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TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.4
Reviewed May 23, 2019 at 10:37 am
TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless Picture
6.5
Mixed Usage
5.4
Neutral Sound
7.2
Commute/Travel
6.6
Sports/Fitness
6.8
Office
4.8
Wireless Gaming
6.4
Wired Gaming
6.4
Phone Calls
Type Over-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless Yes
Noise Cancelling Yes
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless are also known as the TaoTronics TT-BH060 and are comfortable over-ear headphones that are decently well-built. Unfortunately, our unit shows a significant mismatch between their drivers. Their sound quality is sub-par and very dark-sounding. On the upside, they have a great 30-hour battery life, and their ANC feature is pretty good and helpful when commuting or at the office. They also have excellent wireless range. If you manage to get a unit with matched drivers, they can be a decent choice with good value.

Our Verdict

6.5 Mixed Usage

The TaoTronics TT-BH060 are okay for mixed usage. They have a sub-par audio reproduction, and our unit had a noticeable mismatch, which won’t be good for critical listening. Their over-ear design is quite bulky, and they get hot rather quickly, which won’t be ideal for sports. On the upside, they have a decent ANC feature that blocks a good amount of ambient noise and will be effective in your daily commute or at the office. However, their latency is slightly high, and their audio quality won’t let you enjoy watching TV and gaming.

Pros
  • Comfortable and durable design.
  • Great battery life.
  • Good isolation performance.
Cons
  • Dark and muffled sound quality.
  • Heavily mismatched drivers.
5.4 Neutral Sound

The TaoTronics TT-BH060 are disappointing for neutral sound. Our unit has a significant mismatch between the left and right drivers. Their sound profile results in a bass that lacks thump but is overly boomy and muddy. Their mid-range is thick, cluttered, and brought forward in the mix, and their treble is noticeably lacking in detail. They sound overly dark and muffled. Overall, these headphones would be better suited for bass-heavy music, but even then, our unit showed significant distortion and mismatch in the right driver, and we expect this not to be a common thing, but it still shows poor manufacturing tolerance.

7.2 Commute/Travel

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are decent for commuting. They have a decent noise cancelling feature that blocks out a good amount of deep rumble from plane and bus engines. They're also comfortable for long rides, and their battery life should be more than enough for the longest trips. However, they're a bit bulky, but they fold in a more portable format to fit in their nice hard case.

6.6 Sports/Fitness

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are okay for sports. They're stable enough for a casual jog, but they're tight and trap a lot of heat inside the ear cups. You will sweat more than usual and notice a pretty big temperature difference. On the upside, they're well-built, and their wireless design is great for working out without having a wire in your way.

6.8 Office

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are fair for the office. They block ambient chatter and higher frequency noises like A/C systems well, which will help you concentrate on your tasks. They also don’t leak too much at higher volumes, meaning you shouldn’t disturb people surrounding you. Their battery life should last you a couple of workdays and won’t need daily charging, which is nice. Unfortunately, they don’t support multi-device pairing, but they have an amazing wireless range, so you can leave your desk and walk around a small office without too many audio cuts.

4.8 Wireless Gaming

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are poor for gaming. Their microphone isn’t on par with gaming headset boom microphones for online games, and our unit’s stereo image was altered due to the mismatch in the drivers, which will make them practically unusable for gaming. They also have latency issues that will be very noticeable in games.

6.4 Wired Gaming
6.4 Phone Calls
  • 6.5 Mixed Usage
  • 5.4 Neutral Sound
  • 7.2 Commute/Travel
  • 6.6 Sports/Fitness
  • 6.8 Office
  • 4.8 Wireless Gaming
  • 6.4 Wired Gaming
  • 6.4 Phone Calls
  1. Updated Feb 12, 2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.4.
  2. Updated Nov 21, 2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  3. Updated Nov 21, 2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  4. Updated May 23, 2019: Review published.
  5. Updated May 21, 2019: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are fairly low-profile over-ears due to their all-black design. They don’t particularly stand out, and they look like most standard headphones. The cups are dense, and the padding is thick. The headphones are made out of matte black plastic and look fairly good but won’t be as flashy as other headphones.

