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Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus Review

Last updated: 3 months ago
12 min read
Editor
rating
3.9
Puro BT2200 Plus on a table

Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus are rare kids’ headphones that comfortably cover entire ears and have a studio-grade sound. However, they lack water protection and only successfully limit loudness with the included AUX cable.

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Our Conclusion

Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus (Puro BT2200 Plus for short) are an upgrade over the excellent BT2200, which are known to have an extremely accurate volume limiter.

They share many similarities with the previous model, but you now get larger ear cups to fit bigger ears. You can easily swap them with smaller pads if the stock ones are too big.

Furthermore, the tuning is excellent. Headphones have a balanced sound signature with slightly boosted bass and treble, and natural mids. They’re a great introduction to quality sound for kids.

On the other hand, the Puro BT2200 Plus misses the loudness limit by +10 dBA, measuring 100 dBA when playing white noise in Bluetooth mode instead of the advertised 85 dBA. Thankfully, the music test measures much lower at 89.4 dB.

There’s also no sweat or water resistance, which can come in handy when dealing with clumsy children.

Read the full review below to find out how their volume-limiting function performs. And what these headphones are best for.

Pros & Cons:

  • Pleasantly warm & clear sound
  • Swappable on & over-ear pleather pads
  • Great build quality with lots of aluminum parts
  • Strong indoor Bluetooth range of 65 feet
  • Occasional vocal sibilance
  • Volume limiter could've been a bit more accurate

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CONTENTS (show more)

    Our Analysis and Test Results

    Our frequency response tests showed that headphones output a balanced sound with a slightly forward lower treble, which makes vocals a bit thin and cymbals shimmery. Nonetheless, this is much better than the overly bassy sound usually reserved for kids.

    They’re also comfier than any kids’ headphones before and offer good call quality for homeschooling and video calls. Volume limiter is also pretty accurate, but avoid using third-party cables as they bypass the limiter.

    Sound

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    Puro BT2200 Plus have a balanced, if not slightly V-shaped, response with elevated bass for extra rumble, somewhat recessed mids, and sparkly highs. However, the max loudness could be slightly lower.

    Key points:

    • Relatively pleasant sound, despite a few peaks and dips in the measurements.
    • Due to some peaks in the upper midrange/treble, you can expect some minor sibilance.
    • Sound is overall pleasant but could be more detailed.

    In Bluetooth mode, Puro BT2200 Plus sound excellent, especially for kids’ headphones. They are on the fun side of the frequency spectrum so that they appeal to children and adults alike.

    However, switching to a wire significantly changes the sound profile, becoming much more bass-dominant and muddy.

    Max loudness is also an issue, as it extends beyond the advertised limits. But let’s first talk about sound quality.

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus frequency response

    Puro BT2200 Plus - Bluetooth vs Wired mode comparison
    Wired mode (red) provides much less energy in the midrange and treble, making the sound muffled.

    Note that we couldn’t get a perfect seal on the measuring rig (MiniDSP EARS), so the bass is actually quite higher than that.

    Bass: Warm and rumbly, but slightly uncontrolled

    Bass frequencies are noticeably boosted but never unbearably loud. They produce a satisfying punch and add pleasant warmth. On the flip side, the punch sometimes feels sloppy.

    Consequently, it doesn’t portray double-pedal drumming as tactile as you might want to. But that will only matter if your kid is into rock music.

    Midrange: Recessed but natural

    Lower frequencies avoid bleeding into the midrange, so the latter can shine in all its glory. As a result, it sounds natural and dynamic.

    However, due to the V-shaped tuning, it’s slightly recessed (meaning it’s quieter than the bass and treble).

    Instruments and vocals sound pleasant and lush, with just a touch of sibilance at higher volumes.

    Puro BT2200 Plus double ear pads
    Measurements were made with smaller ear pads as they provided a better seal on our testing rig.

    Treble: Energetic but unrefined

    Higher frequencies have more than enough presence to uplift the sound. They give good clarity to the midrange and sparkle to the cymbals.

    However, they aren’t very refined or detailed. But that will hardly matter to children, who probably don’t look for microdetails in music.

    On the flip side, the occasional sibilance might be harsh, especially to kids who have more sensitive ears than adults.

    Soundstage and imaging

    Accompanied by an airy treble, the soundstage feels decently spacious, so the sound shouldn’t feel trapped inside your head. However, there’s more depth than width.

