It is an age-old dilemma – for modern people anyway: you want to be able to listen to music wherever you go, but you do not want to deal with the hassle of earbuds constantly falling out of place. Thankfully, that is not an issue, because Bluetooth beanies provide the syncing quality of wireless earbuds with the form-fitting function of a beanie.
When selecting a Bluetooth beanie, there are a few qualities that should stand out above the rest. The audio quality is easily one of the most important factors with speakers putting out 10W as the ideal target. Aside from that, the different types of materials, styles, and fits can also play an important role in the decision-making process. Bluetooth beanies are meant to be worn after all.
That is why we have put together a list of the 8 best Bluetooth beanies, highlighting what each one does best. We suggest you pay special attention to the Rotibox and Blue Ear beanies as they offer better experiences than most – though you will have to read more to find out why.
Best Bluetooth Beanie for 2018
|Rotibox||6 hours||4.1||44 colors|
|Blue Ear||8 hours||4.1||14 colors|
|Tenergy||6 hours||4.2||7 colors|
|Soundbot||5 hours||4.0||3 colors|
|Deego||3.8 hours||3.0||3 colors|
|Ytonet||4 hours||4.0||2 colors|
|BCELIFE||8 hours||4.0||4 colors|
|Pococina||6 hours||3.0||6 colors|
1. Rotibox: Best Sounding Bluetooth Beanie Hat
Rotibox may not specialize in Bluetooth beanies, but it is definitely their primary market. That said, they definitely seek to dominate the cold weather clothing market with a particular focus on sports clothes. Leggings and gloves help round out the ensemble for this brand along with a few other unique pieces of electronics.
This Bluetooth beanie is by far the most fashion-forward beanie on our list with over 44 different styles to choose from. The overwhelming majority of these beanies are made out of 100 percent acrylic, though there are the errant few which do not hew to that specific construction and will be made from a blend of acrylic and wool. Regardless the fiber type, the Rotibox beanie is double knitted so that you will not have to worry about your head getting cold.
One thing that is a bit odd is that the Rotibox can occasionally have pairing issues. While this seems to be a case by case issue, it does not change the fact that the 4.1 Bluetooth channel does not always work as advertised. On top of that, the microphone is adequate, but it is not going to blow you away with quality or sound clarity. That said, the battery is not bad with a continuous play time of 6 hours – though it would be better if it did not then take 2 ½ hours to charge.
Why we recommend Rotibox Beanies to you
Regardless all other factors involved in a Bluetooth beanie, the reason you buy one in the first place is to listen without having to hold a phone up to your ear or worry about buds falling out. That being the case, the quality of the sound is paramount, and even though other Bluetooth beanies on our list have decent sound quality, none of them really compare to the Rotibox. The 10W speakers produce loud, crisp sound that few can compete with.
2. Blue Ear: Best Bluetooth Beanie for Calls
Whereas some of the companies on our list manufacture products across a wide range of markets, Blue Ear focuses exclusively on audio electronics in general but wearable audio electronics specifically. Beyond beanies, Blue Ear sells Bluetooth audio wearables in the earmuff and baseball cap lines as well. They even make a few portable Bluetooth speakers.
This beanie is made out of a blend of acrylic and cotton fibers which makes it a bit softer than simply acrylic alone. This also means that the fibers are able to stretch a bit more – though they are by no means the most stretchable on our list. The Blue Ear beanie comes in 14 different styles to choose from, so you are not limited by the outfit.
In terms of battery, this Bluetooth beanie is tied for having the longest continuous play time that we saw at 8 hours. On the flip side, it also tops our list in charge time, requiring 3 hours to fully charge the beanie. Still, the major downside to this Bluetooth beanie is that the speakers are definitely on the lower end of our list.
Why we recommend Blue Ear Beanies to you
The Blue Ear beanie should be used more for business people who still want a wireless, Bluetooth accessory in colder climates. What it lacks in powerful speakers it more than makes up for in connectivity and a microphone that will not pick up noise that would otherwise make a telephone call difficult. Even better, you can talk for hours with its 8-hour continuous play battery.
3. Tenergy: Best Bluetooth Beanie Connectivity
As a company, Tenergy is broadly an electronics brand that focuses more on batteries and their applications than anything else. That being said, they will work with you to build anything you can dream up and even have a “custom” option on their website where you provide the design schematics and they manufacture the product for you. That may very well be how their Bluetooth Beanie came to fruition.
While this beanie has a number of qualities that are attractive, it has to be the top of the line connectivity that stands out most compared to its competitors. This is the only Bluetooth beanie that we encountered which runs on a 4.2 Bluetooth channel. This will help ensure that your beanie does not lose connection with the transmitting device not only up to the distance of all the others we encountered but even through light obstructions as well.
That said, this beanie is a mixed bag when it comes to the battery. The continuous play time of this Bluetooth beanie is decent, though unspectacular, at 6 hours. The issue is that it takes 2 ½ hours to charge this Bluetooth beanie which is the second longest charge time that we saw. Still, the beanie is made of an acrylic and polyester blend and is lined with fleece to keep you extra warm.
4. Soundbot: Most Convenient Bluetooth Beanie
If the name does not clue you in, Soundbot is a brand that focuses on audio listening equipment. However, they are acutely attuned to Bluetooth connected audio equipment more specifically offering a wide range of portable speakers, headphones, and other wearable devices. Though, they do still offer plenty of other electronics that focus on cords, adapters, and dongles for various pieces of equipment.
The Soundbot Bluetooth beanie, on the other hand, makes our list for being the most convenient Bluetooth beanie we encountered and accomplishes this with a particular set of features. First, removing the speakers from this Bluetooth beanie is a breeze. The underside of this beanie actually has a zipper that opens halfway around the entire beanie, so you do not have to worry about threading the speakers out of the beanie.