7.5
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.62 lbs
Clamping Force
1.1 lbs

The TaoTronics TT-BH060 are comfortable, and you can wear them for a while without feeling any fatigue. The padding on the cups and headband is good and plushy. They fit well on the head, but they're a bit tight, which can be more uncomfortable for people with wider heads. Also, while the cups are big, the room for the ears isn’t very large as the padding is thick, which may not suit all ear sizes and shapes.

7.3
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use Good
Feedback Good
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
No
Noise Cancelling Control On/Off
Talk-Through
No
Additional Controls No

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60's control scheme is decent and will be easy to use for most. They have a simple button layout with a volume rocker that acts as a track skipper, and the power button is also what you use to play/pause your music and manage calls. You also have a separate switch to enable/disable the ANC feature. However, it stays on even when turning the headphones off, so be sure to switch it off when you’re done using the headphones.

4.0
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 10.6 °C

The TaoTronics TT-BH060 aren't very breathable. They get very hot in a short amount of time because they seal very well on our test rig. They trap a lot of heat inside the ear cups and won’t be suitable for sports as you will sweat more than usual. On the upside, they aren’t that bad for casual listening, especially if you take them off from time to time, letting your ears cool off a bit.

5.7
Design
Portability
L 6"
W 6.6"
H 3.5"
Volume 139 in³
Transmitter Required No

Like most over-ear headphones, they aren’t very portable. They have a bulky design, but at least you can fold them in a more compact format, and the cups swivel to lay flat, which makes it easier to carry them around your neck or slide them inside a bag. When folded, they also fit in their carrying case.

8.0
Design
Case
Type Hard case
L 7.7"
W 6"
H 3.2"
Volume 148 in³

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 come with a nice hard case that protects the headphones well against water exposure, scratches, and physical damage from falls. It also doesn’t add too much bulk to the design and is easy to put inside a bag.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are fairly well-built headphones. The plastic used for the ear cups is dense and should handle a few drops without getting damaged. The headband is decently flexible and has a metal frame to reinforce the build, making them a bit more durable. However, they still have a lot of plastic in their design, which is decently durable but feels a bit cheap. They're built similarly to the Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018 but are more affordable.

7.0
Design
Stability

These headphones are decently stable since they're tight on the head. However, the cups can move around a bit and are susceptible to fall off during more intense physical activity. Nevertheless, you shouldn't use these for sports because of their breathability issues. On the upside, they're wireless, and you won’t have to worry about a cable getting hooked on something and yanking the headphones off your head. This shouldn’t be an issue for casual listening.

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

  • TaoTronics TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 headphones
  • 1/8" TRS audio cable
  • USB to micro-USB charging cable
  • Carrying case
  • Manuals

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-0.29 dB
Treble Amount
-5.66 dB
6.8
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.66 dB

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60's frequency consistency is okay. The left driver is actually consistent and is probably using the ANC feature to deliver consistent bass, but the right driver of our unit is noticeably inconsistent, with maximum variation going over 15dB in the bass range. On the upside, they're consistent in the treble range under 10kHz.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
7.0
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
4.19 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
12.07 Hz
Low-Bass
-7.22 dB
Mid-Bass
1.35 dB
High-Bass
3.31 dB

The TaoTronics TT-BH060's bass performance is satisfactory, but there's a significant mismatch between the drivers, which is taken into account in our imaging test. Their LFE (low-frequency extension) is down to about 10Hz, which is excellent. However, their low bass is lacking by over 7dB under our target curve, which means they're very light on thump and rumble. Mid-bass, responsible for the punch of bass guitars and kick of drums, and high-bass, responsible for warmth, are overdone and about 3dB over our neutral target curve. This will add a lot of boominess and muddiness to the mix.

6.0
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
5.28 dB
Low-Mid
1.32 dB
Mid-Mid
0.69 dB
High-Mid
-6.41 dB

The mid-range performance is mediocre. There is still a driver mismatch in this range, and it's slightly overemphasized in low and mid-mid. This makes vocals and lead instruments sound a bit thick and forward in your mixes. However, the deep drop in high-mid also negatively affects the projection and intensity of vocals and leads.

