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Jaybird Vista 2 Earbuds In-Depth Review For Sports

Jaybird-Vista2-Review

Today Jaybird announced their new Vista 2 earbuds, which add a host of new features, including many aimed at the endurance sports crowd.  From increased waterproofing and even military-spec resistance levels, to SurroundSense noise pass-through, better wind cancellation, rapid charging, and more. In theory, these new features would make it more appealing to athletes, including their sponsored cycling teams like L39ION, who they added today (and is also sponsored by Zwift for indoor training).

In practice though?

I had to turn them all off. So to spoil some of this review, I found that the new SurroundSense & enhanced Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) features were essentially useless in both cycling and running. Though, they were great for indoor workouts such as Zwift or Peloton, or at the gym. But don’t worry, I’ll dive into the details down below. Which isn’t to say these buds are bad, there’s many other features that make them more appealing than their competitors for sport usage. Instead, to simplify, don’t let those two headliner features be the main reason if you’re the sporty type who moves at a running or above pace/speed.

Note that for this review I’m using a media loaner from Jaybird. Once this review is done, I’ll get it boxed back up and sent back to them.  If you found this review useful, you can use the links at the bottom, or consider becoming a DCR Supporter which makes the site ad-free, while also getting access to a mostly weekly video series behind the scenes of the DCR Cave. And of course, it makes you awesome.

With that, let’s get into it.

What’s New:

Jaybird-Vista2-Review-Unboxing

I’m always kinda amazed how a product (of any type) from the outside can more or less look the same, but be vastly different inside, both hardware-wise but also software-wise. I suppose by now I should be used to this, but it’s really not till I sit down to write one of these ‘What’s New’ sections that all the little (and big) features that change between each iteration of a product bubble to the surface. And of course, there are invariably plenty more developer/engineer level changes that happen too.

In any event, here’s what’s new on the Jaybird Vista 2, compared to the original Vista from two years ago.

– Added SurroundSense: Pass-through of outside noise (so you can hear people/cars/etc around you)
– Added in-ear detection: It’ll auto-pause music
– Increased Active Noise Cancellation: To remove outside noises like city noises or on an airplane
– Added Find my Case: The case actually has GPS in it, but that only works when in range of Bluetooth
– Retains existing Find my Buds feature (for finding the buds, if in range of them)
– Added Case Wireless Charging: This works with any Qi wireless charging pad
– Added ‘WindDefense’ fabric over mics: This increases call mic clarity in windy conditions
– Increased buds to IP68 Water & Dust Resistance (from IPX7 prior)
– Increased case to IP54 water resistance (so splash/rain/etc…)
– Completed MIL-STD-810G testing
– Redesigned ear tips a bit from previous, includes four sets in box
– Retains existing USB-C charging port for case
– Buds Battery claim is 8 hours for regular mode, or 6 hours with noise cancellation modes (from 6 hours regular mode on Vista 1)
– Case battery claim is 24 hours in total (from 16 hours on Vista 1)
– Can use earbuds independently as before

Note that the price is $199USD, or essentially in the same ballpark as what we see the Apple PowerBeats Pro priced at these days, or what we often see Apple’s AirPods Pro priced at too.

The Basics:

Jaybird-Vista-2-Basics

I’m not going to focus too much on non-sports usage, since for the most part, you’re here for sports usage. But, a few quick basics to get out of the way. First up, we’ve got the case. I like it, it’s small, tidy, and still packs in 24 hours of battery life potential (to charge the buds).

Jaybird-Vista2-Pods-Out

The case can be wirelessly charged using any Qi wireless charger. So here it is on my $10 charger from many years ago, charging the day away:

Jaybird-Vista2-Wireless-Charger

The case also charges via USB-C, and can top-off your buds up to an hour’s worth of playing time in 5 minutes (the same as the Vista 1).

Inside, there’s a simple pairing button to pair up new devices. You can pair it to multiple devices. For example, I have it paired to my iPhone, my Windows computer, and my Garmin watch, all concurrently. It won’t play audio concurrently to all of them, but you don’t have to re-pair it each time. All that’s pretty normal.

P1022554

I will say that it seems a bit finicky on handing off the connection to my iPhone, usually requiring me to go and manually press the ‘Connect’ option in the Bluetooth control panel on my phone before it’ll see it. I don’t have this problem on the Garmin watch or my computer. So I’m not sure if this is a Vista 2 problem or an iPhone problem.

Once paired up, you’ll want to grab the Jaybird app. The reason being that’s how you change all the settings. You can use it without ever touching the Jaybird app (I did so for a few days initially), but if you want to change sound profiles and do other customization, you’ll need that. The app is free, and easy to install:

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Within the settings, one of the new features is the “Find my Case” option. This is in addition to the “Find my Buds” option. Both though depend on your phone being within Bluetooth range to locate the case or buds. So if you lost these on a trail, you’re mostly outta luck, though it will tell you the last known location of the bud. Thus, if you had the phone and app with you, it’ll record the location of the lost bud at the moment it lost it, and then even allow you to launch a maps app to see the location. It appears to check/record the location every 20 seconds, which means at walking/running speeds it’ll plot a location frequently enough to find it with Bluetooth pretty easily if you go back.

