Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.4
Reviewed Mar 03, 2020 at 08:13 am
Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless Picture
7.0
Mixed Usage
6.9
Neutral Sound
7.5
Commute/Travel
8.0
Sports/Fitness
6.7
Office
5.5
Wireless Gaming
5.4
Wired Gaming
6.7
Phone Calls
Type In-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless Truly Wireless
Noise Cancelling No
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless are the third generation of E8 headphones. These premium in-ear headphones are quite versatile. While they're not as comfortable as the previous model, the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019, the 3.0 have a much longer single-charge battery life and more charges in the case. Their warm sound profile is also fairly well-balanced and should be well-suited to a wide variety of genres. Whether you're out on a light run or commuting to work, their sleek and small design makes them a solid choice for those on the go.

Our Verdict

7.0 Mixed Usage

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are decent for mixed usage. These premium, truly wireless earbuds have a warm sound profile. When you're commuting, they won't reduce much noise from engine rumbles. However, in the office, their passive noise isolation will block out some chatter. These earbuds also aren't gaming headphones: you can't use them on the PS4 or Xbox One, and their high latency makes watching videos or playing games on PC frustrating.

Pros
  • Sleek and lightweight.
  • Improved battery life of 6.6 hours with an additional charge in the case.
  • Case supports Qi wireless charging.
Cons
  • Reduced passive noise isolation.
  • Treble-heavy sound.
6.9 Neutral Sound

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are okay for neutral sound. They're generally balanced, but users may not enjoy the contrasting treble, which is both veiled and sharp. The bass is consistent, but it lacks body, and the mid-range can be a little muddy. However, if you want to customize the default sound profile, you can use the TouchTone EQ in their companion app.

7.5 Commute/Travel

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are good for commute and travel. They don't reduce low noise like plane or bus engines but fare much better at reducing voices. They're also decently comfortable and are quite portable as they fit into most pockets. Their battery life should also be enough to get you from point A to B if you commute. If you're on a long-haul flight, the charging case provides four additional charges if you need just a little more juice before you land.

8.0 Sports/Fitness

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are great for sports and fitness. Slightly less comfortable than their previous generation but just as stable and portable, they're a good choice whether you're running outside or working out at the gym. However, just like previous models, they don't have an IP rating for water resistance, although we don't test for that.

6.7 Office

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are alright for the office. Their passive noise isolation performance might not be great for low rumbling sounds like bus engines, but it does a good job for voices, meaning you can tune out most office chatter. The battery life also requires you to take a break from listening to your audio to recharge them.

5.5 Wireless Gaming

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are truly wireless earbuds, and you can't use them with either the PS4 or Xbox One. You can use them on PC via Bluetooth, but they aren't recommended for gaming due to their mediocre microphone and high latency that could easily disrupt your MMO raid just before the final push.

5.4 Wired Gaming

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are Bluetooth-only headphones that you can't use wired.

6.7 Phone Calls

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are alright for phone calls. Their microphone struggles to separate your voice from background noise, and overall, your voice sounds thin. However, you should still be understandable to whoever's on the other line.

  • 7.0 Mixed Usage
  • 6.9 Neutral Sound
  • 7.5 Commute/Travel
  • 8.0 Sports/Fitness
  • 6.7 Office
  • 5.5 Wireless Gaming
  • 5.4 Wired Gaming
  • 6.7 Phone Calls
  1. Updated Mar 03, 2020: Review published.
  2. Updated Feb 26, 2020: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are just as stylish and sleek as their predecessors, the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 Truly Wireless 2018 and the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019. They have a similar fit to the 2.0; they're slightly angled to fit into the ear, and they have a fairly low profile. The only change to the style is that the silver ring around the logo is now shiny black, making them look even more minimalist than before.

7.0
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.03 lbs
Clamping Force
0 lbs

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are less comfortable than their previous generation, the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019. While they come with the same four different sizes of silicone tips and one pair of foam tips, once inserted into the ear, these earbuds produce a plunger-like feeling. This might not be comfortable for everyone, especially if you're using the larger tips. However, these earbuds are just as lightweight as the 2.0, meaning you should be able to wear them for a long time without too much discomfort.

