HMDX Jam Fusion stereo headset review
The HMDX Jam Fusion is a set of wireless Bluetooth stereo headphones with music player controls and the ability to pair the set with another pair of Jam Fusion headphones to share your music with a friend.
Besides your ability to listen to music, the headset also has a built-in microphone in case you want to take a phone call – and it works pretty well, unless you’ve got the headset on backwards, in which case it sounds a bit like you’re underwater.
What’s in the box
- HMDX Jam Fusion headset
- Carrying bag
- 1/8-inch audio cable should you want to do wired listening
- USB to micro USB power cable
Jam Fusion in action
I guess what really impressed me most about this product is that it actually works at a distance. Usually when I see a product claim a 30 foot range, I assume 15 feet with my phone. I started thinking my phone was just incapable of transmitting much further, but the Jam Fusion combined with my EVO 4G LTE got a little over 32 feet before the audio started cutting out.
The audio reproduction is pretty good: it’s got a pretty interesting profile, seems pretty treble-rich, and for acoustic songs it rocks. On the bass side, I can’t get it to reproduce what I expect in terms of thumping my eardrums, which might be a good call at my age, but I think it’s where the Jam Fusion seems to come up lacking. I’ll point out the bass is OK, but not quite what I hoped for.
The volume, power, and play controls are all on the right ear, and there’s no good tactile indicator of which one your finger is on. Once you memorize which is which, there shouldn’t be much of a problem, but I found myself skipping tracks when I was attempting to change the volume.
As a side note, the volume is loud enough that your ears will ring if you crank it.
The pairing mode works with a switch, which is also located on the right side along with all the other clustered controls. You can switch the unit between primary paired to the music playing device (my phone) and secondary paired to the set that’s paired to the device.
While I don’t have two of these headsets to play with, my assumption is it’s like the HMDX Jam Plus, meaning you can get the second set of headsets even farther away from the music source by using the paired set as a relay.
What I dislike about the Jam Fusion
I really do not like the cluster of controls. I guess if you weren’t working out or moving, you could probably feel the slight indents for the play and plus buttons.
It seems that if you’ve got a headset with two sides, you might want to consider putting some of the controls on the other side. Power and volume on the right, play/pause, next and previous on the left.
The curve of the thing
One of the things I learned very quickly is, when you have a baby and you’re going to have anything on your head, it needs to not have an easily accessible grabbing point. The Jam Fusion leaves a wide open space between your skull and Jam Plus, inviting babies to grab at it.
For those without babies to contend with, there’s a handle extending roughly 2″ on either side of your head that will attract anything (tree limbs, dogs, that space you thought you could clear) to yank the headset off of your head.
While it’s pretty good for just tooling around in, if you want to jog around or do too much physical activity, you’ll start to notice it. It’s not something that will probably bother you for casual listening, but these are not too terribly great for hikes, jogging, etc.
It’s just not there when paired with my phone. It’s OK, but not particularly fabulous.
Bleeping blinking blue light
I understand the desire to have the light blinking when you’re pairing or have just turned the thing on, but I do not know why my head has to be emitting light every three seconds. This ruins listening to music in darkened areas for me. Oh, quiet darkened room, soft music, and a blinking Bluetooth notification light going off constantly – not my idea of a great experience.
What I like about the Jam Fusion
Treble side of the Jam Fusion is great. The clarity you get from the audio is pretty great.
While I do struggle for reasons you’d want to be 30 feet away from your base unit, there exists the potential for laying the phone down and then wandering around your house, which I dig.
For how I listen, six hours is about where it needs to be at. While I’d love it to have a three or four day battery life, you play with the cards you’re given.
The thing is comfortable, doesn’t grab hair, ear pads are soft. It fits my size XXL head without squishing my ears.
The Jam Fusion is a good reasonably priced, lower to mid-range stereo Bluetooth headset that probably won’t disappoint for general use. I doubt most people will ever use the Jam Pairing mode to share music with friends, but the option exists should you want it.
This is a pretty decent gift idea if you’re looking for something for your casual music enthusiast.
The HMDX Jam Fusion is available for $63.80 from Amazon, which is temporarily out of stock. or you can grab it at JamAudio for $99.99 if you just can’t wait.