    Consequently, the imaging feels a bit off, as you have difficulties pinpointing the location of the sound between the left/right and center image.

    Puro BT2200 Plus driver
    Taking off the ear pads exposes the dynamic driver inside.

    Overall, Puro BT2200 Plus sound really good for volume-limiting headphones for kids. I would love to have had a pair like this when I was younger so I would learn what good sound is like sooner.

    They offer a nice balance of fun and clarity without overwhelming you with details.

    How is the sound in wired mode?

    On the other hand, wired mode changes the sound completely. The bass stays similarly boosted but extends further into the midrange, making it muddy.

    Moreover, the upper mids and treble reduce themselves in quantity, making the bass a dominant frequency. The result is a very bloated sound.

    That confirms that Puro BT2200 Plus heavily rely on DSP (digital signal processing) to sound as intended.

    Volume Limiter – Are They Safe for Kids?

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus are marketed towards children, and kids headphones limit volume to protect their hearing. The advertised limit is 85 dB, so we tested it.

    For easier navigation, we color the results:

    • Green: +3 dB above the target
    • Orange: +8 dB above the target
    • Red: More than 8 dB above the target

    The previous BT2200 model did a fantastic job, limiting their volume to 85 dB when using white noise. Here are the results of the new BT2200 Plus model.

    Loudness when using headphones in Bluetooth mode:

    Bluetooth modedB
    White noise100 dB
    Music89.2 dB

    Loudness reaches dangerous heights in Bluetooth mode during white noise playback, surpassing the target by 15 dB. Fortunately, listening to music measures much quieter, but still around 4 dB more than it should.

    That said, the average loudness when playing “Baby Shark” by Pinkfong appeared to be around 85-86 dB, with 89.2 dB being the highest peak.

    Puro BT2200 Plus loudness via Bluetooth (white noise)
    Screenshot from a “white noise” Bluetooth test.
    Puro BT2200 Plus loudness via Bluetooth (Music)
    Screenshot from a “music” Bluetooth test.

    Loudness when using headphones with the original cable included in the box:

    Original cable via …dB
    (Laptop) white noise85.4 dB
    (Laptop) music75.4 dB
    (Samsung dongle) white noise87.1 dB
    (Samsung dongle) music78 dB
    (DragonFly Red) white noise95 dB
    (DragonFly Red) music88.4 dB

    Using the original cable that comes inside the box and has a built-in volume limiter proves to be the safest way to listen to Puro BT2200 Plus. You can only push the loudness above the target by using stronger headphone amps.

    However, the sound quality while using a wired connection is subpar to the one you get via Bluetooth.

    Loudness when using headphones with the third-party cable:

    Third-party cable via …dB
    (Laptop) white noise105.5 dB
    (Laptop) music95.7 dB
    (Samsung dongle) white noise97.0 dB
    (Samsung dongle) music96.3 dB
    (DragonFly Red) white noise111.5 dB
    (DragonFly Red) music106.1 dB

    If you want to keep your kid’s hearing safe, avoid using BT2200 Plus with any other cable than the original one. In all situations, the loudness exceeded the 85dB target by at least 10.7 dB.

    Which is a lot. More on volume safety levels here.

    Based on the results, Puro Sound Labs decided to use different scenarios to set the target for the Plus and non-Plus versions. One of the conclusions we can make is that:

    • For the non-Plus version, Puro decided to reach 85 dB playing white noise at max loudness in Bluetooth mode (playing white noise, the Plus model reaches 100 dB).
    • In contrast, for the Plus version, Puro aimed to reach an average loudness of 85 dB while playing music in Bluetooth mode (playing music, the non-Plus model averages at around 81 dB).
    Puro BT2200 Plus loudness testing
    Testing the Puro BT2200 Plus loudness on a loudness-calibrated MiniDSP E.A.R.S.

    Sound comparison

    My conclusion

    If you’re all about hearing safety and don’t want to risk getting your kids exposed to loud noise, the older Puro Sound Labs BT2200 are a much safer choice.

    That said, if you can teach your kids to never push the volume up to a certain point, the BT2200 Plus offer an overall much more pleasing listen.

    Comfort & Fit

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    Puro BT2200Plus boast bigger ear cups with larger ear pads, which can accommodate any kid’s ear. Even adults can find them comfortable. Conversely, their gentler clamping force can’t keep them in place during play and running around.

    While the design of the Puro BT2200 Plus is strikingly similar to the BT2200, the newer model has slightly bigger earcups. As a result, headphones now come with much bigger over-ear ear pads.

