The Government of Quebec is shutting down non-essential businesses till April 13. Therefore, our lab is temporarily closed and we can't test new products. In the meantime, we will continue to update articles from home.

Beats urBeats Earphones Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.3.1
Updated Jan 05, 2017 at 03:30 pm
Beats urBeats Earphones Picture
Test Methodology v1.3.1
6.5
Mixed Usage
6.3
Neutral Sound
6.8
Commute/Travel
6.9
Sports/Fitness
6.5
Office
4.9
Wireless Gaming
6.7
Wired Gaming
6.5
Phone Call
Type In-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless No
Noise Cancelling No
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The Beats urBeats are simple and straightforward in-ear headphones. They don't leak much, they're easy to carry around and stable enough to use while jogging. Unfortunately, they don't have the most durable design and their sound quality is overly bass-heavy, which may be a deal breaker for some.

Our Verdict

6.5 Mixed Usage

The Beats by Dr. Dre urBeats are basic in-ear headphones that do well in most use cases but do not have the best sound for critical listening.

6.3 Neutral Sound

Mediocre for neutral listening. They're too bass heavy and have a poor soundstage due to their design. Therefore, they won't be the best headphones for an accurate audio reproduction and are not ideal for neutral listening. The sound quality may even be a deal breaker for some casual listeners.

See our Neutral Sound recommendations
6.8 Commute/Travel

Above-average for commuting. The passive seal of these headphones isolates well enough for moderately loud environments. However, they're not the most comfortable or durable headphones to use on a daily basis for your commutes.

See our Commute/Travel recommendations
6.9 Sports/Fitness

Above-average for sports use. They're decently stable and very portable headphones. However, they do not have any stability enhancing tips, and they're also not wireless so the cable could get tangled or hooked on something

See our Sports/Fitness recommendations
6.5 Office

Average for office use. They don't leak much, thanks to their in-ear design and isolate well enough for a lively office.

See our Office recommendations
6.7 Wired Gaming
6.5 Phone Call
  • 6.5 Mixed Usage
  • 6.3 Neutral Sound
  • 6.8 Commute/Travel
  • 6.9 Sports/Fitness
  • 6.5 Office
  • 4.9 Wireless Gaming
  • 6.7 Wired Gaming
  • 6.5 Phone Call
Pros
  • Minimal Leakage.
  • Stable and portable design.
Cons
  • Subpar audio reproduction.
  • Mediocre build quality.
  1. Update 11/21/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  2. Update 11/6/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  3. Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
  4. Update 10/2/2017: The microphone has been tested with our new methodology, as explained here
  5. Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

Check Price

Gloss White urBeats
SEE PRICE
BestBuy.com
Gold urBeats
Unavailable
B&H
Rose Gold urBeats
Unavailable
B&H
Space Gray urBeats
SEE PRICE
Newegg.com

Test Results

Design
Design
Style

The Beats urBeats have a simple but sleek in-ear design. They have flat cables and small earbuds that do not protrude much when in your ears. The inline controls and the ear buds look good, but the plastic used for their design feels a bit cheap upon closer inspection. They won't stick out in a crowd, especially, the gray and black color variation but the understated design will work for most.

6.5
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.04 lbs
Clamping Force
0 lbs

The Beats urBeats earphones have the typical in-ear fit. You will experience the same inconvenience in comfort if you don't find in-ear models comfortable. However, they do come with different sized tips to help listeners find a better fit. They're also incredibly lightweight and won't be a problem for those who regularly use in-ear headphones.

7.5
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
iOS
Ease Of Use Good
Feedback Good
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
N/A
Noise Cancelling Control N/A
Talk-Through
N/A
Additional Buttons No

The Beats urBeat's control scheme is simple and well-designed. They deliver call/music, track skipping, and volume controls. The buttons have a good feedback. Sadly they're relatively flat and a little cramped which makes them a less easy to distinguish by feel alone. However, you quickly get accustomed to it.

9.3
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 0.7 C
8.7
Design
Portability
L 3.94 "
W 1.18 "
H 1.18 "
Volume 5.42 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required N/A

The Beats urBeats are extremely portable headphones. They comfortably fit into most pockets purses or bags which makes them easy to carry around on your person. There's no ideal way to fold them into their most compact format, but the cable is not too long or thick, and the ear buds are quite small, which doesn't take much space.

6.5
Design
Case
Type Pouch
L N/A
W N/A
H N/A
Volume N/A

The urBeats come with a unique pouch that protects the headphones and doesn't add too much bulk allowing it to conveniently fit into a pocket. However, the case does not shield the headphones from hard falls or water damage. The case also opens with a squeeze which is stylish but may cause some of the headphones accessories fall out inadvertently.

6.5
Design
Build Quality

The Beats urBeats earphones have a decent build quality. The audio cable is flat, which makes it less tangle prone, and it's sufficiently rubberized to be durable. The earbuds are hard enough, to not break from a few drops. However, the plastic design of the earbuds and the inline remote is not as durable as some higher-end in-ear models.