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Interestingly, the case however only seems to record the location when the case itself is opened.

Now, unfortunately, there’s no Apple Find My integration here. I know Android users don’t care about that, but for iOS users I was really hoping we’d see Find My UWB integration like on Belkin’s Soundform Freedom True new earphones. That’d be amazeballs here. And I think realistically, going forward, it’s gotta be standard in this category for anyone that’s not a phone maker (e.g. Samsung with their buds). It’s a massive selling point for iOS users, who realistically make up the majority of this particular market (and we all know Apple will undoubtedly launch Find My via UWB baked into the next iteration of AirPod Pro or PowerBeats Pro).

When it comes to fit, the package comes with four sets of tips, for different ear sizes. You can easily remove them to figure out which ones fit best for you. Pretty standard stuff.

Jaybird-Vista2-Review-Tips

Meanwhile, also in the app is the ability to create your own EQ presets.

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Further, there’s boatloads of downloadable presets from top athletes to specific music genre ones. Or again, you can create your own.

Jaybird-Vista-2-EQ-Presets

Finally, note that on the outside of the buds you’ll see a new fabric-looking section. That’s what Jaybird calls their ‘WindDefense’ fabric, which aims to act like a dead-cat on a microphone, and reduce wind noises before they get to the mics. Both earbuds have mics in them, as each side can be used independently in a singular mode, as some people prefer only using one bud at a time for awareness reasons.

Jaybird-Vista-Fabric-CloseUp

Now, we’ll get into the wind reduction in the next section, so let’s dive in.

Sport Usage:

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Jaybird’s claim to fame here is “earth proof” earbuds, and marketing-wise it’s pretty genius. They’ve got a slew of different certifications. For the waterproofing and dust side, they’ve gone with IP68, making it dust resistant as well as water resistant for 1 hour at 3 meters (better than IPX7, which is 30 minutes at 1 meter). These won’t work in the pool from a sound standpoint (since digital audio signals can’t transit water more than a centimeter or two), but if you jump in the pool for a second they won’t die. Same goes for lounging around the pool.

Jaybird-Vista2-A-Bit-Wet

They’ve also completed testing against MIL-STD-810G, which is a US military standard for how you can test devices in certain environmental conditions. Jaybird says they aren’t aligning to any military here, but simply noting that their product exceeds ruggedness standards that are well defined in this spec.

You can read the very long spec document here, if you’re into that kind of thing (it covers a massive number of areas, such as freezing, thawing, acceleration, immersion, sand, dust, salt fog, fungus, humidity, impacts, ballistic shock, and more).

image

These sorts of certifications are often used in marketing (as is exactly the case here). But at the same time, passing even the bulk of these types of certifications requirements means enough engineering to not kill the device through any given test. And more importantly, these tend to have surprisingly similar overlap to sports, especially endurance sports.

While ballistics are not typically part of most iron-distance events, many of the other aspects of the list above are a normal part of endurance sports training and racing. Which again, is probably why Jaybird units are known to last a while.

In any case, for my workouts, I used both my phone (cycling) and Garmin FR945 (LTE) for testing. For running I used my watch, and for cycling I used my phone.  When it comes to pairing up to a Garmin watch for example, you’ll simply kick the buds into pairing mode by holding the button on the case, and then searching for it on the watch:

Garmin-Forerunner945-Pairing

All Garmin watches with music support work the same way in this manner, and this then lets me listen to music without a phone nearby. So in my case, that was primarily Spotify:

Garmin-FR945-Jaybird-Vista-2-Spotify

Once paired up to a watch, there’s no additional configuration that you can do, aside from basic controls (start/stop/volume). However, if you predefine the sound management options to be one of your earbud tap options, then you can access that mid-workout – allowing you to iterate through the three main sound management modes. Which, is as good a time as any to discuss them.

The Vista 2 earbuds have two core new features:

Increased Active Noise Cancellation (called ANC for short): This is more or less standard noise cancellation that removes background/outside noises. So that lawnmower, the planes flying overhead right now, some voices, etc… It does this by using the microphones on the buds to figure things out, and removes those sounds in software, leaving you only the sound of your music. Note: They previously had noise cancellation, but they re-arranged the hardware here.

SurroundSense: This is sound pass-through, in effect, the opposite of ANC. The key difference here though is that it’s amplifying that sound, so you can hear the bus or bike dinging behind you, the person yelling ‘on your left’, and so on. This mode is meant to make it so you can hear everything around you while still listening to music. Just like with ANC, it uses the mics to amplify that sound.

In addition to those two new modes, you have what is the previous mode, which is simply ‘Off’. In that mode you’ll hear your music, but there’s no noise cancellation or pass-through. In other words, it’s just like before.

So, let’s start with SurroundSense. This is the mode that allows pass-through of sound (in other words, the mode you should use while training outdoors). It has two main options within it: Ambient noise level, and wind filtering level, you can adjust these as you see fit:

clip_image001[10] clip_image001[14] clip_image001[22]

I found that the ambient noise pass-through was good. At times, scary good. Like, the mics were picking up conversations from half a city away. Perhaps occasionally a bit overambitious, but hey, nobody is sneaking up on you with this enabled.

