The Bose SoundTrue Ultra In-Ear are above-average headphones with a decent audio reproduction and a comfortable earbud fit. They're stable, portable and lightweight. They also barely leak, and won't be distracting to people around you, even at high volumes.
- Stable and comfortable fit.
- Above-average audio reproduction.
- Minimal leakage.
- Mediocre noise isolation.
The Soundtrue In-Ear look good and blend the simple aesthetic of the SoundSport with the earbud tip design of the QuietComfort 20. They deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience. They're small enough to fit in most pockets and come with a decent soft case to protect them from damage. Also, the button layout is efficient but feels a little small and cramped compared to the QC 20's control scheme. The cable is also a little bit thinner.
The Bose SoundTrue In-Ear have a simple design that looks good. They have relatively small earbuds and share the same StayHear+ earbud design as the QuietComfort 20. They have a stylish two-tone black and dark gray finish but are also available in a variety of colors with different accents.
The SoundTrue Ultra In-Ear are comfortable headphones. They have a hybrid earbud design that does not fully enter the ear canal, removing the pain that some listeners often feel from in-ear headphones. They deliver a comfortable listening experience. However, the earbuds sometimes move around while walking and causes slight discomfort and frustration especially, when it affects the audio.
The SoundTrue In-Ear have an above-average control scheme. They deliver call/music, track-skipping, and volume controls. Sadly, although the inline controls are similar to the Bose QuietComfort 20, their buttons are a little more cramped and don't have as good tactile feedback.
The SoundTrue In-Ear, like the QuietComfort 20, are quite stable and share the same StayHear+ earbud tip design. They won't easily fall out of your ears and are stable enough to use while running or exercising at the gym. However, the long audio cable could get hooked on something, which will pull the headphones out of your ears. Also, the earbuds sometimes move around while exercising, which slightly affects the audio and can be a bit frustrating.
These headphones are incredibly portable. Their small in-ear design can easily fit into a pocket or purse. They don't have a specific way to fold them into a more compact format, but the cable is not too long or thick and doesn't take too much space.
The SoundTrue IE have a decent soft case. The case fabric is tough and will protect your headphones from minor water and physical damage. They also don't add too much bulk to the headphones and can easily fit into your pocket.
Build quality is above-average for an in-ear/earbud headphone. The earbud tips although small look dense enough to be able to handle a fair amount of physical stress without getting damaged. The cable is also decently rubberized and should be able to handle regular wear and tear. However, the cable is not as thick as that of the QuietComfort 20, which have a very similar design, and are therefore slightly less durable.
The Bose SoundTrue In-Ear have an above-average and fairly balanced sound with little harmonic distortion. The bass rumbles and will please fans of bass-heavy music. Instruments and vocals are also well reproduced but are slightly overshadowed by the low-end. This makes the overall sound of these headphones a little dark and bass heavy. Sadly, due to their closed earbud tip design, they can't create a spacious soundstage.
Excellent Bass Range performance. Low-bass is well-extended down to 10Hz, and overemphasized by about 4dB adding to the thump of these headphones. Bass and high-bass are also slightly hyped, making the overall tonal quality of these headphones a little muddy and bass-heavy.
Excellent Mid Range performance. The response is quite flat, but slightly underemphasized, which shifts the balance towards the lower instruments.
Decent Treble. The overall response is quite consistent if very slightly underemphasized. Also, these headphones show a 5dB dip around 8KHz, which is quite the opposite of most in-ears we have measured. So if you have trouble using in-ears because they sound too sibilant and piercing, these ones may sound more pleasant.
Poor soundstage. Due to the earbud design, these earphones don't activate the filters of the pinna, and therefore their sound will be perceived to be coming from inside the head. Also, because of their seal, they isolate the music from the outside ambiance and don't interact with it acoustically either.
Excellent Imaging. These earphones reproduce the audio with minimal phase-shit, which makes the reproduction transparent and accurate. Additionally, the drivers of our test unit were nearly perfectly matched.
Average performance. The overall amount of harmonic distortion is very low, especially at 90dB SPL, and in the Bass Range. However, the overall amount of harmonic distortion in the Treble Range is slightly elevated. At 100dB SPL, there is a general rise in the amount harmonic distortion, but it remains within good values.
The SoundTrue In-Ear only have passive isolation. The earbud tip design blocks a decent amount of high-frequency noise. However, it's not sufficient for loud environments like being on a train or a noisy city commute. On the upside, the great seal created by the earbud tip design barely lets any sound escape. They won't disturb the people around you, even in quieter environments like an office or a library.
Decent isolation. These in-ear don't have active noise cancellation, and provide their isolation only passively. Yet, they are able to provide some degree of isolation to the Bass Range. In the Mid and Treble Ranges however, these in-ears' performance is above average.
Excellent leakage performance. Due to the in-ear design and great seal, these earphones have minimal leakage. Not only the profile of the leakage is quite narrow, only becoming significant above 4KHz, but the overall level of the leakage is quite low too.
No active features.
No compatible app.
In the box
- Bose SoundTrue Ultra In-Ear Headphones
- Earbud tips (x3)
- Carrying case