Swimbuds Waterproof Headphones Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.3.1
Updated Aug 04, 2016 at 11:02 am
Swimbuds Waterproof Headphones Picture
Test Methodology v1.3.1
5.3
Mixed Usage
4.5
Neutral Sound
5.8
Commute/Travel
6.4
Sports/Fitness
5.5
Office
3.0
Wireless Gaming
4.8
Wired Gaming
1.9
Phone Call
Type In-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless No
Noise Cancelling No
Mic No
Transducer Dynamic

The Swimbuds deliver a unique, waterproof listening experience. They're lightweight, compact and stable enough for sports use. Unfortunately, they're not the most well-rounded headphones. They don't block enough ambient noise for loud environments, and the poor sound quality is a deal breaker for some.

Our Verdict

5.3 Mixed Usage

Not the most versatile headphones. They're super compact and have a decent isolation performance. However, they're best used when the accuracy of audio reproduction is not essential to your listening experience.

4.5 Neutral Sound

Not designed for neutral listening. The closed back in-ear buds severely limits the soundstage. Also, audio reproduction is below average and gives an overly bass-heavy representation of all tracks.

See our Neutral Sound recommendations
5.8 Commute/Travel

Below-average for commuting. They provide decent passive isolation but it may not be enough for ambient noise of a busy commute.

See our Commute/Travel recommendations
6.4 Sports/Fitness

The Swimbuds are designed specifically to provide a waterproof listening experience. They're portable and lightweight headphones you can carry around easily in any pocket. The in-ear fit also goes deep into the ear canal providing a lot of stability. However, they don't sound good and comfort maybe an issue for some.

See our Sports/Fitness recommendations
5.5 Office

Average for office use. They barely leak any sound so even at loud volumes no one will hear your audio. However, the isolation is just a little weak for noisy offices.

See our Office recommendations
4.8 Wired Gaming
1.9 Phone Call
  • 5.3 Mixed Usage
  • 4.5 Neutral Sound
  • 5.8 Commute/Travel
  • 6.4 Sports/Fitness
  • 5.5 Office
  • 3.0 Wireless Gaming
  • 4.8 Wired Gaming
  • 1.9 Phone Call
Pros
  • Minimal leakage.
  • Extremely lightweight and portable design.
  • Stable and waterproof.
Cons
  • Poor audio reproduction.
  • Not comfortable for everyone.
  • Cheap 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 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

Check Price

White Swimbuds
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

Design
Design
Style

The Swimbuds have a simple, straightforward design. They have detachable hook sleeves that provide more stability and give the headphones a more sporty appeal. They also have unique tips made for swimming that are unlike most typical in-ear models. Unfortunately, they look a little cheap on upon closer inspection.

5.0
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.02 lbs
Clamping Force
0 lbs

The Swimbuds have an in-ear design and may not be comfortable for everyone. They have an unusual tip design that's meant to provide a better fit underwater. However, these tips go deeper into the ear canal than typical in-ear headphones, which may be uncomfortable for some. On the upside, they're extremely lightweight.

0
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use N/A
Feedback N/A
Call/Music Control No
Volume Control No
Microphone Control N/A
Channel Mixing
N/A
Noise Cancelling Control N/A
Talk-Through
N/A
Additional Buttons N/A
9.3
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 0.7 C
9.5
Design
Portability
L 2.76 "
W 0.79 "
H 0.59 "
Volume 1.24 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required N/A

The Swimbuds are one of the smallest headphones we have tested so far. They have a detachable cable design, that combined with the already compact format of an in-ear model, makes them comfortably fit into any pocket, bag or purse.

0
Design
Case
Type No case
L N/A
W N/A
H N/A
Volume N/A
5.0
Design
Build Quality

The build quality of the Swimbuds feels cheap and fragile. The plastic used in their build looks low grade. The cable is thin and will not be as durable as some of the other thicker, rubberized cables of higher-end in-ear models. On the upside, the headphones are lightweight enough, to not get damage from a couple of falls. However, they won't be able to withstand even mild physical stress.

7.5
Design
Stability

These headphones come with a few features to makes them more stable than typical in-ear design. They have additional hook sleeves that transform the headphones into an ear-hook design, wrapping the audio cable behind your ear. That combined with their long tips, that go deeper into the ear canal than a regular in-ear model, results in a stable design that won't slip out of your ears easily. They're stable enough to use at the gym and while doing high-intensity exercises like swimming.

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

  • Swimbuds Headphones
  • Earbud tips (x4)
  • Ear hook sleeve (x2)
  • Audio extension cable
  • Manual

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
3.05 db
Treble Amount
-14.96 db
9.1
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.19 dB
Sound
Raw Frequency Response
5.2
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
6.68 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
10 Hz
Low-Bass
6.74 dB
Mid-Bass
6.32 dB
High-Bass
8.83 dB
5.0
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
6.64 dB
Low-Mid
7.67 dB
Mid-Mid
4.98 dB
High-Mid
5.73 dB
1.0
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
12.25 dB
Low-Treble
-6.69 dB
Mid-Treble
-16.96 dB
High-Treble
-18.83 dB
5.6
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
2.96 db
Dips
2.78 db
7.4
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.09
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
1.91
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
3.84
Weighted Phase Mismatch
7.99
0.6
Sound
Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
N/A
PRTF Distance
N/A
Openness
3.2
Acoustic Space Excitation
0
6.7
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.671
WHD @ 100
0.355
Isolation
6.7
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-18.98 dB
Bass
-3.3 dB
Mid
-15.29 dB
Treble
-39.34 dB

Average isolation. These in-ears do not have active noise-cancellation, but the passive isolation is quite impressive. They achieve good isolation in the Treble Range and above-average isolation in the Mid Range. In the Bass Range, they achieve about 4dB of isolation, which although quite impressive for a passive design, it is noticeably inferior to what high-end active noise-cancelling headphones can achieve.

10
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
20.15 dB

Excellent leakage performance. The Swimbuds are the quietest headphones we have measured so far. The majority of the leakage is located between 3KHz and 6KHz which is quite narrow and par with most in-ears. However, the big difference here is in the overall level of the leakage, which is extremely low.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
N/A
In-line
N/A
Boom
N/A
Detachable Boom
N/A
0
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
N/A
LFE
N/A
FR Std. Dev.
N/A
HFE
N/A
Weighted THD
N/A
Gain
N/A
0
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise N/A
Speech + Subway Noise N/A
SpNR
N/A
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 1.48 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Wired Latency
0 ms
Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC / PS4 Analog
Audio Only
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

Swimbuds Waterproof Headphones Price

White Swimbuds
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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