However, the wind filtering here simply didn’t work. While there were slight differences between the three levels, it was simply degrees of suck. With even the slightest breeze, or anything above walking speed, the wind noise was heavily amplified. Like, there was no wind outside, but there was a hurricane in my ears. You can adjust the position of your head (totally sideways), and in some cases that gets rid of it. But I can’t easily run or ride my way across the city looking to my left or right the entire time.

clip_image001

But the problem here is essentially that the amount of wind hitting the mic and the way it hits the mic varies, and as such, their algorithm doesn’t seem to be able to handle that super well. DesFit has noted the same in his review as well.

Meanwhile, if you switch to ANC (Active Noise Cancelling), then you lose all configuration options for hurricane levels, but simply keep the hurricane. Again, this is the mode that cancels out all outside noise. That’s great if you’re on an airplane (or, live below a flight path like me), or if you’re at the gym and want to ignore the world. But the thing is, it’s still using the mics to cancel out that noise. Thus as soon as you start moving, the wind comes back into your head.

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And by ‘moving’, I mean anything at running or riding pace. While I’ve been trying many different modes over the last week, I spent half my bike commute this morning trying every possible option for ANC & SurroundSense to see if any were viable, and simply put – none were.

Thus ultimately, I just turned it off. That gave me crystal clear sound (minus my footsteps when running), but it also gave me back battery life. The other two modes chop off about 2 hours of battery life (from 8 hours to 6 hours) when enabled, whereas turning it off means no slice in battery life.

Jaybird-Vista2-Sound-management-Off

What about call quality? Well, while at rest or walking speed, it was perfectly fine. However, the second I went above walking speed, such as just starting to pedal the bike, the receiving end couldn’t hear my voice anymore over the tornado of wind noise. I tried all three settings on three back to back to back calls, and there was no difference between the three options pictured above (ANC/SurroundSense/Off), nor any difference with the wind reduction settings.

Unfortunately, this just won’t work for people trying to hear you while you’re on the move.

As is usually the case, I’ve had ZERO dropouts on any of my workouts with the Garmin FR945 LTE. This is pretty similar to most recent Garmin watches (compared to the first few models of watches where they added music connectivity). These days, most headphone companies that focus on sports, and most watch companies that do music, have figured out how to work together happily. And in this case, it was indeed happily.

I also haven’t killed the headphones either. Granted, it’s still early days, but hey – I’ve got a well-earned reputation for killing things quickly. And the warmer weather has brought plenty of sweat for me lately.

One last thing to mention is that you can customize what the buttons do, as well as what taps do. Jaybird added an accelerometer to both buds, so they can now ‘feel’ when you tap them (but don’t press the button). And then from that, you can customize what each function does. Even more, you can customize it differently for each earbud (left vs right). The ‘Sound Management’ option iterates through the ANC/SurroundSense/Off options.

clip_image001 clip_image001[20]

Additionally, you can turn ‘Auto-Pause’ off or on in the menus, as well as change the language of the voice in your head. So things like connection notifications can be in English (US or UK), Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Korean, or Mandarin. And you can turn off those voices entirely, and simply use tones instead.

Finally, as for audio quality – I’m not an audiophile, and I won’t claim to be. I’m a sport guy. And by and large, when I’m toughing it through an interval workout or riding a bike, having astounding audio quality isn’t really high on my list. Instead, I’m looking for reliability of connection to sport-specific scenarios, device durability, whether or not the buds/device falls out, how it handles things like wind, or other noises on the route.

Thus, undoubtedly, there will be audio quality tests from audio-focused sites on the interwebs. I’m not one of those, though frankly, I might as well be here. Because if you’re looking at using these buds for anything above walking speed, with either ANC or SurroundSense, then audio quality won’t matter, because all you’ll hear is wind. And if history is any indication, most audio-focused sites won’t ever leave their desk…despite being a sport product.

Wrap-Up:

Jaybird-vista-2-connected

The Jaybird Vista 2’s have a number of pretty solid upgrades that make them worthwhile for consideration if you’re looking for sport-focused buds, from a company known for making sport buds that aren’t easily killed. They’ve got both the certification specs to back it, but also plenty of folks have years of experience with past products living longer than the average bear.

And all that’s great. But the challenge I have is that the two key new features (SurroundSense and Active Noise Cancelation) simply don’t work for cycling, or even running. I don’t want a hurricane of wind noise in my head when I’m running on a windless day. It’s as simple as that. Now, when I turn those features off (and thus, turn it into a Vista 1), then it’s great. That’s how I used it on my run today, and all was well. No hurricane in my head and reasonably good audio quality, as well as good fit.

Plus, I do appreciate the battery times, small size of the case (so much better than my Beats PowerBeat Pro), and the fact that the buds correctly settle in the case properly when I close it (again, something my Beats PowerBeat Pro doesn’t always do). If they can adjust, via firmware updates, the algorithm for wind reduction (I tried all the settings/options), then I’m totally game here.

Now of course, if you’re in a gym, or other activity where wind isn’t an issue – then go forth!

With that, thanks for reading!

Found This Post Useful? Support The Site!