6.9
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use Decent
Feedback Okay
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
No
Noise Cancelling Control No
Talk-Through
On/Off
Additional Controls Voice Assistant

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's touch controls are okay. They're decently easy to use: you can play/pause your music, skip tracks, take calls, and even change the volume just by tapping or holding the logo. They also have a talk-through mode that allows you to hear your surroundings without pausing your music. It's activated by tapping once on the left ear, which is great when you're out running and need to be aware of traffic. However, just like their predecessors, these earbuds don't provide tactile feedback and only produce beeps for some controls.

9.4
Design
Portability
L 1.6"
W 1.2"
H 1"
Volume 1.9 in³
Transmitter Required No

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have fantastic portability. They're slightly larger than their previous generation, and they can still easily fit inside most pockets or a bag. Their hard charging case is also fairly portable and should fit in most pockets too.

7.5
Design
Case
Type Hard case
L 2.6"
W 1.7"
H 1.3"
Volume 5.7 in³

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's charging case is good. Just like the earbuds, it's slightly bigger than the case that comes with the previous generation. Its faux leather coating and silver finish make it feel premium and sleek. While generally sturdy, the lid's magnet isn't very strong and can open if you're not careful. Additionally, when equipped with foam tips, these earbuds don't sit properly in the case, making it hard to know whether they're charging or just sitting just above the charger. On the upside, this case is compatible with wireless Qi charging, which is a nice touch.

8.0
Design
Build Quality

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have a great build quality. They feel study as they're made with dense plastic, metal, and faux leather. They should survive a few accidental drops with little damage. The lid on the case doesn't feel as sturdy and secure as previous generations' cases, meaning that it may open in your bag or pockets.

7.5
Design
Stability

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have good stability. Although they don't come with stability fins, they do come with four differently-sized sets of silicone tips and one pair of foam tips so you can find the most stable fit for your needs. Once in your ear, they don't tend to move. Their small, wireless design also means that you don't need to worry about snagging a cable on the corner of the kitchen table while you're running out of the house.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  • Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 earbuds
  • 4x silicone tip sizes
  • 1x foam tip size
  • Charging case
  • USB-C to USB-A charging cable
  • Manuals

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-1.74 dB
Treble Amount
0 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 has a warm sound profile that is still fairly balanced, making it suitable for most genres. It can help bring warmth and smoothness to vocals but can sound cluttered depending on what you're listening to. However, if this sound profile isn't to your liking, you can tweak it using the ToneTouch EQ found in the Bang & Olufsen app.

9.5
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.1 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's frequency response consistency is outstanding. If you can get a good fit and an air-tight seal using the tips provided, you should get consistent bass and treble response every time you use these earbuds.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
8.4
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
2.17 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
24.13 Hz
Low-Bass
-2.68 dB
Mid-Bass
-2.7 dB
High-Bass
-0.06 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have great bass accuracy. Slightly below the target range, their thumps and rumbles sound less intense and lack a bit of body. However, a slow rise in the high bass can add a bit of boominess. Overall, while the bass may be slightly recessed, it's well-extended and fairly balanced.

8.4
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
2.1 dB
Low-Mid
3.24 dB
Mid-Mid
-0.49 dB
High-Mid
-0.23 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's mid accuracy is great. The small bump in the low-mid can make mixes muddy and vocals thick. However, the mid-mid and high-mid are very smooth and will produce good harmonics for vocals and leads in this range.

6.3
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
4.87 dB
Low-Treble
-3.62 dB
Mid-Treble
5.2 dB
High-Treble
-0.25 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's treble accuracy is mediocre. There's a dip in low treble, making notes in this range dull and recessed. However, a high spike in the mid-treble sound overly bright and piercing, especially on sibilants (like S and T sounds).

6.6
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
2.29 dB
Dips
1.72 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have okay peaks and dips performance. The dip between the mid-high bass reduces bass, which might not be great for those looking for more thump and rumble in their audio. The following peak in high bass to low-mid overemphasizes vocals and instruments. Another dip in the low treble makes notes here dark or less detailed. Finally, the spike in mid-treble adds sharpness that some might find piercing, although this is towards the end of the audible range for most people.

8.8
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.22
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.87
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
1.53
Weighted Phase Mismatch
1.29

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have great imaging. The group delay falls below the audibility threshold and results in a tight bass and a transparent treble reproduction. Our unit's left and right drivers were both very well-matched in phase, frequency, and amplitude, so there were no gaps in the stereo image, and objects, like voices or footsteps, were accurately placed. However, this is specific to our unit and might not be the case with every pair.

