need to enjoy the helmet and its features.
In short, if you are looking for a headset that is pleasing to the eye, capable of easily transforming into a hands-free kit and having more intelligent and well-thought-out functions, then go ahead and go for it. The BBH300 won't disappoint, that's for sure, especially in this price range.