Hopefully you found this review useful. At the end of the day, I’m an athlete just like you looking for the most detail possible on a new purchase – so my review is written from the standpoint of how I used the device. The reviews generally take a lot of hours to put together, so it’s a fair bit of work (and labor of love). As you probably noticed by looking below, I also take time to answer all the questions posted in the comments – and there’s quite a bit of detail in there as well.

If you're shopping for the Jaybird Vista 2 or any other accessory items, please consider using the affiliate links below! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, but your purchases help support this website a lot. Even more, if you use Backcountry.com or Competitive Cyclist with coupon code DCRAINMAKER, first time users save 15% on applicable products!

And of course – you can always sign-up to be a DCR Supporter! That gets you an ad-free DCR, access to the DCR Quarantine Corner video series packed with behind the scenes tidbits...and it also makes you awesome. And being awesome is what it’s all about!

Thanks for reading! And as always, feel free to post comments or questions in the comments section below, I’ll be happy to try and answer them as quickly as possible. And lastly, if you felt this review was useful – I always appreciate feedback in the comments below. Thanks!

Found This Post Useful? Support The Site!

Hopefully you found this review useful. At the end of the day, I’m an athlete just like you looking for the most detail possible on a new purchase – so my review is written from the standpoint of how I used the device. The reviews generally take a lot of hours to put together, so it’s a fair bit of work (and labor of love). As you probably noticed by looking below, I also take time to answer all the questions posted in the comments – and there’s quite a bit of detail in there as well.

If you're shopping for the Jaybird Vista 2 or any other accessory items, please consider using the affiliate links below! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, but your purchases help support this website a lot. Even more, if you use Backcountry.com or Competitive Cyclist with coupon code DCRAINMAKER, first time users save 15% on applicable products!

And of course – you can always sign-up to be a DCR Supporter! That gets you an ad-free DCR, access to the DCR Quarantine Corner video series packed with behind the scenes tidbits...and it also makes you awesome. And being awesome is what it’s all about!

Thanks for reading! And as always, feel free to post comments or questions in the comments section below, I’ll be happy to try and answer them as quickly as possible. And lastly, if you felt this review was useful – I always appreciate feedback in the comments below. Thanks!

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76 Comments

  1. How do you find the fit after working up a sweat? I find that earbuds in general fit great for general usage, and even cycling, but once I start running and work up a sweat, I can’t seem to keep anything in my ear.

  2. Awesome, I’ve been loving my gen 1, they are the best I’ve tried (I’ve tried at least 5 other pairs) at least for my ears. I use them in 1 one ear when I do long solo rides.
    I was just about to buy a second pair, luckily I waited xD!

    • Yup, for the pricing they’re at now, the originals are a solid option.

    • No I meant that I will buy the new once, I’m glad I haven’t ordered them yet. The main thing for me is the better batterylife (although the old once weren’t bad), the wireless charging, so I can charge it with my phone and the auto stop/play function, I turned the noice cancelling off on the old once to. I always ride with 1 of them in and I could still easily understand my podcasts!
      What I think these do better than ANY (and I’ve tried quite a few) is the wear comfort, I don’t have any that fit this well and stay in even with running/mtb/… I hate the true in-ear feel of some of them and the easy-falling-out of others!
      I’ve recommended them to anyone I know (that is searching for a pair to use in sport ofcourse)!

  3. tfk, the5krunner

    hey, thank you for that.

    any info on the driver size changes or the codecs?
    hd codecs should be good with iPhones and hd music but not on watches afaik

    would be interested if garmin plan to support hd codecs as one trend is for wider availability of hd music. iirc apple started a hd streaming service last month?

    ty !

    • Driver size is 6mm.

      For Apple it supports AAC, as they’re Made for iPhone certified. I haven’t checked with Garmin on their music plans. Though, I’ve gotta believe that’d be something for the CIQ Summit this fall if so. That said, I’m honestly not sure there’s much value there from a sports watch.

    • Sammykins

      For sure not. You’d be trading sync time for a quality improvement that no one would notice eh? It seems most of the watch apps already use low end but rates for the music stored to reduce sync time.

  4. Kent Carlson

    Love your site…great stuff. Keep it up!!!

  5. william McAnirlin

    Can you use the new charge case with the prior version of the headphones?

  6. Adrien

    Did you also try phone calls in windy conditions? Would the receiver of the call hear windy noises as well?

    • Interesting question, I’ll try it in the morning on the bike.

    • Roxen

      I would also want to know how the mic performs in calls with some wind

    • Update on mic on bike call quality.

      100%, totally, useless.

      I did three calls, with the three core sound management modes, and none of which made any difference in call quality, my voice was completely gone within 2-4 seconds of starting to pedal (the cargo bike, so hardly fast). Basically anything above walking speed, she couldn’t hear me anymore.

  7. Ron Green

    Would you think about doing a review on the Aftershokz headphones to use for outside sports

  8. Zmlick

    I have noticed a loss of signal sometimes with my Vista 1s and Vivoactive3 music during runs. From your post could this be a problem with the watch or the earbuds? Seems to work for a while and then sometimes drops after 2-3 songs while running

    • It’s likely the VA3M. Basically, that was Garmin’s 2nd music watch at the time, and they were still sorta learning things.