0.6
Sound
Passive Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
N/A
PRTF Distance
N/A
Openness
2.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
0.3

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have a bad passive soundstage. To create an out-of-head and spacious soundstage, the pinna or outer ear needs to be activated with resonances. The design of in-ear earbuds bypasses the pinna and doesn't interact with it, giving you a very shallow soundstage. Also, because of their closed-back design, their soundstage tends to be less open than open-back headphones.

0
Sound
Virtual Soundstage
Head Modeling
No
Speaker Modeling
No
Room Ambience
No
Head Tracking
No
Virtual Surround
No

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 don't have any virtual soundstage features

7.5
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.373
WHD @ 100
0.139

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's weighted harmonic distortion performance is good. While there's more distortion at higher frequencies, this won't be noticeable to most listeners. Its frequencies otherwise fall within good limits, which should result in clear and pure audio reproduction.

Sound
Test Settings
Firmware
5.3.0
Power
On
Connection
Bluetooth 4.2
Codec
aptX, 16-bit, 48kHz
EQ
Default
ANC
No ANC
Tip/Pad
Silicone (small)
Microphone
Integrated

These are the settings used to test the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0. Our results are only valid when the headphones are used in this configuration.

Isolation
7.2
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-21.51 dB
Bass
-4.17 dB
Mid
-19.93 dB
Treble
-41.88 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have decent noise isolation. If you take lots of trains, buses, or planes, you'll hear a lot of engine noise. However, these earbuds do better blocking out sounds in the mid-mid to high-treble range. Sounds like chatter will be reduced whether you're working at the office or chilling out in a cafe.

9.8
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
22.46 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have a fantastic leakage performance. Leakage is concentrated more in the low bass than the treble range, resulting in slightly more full-bodied sound leaking. However, it's still low enough that your coworkers at the office shouldn't be bothered if you crank up the volume on your favorite tracks.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
Yes
In-Line
No
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
No

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 in-ear headphones have an integrated microphone.

6.4
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
285.09 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
4.59 dB
HFE
5,270.03 Hz
Weighted THD
3.061
Gain
5.59 dB

The recording quality of the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's integrated microphone is mediocre. Your voice will sound thin and muffled over the phone. Speech is understandable but it lacks brightness.

7.0
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
20.47 dB

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's mic has a decent noise handling performance. While improved from previous models' mics, even in moderately noisy environments, it struggles to separate speech from ambient noise.

Active Features
5.8
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
6.6 hrs
Additional Charges
4.0
Total Battery Life
33 hrs
Charge Time
1.1 hrs
Power-Saving Feature
No
Audio While Charging
No
Passive Playback
No
Charging Port USB-C

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's battery performance is a step down from its predecessor's due to its lack of an auto-off timer. You'll need to remember to put them back in the case when you're not using them; otherwise, the battery continues to drain. On the upside, they offer more battery life, though their roughly 6.6 hours of continuous playback time is unlikely to last through your 9-5 workday. However, you can easily charge these earbuds during your lunch break since they come with a case that holds about four extra charges. According to the manufacturer, a 20-minute charge will get you around 1.5 hours of playtime, although we don't test this. Also, battery performance can vary with real-life use, so your experience may vary.

6.5
Active Features
App Support
App Name Bang & Olufsen
iOS Yes
Android Yes
macOS No
Windows No
Equalizer
Presets
ANC Control
No
Mic Control No
Room Effects
Yes
Playback Control
Yes
Button Mapping No
Surround Support
No

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have an okay app. While sleek-looking, it doesn't have a lot of features. You'll have access to an in-app player, battery information, and you can turn on and off transparency mode. Instead of a 5-band EQ, the app offers ToneTouch, a quadrant EQ that you can slide around between four sound profiles: warm, excited, relaxed, and bright. Because there isn't any way to control specific frequencies, we consider these presets rather than an EQ.

Connectivity
6.6
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
5.1
Multi-Device Pairing
No
NFC Pairing
No
Line Of Sight Range
157 ft
PC Latency (SBC)
347 ms
PC Latency (aptX)
326 ms
PC Latency (aptX HD)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX-LL)
N/A
iOS Latency
133 ms
Android Latency
90 ms

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 have alright Bluetooth connectivity. Similar to their previous generations, they don't support multi-device or NFC pairing, but it's still easy to connect your headphones to your device: you only need to hold down the left and right earbud simultaneously for 5 seconds until the lights flash blue. These earbuds do have lower Bluetooth latency than the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019. Unfortunately, you'll still notice a lot of delay if you use them with a PC, making them less than ideal for watching videos or playing video games. In comparison, the latency on iOS and Android is far less, but you might still notice some lag. It's worth noting, however, that some apps tend to compensate for this, so your mileage may vary in regular usage.