    The new vegan leather ear pads can easily fit any kids ears, creating a better seal, which helps with bass response. If you want smaller pads for a more secure but less comfortable fit, you get on-ear pads inside the carrying case.

    Puro BT2200 Plus ear pads sizes
    Size comparison between over-ear and on-ear earpads that Puro provides.

    Both ear pad sizes use memory foam and feel decently plush. However, your earlobes might still touch the headphone’s insides. Fortunately, a thicker piece of foam covers the drivers, so your earlobes don’t start hurting.

    Furthermore, the headband receives the same treatment as ear pads, entirely covered in vegan leather and stuffed with (standard) foam.

    Like the headband extender, ear cups are made of aluminum. That keeps the headphone’s weight down, so your kid will barely feel them on his head.

    Even the clamping force is much gentler than in the BT2200 model, which increases comfort but also hurts stability.

    Speaking of stability, these are better suited for stationary listening situations. While they can endure sudden head movements, they will eventually fall during running and jumping around.

    Compared to other similar models

    The BT2200 Plus offer superior comfort to most headphones designed for kids, except for the Puro Sound Labs PuroPro. However, that comparison may be unfair as the PuroPro are more geared towards adults.

    Durability

    Star Rating
    4.0 Great

    Puro BT2200 Plus use quality construction materials and come with a hard-shell carrying case. However, they squeak a little and could use at least an IP rating for splash protection.

    Headphones are incredibly lightweight (5.85 ounces), but they’re also built from quality materials. Most of what you’re touching is aluminum and vegan leather (sort of plastic).

    Using aluminum ensures the earcups and a headband extender won’t crack like plastic. That said, kids probably won’t appreciate the premium materials as much as adults.

    Puro BT2200 Plus headband extension
    While the cup and the extender feel aluminum, the shiny headband part is just chromed plastic.

    However, it can bend if twisted too much or dent if dropped on the floor. Also, they produce a squeaky noise when twisted. Most of it originates from the headband.

    Fortunately, headphones arrive with a hard-shell protective case, so you can easily pack them in the bottom of the bag.

    However, what these kids headphones lack is water protection. They have no IP rating. They might survive some light sweat, but even light rain could present an issue due to physical buttons.

    Furthermore, kids are sometimes clumsy, so you have to expect accidental liquid spills. Probably, we’re worrying too much, and BT2200 Plus are actually more durable than they look.

    Durability comparison

    Battery

    Star Rating
    2.5 Average

    Puro BT2200 Plus have a shockingly low battery life of around 12 hours and 7 minutes on a single charge. That’s almost 8 hours less than advertised. No word about fast-charging, but they do have a great 200-hour standby time.

    Tested battery life12 hours 7 minutes
    Official battery life20 hours
    Difference7h 53min (-39.4%)
    Quick chargingn/a
    Qi wireless chargingNo

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus battery comparison:

    Puro BT2200 Plus battery comparison

    The previous BT2200 model comes in a slightly smaller form factor and offers around 18 hours and 21 minutes at 50% volume. So we expected the BT2200 Plus to at least perform equally as well.

    Shockingly, the new Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus last much less than you might expect. At 50% volume, we got:

    • 12 hours and 7 minutes of playtime on a single charge

    We turned the headphones back on just to ensure whether the headphones turned off automatically due to some safety reasons. However, they only worked for about 9 minutes and shut off again.

    It seems that because the BT2200 Plus play louder than the non-Plus variant, they also consume more energy.

    Furthermore, there’s no word regarding fast charging. Fortunately, you can charge them via USB-C rather than micro-USB. And, you get a very long standby time of 200 hours, although, from our experience, they keep the charge for much longer.

    Here’s the battery rating comparison with similar headphones:

    Note: The battery rating considers battery life compared to alternatives, wireless charging support, and the speed of recharging.

    Features

    Star Rating
    3.5 Almost Great

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus have a single volume limiter mode, excellent call quality, and offers to daisy-chain two Puro headphones together using the included USB-C cable.

    Puro BT2200 Plus are light on features, but most work well. Most notable is the built-in microphone, but more on that later (see microphone tests below).

    One area where Puro could’ve offered more is controls. Physical buttons offer you to play/pause the audio playback and raise/lower the volume. However, you can’t skip or repeat the track.

    Puro BT2200 Plus physical buttons
    Headphones use a Bluetooth pairing button, a switch and volume controls.

