The wireless headphones are one of the products that more popularity are getting in recent years. We have the Apple Airpods, the Sony WF-1000X and Xperia Ear Duo or the Samsung Gear Icon X. In addition to the big brands we also find specialized companies such as Bragi. Last year we were able to try and compare the Dash. Now we have been with the Bragi The Dash Pro, an evolution of a high-end wireless headset with all kinds of add-ons.
Bragi offers us a truly complete product. In addition to its in-ear design and bluetooth connectivity we have noise cancellation, water resistance, transparency, internal memory, possibility to pass songs or reject calls making gestures with the head and artificial intelligence to detect activities. A hearing aid with a large number of features that make it a very option to consider if you are looking for a wireless headset.
Characteristics of the Bragi The Dash Pro
|CHARACTERISTICS||BRAGI THE DASH PRO|
|Frequency response||20Hz – 20,000 Hz|
|Autonomy||100mAh, 5 hours|
|Autonomy charging case||2,200mAh, up to 30 hours|
|Load of the case||microUSB|
|Additional features||Noise cancellation, virtual 4D Menu, transparency, heart rate reader, activity detector, IPX7 water resistance up to 1m, Siri / Alexa / Google Now compatibility, iOS and Android app, FitSleeves silicone cases (XS, S, M, L ) and FitTips Pro plugs (S, M, L)|
Same design but bluetooth and autonomy have been improved
The Bragi The Dash Pro keep a design almost identical to the original The Dash. We have two headphones with a fairly small size for what we usually see. On the inside we have two magnets that will be used to charge them through the base. On the outside we have a plastic area with an LED that will light depending on the remaining battery. This part is also tactile and will be from where by touch or gestures we can control the music or interact with the mobile.
The Dash Pro adds silicone sleeves in four different sizes to improve grip. We also have pads or caps of three sizes to fit any type of ear. In my case I used the smaller size. They fit very well and do not release even if we jump, run or make sudden movements. They are comfortable but could be something else because after a couple of hours with them the ear we resent.
The quality of materials and construction transmits resistance without being too heavy, although perhaps it does not give us a very premium or lightness sensation. The Bragi The Dash Pro are very capable headphones but at the level of avant-garde design they stay a step behind.
As we will talk later, The Dash Pro recognize different activities, including swimming. We have not had the opportunity to take it to a pool but we have tried it with a hot shower. This has been possible since they are IPX7 water resistant, even if everything is said the touch surface failed more with wet hands. As for sensors, we have heart rate sensor and accelerometer.
We can not finish the design section without talking about the charging case. In The Dash Pro it has been slightly redesigned. Now it is something bigger and more metallic but in the same way that many other headphones are magnetically hooked and charged by a microUSB cable.
Precisely the charge and battery is one of the highlights of the Bragi The Dash Pro. The official autonomy is five hours and several days that I went out with them in the early hours of the morning have held me until noon. In the case that we listen to music with the internal player the autonomy is close to these five hours, if we are with bluetooth we are left in about three or four hours. There is also no problem because the load base theoretically offers up to 30 hours.
With the case of load in general we will not be thrown away. It is simply a matter of when we are not going to use them we keep them and while they are in the backpack the Dash Pro will already be recharging. While it is true, that the charge of the headphones from the case is not the fastest because it can last up to two hours to complete its autonomy.
Much more than a bluetooth headset
One of the distinguishing features of The Dash Pro is the amount of options that it adds. In fact, Nikolaj Hviid, CEO of Bragi, commented during the MWC 2018 that the company’s real objective is to sell artificial intelligence. 70% of the development of Bragi is dedicated to software and although the user experience is still improved, it is true that it is a point where it differs greatly from its competitors.
The weak point of the first generation was the loose bluetooth connection. In these test days I have been able to use them without problems with my Android phone stored in my pocket or backpack and in general I think it is no longer a problem. Yes it is true that it takes a few seconds to synchronize and when we activate some actions there is a small delay.
