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A lot of people loved Jaybird’s original— they really lock in your ears for sporting activities and were quite durable. The reception for the more feature-rich buds hasn’t been as strong and part of the reason for that is their higher $200 price tag. However, the for Black Friday at various retailers now, including and . (Amazon only has the white and black colors, however, not the blue.) At that price, they’re a good value.
Known for their secure fit, decent sound and durability, Jaybird’s Vista 2 buds have a couple of key upgrades missing from the original: active noise canceling and a transparency mode called SurroundSense, which allows you to hear the outside world, an important safety feature for runners and bikers.
Jaybird has added some fabric to the outside of the buds, which the company says helps cut down on wind noise a little (think of the fabric as a dampener), but I wouldn’t say it cuts it down as much as advertised, particularly when biking. There is an ear-detection sensor, so your music automatically pauses when you take the buds out of your ears, and these have an IPX68 water resistance rating, which means they’re both dust-proof and fully waterproof. Jaybird says they’re also sweat-proof, crush-proof and drop-proof. And the compact case is now splash-proof and dust-resistant, with an IP54 rating.
They sound quite good once you tweak the EQ settings to your liking, but their sound quality isn’t quite up to the level of some other premium earbuds in the $200 price range. Their noise canceling, transparency mode and voice-calling are decent though unspectacular (the AirPods perform better in all departments). But if you’re buying these, you’re buying them for the secure fit and durability. They may not be a good value at $200, but at $130, they’re an enticing deal.