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Review: Beats Flex Offer a Great Entry Point to Apple's Wireless Earphone Ecosystem for Just $50

fourthtunz

macrumors 65816
Jul 23, 2002
1,233
672
Maine
Apple releases new chargers and earphones At the same time it removes them from the iPhone box. What a coincidence!....
Exactly! Apple removes the chargers and earphones(which prob costs them $5 to make) and includes a cable
90% of people cannot charge their phone with :(
So you buy the $1399 iPhone max and then you need to spend at least $30 for a charger and headphones.
I love my iPhone but damn!
 
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Remy149

macrumors 6502
Oct 20, 2016
373
683
Yes an obvious move.
Only why do Lightning on the iPhone 12's while USB-C on these, Apple?!

Complete and utterly stupid. As per usual. 🙄
A lot of android users buy beats headphones now that there is a pair starting at $50 they will really sell. Especially considering Best Buy and others will probably ha s great discounts on them.
 
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mono1980

macrumors 6502
Feb 15, 2005
384
126
Lansing, MI
Yeah and the Skullcandy's don't have batteries so they won't be destroying the environment after a year.

This whole "environmental" BS spiel from Apple this iPhone launch is such a sham. Ala, AirPods, AirPods Pro, Beats Flex. Such a waste. Consumable, to the MAX

You literally make more waste from your going to a fast food place once, or even eating a single meal with food you bought at a grocery store than you from these tiny earbuds. A paperclip you throw in the trash has more metal than one of these earbuds. Get some perspective...
 
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citysnaps

macrumors 604
Oct 10, 2011
6,659
11,319
San Francisco
Exactly! Apple removes the chargers and earphones(which prob costs them $5 to make) and includes a cable 90% of people cannot charge their phone with :(

Think about it... Apple knows most people have a Lightning - USB-A cable. For those that have already moved to USB-C, such as myself, Apple includes a Lightning - USB-C cable. Easy.

Life goes on.
 
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spitcoff

macrumors member
Jul 24, 2005
51
27
I have had 2 pairs of Beats X and love them. I am not a frequent headphone user so they are more than sufficient for me. Only reason I have had 2 is I lost my 1st pair. When and if they break or I lose them again ill definitely get a pair of these at that price.
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
Good thorough review.
I’m looking forward to my flex arriving this week to replace my broken beatsX. With the flex they seemed to have addressed all the design issues I had with the beatsX, and the low price and increased battery life is a pleasant shock. That auto pause is a nifty addition too. Would someday also love auto mono sound when only one ear bud is in. The only thing I’m super bummed about is it not having the H1 chip. I move from device to device a lot throughout the day so I was excited when I saw the automatic switching feature announced. I would have gladly paid more to have the chip upgraded in these. But for my uses, the form factor and battery life of the flex still comes out way above other options.

Edit- and I hope the build quality is improved over the beatsX.
 
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hirsthirst

macrumors 6502
Nov 3, 2008
385
454
UK
I'm sceptical these will sound better than any number of cheapo bluetooth earphones on Amazon - I think my last lot (with ear clips) were about £18. $50 is a weird price point - too expensive to be disposable & too cheap to be good.
 
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devonair

macrumors newbie
Oct 23, 2017
6
8
Huntington Beach
The price was low enough for me to add a set to my cart when I preordered my iPhone. I had previously owned a pair of BeatsX's that I was mostly happy with until the day they randomly stopped working just outside of the one-year warranty -- a flaw that I've come to discover is not that uncommon if you go by the complaints of other BeatsX owners online. The similarity between the X and Flex had me second guess, but if $50 gets me something that lasts a year and is more convenient (to me, at least) than Airpods, then I might not be so upset about spending another $50 next year if these crap out like the X's did -- especially if they update them with an H1 (or H2 by then?) chip.
 
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FightTheFuture

macrumors 65816
Oct 19, 2003
1,365
1,710
that town east of ann arbor
These barely look any better than $4.98 Skullcandys at Walmart.

They probably sound only marginally better too.
You can't tell how headphones sound from a picture. BeatsX are excellent headphones.
Apple releases new chargers and earphones At the same time it removes them from the iPhone box. What a coincidence!....
This whole "environmental" BS spiel from Apple this iPhone launch is such a sham.
Apple will not make or sell 100s of millions of Beats Flex headphones like the iPhone. That's the difference.
 
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80s Fan

macrumors member
Jan 31, 2008
66
7
Does anyone know if these will read incoming texts to you as AirPods do? Personally, that's a favorite feature of AirPods.
 
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GordonGekko999

macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2009
386
63
No thanks. There is no point in these when we can get decent true wireless ones for around $30 now.

I refuse to pay for expensive headphones (which is one of the main reasons I refused to go back to iPhone when the 7 came out).

I neither need the higher-end features nor care what people think of me and my cheap audio devices.

I guess I'm the one with "courage".

EDIT:
I'm not saying paying more for features is wrong, I'm just saying I won't/don't need them.

AirPods and the like are nice for what they are, even if I personally don't think they're $150-$250 worth of nice.

To each their own, though.

Can you provide a list of wireless earbuds or headphones for $30?
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
could they make those any uglier? they look like the old earbuds I had ages ago and I bet the wire pulls them out of your ear the same way
Can't workout in them as the loops bang around,
A long wire will pull ear buds out but these are short. In the beatsX, the wires were short and while one ear bud was fine for me, the other one had volume/playback controls on the wire which bounced around while running and pulled the ear bud out. Looks like they realized the issue and fixed the design for the flex by moving the controls to the neck base.

These barely look any better than $4.98 Skullcandys at Walmart.

They probably sound only marginally better too.
Are the 4.98 skullcandys even Bluetooth (much less have the W1 chip)?? Tech costs money...?
And what are you basing your “probably” sound comparison on? Nothing?