    The included 3.5mm cable only has an inline mic and a volume limit circuitry, but no inline controls.

    Puro could also provide more than one volume limit, like in their more expensive Puro PuroPro headphones.

    Daisy-chain audio sharing

    Similar to BuddyPhones headphones, you can daisy chain multiple Puro Sound Labs headphones by using the included USB-C to USB-C cable.

    Note that this feature works exclusively with Puro headphones. Also, for some reason, you can’t use the same cable for everyday audio playback.

    Microphone quality

    Puro BT2200 Plus have excellent call quality, keeping your voice clear regardless of how loud it is around you.

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus microphone test (quiet & background noise):

    Microphone performance is the best extra feature BT2200 Plus have to offer. The mic captures your voice with good clarity and decent fullness.

    You may sound a bit thin, but that’s hardly distracting, as your voice remains perfectly understandable without any distortion.

    The latter might creep in a little when making calls someplace loud. Others might also hear some of the ambient noise. However, the mic continues to capture your voice nicely and clearly.

    You can easily use these wireless headphones for phone calls in all kinds of situations, even for homeschooling. Adults can even borrow them for their business meetings.

    Features rating comparison

    Noise Isolation

    Star Rating
    3.0 Good

    Puro BT2200 Plus have decent passive isolation, which is good enough for commuting. Moreover, they don’t leak as much sound at moderate volumes.

    Measured average noise isolation11,64 dBA

    Passive noise isolation in BT2200 Plus is pretty okay. It is better than the measurement would suggest since the ear pads struggle to make a perfect seal with our MiniDSP HEARS.

    Puro BT2200 Plus Passive isolation

    Nonetheless, the performance could still be better, at least in the midrange. In practice, headphones can mute a bit of speech and higher-pitch noises while engine hum remains the same.

    You can still use them on public transportation, but you’ll have to raise the volume to drown out the noise, which isn’t the best for hearing safety.

    Sound leakage is decently contained. Headphones only leak sound at really high volumes that are painful to listen to.

    Here’s a table of how effective is Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus’s passive noise isolation at blocking specific frequencies:

    FrequencyNoise reduction
    dB SPL
    Noise reduction
    dBA (A-weighted)
    100 Hz0 dB-19,1 dBA
    200 Hz+1,7 dB-7,2 dBA
    400 Hz+4,4 dB-0,4 dBA
    600 Hz+1,6 dB-0,6 dBA
    1 kHz1,1 dB1,1 dBA
    2 kHz17,7 dB18,9 dBA
    4 kHz29,7 dB30,7 dBA
    6 kHz27,9 dB28 dBA
    10 kHz21,4 dB18,9 dBA
    15 kHz25,9 dB19,9 dBA
    Average11,64 dBA
    A-weighted values from the International standard IEC 61672:2003

    Noise isolation rating comparison with other models

    Bluetooth

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    Puro BT2200 Plus have an excellent Bluetooth range with mild hiccups and only a minor lag during mobile games—unfortunately, no multipoint.

    Bluetooth version5.1
    Bluetooth range
    (no obstructions)
    200ft+ (60.9m)
    Bluetooth range
    through a wall
    65ft (20m)
    MultipointNo
    Audio latency
    (audio delay)
    Small but
    visible

    Headphones use Bluetooth 5.1 instead of the latest version, 5.3. However, you still get a more than reliable connection.

    There are zero stutters when having a transmitting device nearby. Even our indoor long-range results were impressive:

    • Puro BT2200 Plus lasted 65 feet (20m), passing 2 brick walls. It stuttered a couple of times but continued working till the end.

    How to pair Puro BT2200 Plus?

    1. Headphones automatically start pairing when turned on for the first time.
    2. To pair them to the other device, you can either press the “Bluetooth” button on the left ear cup or turn them on without connecting them to the first device. They’ll go into paring mode after a few seconds.
    Puro BT2200 Plus on a stone
    Puro BT2200 Plus have a strong Bluetooth connection and lots of Bluetooth codecs to pick from.

    What Bluetooth codecs do they use?

    Headphones use a wide range of Bluetooth codecs, from basic ones like SBC and AAC to more advanced ones like aptX and even aptX HD.

    While having a choice is always good, the aptX HD is unnecessary as the other 3 codecs are more than enough to squeeze the best audio quality possible from the given hardware.

    Is there an audio lag?