    • zmlick

      Ray thank you so much for taking the time to reply. It is sometimes frustrating not being able to find a resource. Your site provides a valuable resource for athletes or in my case has beens.

    • Yakubu

      I’ve had the same issue for the past 6 months or so.

      When originally got my Vista 1s, they worked perfectly with my fenix 6 pro.

      After a while I started experiencing problems. Turned out Garmin had updated the watches bluetooth firmware.

      The whole saga is documented here link to forums.garmin.com

      TLR – Still waiting on a fix for the issue. In the meantime, i rolled back the Garmin firmware update.

      It’ll be interesting to see if the new buds work consistently with the fenix 6.

      @DCRainmaker May i ask how long on average your runs were?

      Besides the watch problems, my buds have been amazing when it comes to connection stability. I can leave my phone on one side of a basketball court, and run around the perimeter of the whole court without dropouts

    • “@DCRainmaker May i ask how long on average your runs were?”

      Yesterday’s was ~80 mins. A few days prior about an hour.

  9. I’m still searching for buds that will allow me to hear and speak over Discord for Zwift team events and also work for audio for workouts. These do not fit the bill. Thanks for the review!

    • This would work, assuming the workout portion isn’t moving (if you want the newer feature). But for a Zwift scenario, these would work well.

    • David W

      Works well for Zwift unless you have a fan! I have one of the Lasco blowers and wind noise has been terrible with everything except for Bose Quiet Comfort ear buds (with ANC) and Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones. With the Bose buds you can still hear some low frequency rumble with my head in the wind stream. With the Sony almost nothing is heard in a test I did. However, the fake leather ear cups are too nice to ride on the trainer.

  10. I’ll also throw the Jabra Elite Active 75t into this one. They have basically all of the same features and only slightly lesser IPX rating at IPX57. Since fit is such a tough thing to know what works best, I like seeing lists that give options of similar earphones.

    Personally I’m pretty uncomfortable with people wearing any kind of headphones while cycling but the Jabras have a similar passthrough audio system that works awesome while I run…it doesn’t sound like I’m in a hurricane. They’re also a little cheaper.

    • Tyler

      100% agree.
      The Jabra’s are hard to top.

      And the Google Pixel Buds are also quite good.
      The touch and swipe controls are particularly easy to use while cycling.

    • Andrew

      Have tried the Vista 1 & Jabra’s. Neither work for me. I feel like the use case here isn’t insane.
      1. Need multi-channel for in the office (not on the Vista)
      2. Needs to work with my Fenix 6 (not the jabras, right bud is master)
      3. Would also appreciate an all day battery

  11. Mirko Surf&Run

    “As is usually the case, I’ve had ZERO dropouts on any of my workouts with the Garmin FR945 LTE. This is pretty similar with most recent Garmin watches (compared to the first few models of watches where they added music connectivity). These days, most headphone companies that focus on sports, and most watch companies that do music, have figured out how to work together happily. And in this case, it was indeed happily.”
    Unfortunately I can’t agree with this.
    It’s about two years that I’m using the Jbird Vista with my Garmin Forerunner 945. For the first year everything was good and I had zero disconnection, like you describe. But it’s about 5–6 months that I can’t use them anymore with the Garmin FR945. I have continuous dropouts. The Garmin forum of the Forerunner 945 is full of threads about Garmin and the Jbird Vista and this problem. Garmin admitted that there is a problem, but it’s not able to fix it. In the meanwhile, the Jbird Vista funtioned perfectly fine with my phone, my computer and my TV. So it’s only a Garmin-Jbird Vista problem.
    Two weeks ago my right earbud stopped functioning completely, and Amazon sent me immediately a replacement.
    The new buds have the same behaviour: they work perfectly fine with phone and TV, but as soon as I connect them with the Garmin FR945, after about 15 minutes I have a disconnection.
    So I’m not using the Vista any more.
    By the way, I have another pair of earbuds (Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless) and they work fine with the Garmin FR945.
    So it’s a incompatibility between Jbird Vista and Garmin.
    I read in the Garmin forum that Jbird is also aware of the problem, but told that it could be a lack of compatibility with the Garmin hardware.
    I repeat, Garmin forums are full of people that are very disappointed. I don’t use the Vista any more, because for the normal use I use the Sennheiser, for running I don’t use the Sennheiser but I don’t wear the Vista any more because I’m sick and tired about the continuous disconnections. If you want, I can put the link of the Garmin forum threads.
    So if you have a Garmin watch, I would advice not to buy Jbird earbuds, till Garmin and Jbird find a solution.
    The problem was introduced by Garmin with a firmware update and never went away. Till that firmware update, the Vista functioned very good for running with the Fr945.

    • Zmlick

      As noted above, I have noticed exactly the same issue. Thought it might be my hardware. Thanks for the input

    • Sammykins

      This ’ drop to silence’ with some jaybird headphones is an ongoing issue under discussion on the Garmin forums and seemingly under (hopefully active!) investigation by Garmin support. 945 platform (so fenix 6 too I assume) Bluetooth stack 6.0 or newer has this issue. Workaround is manual Bluetooth stack downgrade to 5.04 but lord knows what untested world of regression risk you enter by doing this! I’d be anxious that these new buds might exhibit the same behaviour with the 945, although given the new vistas will doubtless use a new Bluetooth platform (but possibly reuse other code) it’s not certain the incompatibility will persist. Nonetheless I’d be interested in any testing anyone has done here?

