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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 B&O PLAY E8 3.0 True Wireless are the 3rd generation of the E8 headphones. They're premium in-ear headphones that are versatile for everyday life. While they're not as comfortable as the previous model, the B&O PLAY Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless 2019, the E8 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 like R&B. Whether you're out on a light run or commuting to work, their sleek and small design makes them good earbuds for those on the go.

Our Verdict

7.0 Mixed Usage

Decent for mixed usage. The Beoplay E8 3.0 are premium truly wireless earbuds with a warm sound profile. They might not please fans of neutral sound but they'll be adequate for casual listening. 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: they can't be used 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.
  • Qi wireless charging case.
Cons
  • Reduced passive noise isolation.
  • Treble-heavy sound.
6.9 Neutral Sound

Okay for neutral sound. While the Beoplay E8 3.0 are generally balanced, users might 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

Good for travel. While the Beoplay E8 3.0 don't reduce low noise like plane or bus engines, they 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 until you land.

8.0 Sports/Fitness

Great for sports. Slightly less comfortable than the Beoplay E8 2.0 but just as stable and portable, the Beoplay E8 3.0 are a good choice whether you're running outside or wrapping up a basic workout. However, just like previous models, they don't have an IP rating so if you sweat a lot, they might not perform well and might even get damaged.

6.7 Office

Alright for the office. The passive noise isolation of the Beoplay E8 3.0 might not be great for low rumbling sounds like bus engines but it does a good job for voices, meaning you'll be able to 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 Beoplay E8 3.0 are truly wireless earbuds and can't be used wireless on either the PS4 or Xbox One. They can be used 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 Beoplay E8 3.0 are Bluetooth-only headphones that can't be used wired.

6.7 Phone Calls

Alright for phone calls. The Beoplay E8 3.0's 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

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style

The Beoplay E8 3.0 are just as stylish and sleek as their predecessors. They still have a similar fit to the Beoplay E8 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
0.0 lbs

A slight downgrade from the Beoplay E8 2.0, the E8 3.0 are less comfortable. While they also come with the same four different sizes of silicone tips and one pair of foam tips as the previous model, 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 also 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 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 just 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 any tactile feedback and only produce beeps for some controls.

9.4
Design
Portability
L 1.6 "
W 1.2 "
H 1.0 "
Volume 1.9 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required No

These earbuds have excellent portability. While slightly larger than the Beoplay E8 2.0, they can still easily fit inside most pockets or inside 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 Cu. Inches

The Beoplay E8 3.0's charging case is good. Just like the earbuds, the case has also gotten slightly larger in this updated model. 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 the 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, just like the second generation, this case is compatible with wireless Qi charging, which is a nice touch.

8.0
Design
Build Quality

The build quality of these earbuds is just as great as previous versions. The E8 3.0 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, however, doesn't feel as sturdy and secure as previous generations, so they might open in your bag or pockets.

7.5
Design
Stability

The E8 3.0 are fairly stable truly wireless in-ears. 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

  • Beoplay E8 3.0 earbuds
  • 4 silicone tip sizes
  • 1 foam tip size
  • Charging case
  • USB-C charging cable
  • Manuals

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-1.74 db
Treble Amount
-0.0 db

The Beoplay 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 Beoplay 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

These earbuds have great bass accuracy. Slightly below the target range, the Beoplay E8 3.0's thumps and rumbles will 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 E8 3.0's mid accuracy is great. The small bump in the low-mid can make mixes muddy and vocals thick. However, both 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 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 (such as S and T sounds).

6.6
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
2.29 db
Dips
1.72 db

The E8 3.0 have a few peaks and dips. 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

Just like the Beoplay E8 2.0, the E8 3.0 have great imaging. The group delay falls below the audibility threshold and should result 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 this 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

Like its predecessors and most other in-ears, the E8 3.0's soundstage is poor. 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 that of open-back headphones.

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

The 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 Beoplay 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

Beoplay E8 3.0's results are only valid for these test settings.

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

A slight downgrade from the Beoplay E8 2.0, the E8 3.0 have okay noise isolation. If you take a lot 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 E8 3.0's leakage performance is exceptional. 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

These Bluetooth 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
5270.03 Hz
Weighted THD
3.061
Gain
5.59 dB

The recording quality of the integrated microphone is mediocre. Like most Bluetooth headphones, your voice will sound thin and muffled. Speech will still be understandable but it'll lack brightness.

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

The noise handling of the integrated microphone is only okay. While improved from previous models, even in moderately noisy environments, the microphone will struggle 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 E8 3.0's battery performance is a step down from its predecessors 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 they'll continue to drain the battery. On the upside, they offer more battery life, which is a good upgrade. They have 6.6 hours of continuous playback, though it's unlikely to be enough for a 9 to 5 workday. However, you can easily charge these earbuds during your lunch break. According to the manufacturer, a 20-minute charge will get you around 1.5 hours of playtime, although we don't test this. If you need even more battery life, there are four additional charges in the case.

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

If you like to have more control over your settings, you can download the Bang & Olufsen 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 four sound profiles: warm, excited, relaxed, and bright. Because there isn't any way to control specific frequencies, we don't consider this to be an actual EQ since it acts more as presets.

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 Beoplay E8 3.0, like most truly wireless headphones, only connect to other devices via Bluetooth. While just like previous models, they still don't support simultaneous multi-device pairing or NFC, 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. The E8 3.0 have also improved on latency. 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 headphones are Bluetooth-only.

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

As with all truly wireless in-ears that we've tested so far, the E8 3.0 can't be used wired. They come with a USB-C cable so that you can charge your 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 the PS4. If you have a Bluetooth-enabled PC, you'll only be able to 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 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 Beoplay E8 3.0's case acts as a charging dock, providing four additional charges. While it doesn't have any inputs, the case supports wireless Qi and a USB-C cable for charging.

Compared to other headphones

Comparison picture

The Beoplay E8 3.0 are the next generation of E8 headphones. Similar but slightly improving on the Beoplay E8 2.0, they have increased battery life and their case includes an additional charge. Their unique warm sound profile can also be customized using the companion app's 5-band EQ. While they perform decently, they don't particularly stand out among other in-ear headphones. Check out our recommendations for best truly wireless earbuds and best sounding wireless earbuds.

Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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.

Sony WF-1000XM3 Truly Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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, however, 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
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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

Bose SoundSport Free Truly Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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.

Jaybird Vista Truly Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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.

+ Show more

Bang & Olufsen E8 3.0 True Wireless Price

E8 3.0 True Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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