Jaybird Vista 2 review | TechRadar
The Jaybird Vista 2 are the true wireless successors to the Jaybird Vista, which launched back in 2020 and swiftly took a spot on our guide to the best running headphones you can buy today. The goal here remains the same; to offer workout-friendly buds that promise a secure fit, deliver strong audio quality, and give you plenty in the way of battery life too.
With the Vista 2, Jaybird has made some changes to the earbuds and the case design to bolster its ‘earth proof’ credentials, improved the audio quality, and added active noise cancellation to help drown out the world around you. It’s also given the battery a boost too.
That’s led to a bit of a bump up in the price compared to the original Jaybird Vista, though the vast improvements do make the Vista 2 an even stronger option for anyone looking for some of the best true wireless earbuds to get sweaty with – whether that’s for running, smashing out some HIIT training, or making a beeline for the weights section at the gym.
While the active noise cancellation isn’t as good as that offered by models like the Sony WF-1000XM3, the combination of fit, low profile design, sound quality, and solid battery life still make the Vista 2 some of the best truly wireless earbuds for working out as well as listening at home or in the office.
Jaybird Vista 2 price and release date
- Available now
- $199.99 / £189.99 (about AU$260)
The Jaybird Vista 2 launched on June 8 2021, and cost $199.99 / £189.99 (about AU$260). That’s up from the $179.99 / £159.99 / AU$299 price that the Jaybird Vista launched at, and puts them in competition with the likes of the Jabra Elite Active 75t, Sony WF-SP800N, and Bose Sport Earbuds.
They’re available in Black, Nimbus Gray, and Alloy Blue color options.
- Comfy fit
- IP68 water and dust resistance
- Touch sensitive controls
Go back to the early Jaybird years, before the Vista was on the scene and its wireless sports headphones had big appeal because they offered a good, secure fit. The original Jaybird Vista earbuds continued that trend with its wing and ear tips combo offering that reliable fit as well as an unobtrusive design.
With the Vista 2, Jaybird has largely stuck to the same look, making some small design tweaks that make them better suited for exercise. You get similarly sized earbuds with the set of ear tips and wing tips included in the box to make sure they can fit a wide range of ears. We were fortunate that the ones already plugged on straight out of the box gave us that secure fit.
For steady paced jogs, fast runs, and home HIIT workouts, these buds simply don’t budge. Jaybird also offers a Find My Fit mode in its companion phone app to help you find the right tips to make sure they do the best job of staying put.
When you lift the buds out of the charging case, they do feel a little heavier than the original Vista, likely due to the additional new in-ear motion sensors along with the microphones that appeared on the first Vista. It’s not the kind of added weight you really feel once they’re in the ears, though.
One noticeable change compared to the original Vista is a more textured finish on the outside of each bud. Jaybird calls this WindDefense fabric, which is essentially included to help stop wind from interfering with taking phone calls. We didn’t get the opportunity to battle particularly windy conditions as we were hit with a mini heatwave during our tests, but any help to keep the wind at bay without compromising the bud design can only be a good thing in our book.
The outside of the buds also host a series of tap and touch sensitive controls, letting you pause your music, reject calls, skip tracks, or double tap to turn on the ambient mode. We’d always favor physical controls to interact with during exercise but these touch controls were nicely responsive and didn’t need an extra tap or press to get them to do their job.
Jaybird made a big deal about dubbing its first Vista buds as ‘Earthproof,’ in a slightly over the top way of saying they’re built for rugged use, should be good for a run in the rain, and will still function if they get a bit dusty. Compared to the original Vista, the Vista 2 have been changed from an IPX7 water resistant rating to IP68. That means they can technically be submerged in water up to 1.5 meters deep for 30 minutes. That’s a higher rating than other sporty buds like the Jabra Elite Active 75t and Sony’s WF-SP800N buds.
While they’re not a pair you’d want to go swimming with (simply because without built-in storage, Bluetooth isn’t going to work very well in the water), you could give the Jaybird Vista 2 a quick rinse under a tap and they’re fit to fend off some sweat and rain.
They also come with military-grade durability credentials, with a MIL-STD-810G rating also deeming them drop proof, crush proof and dust proof.
Another small design addition worth highlighting is the raised surface around the L and R to help identify the buds – it’s a nice touch for visually impaired users in particular.
That extra weatherproofing also extends to the case, which does feel like it’s slightly grown in size compared to the case that came with the original Vista, though it’s been slapped with an IP54 rating to give it some added protection against dust. Jaybird has also added a small series of LED lights to act as a battery status indicator and let you know when it’s in Bluetooth pairing mode. Crucially, it’s still a pocket-friendly case or one you can throw into the back pocket of your shorts, and it won’t feel like a heavy burden to carry.
