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4W Review: Bell’O Digital Headphones BDH-821

What is it?

The BDH-821 are over-the-ear headphones that can be used with Android and iOS devices. They include in-line volume controls and a 24k gold-plated plug.

What does it do?

The BDH-821 delivers solid stereo sound at an affordable price. The BDH-821 has solid construction with attractive black and chrome accents (white & chrome also available). They are foldable and include a microfiber travel bag that doubles as a screen cleaning cloth. The tangle-free cord is attached to the headphones but still has substantial length for comfortable listening and includes the in-line control switch and microphone to take incoming calls.

What's wrong with it?

The overall feel of the headphones are a bit “plasticky” but do not take that as a sign of inferior quality as it was just something I noticed when comparing to our in-studio headphones.I think the feeling is also reinforced by how incredibly light they are.

The in-line controls have a slight learning curve when skipping tracks since it is handled by one button. I feel the controls would have benefited from rewind/fast forward buttons as well as volume control.

Individuals with larger ears may not find comfort in the slightly smaller ear cups.

Android users will continuously fight to skip tracks as the controls do not play nice with Android devices, which is odd since the play and pause functionality work fine. iOS users will not experience these issues.

Why do you/don't you need it?

The BDH-821 are a solid purchase for someone looking for some nice sound at an affordable price. Their design is subdued and not garish, which may attract key demographics that have no desire to stick out.  Bottom line: you get nice audio quality without attracting too much attention, which for commuters will be quite welcome. Their travel friendly construction can take abuse as well. I cannot recommend these enough for commuters.

My Take:

When you hear the name Bell'O, you would probably associate it with home theater furniture which is correct since that is what Bell'O is known for. I was surprised to see them at CE Week showcasing some extremely polished pieces of hardware for their Bell'O Digital division. I initially wanted to review their in-ear headphones but the design of the BDH-821 got my attention as well, which is something I am sure consumers will experience. The overall design was attractive but subdued which is nice when you are in a gym or on mass transit.  I put the headphones through their paces not only in gym but also during my shows as well and I was pleased to not have my ears get hot or sweaty which can attributed to the extremely comfortable ear cups. Low quality earphone cups usually get discolored from sweat and the sound quality takes a hit, but the BDH-821 cups retained their luster and looked as good as new even after a week or two of abuse. The leather-like band also held up nicely but the chrome accents showed a bit of wear after the week in the gym with some loss of color and a bit of fading. Sound quality is negligible when tweaking the EQ on your hardware, but when the EQ is off the bass is firm yet not overpowering. High frequency sound is also pleasing with no audio bleed from the ear cups. Bell'O Digital surprised me with their venture into audio but the bigger surprise came from how much I enjoyed using these headphones. They are not without their flaws of course but they are far from crappy. Their affordable price point of $49.99  and deceptive ruggedness makes them a solid pick up.  I have no problem recommending these if you are in the market for some nice over-the-ear cans priced below $100.

Product Photos


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