This whole "environmental" BS spiel from Apple this iPhone launch is such a sham. Ala, AirPods, AirPods Pro, Beats Flex. Such a waste. Consumable, to the MAX
I do wish companies would stop making batteries irreplaceable, even for small devices. Horrible for the environment and waste of money. At the VERY least make the battery and entire device recyclable.

I'm genuinely surprised that Apple sells any wireless headphone with a W1 chip in it for that cheap, I'm similarly stunned by the HomePod mini coming in at $99. Apple are clearly doubling down on getting people into the ecosystem with these products.


I wouldn't have thought that the crossover of people who own multiple Apple devices but can't afford better headphones than these to use with them is very high. They'll go down well with teenagers presumably, but they don't really come to life unless you're also using them with other Apple devices, by which point you're probably not going to want a pair of ugly and bad-sounding exercise buds.
Personally, I just love the form factor. I wouldn’t mind paying more for more premium features (and I guess design) but as it is, these are the ONLY headphones in the lineup that fit my needs.

Apple releases new chargers and earphones At the same time it removes them from the iPhone box. What a coincidence!....
You could also look at it like Apple removed the included cheap wired headphones that less people were using, and so to compensate they drastically reduced the entry price of the next wireless headphones they made?

too expensive to be disposable & too cheap to be good.
All apple’s wireless headphones are disposable. And not all headphones need to sound amazing.
 
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GordonGekko999

macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2009
386
63
Had beatsX, which these are basically. Hated them. Ugly loops rubbing and bouncing off your cheeks. Can't workout in them as the loops bang around, when you lie down they fall off your neck. Just poor design all the way around.

I just wanted a no frills bluetooth earbuds for my Ipod Nano 7th generation, currently when I do yardwork the earbuds sometimes get ripped out. I don't want Airpods as I don't like the way they fit in the ear but I definitely don't want the wires of the Beats Flex bouncing around my face, this never happens with my cheap wired Sony earbuds.

Simple yardword solution for now, wired earbuds go under my shirt to avoid them getting ripped out.
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
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2,592
I just wanted a no frills bluetooth earbuds for my Ipod Nano 7th generation, currently when I do yardwork the earbuds sometimes get ripped out. I don't want Airpods as I don't like the way they fit in the ear but I definitely don't want the wires of the Beats Flex bouncing around my face, this never happens with my cheap wired Sony earbuds.

Simple yardword solution for now, wired earbuds go under my shirt to avoid them getting ripped out.
Not sure the flex wires would get in the way for you. They never really got in my way on my beatsX. But it seems like your current solution works well, so if it ain’t broke.. But if you do end up wanting wireless, you could also probably pick up a pair of cheap true wireless ear buds for around the same price as the flex.
 
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GordonGekko999

macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2009
386
63
Not sure the flex wires would get in the way for you. They never really got in my way on my beatsX. But it seems like your current solution works well, so if it ain’t broke.. But if you do end up wanting wireless, you could also probably pick up a pair of cheap true wireless ear buds for around the same price as the flex.

Yes, they might not be as obtrusive as the quoted poster suggested, from the picture though they appear to be more in your face than the really thin wired Sony earbuds I currently have.

And right now Best Buy has the Sony copy of the Beats Flex on sale for $18, probably can't tell the audio difference.
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
Yes, they might not be as obtrusive as the quoted poster suggested, from the picture though they appear to be more in your face than the really thin wired Sony earbuds I currently have.

And right now Best Buy has the Sony copy of the Beats Flex on sale for $18, probably can't tell the audio difference.
$18 wow nice price. And with your nano, the W1 chip is probably irrelevant.
 
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Constable Odo

macrumors 6502
Mar 28, 2008
461
252
Apple releases new chargers and earphones At the same time it removes them from the iPhone box. What a coincidence!....

Apple is saving the planet for you and your children to buy more Apple products far into the future. Don't you feel fortunate?
 
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211

macrumors member
Feb 27, 2020
42
51
51.531011,-0.023979
On my third BeatsX. Finally, this one is made well and has lasted longer than the previous 2 put together. It looks like the build quality of them were hit or miss.

A shame the on/off is still a button. I was hoping it would be a switch so I wouldn’t have to look at it to know if it’s on or off
 
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Jxdawg

macrumors 6502
Dec 17, 2019
252
205
While the W1 is nice, why not get true wireless, great sound quality, touch controls, better battery life, and...wait for it...ANC. All this for nearly the same price found in the Jlab Jbuds Air ANC.

I mean honestly, I would consider the Beats Flex if it wasn’t for the wire.
 
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CostaMoses

macrumors regular
Feb 4, 2014
102
45
I’ve had a set of BeatsX for a few years now and they’ve been great. No issues with them and good sound quality. If they break I might just replace them with these.
I've had a set since October 2018 and they are still working great, 2 years later. As soon as they kick the bucket, I'll be happy to buy a new pair of Flex at $50.

Does anyone know if the "fins" from Beats X will fit on the new Flex? That is the make or break point for me. The fins hold them in my ear perfectly, even if I want to pull them slightly out to have a conversation or hear what's going on around me, and they are so comfortable.
 
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jinnj

macrumors 6502
Dec 9, 2011
384
240
That's great. I'm on my 4th (or 5th, I've lost count) pair of BeatsX, which all had battery issues after six months to a year of use.

Next time my BeatsX die I'll give these a chance. 150 and even 90 was way too much for the Beats X, but 50 is great if the battery issues have been solved.
I have the BeatsX for 3 years and only recently started having issues with the battery (3 hours). Was about to get the battery replaced by Apple for $56 dollars until they just released these.
 
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