To discover all the functions offered by the Bragi The Dash Pro we have to download its official application, available on both iOS and Android. Once installed it will serve to synchronize the headphones, activate gestures, keep track of our activity and control all kinds of adjustments. One of the advantages of Bragi is that it has been updating its application periodically and the device is designed to continue incorporating novelties via software.
The Dash Pro has an external touch surface on the bottom of the headset. It is difficult to identify with the naked eye and with touch it also takes a couple of hours to get the hang of it. With each correct touch we have a small auditory response that tells us that we have played well. The combination is quite high and for example we can double tap on the right to move from song or slide to increase or decrease the volume.
Other gestures include turning on the transparency, time information or moving through the menus. Also interesting is the option to hit twice just outside the ear to activate Alexa or Google Now. In general, the navigation touches are useful and allow you to forget your mobile to manage the audio, although getting to learn them is a matter of a few days of continuous use.
Bragi also incorporates gestures with his head to control the headphones. They call it “Virtual 4D Menu” and basically recognizes gestures in vertical and horizontal. We can shake our heads to reject a call, affirm to pick it up or turn our heads laterally to change the song. In the case of the calls it worked for me the first time but with the song I still have problems and finally I ended up opting for the double touch touch hitting on the right earpiece.
One of the options that Bragi gives more importance and where we think many of the future developments will be is the automatic tracking of the activity. The Dash Pro are able to detect when we are running, cycling or swimming . At that moment they start monitoring the activity and they mark it in the application itself. We can then look at how much we have done each day and export that data to third-party services such as HealthKit. However, the accuracy of the activity section needs some improvements. The heart rate that marks many times is crazy and the kilometers traveled do not always conform to reality.
In the case that we want to use the headphones as a translator, from Bragi they also offer us a solution. They have teamed up with the iTranslate application to create translated conversations in 40 languages. The idea is like using a traditional mobile translator, but we speak in our native language and the voice of the other person comes directly to our ears. In fact, with two Dash Pro you can create an ‘Air Translate’ mode of simultaneous translation. The sensation that remains for us testing the standard mode is that it works well and the idea is great, but a better implementation is needed to make it more fluid. We must also mention that Bragi and iTranslate give us a free trial month, but then it costs 4.99 dollars per month. In addition to the translation service, Bragi is open to working with more third-party applications.
Gestures, tactile control, recognition of activity … and own storage. The Bragi The Dash Pro are a wearable by themselves as they have 4GB of internal memory and can be used without the need of the mobile. Here what we should do is connect them to the computer, update their software, choose the language in case we want and copy in memory up to a thousand songs. Once inside the folders of playlists, we can listen to them even if we do not have the phone. It is a truly differential addition, since it allows us to run without the mobile phone and still have a device to listen to music and keep track of our activity.
Sound: Transparency and noise cancellation
Some headphones, beyond their design and functions, should be valued for their sound quality. The Bragi The Dash Pro are quite good and the experience is more than satisfactory for bluetooth headphones, although perhaps not for some that cost about 300 dollars. The frequency is 20-20,000 hertz and its impedance is 16 ohms.
Due to the type of headphones, these Dash Pro can not be compared to others with a headset. For example, we noticed that the serious ones lack something of forcefulness. In general, the sound is clear on all frequencies but without highlighting above other Bluetooth headsets of its level.
The Bragi The Dash Pro stand out in two ways, on the one hand the standard with noise cancellation and on the other the transparency. In the first we have a good isolation from the outside but the second one is one of the most useful. The Dash Pro allows you to listen to music with transparency to be able to find out what is happening around you without losing much sound quality along the way. It is a mode that I have generally kept activated, very useful for example when I had them with the bike and wanted to find out if a car was ringing or someone was telling me something.
We miss some extra way to configure the sound from the application itself. As for calls, The Dash Pro are an excellent companion. The sound level is very good, but if you’re looking for headphones that give you the best sound quality maybe these Bragi The Dash Pro are a little short. Of course, we believe that with all the extras that incorporate it, they supplement it quite well.