One thing that sports earphones have to be able to do is stay in your ears. Yes, sounding amazing is all well and good, but not if the earbud keeps dropping out. Skullcandy are obviously staffed by gym bunnines as their XTfree Bluetooth earphones come packing three proprietary designs – FitFin, StickyGels, Fix – all to ensure that you get the best fitting earbuds on the market.
Skullcandy appears to be quite sure of themselves with their take on sports earphones. The XTfree wireless sport earbuds promises that you’ll be free to move through your workout and, thanks to TripleLock security, your earphones will stay put.
Let’s have a look how the XTfree performs in reality.
Skullcandy XTfree design
The Skullcandy XTfree sport earbuds have been designed to be your go-to workout bud(s).
Looking at the business end you can tell that quite a lot of thought has gone in to keeping these things in your lugholes.
To start with the earbuds use ‘StickyGels’ tech. Skullcandy says that this particular silicone and shape is 30% more grippy than regular gels.
As you are expected to be wearing these when working out, Skullcandy uses their ‘PureClean’ tech. This is blended into their silicone ear gels to keep your gear feeling and smelling fresh.
They also come with a natty little mesh-covered pouch to store them in.
Skullcandy XTfree performance
The earbuds feature MicroSport Bluetooth technology that is built into the earbud so that it allows for a lower profile and a less intrusive set of earbuds.
Skullcandy states 6 hours of battery life and I have to agree with that. My review device got me through 2 lunch breaks and 5 commute journeys which all adds up to just over 6 hours, to my reckoning.
Thanks to the FitFin, StickyGels, and Fix technology they certainly provided a snug fit. At no point did the XTfree plop out of my ears. Granted, I don’t run or use a gym but they withstood my ‘headbang challenge’. Classic moshing, circle/windmill, and pogoing could not budge these buds.
Skullcandy didn’t forget about making these sound good just because they spent time on the fit.
I can’t say that these are audiophile IEMs but they do have great sound for pumping out your motivational playlists.
Bass is rich and firm but not as heavy handed as some sports/urban earphones. There’s decent isolation but Skullcandy’s ambient ear gels purposely allows some outside in to keep you safe on your run or cycle.
Skullcandy XTfree review conclusion
The Skullcandy XTfree are a sensible purchase for active types. I have been impressed by how these stayed in my ears. They are sweat and rain resistant and, thanks to the PureClean tech, will not get funky in the wrong way.
Sensibly priced with good audio, I can heartily recommend the XTfree to all you gym bunnies out there. To my mind, their only real rival is the Gibson Trainer, and they’re about 20 quid more.