New Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8 fix a lot of the biggest problems with true wireless earbuds

beoplay e8
(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

Bang & Olufsen has announced the third generation of its Beoplay E8 true wireless earbuds, which come with a new smaller design and improved battery life. 

Now 17% smaller than their predecessors, the third-generation Beoplay E8 weigh just 5.8g apiece, and are "even more comfortable and natural to wear" than the second generation buds, according to the brand.

The upgraded true wireless earbuds also boast a far better battery life than the previous model, with seven hours of playtime from the buds themselves and a further four full charges built into the wireless charging case. 

Like the second-gen E8 true wireless earphones, the charging case is decked out in premium-looking leather; great if you like that luxe finish, but it does mean that these buds won't be suitable for those who avoid using animal products.

beoplay e8

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

Better sound, clearer calls

Another improvement to these stylish buds comes in the form of better call quality. Bang & Olufsen has doubled the number of microphones from two to four, to achieve "a beam-forming technology directed towards the mouth". 

The company says that this means voice is delivered "seamlessly", while reducing environmental noise that could otherwise distort your phone calls. 

The inclusion of two extra microphones will also improve Transparency Mode, according to the brand, which allows you to tune into your surroundings by tapping the outer housing of the earbuds. 

Sound quality should also see an improvement, thanks to a new bass port that lets air flow in and out of the acoustic chamber of these buds. Bang & Olufsen says that this allows the drivers inside the new Beoplay E8 to move more freely and produce a "greater and more precise bass output". The second-gen E8 wireless earphones impressed us with their tonal balanced and rich bass, so any improvement in audio quality could push them into the class-leading category.

Like their predecessors, the new buds work with the B&O app, which allows you to tweak the equalizer settings, with preset themes such as Commute, Clear, Workout, or Podcast to choose from. You can also use the TouchTone feature to tweak the sound profile to your exact requirements if you prefer.

With the latest Bluetooth 5.1 wireless technology, the new E8 should offer cutting-edge connectivity, while support for ACC and aptX codecs means you should experience high fidelity sound without a drop off in battery life. 

Unless you're in China (where the buds are released on January 15), you'll have to wait until February 14 to get your hands on the new Beoplay E8 3rd generation. 

They'll cost $350 / £350, which works out at around AU$500 based on current conversion rates. This is pretty pricey, particularly for buds that don't feature active noise cancellation. Still, if you rate a luxurious design and high quality audio above the convenience of noise cancellation, they could be the perfect Valentine's Day gift to yourself.

Olivia Tambini

Olivia was previously TechRadar's Senior Editor - Home Entertainment, covering everything from headphones to TVs. Based in London, she's a popular music graduate who worked in the music industry before finding her calling in journalism. She's previously been interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live on the subject of multi-room audio, chaired panel discussions on diversity in music festival lineups, and her bylines include T3, Stereoboard, What to Watch, Top Ten Reviews, Creative Bloq, and Croco Magazine. Olivia now has a career in PR.