Bluetooth Headphones - Bluedio's "R+" - diyAudio
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Old 10th January 2014, 02:59 AM   #1
agdr is offline agdr  United States
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Default Bluetooth Headphones - Bluedio's "R+"

I just picked up a fun toy. A pair of Bluetooth headphones that pair up quite nicely with my cell phone. I can now walk around with my cell phone playing streaming music off the phone from the various streaming services, along with my stored tunes.

I don't think I've seen many posts here recently about Bluetooth heapdhones. Just curious what everybody else's experience has been who have tried any moedel Bluetooth cans. This new APT-X protocol, while still apparently in the early stages, seems to at least have the potential of cleaning up much of the historical quality problems with Bluetooth audio.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AptX

http://www.aptx.com/

Here is a bit of a review of these phones...

This pair is a "Bluedio R+" that I bought off of Amazon. disclaimer - I'm not affiliated with that company in any way, or Amazon for that matter, I'm just a happy customer at this point.

These particular phones have some neat features. They are Bluetooth V4.0 and support the APT-X streaming protocol, as does the phone for both (a HTC EVO 4G LTE thing through Sprint), although at this point it is anyone's guess if APT-X is actually being used. Haven't figured out yet how to confirm it. I nearly bought the previous model of Bluedio phones from Monoprice (their house brand Bluetooth headphones) but figured out at the last minute those are just Bluetooth V3.0 and no APT-X.

These things say they support near field communication (NFC), as does the phone apparently, so the two can just be tapped together to pair. I've never tried messing with NFC so couldn't say if that one works or not yet.

They paired right up over Bluetooth in just a second. Just press that big button in the middle of the right earcup and put the cell phone on pairing. They come with a mini-to-regular USB cable for charging the internal lithium battery. The USB port is in the right earcup while a standard 3.5mm port (comes with that cable too) is on the other earcup. I discovered that USB cable does pass audio in addition to charging! Plugged it into the laptop and it was immediately recognized as a Bluetooth audio device. Windoze (Win 7 pro 64 bit) switched right over automatically to using the phones via the USB connection.

The sound quality seems very good. The reviews of these headphones over on Amazon seemed to be largerly positive, and sure enough. While using the cell phone for streaming audio there is the occasional time when the stream hiccups, but that isn't the headphones fault. These phone have a fairly powerful amp built in. I have the Windows Media Player slider nearly all the way down, the Windows audio slider most of the way down, and the volume +/- buttons way down on the phones for normal levels. Good bass and good treble.

The phones claim to have 4 drive transducers in each cup, 1 bass and 3 treble. I haven't tried to lift the fabric yet to confirm it, but from what I'm hearing it probably is the case.

I haven't tried yet to see how far away I can get before the bluetooth drops out, other than it stays well connected just moving around the room with the cell phone.

The phones even have a slot for a SD memory card that I haven't tried yet. I think it said they could read MP3 and WMA files. The hgeadphones have a built in mic so the phones can work as a cellular handsfree, although that obviously wouldn't be a good idea while driving. Interesting chart about that here from the AAA:

Headsets | AAA/CAA Digest of Motor Laws

Even if it is legal, common sense says don't do it! Couldn't hear abulances, horns, etc. But they could certainly be used while parked. Maybe stuffed in a glove compartment.

Lol - when I first tried them with my cell phone there was an insane amount of bass. I was thinking to myself "back they go to Amazon", but then studied my cell phone screen. Apprently this HTC phone has "Beats" software lurking in there, just waiting to attack. A touch on the Beats thing that popped up on the screen turned the Beats off, and all was back to normal.
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Last edited by agdr; 10th January 2014 at 03:13 AM.
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Old 12th August 2014, 01:23 AM   #2
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I've been using Nokia BH-905i for quite a while and quite happy with them. They allow using their microphones (8 in total) for calls as well.
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Old 12th August 2014, 04:13 AM   #3
agdr is offline agdr  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsolodov View Post
I've been using Nokia BH-905i for quite a while and quite happy with them. They allow using their microphones (8 in total) for calls as well.
Those Nokias look nice! They have the noise cancellation feature that the Bluedios lack.

When I want to play music from my cell phone it just seems like heresy for some reason to have to use wires of any sort. I want a wireless solution like bluetooth phones.
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Old 6th September 2014, 05:31 PM   #4
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Hello, and thanks for the review.

First off, great headphones overall - good heavy feel and solid, solid sound.
I want to clear a couple things about the phones, though:

1. AptX is supported by the CSR bluetooth chip inside, but it's disabled by default for unknown reasons in all Bluedio products (SBC is used instead). It can be enabled using a special USB-SPI tool (ask Bluedio for details on how to purchase one). I'll be attaching the tuning software and the how-to instructions which I recieved from a very friendly Bluedio rep after a long email exchange, below.

2. Both earcups indeed do have 4 drivers each; this can be confirmed by taking off the pads. And while you're down there, if you want a more balanced sound but don't want to spend USD30 on a USB-SPI programmer, it's a good idea to take off the felt underneath the earpads (not the outer layer, just the inner one under the pads which covers the tweeters). This will result in a much more balanced sound because the highs and upper mids are no longer muffled by the excess padding - I have done it and it really means the difference of night and day. Of course, warranty-wise this is a questionable maneuver, but in the end it's up to you.

3. The headphones have a built-in EQ (two ways to work it: Press either the + and - buttons simultaneously, or alternatively Skip>> and -). It has three settings; Normal (flat-ish) curve, V sharp (heavy lower bass and very emphasized highs, good for techno music), and finally a curve that oomphs the lower mids and upper lows a little bit (a lot). I personally prefer the flat curve as it has the most natural sound. The EQ curves may be adjusted, added and removed with the USB-SPI tool.

Alas, the mighty CSR tuning software!

Cheers,
-odd

Oh, and /major/ PS - The tuning software is pretty low-level stuff which can really mess with your headphones if you go around poking the wrong things in there. You've been warned!
Win 8 users are out of luck as drivers for the programmer don't as of yet exist for your OS. I learned that the hard way.
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Old 7th September 2014, 09:26 PM   #5
agdr is offline agdr  United States
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Thanks for the information! I'll get one of those USB-SPI tools too. I've suspected that APT-X wasn't being used. I'll bet they've disabled it by default because relatively few sources have it. My HTC phone is supposed to have it, so I'm eager to give it a try.
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Old 7th September 2014, 10:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agdr View Post
Thanks for the information! I'll get one of those USB-SPI tools too. I've suspected that APT-X wasn't being used. I'll bet they've disabled it by default because relatively few sources have it. My HTC phone is supposed to have it, so I'm eager to give it a try.
No problem. At USD100 these were a real bargain as is, so forking out another thirty for the programmer was no problem at all Trust me, if you know your audio, aptX over SBC truly means the difference of night and day.
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Old 7th September 2014, 10:19 PM   #7
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Does the Bluedio R+ support AAC? I know the built in player does, I mean over Bluetooth.
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Old 7th September 2014, 11:23 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by theAnonymous1 View Post
Does the Bluedio R+ support AAC? I know the built in player does, I mean over Bluetooth.
Very likely yes. I have not tested because I use aptX myself, but AAC does appear in CSR Universal Parameter Manager when the headphones are connected to the programmer.
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