Review: Beoplay E8 3.0

Luxury that finally sits

Bang & Olufsen have tried and failed sometimes with their completely wireless Beoplay E8. Beoplay E8 3.0 is the best so far.

Karakter
Beoplay E8 3.0
We think
Nice sound with lots of details. Ambient sound that is let through sounds very natural. Wireless range is finally good, and support for wireless charging is fine.
The sound could well have been louder. Touch features are quite knotty, and the Bluetooth connection could have been more intuitive. Not NFC.
Specifications
  • Type: completely wireless earplugs
  • Bluetooth: 5.1
  • Waterproof: IP54
  • Coder: aptX, AAC, SBC
  • Battery: 7 hours, 35 extra in case
  • Weight: 11.6 g
  • Charging cable: USB C
  • Web: bang-olufsen.com
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Beoplay E8 3.0 is Bang & Olufsen’s latest version of their completely wireless earbuds, which can also charge wirelessly.

The problem with its predecessor was first and foremost that the wireless range was far too poor, and that wireless noise from other Bluetooth products negatively affected the E8 2.0. Both parts are fixed now. And even though there are several more expensive earplugs that do not support aptX, it is definitely a minus, something B&O has taken on and finally got in place.

Battery life has also greatly improved since the last time. Up from 4 to 7 hours in the plugs, and also 35 hours extra in the case, compared to the predecessor’s 12 hours. Not bad!

B_O Beoplay E8_3Gen wireless charging
Photo: Bang & Olufsen

The slight time delay of its predecessor that went beyond the gaming experience has not gotten any better, even with aptX. If you are going to play, you have to live with the sound hanging around for a quarter of a second after the action.

The fit of the E8 3rd Generation is identical to its predecessor. In my ears they sit well, but I have read that others think they are a little troublesome. Ease of use is good, but it will always take some time to get used to the printing on the two earplugs. Press once, twice and even three times, perform different functions, and the right and left earplugs do different things. But you get used to this.

One thing I like about the Beoplay E8 is how it lets through ambient sound when you want it. This is done by tapping the left earplug easily, or you can do it in the mobile app, then with three different degrees of volume. The surroundings sound much more natural through the E8 than with any other earplugs I have heard with a similar function. For example, Panasonic and Technics, which both sound a little more closed.

You still do not get active noise reduction here.

The sound of Beoplay E8 3rd Generation

The sound is almost the same as its predecessor, with a rich and good bass – although not the most powerful. It could well hit a little harder on electronic rhythms, especially compared to Powerbeats Pro.

With aptX from an Android phone, the treble becomes even more fine-meshed and airy, compared to the AAC sound you get through the iPhone. But the sound signature is otherwise the same. By the way, if you want to adapt the sound to your own taste, this can be done in the app.

What I miss is sound pressure. Maximum sound level actually seems to be a notch lower than its predecessor, perhaps to extend battery life. It makes me sit a lot and play music at full blast, and it also makes classical music quite boring. Here, Sennheiser is better.

The call quality, on the other hand, is excellent. The receiver hears my voice clearly and distinctly, as with Panasonic and Technics.

Conclusion

Beoplay E8 3rd Generation – which is officially just called E8, is a pair of very good luxury earplugs. The sound is good, with lots of details. Ambient sound is also nice to be able to let through, and the sound of conversations is very good.

Wireless range is finally on par with the best, and the connection is much more stable than on its predecessor. Finally, aptX is in place, but the sound delay is still almost a quarter of a second compared to the image. That makes gaming a little annoying affair.

All in all, a great earplug, and a clear improvement from its predecessor.

Also in this test

Technics EAH-AZ70W

The icing on the technological cake

Technics EAH-AZ70W has everything you could want from technology in a pair of earbuds, and also excellent sound with great resolution.

Good noise cancellation, neutral and resolved sound
We want more punch

Klipsch T5 True Wireless

I really want these earplugs to be good!

Klipsch likes it best when the music is thrown into the listener's face. It also happens here, but we have to make some reservations.

Energetic midrange, lots of dynamics. Fantastically satisfactory charging case.
Coarse-grained and fairly sharp sound.

Skullcandy Sesh Evo

Do what it's supposed to

Skullcandy's cheapest completely wireless earbuds Skullcandy Sesh Evo have rhythmically enough bass, and sound pretty good. When set correctly.

Energetic bass, works for training. Movie sound mode sounds pretty good.
Missing details, especially in the overtones. Default setting sounds woolly. Poor call quality.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2

Our new favorite

Review: Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 - Sennheiser reaches the top with its latest edition of Momentum True Wireless.

Excellent sound quality, improved operation, great fit and - finally - long playing time! Active noise reduction comes in handy in some situations.
Outgoing call sound is a bit more confined than with its predecessor. Sound delay a bit big for action games and movies.

Beats Powerbeats Pro

Still among our favorites

Top-class wireless range, fully-fitted fit - Beats Powerbeats Pro delivers a very engaging sound.

Very engaging sound, and a fit that never falls off. Seamless integration with Siri. Class-leading wireless range.
There are earplugs with better resolution at the very top. Missing some of the features of AirPods Pro.

Audio-Technica ATH-CK3TW

Affordable and good from Audio-Technica

Audio-Technica has finally come up with some completely wireless plugs that fit well in the ears.

Full bass, clear overtones, good call quality. Better fit than previous plugs from the same manufacturer.
The midrange range is too restrained, instruments and vocals lack emphasis here.

Jaybird Vista

Sports earbuds with an impact

Jaybird Vista is stable, and with lots of bass energy! But here, too, some weird choices have been made.

Wireless connection is very stable. The user can customize sound and features.
Dark tone, bass-focused and a fairly sharp midrange reproduction. Only the Sub Band Codec (SBC) limits the sound quality.

Creative Outlier Gold

Good idea, poorly executed

Creative Outlier Gold has some smart stuff in it, but the sound can not be approved.

Full-bodied and rhythmic bass, interesting Super X-Fi function for holographic sound. Fantastic battery life!
Sharp treble, too little midrange. Very "hammock" sound! EQ function does not work outside the app.

Jabra Elite Active 75t

Superior training earbuds

The Jabra Elite Active 75t is perhaps the best wireless training earbuds you can buy.

Effective "passive" noise cancellation, excellent and solid sound and excellent battery life. They are waterproof and firmly attached to the ears, and are therefore also perfect for training.
The effective noise cancellation can create a kind of cheese bell feeling. Operation directly via the plugs is a bit difficult.

Panasonic RZ-S500W

Packed with technology

Panasonic RZ-S500W serves the best noise cancellation found in a pair of earbuds is combined with good speech sound and a neutral music reproduction. Why is it not enough?

Good noise cancellation, neutral sound
Lacks dynamics, sounds flat and tame.

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