- Powerful, warm sound
- EQ can be adjusted
- ANC could be better
The original Vista earbuds sounded pretty good during indoor and outdoor workouts, though we felt like they could do with a kick in the power and loudness department, particularly if you like listening to bassier, more uptempo music for runs and workouts. While the Jaybird Vista 2 still stick with the same 6mm drivers as their predecessors, there does seem to be an improvement in overall sound quality based on our time with them.
Out of the box, they felt noticeably louder than the original Vista, and the soundstage has grown in a really satisfying way. There’s a nice level of detail and good clarity for calls and for podcasts – but it’s the pick up in power and warmth that really stands out here.
Jaybird does offer an EQ and presets to get a more tailored sound profile, along with the ability to create personal EQ settings, letting you toggle sliders to adjust elements like bass, bass range, and low midrange. It pays off to spend some time playing around with the EQ options to get a more rewarding sound profile that suits your ears.
During exercise is where that performance really matters and there’s certainly no let up on that front. We used them for indoor and outdoor workouts, and the audio quality overall was great, feeling like a bit of a step up compared to the original Vista earbuds. We’d be inclined to say the similarly priced Jabra Elite Active 75t offer a little more in terms of power and detail but the Vista 2 are still really great sounding earbuds for exercise.
There are some extras that make the Jaybird Vista 2 a better fit for outdoor workouts in particular. There’s now active noise cancellation, which wasn’t available on the original pair. A double tap on the buds can switch you from that ANC mode to a SurroundSense ambient mode that lets your world back in. From the app, you can adjust just how much of that ambient noise you want to let in.
The ANC isn’t best in class and on outdoor runs it didn’t entirely block out the traffic, but it does a good enough job of cancelling some of that exterior noise to help you zone out to your music. The ambient mode also works well to bring those worldly sounds back in too, and there’s a clear difference between the two modes.
You still have the ability to use the buds independently if you feel safer not entirely blocking out your ears while exercising. Once you take a bud out, the audio will stop and you tap on the bud that’s remained in your ears to get it working on its own. It’s as simple as that.
Battery life and connectivity
- Eight hours from earbuds
- 24 hours from charging case
- Easy to set up
In terms of battery life, Jaybird is promising 33% more than the original Vista earbuds. With the Jaybird Vista 2, you’re getting up to eight hours from a single charge and 24 hours with a fully charged case. Compared to similarly priced sporty earbuds, that battery life fares pretty well. Sony’s WF-SP800N offer nine hours of playback from a single charge, while the Bose Sport Earbuds give you up to five hours.
After an hour of working out, the battery drop-off was 15%, with ANC enabled throughout, so it seems those numbers are based on when ANC and the SurroundSense modes are not in use. When it’s time to charge them up you can drop them in the charging case and a five-minute charge is good enough to give you an hour of play time. The case also supports wireless charging, and it worked perfectly on our IKEA wireless charging lamp.
The Vista 2 are very easy to set up via Bluetooth, with or without the app. Do it without the app, and you can press the button inside of the case and wait for the lights on the outside of the case to start blinking to start the pairing process. We paired with a range of devices including phones (Android and iPhone), a laptop, the Hydrow connected rowing machine, a Garmin watch, and the Apple Watch. We had no issues with pairing and never suffered any kind of Bluetooth dropout.
If you take the app route to setting up, you’ll have access to some additional features you may want to have a play around with. The Jaybird app is available on Android and iOS and it’ll prompt you to connect the buds before letting you into the app. Inside you’ll find battery status for each bud and the case.
The app allows you to toggle through sound profile presets as well as creating your own and adjust the button controls. There’s also a useful Find My Buds feature to help locate the last place they were connected to your phone. It works for each bud individually, and can launch Google Maps to help you hunt them out. To set things up, you’ll need to remove the earbuds from the case and turn on the location tracking on your phone.
Should I buy the Jaybird Vista 2?
Buy them if…
You’re liable to sweat during workouts
These buds come with an IP68 water and dust resistance rating, so you can be sure a sweaty workout won’t break them.
You like to customize your sound
With an EQ built into the app, you can adjust the sound of the Jaybird Vista 2 as much as you please.
You need a secure fit
You get a range of eartips and wings with the Jaybird Vista 2, while a Find My Fit feature within the app means anyone should be able to find a secure fit.
Don’t buy them if…
You want best in class noise cancellation
The ANC provided by the Jaybird Vista 2 is fine, but it’s not a patch on the Sony WF-1000XM3.
You want a super long battery life
The battery life isn’t bad, but models like the Lypertek PurePlay Z3 prove that wireless earbuds can do much better in this department.
You’re on a strict budget
These aren’t the most expensive buds on the market, but they aren’t cheap, either. Check out the EarFun Air Pro for a pair of budget noise-cancelling earbuds that sound good.