    When watching videos on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc., the audio perfectly syncs with the video.

    On the flip side, there is a slight delay during mobile gaming. As there’s no game mode to reduce it, you can’t use these headphones in competitive games.

    Of course, you can always use the cable if you are okay with the drop in sound quality.

    Bluetooth rating comparison

    Should You Get Puro BT2200 Plus?

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    Puro BT2200 Plus are great headphones on their own. They’re a fantastic introduction to high-quality tuning, so your kid will learn to appreciate good sound.

    However, they need to improve their volume-limiting feature. The deviation between the promised volume limit and actual loudness isn’t enormous, yet it is higher than it should be in Bluetooth mode.

    Puro BT2200 Plus on a branch
    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus are a big improvement over the previous model, except for the volume limiter.

    Pros & Cons

    • Pleasantly warm & clear sound
    • Swappable on & over-ear pleather pads
    • Great build quality with lots of aluminum parts
    • Strong indoor Bluetooth range of 65 feet
    • Occasional vocal sibilance
    • Volume limiter could've been a bit more accurate

    Who are these best for:

    • For parents who wish their kids would listen to headphones with higher quality audio.
    • For kids or teens who are often making phone or video calls (or need a pair for online chatting).

    Who should avoid them:

    • Younger kids with more sensitive ears, as the volume limit is louder than in their predecessor.

    How do Puro BT2200 Plus compare to the competition?

    • They are made of higher quality materials than other kids headphones, which are primarily plastic.
    • Sound quality is above better than in most kids headphones, even compared to a pricier PuroPro model from the same brand.
    • Headphones offer over-ear pads and thus better comfort than the competition.
    • Call quality is vastly better than in other wireless Bluetooth headphones for kids, except for the ones with a boom mic.
    • Their volume limiter is highly inaccurate compared to the competition.
    • They only offer one volume limit, whereas competitors typically provide 2 or 3 limits.

    Here’s Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus value rating compared to similar alternatives:

    Are they worth the price?

    Currently, at $99, they’re worth checking if you’re looking for classy headphones for your kid (and maybe for yourself, too).

    Puro BT2200 Plus alternatives

    BuddyPhones POP Fun

    BuddyPhones POP Fun headphones for kids

    POP Fun sound slightly muddier in comparison, but are still fun and enjoyable to listen to. And have no sibilance issues.

    They’re made of highly flexible plastic, offer a good battery life of 23.5 hours, washable ear pads, and, most importantly, very accurate 85dB and 94dB volume limiters. Plus, they cost less than half as much.

    BuddyPhones POP Fun review

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200

    Puro-Sound-Labs-BT2200-review

    The original model has a warmer, less clear sound than BT2200 Plus, but it’s also free of sibilance. And it’s actually limited to 85dB, making it much safer for use by kids.

    Design-wise, they look and feel almost identical, but the cups on the BT2200 are smaller, and they only provide on-ear ear pads. On the other hand, they can play music for more than 18 hours, 6 hours more than BT2200 Plus can.

    Puro Sound Labs BT2200 review

    Puro Sound Labs PuroPro

    Puro Sound Labs PuroPro headphones

    PuroPro have a smoother, warmer sound than BT2200 Plus, which sound clearer. However, the PuroPro, while not perfect, play closer to their volume limits, and offer active noise cancellation.

    They’re also much bigger, geared for adolescents and adults. Headphones have massive, cushioned ear pads, 39 hours of battery life, and can fold into a small rugby-shaped case.

    Puro Sound Labs PuroPro review

    What’s in the Box?

    Puro BT2200 Plus accessories
    • Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus Bluetooth headphones
    • 2 pairs of vegan leather ear pads (on & over-ear)
    • Hard-shell carrying case
    • 3.5mm to 3.5mm audio cable with a volume limiter
    • USB-C to USB-C audio sharing cable
    • USB-C to USB-A charging cable
    • User manual

    Specifications

    Type: On-ear & over-ear
    Connection: Bluetooth 5.1 & wired – 3.5mm
    Back design: Closed-back
    Drivers: Dynamic
    Frequency range: n/a
    Impedance: n/a
    Weight: 5.85 ounces (166 grams)
    Mic & Controls: Yes
    Water resistance: None
    Battery life: 20h
    Charging time: n/a – USB-C
    Active noise cancelling: No
    Bluetooth codecs: SBC, AAC, aptX
    Wireless range: 65 feet (20 meters)
    Microphone: Built-in mic

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