7.0
Design
Stability

The Beats by Dr. Dre urBeats, like most in-ear headphones, are inherently quite stable. The in-ear buds fit deeply into the ear canal and are relatively hard to dislodge by just pulling on the cable or running. However, these headphones do not come with any unique stability tips to make them more stable. This means they will still fall out of your ears every once in a while, and the audio cable can also yank the headphones out of your ears if it gets hooked on something.

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

  • urBeats 2  Headphones
  • Earbud tips (x3)
  • Carrying pouch
  • Manual

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
4.28 db
Treble Amount
-5.13 db
9.3
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.14 dB
Sound
Raw Frequency Response
6.5
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
4.95 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
10 Hz
Low-Bass
3.81 dB
Mid-Bass
4.9 dB
High-Bass
7.04 dB

Poor Bass Range performance. The response is quite flat, but consistently overemphasized by more than 7dB. This makes the sound excessively bass heavy and muddy.

7.3
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.66 dB
Low-Mid
4.43 dB
Mid-Mid
-2.0 dB
High-Mid
-3.23 dB

Average mid-range performance for the Beats urBeats. Low-mid is slightly overemphasized, which adds to the muddiness and boominess caused by the excess high-bass. Mid and high-mid are consistently underemphasized by more than 5dB, weakening vocals/leads relative to the lower instruments and pushing them to the back of the mix.

5.6
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
5.37 dB
Low-Treble
-3.83 dB
Mid-Treble
-5.57 dB
High-Treble
-6.88 dB

Poor Treble Range performance. The overall performance is underemphasized consistently by about 5dB. Considering the excess bass that these in-ears produce, the lack of high frequency emphasis makes these headphones exceptionally dark sounding.

7.0
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
1.91 db
Dips
1.59 db
9.4
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.12
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.36
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
0.66
Weighted Phase Mismatch
0.96
0.7
Sound
Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
N/A
PRTF Distance
N/A
Openness
2.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
0.5
8.5
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.153
WHD @ 100
0.054
Isolation
7.1
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-19.65 dB
Bass
-6.8 dB
Mid
-17.87 dB
Treble
-35.26 dB

Decent isolation. Although these headphones isolate passively, they perform on par with some active noise cancelling headphones. They achieve about 7dB of isolation in the Bass Range, which is very good for passive isolation. In the mid and treble ranges, the amount of isolation achieved is very good.

9.6
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
23.39 dB

Excellent leakage. The Beats urBeats earphones leak very little as the significant portion of the leakage is limited to the 1KHz-6KHz range, and the overall level of the leakage is also quite low.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
No
In-line
Yes
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
N/A
7.2
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
459.13 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
3.72 dB
HFE
20480.0 Hz
Weighted THD
1.941
Gain
22.19 dB
6.0
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
12.36 dB
Active Features
N/A
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
N/A
Continuous Battery Life
N/A
Additional Charges
N/A
Total Battery Life
N/A
Charge Time
N/A
Power Saving Feature
N/A
Audio While Charging
N/A
Passive Playback
N/A
Charging Port N/A
0
Active Features
App Support
App Name N/A
iOS N/A
Android N/A
macOS N/A
Windows N/A
Equalizer
N/A
ANC Control
N/A
Mic Control N/A
Room effects
N/A
Playback Control
N/A
Button Mapping N/A
Surround Sound N/A

No compatible app.

Connectivity
0
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
N/A
NFC Pairing
N/A
Line of Sight Range
N/A
Default Latency
N/A
aptX Latency
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
N/A
0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
9.0
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable No
Length 4 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Wired Latency
0 ms
Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC / PS4 Analog
Audio + Microphone
PC / PS4 Wired USB
No
PC / PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
Audio Only
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Wireless
No
0
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
N/A
USB Input
N/A
Line In
N/A
Line Out
N/A
Optical Input
N/A
RCA Input
N/A
Dock Charging
N/A
Power Supply
N/A

Compared to other headphones

See our recommendations for the best cheap earbuds, the best earbuds and in-ears, and the best earbuds under $50.

Beats BeatsX Wireless
SEE PRICE
B&H

The Beats BeatsX are not directly comparable to the Beats urBeats since they are Bluetooth-only headphones and the urBeats are wired. On the upside, the BeatsX are a much more versatile option than the urBeats. They sound better, they're more practical for every day casual use, and they come with more tip options than the urBeats, which makes them slightly more comfortable (but not by much). On the other hand, since the urBeats are wired, you won't have any battery life concerns and they're a lot simpler to use.

Beats urBeats Earphones Price

Gloss White urBeats
SEE PRICE
BestBuy.com
Gold urBeats
Unavailable
B&H
Rose Gold urBeats
Unavailable
B&H
Space Gray urBeats
SEE PRICE
Newegg.com

Recommended Articles

LOG IN

JOIN RTINGS.com

Be part of the most informed community and take advantage of our advanced tools to find the best product for your needs.
Join our mailing list:
Become an insider

Unlimited access to full product reviews, test measurements and scores

test table UI

Product prices across the site on reviews, tables and tools

product prices UI

Additional votes for our
next reviews

Additional votes UI

Early Access
to our reviews and test measurements

Early Access UI

Create Discussion