    • Weird. In my case I had zero dropouts at all with the FR945 LTE. Both in workouts, and also just using it around the office/house to send music to the Vista 2.

      I don’t know if perhaps the FR945 LTE is on different firmware for BT audio, or the Vista 2 has different somethings, or what.

    • Didn’t have a problem with a Fenix 6S Plus with the first Vista’s BUT I do have the same problem with JBL Reflect Mini NC TWS, it drops a few seconds of audio a couple of times each run.

  12. Chillfmm

    At least in Spain you are not allowed (you will be fined and might loose driving license points) to wear headphones wile riding a bike on a road. I will be surprised if it is the only country in the world where it is not allowed as you potentially loose awarness of the surrounding traffic.

    • itsMEL

      Where I am, it’s not legal to ride on the road with both ears blocked, but you can ride with a single ear bud in. That’s what I do with my Vista 1s on the bicycle to listen to audio books or music. That works and provides solid awareness of what’s going on nearby.

    • The Real Bob

      I always thought that wasn’t a very good law to pass. I understand on the face of it, it seems reasonable. But what you are essentially saying is if you are deaf you can’t ride a bike. Now, I know the argument will be that “well, deaf people are used to being deaf so its fine, etc”. But I would argue that someone could learn to ride with earbuds pretty quickly. Aslo, what if they are on a bike path/road in the middle of nowhere? What if they have radar on their bike and a mirror? This whole things of wanting to ban something is just a little much.

      That said, I only ever ride with one bud in, but mostly just use my aftershokz. I only, normally use an earbud in the winter when wearing a hat, aftershokz wont work with a had on. Too bulky.

  13. Andrew Ziminski

    Literally bough a pair of vistas after my Bose Soundspoort dies (sweat)…
    I guess I’m using the 14 day return policy. 2 Questions:
    1. Is it worth an extra $50 (80% of use is in the office), the other 20% are ultra-runs where the battery would be appreciated
    2. Any word on concurrent pairing (switch from music on computer to phone call without issues)

  14. okrunner

    I had/have the original Jaybird X and it still won’t completely die though battery life is much less than new. I purchased the Tarah Pro’s about a year ago and way happy. Have you compared the Vista/Vista 2 against the Tarah Pro? Certainly the Tarah Pro has longer battery life and reviews indicate bette sound. Plus, the Tarah Pro is down to $129. For running earbuds seem great but I really like a teathered earbud cycling, so I can take it out, let it dangle and not worry about dropping a $100 earbud on the tarmac at 20 miles an hour.

    Any thoughts on the Tarah Pro? Have they sent one to test?

  15. Kyle

    Can you elaborate on dealing with multiple devices? Jaybird used to support multipoint but dropped it on the Tarah Pro and Vista 1 and while they can pair up to 8 devices they only connect to one at a time and it usually requires manual intervention to switch devices. Compare to earlier Jaybirds which can actually connect to two devices at once and they’ll play audio from either (not at the same time obviously) without ever having to look at Bluetooth settings.

    Lack of multipoint is “pretty normal” with true wireless earbuds but it is a step backwards from a few years ago. Some like Jabra still manage to support it.

    Nice touch on the braille on the L and R.

    • Yeah, as noted in the review, it doesn’t seem to correctly transition back to my phone seamlessly. The Garmin properly grabs it each time, but the phone requires manual takeover. Whereas my PowerBeats Pro correctly auto-take-over on the phone.

  16. Kyle

    I used the Tarah Pro for almost two years. Amazing battery life (14+ hours) but eventually the left earbud got quiet and soon after the battery would only last a few hours.

    Got a replacement from Jaybird and that one had a dud battery on delivery. Plenty of reviews on Amazon saying the same so seems like a bad batch was manufactured about a year ago.

    Jaybird then replaced that with a Vista and I think they sound better than the Tarah Pro as the wings really help to get a good fit. The battery cut from 14>6 hours is pretty big but you can quick charge one bud while still wearing the other to keep going for as long as the Tarah Pro. Not entirely convinced on the sweat proofness as I have had them die and need to dry out before they work again.

    I think I will also get the Vista 2 for two reasons:
    1) Upgraded sweat resistance
    2) The fit is so good for me it really does need the passthrough feature.

  17. Rob

    You’re being too kind here. Two of the marquee features on a two hundred dollar pair of headphones simply don’t work should be a dealbreaker.

    Interested in your test of of phone call quality. That’s an area that Jaybird has had challenges in the past.

    • I’m not sure how I’m being too kind. I literally started the review in the second paragraph saying the “features were essentially useless”, and then finished the summary with the same. For clarity, it’s incredibly rare that I call-out features as being useless in the opener of my post.

      That said, there’s tons of people who simply don’t care about running and cycling. They’re at the gym, where wind noise isn’t an issue. And thus, they’re looking for durable buds that stand up to lots of sweat/etc.

  18. Tony

    In case you didn’t notice, the L and R on the headphones themselves also say L and R in braille, respectively. I think that’s a pretty cool feature.

