Thursday, July 25, 2024

Boat Airdopes 800 Review: Formidable Sound on a Budget

Boat Airdopes 800 were launched in India on May 17 with adaptive EQ and Dolby Audio-backed audio. The earphones are equipped with 10mm titanium drivers, ENC-supported microphones and an IPX5 rating for splash and sweat resistance. They are also compatible with the Boat Hearables application, available on both Android and iOS smartphones, which allows users to customise touch controls and equaliser settings. The true wireless (TWS) earphones are claimed to offer a total battery life of up to 40 hours. I have spent over a week with the Boat Airdopes 800 and let’s talk about how “dope” the budget offering is or isn’t.

Boat Airdopes 800 Review: Design and Features

The in-ear true wireless Boat Airdopes 800 come in the box with three silicone ear tip size options – small, medium and large. It is mildly irksome that none of the sizes offered a comfortable fit for me but I found that the small size worked the best. I say best very generously, of course. The mid-sized tips should have theoretically worked better but every time I would so much as grin at a Brooklyn Nine-Nine cold open, the earphones would pop out and the in-ear detection feature ensured the show paused. Well, we now know that the in-ear detection works well, but more on that later. Preferring to keep the earphones in my ear as I went about my day, I chose to use the small-sized tips most of the time.

boat airdopes 800 gadgets 360 review inline1 Boat Airdopes 800

The Boat Airdopes 800 comes with an IPX5 rating for splash and sweat resistance


Regardless of which tip size I opted for, the fit of the Boat Airdopes 800 is not the most comfortable. The longest I used it was for about two hours, one hour and 56 minutes to be precise, when I (re)watched Arrival (2016). More on this later, but as livening the sound experience was, the dull ache on the outer shell of my ears was just as vivid.

If we move past the fit though, things look up for these TWS earphones. The stem has a slight curvy bump-like design which helps with a better grip while putting on or taking off the earphones. The touch control sensors were placed towards the upper side and were largely smooth in function. The charging points of the earphones, placed on the inside of the stem come in direct contact with the skin. Although I did not face any dermatological irritation or rashes, people with sensitive skin and/or metal allergies may face issues with this.

The charging case of the Boat Airdopes 800 is clunky. Along with the earphones the case weighs 45g, which is not uncharacteristically heavy as far as TWS earphones go, but the boxy design makes it appear bulkier than it is. Carrying it around in your jeans pocket is possible as long as you are comfortable with the bump visibly jutting out. The case has an indication light at the bottom that shows the connectivity and battery/charging state of the earphones. The USB Type-C charging port is placed on the right edge of the case. The cover is inscribed with the Boat logo as well as Dolby Audio branding.

Alongside the earphones with the charging case and two additional pairs of ear tips, the retail box of the Boat Airdopes 800 includes a USB Type-A to USB Type-C cable, an information/instruction leaflet and a few stickers.

Boat Airdopes 800 Review: App and specifications

As previously mentioned, the Boat Airdopes 800 are compatible with the Boat Hearables app. Once paired with your smartphone, the app syncs with the earphones and on the home page, you see the battery levels of the left and right earphones. Further down, you have the list of different pre-installed equaliser settings and the option to opt for the adaptive EQ option. This is powered by Mimi, which can also be found in the Nothing Ear (Review) and Nothing Ear 2.

boat airdopes 800 boat hearables App inline Boat Airdopes 800

Screengrabs from the adaptive EQ setting up process on the Boat Hearables App


Adaptive EQ is said to offer a personalised sound experience to users. To configure the adaptive EQ on Boat Airdopes 800, you need to click on the “Set Up Adaptive EQ” option. It will take you through a practice round and a step-by-step test which is easy to follow with the instructions on the screen. Once the set-up is completed, you can choose to turn the adaptive EQ mode to experience an exclusively customised sound.

The preset equalisations include five options – Balanced, Pop, Rock, Jazz and Club. You can also choose to toggle between Dolby Movie and Dolby Natural settings. We will talk about the sound experience of each of these modes in detail in the next section.

In a second tab within the Boat Hearables app, you can choose the one-tap and two-tap functions on the left and right earphones separately. Although you can use four completely distinct actions with these, I chose to use identical actions for both sides. But that is simply because I find it easier. You can choose among functions like – play/pause, volume control (up/down), change between tracks (next/previous), as well as manage Beast Mode and Google Assistant.

A third “System” tab allows you access to the user manual of the Boat Airdopes 800 and a section to help check for the latest version of the Boat Hearables app. In this tab, you can also choose to turn on/off the In-Ear Detection feature and Multipoint Connectivity option.

boat airdopes 800 gadgets 360 review inline3 Boat Airdopes 800

The Boat Airdopes 800 are equipped with 35mAh batteries in each earbud


The Boat Airdopes 800 are equipped with 10mm titanium drivers and four AI-backed ENC-supported microphones. The earphones carry 35mAh batteries each and the charging case has a 400mAh battery. They support Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity and 50ms low latency. The storage case has a USB Type-C charging port and the earphones come with an IPX5 rating for splash and sweat resistance.