0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line Of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A

These earbuds are Bluetooth-only. If you're looking for in-ears that support non-Bluetooth wireless, consider checking out the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 True Wireless since their carrying case can be used as a wireless transmitter.

0
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
No
USB Audio
No
Detachable No
Length N/A
Connection No Wired Option
Analog/USB Audio Latency
N/A

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are Bluetooth-only earbuds that can't be used wired. They come with a USB-C to USB-A cable so that you can charge the case.

Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC/PS4 Analog
No
PC/PS4 Wired USB
No
PC/PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No

These headphones aren't compatible with PS4 consoles. If you have a Bluetooth-enabled PC, you can only use these headphones via Bluetooth. However, they'll likely have noticeable lag and it could ruin your gaming experience.

Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
No
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Non-BT Wireless
No

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 aren't compatible with the Xbox One.

2.2
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
Charging Case
USB Input
No
Line In
No
Line Out
No
Optical Input
No
RCA Input
No
Dock Charging
Yes
Power Supply
USB-C

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0's come with a case that holds about four additional charges. While it doesn't have any inputs, the case charges with the included USB-C to USB-A cable or via wireless Qi charging.

Compared To Other Headphones

Comparison picture

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 are the third generation of Bang & Olufsen E8 headphones, following the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 Truly Wireless 2018 and the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019. Similar to but slightly improving on the 2.0, they have increased battery life and their case includes an additional charge. Their warm sound profile can also be customized using the companion app's 5-band EQ.

If you're looking for other options, check out our recommendations for the best truly wireless earbuds and best sounding wireless earbuds.

Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless

The Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless are better, more versatile Bluetooth earbuds than the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless. The Apple have a more balanced treble reproduction, an excellent active noise cancelling (ANC) feature, and a more comfortable design. The Bang & Olufsen last longer on a single charge, and they leak less sound but feel less fully-featured overall.

Bowers & Wilkins PI7 True Wireless

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless and the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 True Wireless are similarly performing headphones, and you may prefer one over the other. The Bang & Olufsen are more comfortable, have a more neutral default sound profile, and have better overall battery performance. Their companion app also offers EQ presets. However, the Bowers & Wilkins have a better noise isolation performance, thanks to their ANC system. Their carrying case can also be used as a wireless transmitter if you prefer.

Sony WF-1000XM3 Truly Wireless

The Sony WF-1000XM3 Truly Wireless are slightly better-performing Bluetooth earbuds than the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless. The Sony have a more neutral sound profile out-of-the-box and are compatible with an excellent companion app that provides a ton of customization options. They have some pretty notorious issues with their fit, while the Bang & Olufsen tend to fit most people more securely, and are more comfortable for some as well.

Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019

The Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019 are the previous generation of the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless. While similar, the 2.0 feel more comfortable and isolate background noise better than the 3.0. Their case feels more stable and is less likely to open on its own. The 3.0 have increased battery life, and their case also includes one more charge.

Bose SoundSport Free Truly Wireless

The Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless are similar to the Bose SoundSport Free Truly Wireless. While the Bose are smaller, they also have worse controls. If you want a more neutral sound, the Bose are relatively more consistent in sound reproduction. However, you can't customize the Bose's sound, unlike the Bang & Olufsen who have a ToneTouch EQ in their app.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless

The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless are slightly worse than the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless. The Sennheiser may have better controls but the Bang & Olufsen have almost triple the battery life of the Sennheiser and they have a better microphone performance. However, the Sennheiser have a graphic EQ, which is better for customization compared to the Bang & Olufsen's TouchTone EQ.

Jaybird Vista Truly Wireless

The Jaybird Vista Truly Wireless are better earbuds than the Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless. The Jaybird are designed for sport and while we don't test this, they have an IPX7 rating for water resistance while the Bang & Olufsen don't have an IP rating at all. However, if you take a lot of calls, the Bang & Olufsen have a better microphone. They also have a longer battery life, although they don't have an auto-off timer like the Jaybird.

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