  19. Simone

    Hey Ray, how would you rate the call quality (for both mics and audio)?

  20. Glen

    I’m on the lookout for some headphones that don’t generate a load of wind noise when travelling at 40km/h+ – my current Bose Soundsport have a big blocky design that juts out from my ears.

    As far as I can tell, there aren’t any headphone makers who are taking aerodynamics into account in their designs.

    I don’t even really care whether they’re true wireless, linked together, neckband-style or what – I just want to be able to hear stuff when descending!

  21. Matty

    I bought my Jaybird Vista during black friday sales last year (it was cheaper than Tarah Pro).

    Use them mostly for sports, primarily running. Very satisfied with sound, moderately with fit (wings are ok, but it gets painful after prolonged use), unfortunately it has no proper noise cancelling for use on airplane or train. I wouldnt dare to use them for cycling (due to fit and danger of them falling out). Mediocre to use in windy conditions (too much noise), therefore also not good to use while cycling. Calls are really disappointing, as mic picks all the sounds, including wind.

    I’m actually interested in new generation, mostly regarding the active noise cancelling, better mic and battery life. Though, as my runs are between 1-2 hours i never had an issue with battery life. A real downer is the fact that little has been improved regarding wind noise reduction.

  22. Hessel

    Hi Ray, how do you find it handles the wind of the fan on the turbo? For example the Vacmaster you’ve got produces quite an air flow.

  23. Udo Hansen

    Jaybird Vista 1 had a Big problem for now a year connection with Garmin Fenix 6 x. The Music stops all the time. Is Vista 2 for Garmin users ?

    • As shown in the review, I used the Vista 2 without issue with a Garmin FR945 LTE. I didn’t try a Fenix 6X (there’s some comments here that others are having issues with the Fenix 6 on the Vista 1 as well).

    • Volker

      So it shouldn`t be a problem for you to try that out (please)?

    • Udo Hansen

      For us users who only use Vista with running and always only with the watch … Fenix 6x Pro solar… so we dont need to switch to the phone.
      Therefore …. Are Vista 2 Without problems then ?
      Im not sure to conclude on other watch like FR945 i think it is different than the Fenix 6x Pro serie

    • Struan Lownie

      There a long thread on the Garmin Forum about the Fenix 6 and Jaybird headsets

      It does include a request from a Garmin staff member to report your issues so they can suitable prioritize

      link to forums.garmin.com

  24. Volker

    WTH is almost every company able to buy and use USB-C, except Garmin? (:
    Is that just too durable for them? Or is Apple holding the patent and has Garmin ruled out?

    • Not sure. It’s pretty silly.

      Though, plenty of companies have botched it too. We saw that with Insta360’s Go2, and even the Wahoo BOLT 2 is arguably poorly implemented USB-C charging (for example, you can’t use a Mac charger to charge it). A past DCR Reader in a comment somewhere outlined the very specific thing (from an engineering standpoint) that companies do to screw this up, and mostly sounds like a ‘first timer’ type problem. Sigh.

    • Simon

      Nah Garmin just suck. USB is an open standard, everyone can use it. Garmin has decided to not use it and use their own. Just like Apple (Though Apple have started using USB Type C in some of their products)

    • Garmin hasn’t used their own thing, they just haven’t done USB-C. They use micro-USB on their Edge units.

      If you’re talking wearables, then nobody with any smarts uses USB-C or Micro-USB on the watch itself. None of the port designs last in a wearable format due to sweat and other crap getting in there, as has been well proven.

  25. Chris

    Hi Ray et Al.

    How did you find the calling in the 2’s? I have the original vistas and a big complaint is that anytime I use the earphones to make calls, it picks up a lot of wind noise and the person at the other end can’t hear me. Has this improved with the Vista 2’s?

    Cheers!

  26. Brian

    I am curious about durability. I too have tendency to kill things early with sweat. I have killed every version of Jaybird headphones that I have owned and always just outside of warranty. The old lifetime warranty was great until they told me that I couldn’t exchange anymore.

  27. Patrick Ricci

    Sorry Swing and Miss on Vista 2.

    The price is too for this Runner.- I will stick with my Jaybird Run…

    It seams manufacture is in a rush to bring new products out yearly instead of developing a a quality product to last multliple years…..

    Patrick

  28. Adrien

    Thanks for the update on wind calls. I am still searching for Bluetooth earbuds, which I can use both for sports and for phones calls e.g. on bike commutes. Do you have recommendations?

  29. Nate C

    Thanks DCR for the review. But, I noticed no mention about Jaybird customer service in the review, which is unfortunately an important omission with Jaybird headphones. I used to be a huge fan of Jaybird headphones, having owned at least 6 pairs over the last decade or so (some pairs concurrently as my indoor training/biking vs running pair), and recognizing the audio quality seemed to be a notch a over cheaper models. But quality has taken a toll since they were purchased by Logitech (with 3 pairs of different models all failing with the same symptoms over the course of the last year, 2 pairs were “refurbished”, one new).

    Search the internet or Jaybird forums for the “green led of death” and you’ll find countless people with a pair of Jaybird headphones which suddenly are completely unresponsive, won’t turn on, and immediately show a green LED (charged) upon plugging them in on the charging cable.

