Consumer Reports: My Experience Searching for Bluetooth Headphones

Published Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Looking for the best sound bar on the market? Need help choosing between two different cars? Check out Consumer Reports! Consumer Reports gives Edwardsville Public Library cardholders access to ratings and reviews for a plethora of cars, household gadgets, appliances, and much more. Comparison shopping has never been easier!

You can find Consumer Reports on the “Resources” tab on the library’s website at www.edwardsvillelibrary.org. Please ask library staff if you’d like any more tips for using this wonderful database. We’re happy to assist you.

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Listening to music (usually loudly) is one of the things that brings me great joy. Particularly when I’m doing a task I don’t love, like chores or dishes. However, living in an apartment means I can’t blare my music as loudly as I want on my TV, because I don’t want my neighbors to get fed up with me. This led me towards purchasing wireless headphones.

Here was my basic list of requirements for them:

  1. They were wireless
  2. They had good audio quality
  3. They had Bluetooth connectivity
  4. They support Siri voice commands
  5. They were under $60

This list of requirements is easy to find, up until item 5, so this is where Consumer Reports came to the rescue! I took a look at their online ratings to see what headphones were good quality, but also in my price range. You can also compare different items and their features, which means making a more informed decision is easier.

Let’s take a look at our top contenders! (My choice is in red)
Headphones 1 1
Headphones 2 2
Headphones 3

As an owner of an iPhone, the Apple AirPods seemed to be an absolute game changer when they first arrived on the scene. But are they the best option out there? A poignant question, especially when their price tag is around $200. It turns out they rate at a 56 on Consumer Report’s scale. While they have good audio, if there were better options out there, and for a lower price, I wasn’t even going to consider splurging on them.

Finding a decent pair of wireless headphones was a real challenge. While there’s a plethora of cheaper options out there, the quality always seems lacking. If I'm going to spend my money on a new gadget, it's important that it lasts more than a few months. And while I'm not expecting exceptional audio quality for my price point, I'd still like it to be at least fairly good.

After some debate, it became clear that the obvious winners were the JLAB Audio JBuds Air. They had a very good audio score and were within my price range at $49. After purchasing them and using them for about a month now, I can say I'm pleasantly surprised with the audio quality. While there is a bit of a learning curve with these headphones' buttons, it has overall made my routine much more pleasant. Now I get to listen to music, clean my house, and not annoy my neighbors-all at once!

Devin headphones
About the Author

Devin is the Adult Services Librarian and has been working at EPL since 2014. She loves traveling, her two cats, and everything Tolkien.