2.7
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
9.74 dB
Low-Treble
-11.53 dB
Mid-Treble
-4.42 dB
High-Treble
-9.92 dB

The TaoTronics TT-BH060's treble performance is terrible. Most of the response through the range is under our target curve, with a maximum dip of about 11dB. This will be very noticeable and will make vocals, leads, and sibilants lacking in detail and brightness.

6.1
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
2.55 dB
Dips
2.42 dB
4.5
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.54
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
5.25
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
6.25
Weighted Phase Mismatch
17.6

The stereo imaging is bad. Our unit had very mismatched drivers in amplitude, frequency, and phase. Especially in the bass range, the two drivers were acting differently, with the right one having practically no bass. The GD graph also shows that the group delay of the right driver surpasses the audibility threshold under 100Hz, which will result in a loose bass. The audio sounds skewed to one side with holes in the stereo image. These results are only valid for our unit, and yours may perform differently, but it shows poor quality control.

3.8
Sound
Passive Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
4.28 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
4.12 dB
PRTF Distance
5.21 dB
Openness
1.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
2.1

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 have a poor soundstage. The PRTF graph shows that the response doesn't follow our reference at all. There’s not a lot of pinna activation, and it isn’t accurate. Therefore, their soundstage will most likely be perceived to be small and not speaker-like. Their closed-back design also makes their soundstage feel 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 App
6.5
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.803
WHD @ 100
0.374
Sound
Test Settings
Firmware
Unknown
Power
On
Connection
Bluetooth 4.0
Codec
SBC, 16-bit, 48kHz
EQ
No EQ
ANC
On
Tip/Pad
Default
Microphone
Integrated
Isolation
8.2
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-23.2 dB
Bass
-15.05 dB
Mid
-17.31 dB
Treble
-37.19 dB

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 have a great isolation performance. With their ANC (active noise cancelling) enabled, these headphones achieved more than 15dB of isolation in the bass range, which is good. This means they can cancel out the low rumbling noises like airplane and bus engines to a great degree. In the mid-range, important for blocking out speech, they isolate by 17dB, which is also good. In the treble range, occupied by sharp sounds like S and Ts and air conditioning systems, they achieved about 37dB of isolation, which is very good.

8.2
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
32.54 dB

The leakage performance is great. A significant portion of the leakage is spread between 400Hz and 1kHz, which is a narrow range. The overall level of the leakage is relatively quiet too. With the music at 100dB SPL, the leakage at one foot away averages around 33dB SPL and peaks at 49dB SPL, which is just under the noise floor of an average office.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
Yes
In-Line
No
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
No
6.2
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
226.27 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
3.96 dB
HFE
2,560 Hz
Weighted THD
1.622
Gain
34.51 dB

The integrated microphone has a mediocre recording quality. The LFE (low-frequency extension) of 226Hz results in a recorded/transmitted speech that sounds a little thin. The HFE (high-frequency extension) of 2.6kHz means speech will sound noticeably muffled and lacking in detail. It will still be understandable in quiet environments.

6.7
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
18.63 dB

In our SpNR test, the mic achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of about 19dB, which suggests this microphone is well-suited for quiet and moderately loud environments. However, it may still struggle to fully separate speech from ambient noise in louder places.

Active Features
7.8
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
29.9 hrs
Additional Charges
0.0
Total Battery Life
29.9 hrs
Charge Time
0.8 hrs
Power-Saving Feature
No
Audio While Charging
No
Passive Playback
Yes
Charging Port micro-USB

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 have about 30 hours of battery life with their ANC on. It should be more than enough for a few normal workdays, and they won’t need daily charging, which is great. On top of this, they take less than an hour to charge fully. However, they don’t have any power-saving features, and you have to turn their ANC switch off, even if you power off the headphones. On the upside, if the battery is dead, you can also use them passively with the included 1/8” TRS cable.

0
Active Features
App Support
App Name No App
iOS No
Android No
macOS No
Windows No
Equalizer
No
ANC Control
No
Mic Control No
Room Effects
No
Playback Control
No
Button Mapping No
Surround Support
No

The TaoTronics TT-BH060 don’t have a companion app for customization options.

