To start out with this review, I wanted to say that I owned the original Jaybird Freedom headphones for a short amount of time when they were first released. However, at the time and shortly after I purchased them, I had a financial issue crop up and had to return them for the money. So, I will have some comparisons in this review to the original as well. Let's see how far they came!
Note: I tested these on an iPhone 7 and an iPad Pro 10.5" - both current devices.
Packaging - LOVED the packaging for these suckers. It's small and compact enough to hold what you get, very sleek and yet, high quality. The outer sleeve slips off and inside, you are greeted by a nice flip-open box with a message on the inside front flap to the left and the headphones front-and-center to the right. Very easy to unpackage and behind the headphones, you will find the obligatory user manual (in a real manual form!...not a fold out gigantic piece of paper...THANK YOU!) and a case for the headphones, which also has the additional earbuds sizes packaged, in addition to the battery pack and small neck clip.
Quality - I will say that these have to be the first pair of headphones like this (Sport) that fit me great straight from the box. I didn't have to change the earpiece sizes out. Just had to widen the cord in the back using the new "Speedfit" integrated cord management so I had more wiggle room. This feature worked PERFECTLY. I expected to have to fight with the cord getting tangled somehow or the grips not sliding correctly. As for the actual silicone ear-pieces...my only complaint is that they ALL have the eartip "wings" build into them. On the original Freedoms, the wings and the earbuds were separate and you could even wear them without the eartips/wings. Not with these. I hate the fact that the integrated them together.
Performance - They charged up quickly and even had plenty of juice for me to play around with them before the first charge. I was initially a little confused on how to properly turn them off and on, as this really wasn't detailed much in the manual. However, the Jaybird app is pretty nice. It has the full manual and more included, as well as the option to set your sound stage, such as Flat, Increased Base, Treble balances and etc. I went straight for the increased bass. Compared to the original Freedoms, these are FAR improved in the department of Bluetooth Quality. The originals would have a huge delay when I would type and hear the text click noise on my iPhone. These do not have any delay at all and were on par with my current primary bluetooth earbuds.
Sound is great, with nice noise isolation and plenty of bass with the "Bring the Bass" setting from the app. Call quality was superb, too!
Overall, they are comfortable... although I feel the battery pack, while light-weight, does add some bulk when using it on the headset. This is a minor complaint, however. The headset itself has 4 hours and the battery pack has an additional 4 hours, for 8 hours total charge. From my testing, average use for me was about 6-7 hours for mixed usage (music and calls). Not too bad and pretty close to claims. They clean easily, although with these being black, the earpieces tend to show every small amount of ear crud and skin oil, lol. But again, easy to just wipe right off and keep clean.
Now, for my BIGGEST complaint and really, the only reason I knocked a star off. Bluetooth distance. I live in appx. a 2,100 sq. ft. home. My primary earbuds I've been using prior to these...I could have my phone on one end of the house and have the earbuds with me on the other end and quality remains the same, no connection issues, very little crackling, etc. With these, it seems when go more than 20 ft. away from my phone, I start getting severe connection issues. NOT a deal-breaker, but it would have been nice to have the peace-of-mind to know I can leave my phone anywhere in the house and go wherever I need without worry of the connection dropping.
Conclusion - Overall, I'm very happy with these! I think these will become my primary bluetooth headphones now for music listening and when I'm exercising. I'll leave my other earbuds for when I need the "convenience" of quickly placing them in my ears and/or taking phonecalls. While I am bummed that a firmware update cannot be done on these (too my understanding, just like the original Freedoms)...as my other pair of earbuds update automatically when an update is available), they seem to work fine other than the shorter than expected connection. Would I buy these OVER my primary earbuds? No. However, it's always nice to have two bluetooth headsets, in my opinion. However, these came VERY close to becoming my new primary headset for EVERYTHING...and that says a lot. I give them 4 stars due to the bluetooth connection distance, the fact that the wings and earbuds are built together and the lack of a firmware update option. Buy them - you won't regret it.