Best earphones for running : JBL Reflect Fit vs Bose Soundsport Free

We like to listen to music on our mobile phone or other music player while playing sports or exercising outdoors or in the gym. Music has been shown to increase performance and motivation during movement. During a workout in a gym or fitness room, it is recommended to treat the walls and ceiling of the room with sound-absorbing acoustic panels to make the music truly motivating and enjoyable while exercising. Noisy, echoing sound has a negative effect on the body, so acoustic treatment of rooms with unfavorable acoustics is essential.

However, if you exercise outdoors or just want to listen to your own music while moving, you need earphones. Many companies manufacture earphones specifically for sports such as running, in a variety of types and prices. For earphones used during exercise, our most important expectations are to fit comfortably and stably in our ears and sound properly. This time, we tested two very high quality sports earphones, the Bose Soundsport Free and the JBL Reflect Fit neckband Bluetooth earphones. Both devices fall into a fairly high price range, but in return we can get really premium quality.

Bose Soundsport

The Bose wireless earphones have been specially developed for sports and running. After unpacking, you can get a black, plastic, small case (less than 10 cm) in your hand. The small case for safe storage of earphones suggests elegance and quality. The most pleasant surprise was when we discovered that the box not only has a storage function, but also provides wireless charging for the earphones! This is very useful when travelling, as you can charge the earphones without a cable, which is approx. They are capable of 5 hours of continuous operation, this number can be multiplied by the charger.

Bose Soundsport Free

Looking more closely at the earphones, the most striking was the large size of the speaker chambers. Silicone “caps” are included in 3 sizes. They are also equipped with a hook-like support, which allows the earphones to be stably attached to the ear, so they are guaranteed to stay in place even during intense movement. This proved to be the case in practice, we felt comfortable in the ears, they didn’t move at all.

We sweat on the move and are exposed to the weather during outdoor sports. Soundsport earphones are IPX4 certified, which means they are water and sweat resistant. It can be connected to the phone via Bluetooth, the connection took only a few seconds. Unfortunately, the Bluetooth connection can sometimes be insecure, such as when the phone was set up, the connection was lost and you had to wait a few seconds again for it to work again. If you are out of Bluetooth range, the connection is also lost or lost. For this reason, it is advisable to take your phone or other playback device with you.

The right earphone has volume keys and music on and off buttons to handle voice dialing. The volume buttons could be more sensitive, they need to be pressed with enough force.

Bose earphones remember paired devices, so when you turn on the phone you used before, Soundsport recognizes it and connects to it automatically. An LED in the storage box that also acts as a docking station indicates the battery charge status.

They got the most out of this earphone, they even have a built-in microphone so you can make phone calls easily and quickly with it. During the phone call, it was a little confusing that our own voice echoed.

Bose has developed an app to manage its own devices that identifies what Bose device we have paired our phone with. Thus, we can also control the music playback with the help of the application. While the earphones really fit very securely in your ears, you may still lose them. The Bose Connect app can measure the position of the earphones, making it easy to find the lost device.


It virtually doesn’t filter out outside noise at all, which can be annoying to many, but let’s not forget that these earphones were invented for sports and it might not be safe for the earphones to completely exclude the outside world. While running, cycling, it doesn’t hurt to hear and notice moving vehicles, humming and other noises in time. Of course, the sound quality of Bluetooth wireless earphones cannot be compared to the sound of a studio monitor listened to in a studio or in an acoustically well-managed room.

The manufacturer focused more on intense, powerful bass sounds. We obtained clear, even, distortion-free sounds, and we did not experience any errors at higher volumes. We had spacious, dynamic rhythms, but the medium ranges were pushed into the background, and the high ones could have been nicer, sharper. While playing sports, most people swear by percussion bass, which increases motivation and also gives the rhythm of movement.

JBL Reflect Fit neckband sports earphones

JBL Reflect Fit

The JBL sports earphones are also wireless with Bluetooth. We get a sachet that we can store in. The neckband is extremely small and lightweight, it may seem too snug to the neck, but it provides stability, and after a few minutes we forgot to wear it. The rubber cover does not irritate the skin, it is soft and comfortable. This device is also designed for water and sweat resistance, has an IPX5 standard, and is resistant to low pressure water and rain.

The earplugs can be attached to the ear with silicone hooks, the silicone rings are added in 3 sizes. This mode of attachment is very stable, but after prolonged wear we experienced a slightly uncomfortable, tight feeling. You can choose from black, green, blue and red. On the right side of the neck strap is the on and off button, which, like the Bose product, is not sensitive enough to be pressed very hard. A blue LED indicates when the earphone is on, and glows red when the battery is low. When switching off, keep it pressed hard and longer. The communication is also great for telephony, clean, easy to understand, no rattles.

Best earphones for running


The heart rate monitor is also located on the right side of the neck, but application is required for it to work. (these are usually paid). To the left of the neck strap is the volume key, press briefly when adjusting the volume, because holding it down for a longer time will switch songs. The battery lasts for approx. Allows 10 hours of operation. The neck strap cables phosphoresce in the dark, which is very useful when running or cycling in the evening.

About the sound

It filters noise very well, we heard dynamic deep, even sound. The treble proved to be weak, and the bass was sometimes overly powerful.

Which earphone is the winner?

Both devices have similar features, their quality is also really excellent. The Bose earphone is a bit more expensive, but its own docking station and all-wireless design are worth the price. It is very stable in the ear, you don’t have to worry about the integrity of the ear during sweaty workouts or exercising in the rain, thanks to its waterproof feature. Disadvantages include oversized speakers, sometimes unstable Bluetooth connectivity, and slightly noisy sound. In the case of JBL, our comments are similar, we rate its sound as slightly better. Due to the quality, the docking station and the comfortable and stable mounting, we might bring out the Bose Soundsport ears as a winner, but the JBL Reflect Fit isn’t far behind either.