It’s now been 2 years and 4 months since I received my set of Bragi The Dash from a Kickstater campaign in 2014. I use them almost daily for anything from conference calls to just tuning out the world, hearing the hiss of the high-precision amplifiers in my ears and not the noise of my office/house/world. I’ve used them for conference calls, plane flights, phone calls, podcast listening (which I’m doing while concurrently writing this blog), music listening, and heart-rate monitoring. They have truly become a part of my everyday life and daily routine. Before I walk out into the field from my office, I throw them on, tuck the battery-case in my pocket and walk out; enjoying the ability to turn on the passivity and wind-screen as I hear a quiet background of music while I traipse around work safely hearing enough around me to be aware and even exchange pleasantries without flicking them out of my ears.
They’re so versatile that I rarely pull my molded, professional-grade in-ear monitors (Ultimate Ears UE5 Pro’s that I use to mix monitors on) out of my bag other than to use the cleaning tool to clear out debris* from my Dash units. However, the one place they don’t work super well is in the shower as the touch interface is optical and not capacitive (a flaw I think I’ve noted in previous reviews). You can always enable the lock, but that’s buried in the menu-structure and/or accessible from the accompanying iOS and Android application. Regardless, with the other materials used during a shower (e.g. soap and shampoo), I wouldn’t necessarily want my Dash in there with me anymore than I would want my Apple Watch (version 2) in there. Waterproof does not equal soap and shampoo-proof, in case you were wondering.
The only other criticisms I have (other than the aforementioned optical sensors) is that the battery life leaves a little to be desired. The sled will fully charge them about 4 times initially and now does it about 2.5 times without my having to plug the sled into an alternative source.
Other than that, I think they are a very worthy alternative to the Apple Airpods, which at the very least look obnoxiously senseless; knub-sticking-out of someone’s ear as they walk around. Bragi has since released a few other SKU’s (also no longer offering the traditional Kickstarter-edition “The Dash”) and has a “light-weight” model and “pro” model, the latter (called The Headphone) offered at retail ~$169USD (Airpods retail for $159USD). The Dash Pro are offered at ~$411USD and have replaced the SKU that I am reviewing here. I doubt I will upgrade to them anytime soon, though, as the pair I have are working great 2+ years later. It is worthy, comparably-priced wireless in-ear listening experience that I whole-heartedly believe in the technology and company.
*read: gross, disgusting ear-wax and dead skin