Boat Airdopes 800 Review: Performance and battery life

The Boat Airdopes 800 pairs seamlessly with two devices, which in this case, was my Redmi Note 11 Pro smartphone and Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3 laptop. The Bluetooth connectivity and 50ms low latency make the earphones a decent option for occasional gamers and full-time audio-visual content consumers like me. The low latency mode or the Beast Mode can be turned on and off by long pressing the touch control area of the right earbud for three seconds.

I did, however, face some connectivity issues. While switching between the different preset EQ modes, the app would sometimes hang or sometimes fail to recognise the earphones, showing alerts to connect to a Bluetooth device to complete the action. Choosing to turn the adaptive EQ mode would at times disconnect both or one side of the earphones. An easy fix for these errors was for me to put the earphones back in the case for a couple of seconds before connecting them again.

These connectivity errors while changing equalisation modes were rampant for the first couple of days that I used the Boat Airdopes 800, but with each update of the Boat Hearables app, the frequency of these problems reduced. Evidently, the issues were caused by bugs that were fixed with OTA updates. With the current version ( I have not faced any connectivity issues at all.

boat airdopes 800 gadgets 360 review inline2 Boat Airdopes 800

The Boat Airdopes 800 supports Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity


The sound of the Boat Airdopes 800 is bass-heavy, as advertised and expected, but it does not do any major disservice to the mid and high tones, especially considering the price range. Even without any customisable modes, listening to music on these earphones is pleasant. It is more than sufficient for casual use with a decent battery life.

The adaptive EQ mode of the Boat Airdopes 800 despite draining your battery offers a personalised sound experience which I preferred in some, not all instances. When listening to Baba O’Riley by The Who, I preferred the custom equalisation that the adaptive EQ mode offered over the regular sound. Notably, you can reconfigure the settings any time you wish by retaking the test.

The Dolby Natural mode introduces elements of spatial sound, which is best savoured with music with stereo tracks. The details of the arrangement stand out especially well in tracks like Space Oddity by David Bowie or any of the Abbey Road by The Beatles Super Deluxe mixes. If you are as much of a Beatlehead as me then when the song Oh! Darling plays, you may even be able to imagine the different positions that the fab four were in, within the Abbey Road Studios recording room. This is beyond what I expect out of TWS earphones priced under Rs. 2,000.

As previously mentioned, I watched the 2016 Denis Villeneuve feature film Arrival with the Boat Airdopes 800 earphones. Apart from Bradford Young’s solemn cinematography, I would argue that Jóhann Jóhannsson’s music helps make it one of the best sci-fi films of the recent past. I had low expectations going in because my expectations were built on the multiple rewatches over the years on different phones and PCs since the first-day, second-show theatre viewing all those years back. I was pleasantly surprised with the experience that the Dolby Movie Audio mode offered on these earphones. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it offered a theatre-like experience, but it was close enough and a formidable one, at this price point.

The sound experiences with the preset modes are pretty much at par with expectations – Rock and Club options are more bass-heavy than the rest, while the Balanced mode does indeed offer a stable equalisation. The Jazz and Pop presets focus slightly more on the vocals and treble.

boat airdopes 800 review gadgets 360 inline6 Boat Airdopes 800

The Boat Airdopes 800 have charging points on the inward-facing side of the earphone stems


Making and answering calls with the Boat Airdopes 800 was satisfactory. In an indoor setting with a stable network connection, despite occasional environmental disturbances, the calls were clear, with no voice complaints from the other end.

The Boat Airdopes 800 are claimed to offer a total battery life of up to 40 hours at 60 percent volume. For testing purposes, I maintained this volume throughout. Without the adaptive EQ mode on, but with a couple of hours of Dolby Movie Audio mode, I got about 36 hours of total playback time on a single charge. The earphones offered playback of up to more than four hours.

With the adaptive EQ mode on, the Boat Airdopes 800 earphones offer playback of up to three and a half hours at a time. The earphones needed about 30 minutes within the case to charge from zero to 100, while the charging case charged fully in an hour and 30 minutes.

Boat Airdopes 800 Review: Verdict

As a casual user, if you are looking for something that has the potential to offer an almost-theatre-like experience on a budget, you can consider the Boat Airdopes 800 TWS earphones. The adaptive EQ provides a favourable audio journey, while the Dolby Audio support gives the overall sound performance just the kick that it needs to stand out among competitors.

If you are on a very tight budget and want a decent, personalised sound experience, the Boat Airdopes 800 at Rs. 1,799 are a perfect ‘fit’ for you. Although the physical fit of the earphones is not the most comfortable, it is good enough to use for a couple of hours at a time with 10 or 20 minutes of breaks in between. You should also be willing to gamble with the seamlessness of switching between the different sound and equaliser modes. All is well if it runs smoothly at once, otherwise, be ready with the case in hand to quickly reconnect the devices.

You can also check out the OnePlus Nord Buds 2r (Review), available in India currently for Rs. 100 more at Rs. 1,899 for a bigger 12.4mm driver, an IP55 rating and a lighter case. The CMF Buds, which come at a slightly higher price of Rs. 1,999 for a comfortable fit, as well as, up to 42dB active noise cancellation (ANC) support can also be explored.

Will the Nothing Phone 2 serve as the successor to the Phone 1, or will the two co-exist? We discuss the company’s recently launched handset and more on the latest episode of Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
Affiliate links may be automatically generated – see our ethics statement for details.

Source link

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -spot_img

Latest Articles