Connectivity
7.0
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
5.0
Multi-Device Pairing
No
NFC Pairing
No
Line Of Sight Range
219 ft
PC Latency (SBC)
226 ms
PC Latency (aptX)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX HD)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX-LL)
N/A
iOS Latency
90 ms
Android Latency
108 ms

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are Bluetooth-compatible, but they can only connect to a single device at a time, which is disappointing if you often want to switch between your work computer and your phone. They also don’t support NFC for a quicker and easier pairing procedure.

These headphones have low latency on iOS and Android devices, making them a suitable choice for streaming video. However, their high latency on PCs may cause issues with the syncing of your audio and visuals. Some people may not notice the delay, as some devices and apps offer some compensation. They won’t be the ideal choice for video content and gaming, but you can nullify these issues by using the audio cable.

0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line Of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
9.5
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable Yes
Length 3.8 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Analog/USB Audio Latency
0 ms

You can use the TaoTronics TT-BH060 passively with the included 1/8” TRS cable. However, that cable doesn’t have an in-line remote or microphone, so you’ll only have audio support on consoles and PCs. Also, when plugging in the audio cable, the headphones turn off, meaning you can't use the on-cup controls, but you can still enable/disable ANC.

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 Non-BT Wireless
No
0
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
No Base/Dock
USB Input
No
Line In
No
Line Out
No
Optical Input
No
RCA Input
No
Dock Charging
No
Power Supply
No Base/Dock

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 don't have a dock.

Compared To Other Headphones

Comparison picture

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 are okay overall headphones. They have a good ANC feature and a great battery life, but unfortunately, they have a very uneven sound profile, and our unit has a significant driver mismatch which made it worse. They're pretty affordable, though, so if you can get a unit with matched drivers, they may offer good value.

See our suggestions for the best noise cancelling headphones and the best noise cancelling headphones under $100.

Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018

The Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018 are noticeably better headphones than the TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless. The Bose are one of the most comfortable headphones we’ve tested so far. They support NFC, their ANC feature is great, and their sound profile is very well-balanced. The Bose will be a better option over the TaoTronics in pretty much every way, but they're more expensive, so if you can get a TaoTronics unit that doesn’t have a big mismatch in their drivers, they might have better value for some.

Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless

The Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless are much better Bluetooth noise cancelling headphones than the TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless. While their noise cancelling isn't quite as good, the Anker sound much better-balanced. Our TaoTronics unit sounds dark and shows a significant mismatch in performance between their drivers. The Anker are much better-balanced, with a more excited sound signature. The TaoTronics do feel a bit better built and even come with a nice hard carrying case, but both models are equally comfortable.

Anker SoundCore Life 2 Wireless

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless are better ANC headphones than the Anker SoundCore Life 2 Wireless and will be better suited for commuting. The TaoTronics are well-built headphones, especially since they're quite comfortable and affordable. They have more battery life, but on the other hand, our unit has mismatched drivers. Because of this, the Anker might be the better-sounding option.

Mpow H5 Wireless

The TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless have a better noise cancelling feature than the Mpow H5 Wireless, and they're slightly better-built as well. They have noticeably better battery life and also feel more comfortable. However, our unit has mismatched drivers, so the Mpow are the better-sounding option. They also have very low latency for Bluetooth headphones and offer good value.

Mpow H10 Wireless

The Mpow H10 Wireless are better headphones than the TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless. Their ANC features are practically identical, but our Mpow didn’t show any mismatch in their drivers, resulting in a better overall sound than the TaoTronics. They also have very good battery life on top of a standby mode, which the TaoTronics are lacking. They have low latency for Bluetooth headphones, too. However, the TaoTronics are better-built and leak noticeably less than the Mpow.

Mixcder E9 Wireless

The Mixcder E9 Wireless are better headphones than the TaoTronics SoundSurge 60 Wireless. The Mixcder's sound quality is better, and our TaoTronics unit had a noticeable mismatch. The audio reproduction of the Mixcder is, therefore, more balanced and accurate. However, the TaoTronics are Bluetooth 5.0, their noise isolation performance is better, and they offer more battery life. However, they do have higher latency than the impressive Mixcder.

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