    Back in the old days, if you had an in-warranty problem, it was easy to get a replacement pair of headphones, but not so, anymore. I bought my most recent pair new from Amazon and they died suddenly with the green led of death after less than 4 months and customer service was unwilling to replace or repair because I hadn’t purchased from the correct “authorized” Amazon seller. I decided that Jaybird didn’t really care about earning my continued support after that, and swore off buying any more pairs, given there are hundreds of other options.

    At Jaybird pricing, you need to get 3-4 years out of a pair, but based on my experience and hundreds of people in the Jaybird forums with similar issues, I don’t think I’d be confident to take a $200 bet. (not to mention the fact that the lithium ion rechargeable batteries degrade and you’ll get less than a long bike ride of listening time by then)…

    I’ve since started treating workout headphone purchases as “consumables” and have had excellent experience purchasing cheaper models on Amazon in the $20-30 price range, with a “Boltune” model giving me good sound quality, no dropouts and all-day battery life- they usually come with at least a year warranty and if the battery degrades after a year, or I lose them its not a big deal, whereas buying a new $200 headphone after a year is painful.

    Also, I can’t quite understand the draw for in-ear wireless headphones. I much prefer the wireless models with a cable between the two ear-buds because
    1) you’re less likely to have one fall out or get knocked out and lose it since it will dangle by the cable
    2) if you need to take one or both buds out to talk to someone you don’t have to find a place/pocket to put them that you won’t lose them, since the wire can just hang around your neck.
    3) less issues with dropouts/reception of one bud
    4) control buttons on full wireless models usually require pressure to activate the button which jams the headphone deeper into your ear or use too-sensitive touch controls, while the wired between the ears models have a control box that doesn’t need to be jammed into the ear.

    Anyway, just a few thoughts/experiences to share with your readers as they make their own headphone decisions.

  30. Zach Sandoe

    So the Garmin and Jaybird Bluetooth connectivity issues have been worked out with the Vista 2? I had the Vista 1 for about two weeks and returned them due to connection issues. With my FR945.

  31. In your opinion, what are the best cycling / running wireless headphones out there? Where do these rank?

  32. Ted Jarrett

    I had to return my Vista 2’s for the reasons stated above in regards to wind noise and poor call quality. I have a set of MPOWs bought on Amazon for $19 that are far and away superior in call quality.

  33. Alexander Larssen

    Hi! First of all, love your channel! My question to you is: I can’t fin the “Off” setting in Jaybird Vista 2 sound management. The buds are updated to the new firmware. Any suggestions?

    Alexander from Norway

  34. Marcus

    How does this Jaybird compare to the Sony WF-1000XM4?

  35. Nicolas Soenen

    Not sure if this is the relevant place to put the following comment (sorry if it isn’t) but I want to give a headsup for potential buyers of these earphones in the benelux area (I’m located in Belgium). I have ordered a pair of these one week ago on the website of Jaybird. These were supposedly delivered to my front door the next day by UPS. At the time of the supposed delivery I was at home. Nobody rang my door, it wasn’t put in my mailbox and it was nowhere to be found. I contacted UPS who said I have to contact the seller of the product, which is ultimately logitech. After trying a couple of numbers for customer support on the logitech website that were simply not working I finally found someone from the customer services in Switzerland who told me to contact UPS and file a claim. Thus, I’m going around in circles, having paid for a product that never arrived and nobody willing to take responsibility for the screwup. To say the least this is some very poor customer service.

  36. Matthew

    Any thoughts on the Vista 2 (or air buds in general) vs Aftershokz Aeropex for running and cycling? I have Powerbeats Pro and every criticism is spot on, especially the charging issues. I’m looking to update to a new sports headphone and trying to decide between the two. I’d also consider the the Tarah Pro, but I think the wired headphone ship has sailed. From a cycling perspective, the Aftershokz seem to be the go-to headphone for my friends. Reviews suggest the Aeropex corrects the vibration sensation of bone conducting headphones, which is my biggest sticking point. I assume the Aeropex resolves the wind issues too?

  37. Scott Hunter

    I’d be interested to know how these compare to Aftershokz Aeropex for cycling. My biggest complaint with the Aftershokz is that you can’t really hear podcasts or talk radio when you are moving at speeds of more than about 18mph because they offer no noise isolation from wind, unless you turn the volume right up but I always like using a low volume with earbuds. With ANC and SurroundSense switched off, do the Vista 2s fare any better?

  38. Jim

    If the feature that lets me hear what’s going on around me while running and biking does not work, I have to pass on these, especially at $200. Is there a good alternative that has that feature working well?

  39. OSW

    Love your site … awesome reviews here 👍

    Making phone calls during running and biking is a hell, specially when you training several hours a day.
    I have tried Jaybird vista, Jabra 75xt and Aftershockz, they all suck (you can hear people … but they don’t hear you because of the wind condition).

    My best option was to use a Jaybird Tarah and drop the mic in my t-shirt when picking a call …

    @DCR: I’am trying to solve that for years, do you have any idea / advise / review ?

    Thanks for the good work.
    Cheers,
    OSW