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What Run Oregon is Trying: Kicker EB300 Bluetooth Sports Earbuds

So I’m one of those weird runners. You know, the ones that don’t wear any headphones when they run. Part of that is for safety reasons – so I can hear what is going on around me on the busy streets I run on; part of it is because I just never wear headphones, mostly because I have tiny ears. Like when I go to the doctor office, they have to pull out the kid’s size ear instruments because even the small adult size is too big. In any case, I have been wondering if running with headphones would help me increase my pace (as in play some fast paced music!) so I gave the Kicker EB300 Bluetooth Sports Earbuds a try.

The name brand Kicker reminds me of back in high school when all the cool kids had the fancy Kicker bass subwoofers and how I always wanted one, even still actually, all grown up. I had no idea that Kicker even made earbuds and headphones, but they have been for quite some time. The EB300 Bluetooth Sports Earbuds are Kicker’s entry into “active lifestyle” headphones.

The EB300’s can easily connect to any music or phone source with Bluetooth capabilities, are sweat and water resistant and offer a lightweight, durable and comfortable design. They provide an 8 hour battery life and it’s very easy to change the volume, tracks, or even accept phone calls with the control pod on the back. The EB300’s provide wrap around the ear security with a tightening strap on the back to make an even more secure fit. Kicker sends along three different size silicon earbud tips so that you can get the exact fit in your ears and a very nice carrying case and a micro USB charger.

I have to say that I was impressed with the way that the earbuds came packaged and especially with the wire connecting the earbuds together. A lot of my friend’s earbuds seem to be very loose and flimsy wires – you could tell Kicker went all in on quality. Charging up the earbuds was very easy and relatively fast. Once they were ready to go, I synced it to my phone without issue and put on the medium size tips – it was a bit awkward for me to get the earbuds on the first few times, but I soon figured it out. The medium size tips felt a bit loose, so I switched over to the small size tips which provided my tiny ears a much better fit. The earbuds themselves did feel like they stood out from my ear a bit more than others I had seen, even with the smaller tips.

I then began to figure out the controls. The control pod sits behind your right ear, so you have to memorize which buttons to hit. Again, it’s a little awkward at first, but once you get it sorted out, it seems to work out fairly well. I did notice that it was sometimes hard to get the tracks to change – you have to hold it down a few seconds and it sometimes did not respond or I would have to hold it for an extra long time. I had made a little running playlist on my phone of fast paced EDM/dance tracks – the overall sound quality was definitely very good, sharp and clear. I can say that the “bass” was super strong with no distortion at all, which was very nice!

It was now time to try them on a run!

3 and 5 mile treadmill: It was very cool to have music playing as I ran on the “dreadmill” instead of just the TV or the dishwasher or whatever. The earbuds stayed in place for the first 1.5 miles and then I noticed one side was starting to come loose. I tightened down the wires with the tightener and that helped quite a bit and I did not have any other issues with that. I did have some issues changing tracks as I ran and kept turning up and down the volume instead! Oops!

5 and 8 mile run outside: I was honestly a little concerned about running outside with earbuds in but I couldn’t figure out a way to just wear one side, so I decided to just go for it. Running with these in was definitely a change! After settling on a volume where I could still hear things going on around me, I did like it. It was nice to have something else besides my thoughts and listening to my breathing. Unfortunately, the earbuds and I did not seem to like each other for placement – after a few miles both times, I felt like they were going to fall out of my ear and had to keep stopping to push them back in. Even when I used the wire tightener, I still continued to have the same issue. In reading other reviews online, I do not appear to be alone in this issue. Maybe I’m not the only tiny eared runner!? Or maybe it’s because they sit a bit outside your ear that they get loose? I’m not really sure, but I wish that they had worked out better for outside running.

Overall, I really like these earbuds and I’m glad that they are my first pair ever. They have great sound and they are comfortable. I think that I would restrict them to treadmill (they’ll get a lot of use soon with winter weather coming!) or other indoor gym activities since the jostling around and constant head movement on the road seemed to make them fall out relativley easily. I would definitely recommend these earbuds to others and hey, I can finally say I have a Kicker product now! 🙂


Company: Kicker (Facebook)

Product: Kicker EB300 Bluetooth Sports Earbuds $79.95 (Amazon)

Specs:

  • Bluetooth wireless for connection to phones, tablets or notebooks
  • Speakerphone – answer calls/built-in microphone
  • 8 hour battery life
  • Hard carry case
  • Micro USB cable
  • 3 pairs of silicon tips

More about Kicker:

In 1973, KICKER’s Livin’ Loud legacy began as a two-man operation, hand-building professional-speaker systems in a narrow one-car garage. With very few resources and an intense love for music, company founder and current president Steve Irby invented the mobile-stereo enclosure market from his Stillwater, Oklahoma community, when he developed the Original KICKER. It was the first full frequency-range speaker box designed specifically for cars and trucks. From that historic moment, delivering concert-like audio quality across a wide volume range with renowned bass and accurate sound has always been the KICKER way.

KICKER products are currently sold by approximately 1,200 authorized dealers in the United States, and export sales are managed through a network of distributors serving over 2,000 dealers in approximately 50 countries. As audio continues to evolve, KICKER will continue to be on the industry’s cutting edge, pushing the limits of audio design technology, performance and integration in the quest for ultimate sound.


Thank you to Kicker for providing us with a sample pack. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

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