Reader Comments

Plantronics BackBeat Fit 2100: Runners get an upgraded BackBeat Fit Wireless

by Aida Lundstrom (2020-03-18)


International pricing isn't available yet, but it converts to about £100 or AU$180. At the high end you have products such as Bose's QuietControl 30 and Sony WI-1000X, both of which retail for $300 (£230 or AU$449). But now we're seeing more moderately priced noise-cancelling in-ears. The latest is Plantronics' $130 BackBeat Go 410, which delivers good performance for a lot less. Sarah Tew/CNET Over the last year or two, we've started seeing more in-ear headphones that feature active noise cancelling.

A version with 8GB but a 360GB SSD and a Core i5 runs AU$3,100. It doesn't look like you can get the privacy screen option or Tilt Pen in Australia, either. You can only get the HD screen in Australia, and the closest model to ours comes with 16GB RAM and a 512GB SSD for AU$3,100.

It has a lot in common with Plantronics' more expensive, business-grade Voyager 6200 UC, but the BackBeat Go 410's neckband is lighter and more flexible and it's more comfortable to wear overall. Like the Bose and Sony, the BackBeat Go 410 is a neckband-style headphone that is designed to be worn around all day.

I got a chance to try an early review sample for a few days, and I think Plantronics has done of a lot of things right with the headphone. At 8 ounces (227 grams), it's not as light as the BackBeat Go 600 at 6.4 ounces (181 grams), which leaves off the noise-canceling, but it's not heavy either. It feels pretty sturdy and folds flat into a thin cloth carrying pouch.

That's something to consider if you're budget constrained. You can get it in the new Pale Rose Gold (pink) as well as the traditional Dark Ash Silver (copper and brown) or just plan old Natural Silver; you pay $10 extra for the two more exotic models, kumpulan situs judi online indonesia as well as a bizarre extra $1 for your CPU choice in the Rose Gold.  While HP sells this $1,250 model on its site, as far as I can tell you can configure the lowest-end model and get it for $1,100, just without the webcam. All that and value, too
Its price is pretty reasonable for what you get.

As more laptops adopt the newer processors its lead will diminish, of course. The update to Intel's eighth-generation Core i-series processors has boosted its battery life to a whopping 13-plus hours on our tests. For instance, it slightly lags behind the also-excellent Lenovo Yoga 920 in almost all performance areas, except for battery life. Coupled with that processor's jump to four cores from two, it performs significantly better than previous models for operations that use the processor.

Now there's a successor -- the BackBeat Fit 2100 ($100) -- and while it's definitely an upgrade over the original, it's not so different. The headphone has had some tiny updates and more color options, but it's basically remained the same. Plantronics clearly didn't want to fix what wasn't broken.

This laptop retains the terrific design of its predecessors and improves on the basics.  Cheaper, lighter and faster than a 13-inch MacBook Pro, with a longer-living battery and tons more features, the HP Spectre x360 13 continues to wow me. It has some advantages over its closer Windows competitors as well. The screen of HP's stylish convertible flips out of the standard clamshell orientation into a "tent" for presentations, and it stands on its keyboard or flips all the way around to work as a tablet.

Like that model and the new BackBeat Fit 2100, the Backbeat Fit 3100's eartips aren't designed to completely seal out the outside world. Look closely and you'll see they resemble standard hard buds, with a firm silicon covering that has a little loop on it to help keep them in your ears. Rather, these are designed to let some ambient noise in, so you can hear traffic if you're running or biking with them outside.

They feel like premium cheap headphones, which sounds like an oxymoron, but I'm sticking to it. The plastic finish on the earcups, however, will show scratches over time if you're not careful. They seem fairly sturdy and have some metal in the headband for extra solidity.

It has the same drivers, features and "open" design of the new BackBeat Fit 2100, but there's no cord between the earbuds, and that should get fans of Plantronics' original BackBeat Fit Wireless excited.

The first thing you'll notice is that for full size headphones, these are really light -- they weigh in at 6.4 ounces (181 grams), while the BackBeat 500 on-ears weigh 5.4 ounces (153 grams). I'd give it an 8 out of 10 for comfort.

It's also possible more recent models may benefit from some performance tweaks in Windows 10 that weren't available in December when this model was tested. However, you can also see that its performance falls a little behind, which likely indicates that HP has traded off speed for battery life; that includes Lenovo and Samsung's (for the Notebook 9 Pen) decision to use faster but more battery draining 2,400MHz memory over the 2,133MHz used by the HP.

Weight 2.8 lb/1.3kg
There's no identical version of this in the UK or Australia. HP UK only offers the 4K screen -- which means no privacy screen option -- with either the i7 chip with 512GB SSD for £1,400, or with an i5 chip and a Core i5-8250U processor for £1,200. It comes with the Active Pen, but it supports the newer Tilt Pen if you want to upgrade for £80. The top-of-the-line model goes up to 1TB storage and 16GB memory for £1,700.