Beyerdynamic has released their Byron In-Ear line which is exciting because this heralds Beyerdynamic’s entrance into the wireless In-Ear market. This release comes with 3 different incarnations of the Byron In-Ear. The Byron a wired $50 model, the Byron BT which is the entry level wireless model at $100, and finally their top of the line wireless unit the Byron BTA for $200. Both wireless models use the aptX codec to deliver a high-fidelity audio connection over the Bluetooth network. The main differences between the two units is their Bluetooth Versions, the BT using version 4.1 and the BTA using the 4.2 version, the BTA using a charging station versus a standard micro-USB connection, and an extended frequency range in the BTA model.
The Byron BTA wireless In-Ears are the first In-Ear Wireless headphones to not leave me disappointed in a while. There is a full and clear representation of the entire frequency range.. for a Bluetooth In-Ear this is not the norm.
Beyerdynamic Byron BTA Wireless Review
Byron BTA (left), Byron BT (center), and Byron Wired (right)
Beyerdynamic has kept the design of their In-Ear models pretty minimal over the last few years, and has continued this trend with the Byron series. Having favored functionality over form by keeping the design simple and sound quality high. Many of the wireless In-Ears being released lately have become very bulky and flashy, I found comfort in the simplistic design Beyerdynamic is known for.
It wouldn’t be a premium wireless headphone if it didn’t include it’s own custom charging dock. The volume remote fits into a magnetic charging dock that Beyerdynamic designed for use with the BTA earphone. One complaint with the design is the incredibly short USB cable the charging dock is attached to, I would heavily suggest investing into a USB extender if you do not already own one.
Another point in Beyerdynamic’s corner is by having the active listening time come out to 7.5 hours. This is well above the average of 6 hours for most wireless headphones. And, with the design of the custom charging station they have cut the charging time from 2 hours (for the micro-USB BT model) to only 1.5 hours. Another thing that helps preserve battery life is that the BTA has a good volume range. It doesn’t need to be maxed out for the music to reach a listenable level. The earphone lets out a small tone when you reach the lowest and highest volume output setting, if you’ve been blindly changing the listening level without checking it.
The Byron BTA definitely comes across as a warmer headphone, but there is a noticeable amount of high end detail and extension which starts to give it a slight V sound image but it doesn’t fully reach that sound characteristic. Absolutely no shuttering from the Bluetooth connection thanks to Bluetooth 4.2. The operating range is really impressive, it only shows signs of weakness at the outer limits of the operating range which isn’t stated the the specs, but I’d give it a good 45-50ft (13-15m).
The low end is very deep and rich. I usually don’t believe it when In-Ears tech specs claim an operating range of sub 20Hz, and we can get into an argument about the limits of human hearing and harmonic distortion causing us to hear below/above the 20Hz-20kHz. But from my test tones I was able to get juice out of the heaphones from a 14Hz sine wave and again at 10Hz, but I’m not convinced that it’s a true 10Hz value. The earphone thrives in it’s low end response, offering a solid replication of low end material that retains it’s raw power and detail.
Possibly overshadowed by the low end response the mid-range is present, it just takes a back seat in it’s delivery. The mids come out as a little recessed, offering more room for the low and high end to breath, but it isn’t sacrificing detail for this to be achieved. And maybe most surprisingly for myself is the fact that the snare actually sounds like a snare, I’m not joking. I have had so many pairs of wireless earbuds completely trash snares top or bottom end. Vocals are present and warm, full of deatil, no noticeable addition of silibance to the upper-mid range
There is a nice upper brilliance quality to the Byron BTAs. Strings sound fantastic and have their upper end dissolve well into the background. Cymbals roll off with a great finish and keep their sound quality in check. Some upper airiness gives the headphones a little brightness to counter the warm low end.
Personally I really like the headphones. The sound quality is well suited towards my listening preferences, when not critically listening. A big part of it is because I find this to be a good sound quality standard I want to see more wireless earbuds gravitate towards. Sound quality is on the warmer side and still retains some detail in the mids, and upper end. I found pretty much all genres to be pleasing to listen to. There is more of a focus on the lower end so pop and EDM based music will shine a little better than others, but there is still a fare amount of detail and air for classical and jazz to come through unabashed. I only have a pair on lone to write the review with, and will be sad to see them go.
If you’re searching for a wireless earbud strictly for listening to music, this is not an active-ware sport earbud, then your money is well spent on the Byron BTA. The long battery life, Bluetooth quality, and most importantly sound quality is at a level I find fully acceptable. This is coming from a person who really dislikes most wireless Headphones, let alone wireless In-Ears. If the Olympics were still going on these would receive a gold medal from me.
Available at Audio46 (use coupon code majorhifi for 10% discount) or on Amazon Byron BTA Bluetooth, wireless in-ear with DSP