On top of that, the Soundbot also make putting the beanie back much easier and with a greater degree of customization and stability than any other Bluetooth beanie that we saw. This is accomplished with velcro. One piece of velcro is placed on the back of the speaker and another is sewn into the inner compartment of the cap. This means you will not have to worry about the speaker being offset like with some of the other beanies we encountered.
The Bluetooth of the Soundbot only runs on the 4.0 channel. This is not terrible, but it is not necessarily the best that we saw. That said, this beanie is compatible with a wide range of codecs to provide an expansive selection of different media options. Still, one of the biggest downsides that we saw with the Soundbot is its battery life. At only 5 hours of continuous play time, this Bluetooth beanie is definitely on the lower end of battery life.
5. Deego: Best Bluetooth Beanie Kit
Deego is one of the few brands on our list that does not at all specialize in electronics in any form. Instead, this brand focuses its efforts on manufacturing different types of accessories to complement the electronics you already own. While this generally takes the form of high-end, braided cables, this company also makes a number of accessories for your phone like wallets and cases.
The Deego Bluetooth beanie is a bit of a misfit on our list in a large part because it does not necessarily do too many things better than any of the other products that we reviewed. That said, it is at least one of the least expensive Bluetooth beanies that we reviewed, but you are definitely losing a bit in terms of capabilities and overall quality with that decrease in price.
For instance, this beanie is actually tied for the lowest Bluetooth channel on our list. Using Bluetooth 3.0, you should expect this beanie to have some issues pairing with your device or staying paired with your device. This issue only increases when the transmitting device is not close to the beanie.
On top of the pairing issues, this beanie also features the worst battery life out of any other product on our list. At only 3.8 hours of continuous play time, this beanie will run out of juice far sooner than most of the other Bluetooth beanies that we encountered. The only silver lining to this problem is the fact that this beanie’s speakers will charge relatively quickly requiring only 2 hours before they are fully charged.
Still, the best quality about the Deeg Bluetooth beanie has to be the fact that it is sold as a complete. Aside from the Bluetooth beanie, you are also purchasing a pair of gloves. While this may generally not be enough to justify the purchase of an inferior product, these gloves feature specially textured fingers which allow them to interact with your touchscreen smart devices.
6. Ytonet: Best Bluetooth Beanie Control
Ytonet is another of the few companies on our list that does not have any special market focus on audio products in specific or even electronics in general. Again, this is another brand which focuses far more on the accessories that accompany electronics rather than the electronics themselves. This shows itself most prominently with high-end, threaded cables and a variety of different carrying and storage accessories for a variety of electronic devices.
The Ytonet also follows the suit of other products on our list by presenting a bit of a mixed bag when it comes to the performance of their Bluetooth beanie. To begin with, this beanie does at least provide a solid function for the two most important factors: audio quality and the mic. While the speakers themselves are nothing to brag about, they do provide a solid sound quality. Likewise, the mic is one of the few we saw that is noted for being crisp and clear without background noise or static.
That said, the battery is definitely a bit more hit or miss. For instance, the Ytonet only offers 4 hours of continuous play time. That is tied for the second lowest on our list. That said, the Ytonet beanie does at least charge the fastest and only requires 1 full hour before it is fully charged. Of course, with one of the smallest battery capacities, you expect the charge time should be similarly short.
Regardless, the best quality about the Ytonet beanie has got to be its controls. While the actual control interface is set up pretty much like every other Bluetooth beanie that we have come across, it does come with one control feature that we found on only a single other competitor: redial. While the track skipping and call answering are the same, the Ytonet can quickly and easily redial the last number that you called. Even better, it can also change the volume of the speakers–and no other Bluetooth beanie supports both of those.
7. BCELIFE: Best Bluetooth Beanie Battery
BCELIFE very nearly focuses exclusively on Bluetooth beanies with a couple peculiar exceptions. The first is an inverted umbrella while the other is a bento lunchbox and set of silverware holders for bento lunchboxes. As such, it should not come as much of a surprise that BCELIFE is quite popular in Japan and South Korea. That said, this is definitely one of the more expensive Bluetooth beanies that we reviewed, but it might just earn that inflated cost depending on what feature is most important to you.
If you do not want to have to worry about the hassle of trying to keep your Bluetooth beanie charged but do not want to have to sacrifice too much in the way of features, then the BCELIFE is definitely the Bluetooth beanie for you. This beanie is tied for the longest continuous play time on our list at 8 hours. However, the BCELIFE goes a significant step further by also only requiring 1 to 2 hours to fully charge the speakers. This means that the BCELIFE Bluetooth beanie has not only the longest play time but one of the shortest charge cycles as well.
On top of that, the BCELIFE also sports some excellent sound quality, though it is not the best that we encountered. Still, with two 10W speakers, you will not be lacking in the sound department or volume quality. That said, some people have noted that the BCELIFE Bluetooth beanie’s speakers have a tendency to distort at the higher end of the volume and do not properly replicate bass.
8. Pococina: Best Budget Bluetooth Beanie
The Pococina Bluetooth beanie is definitely not the best product that we reviewed. In fact, there are a number of products on our list that do not cost much more but are ultimately a better value than this beanie. That said, if you are looking for the absolute rock bottom price for a Bluetooth beanie, then this is the best game in town. Of course, the Pococina brand does not actually specialize in anything and is the only company on our list to have a seemingly undefined focus.
In terms of the good, this beanie is made out of 100 percent acrylic. This means the beans will keep you warm and is fairly durable. On top of that, the inner lining of the beanie is fleece so your head will be kept even warmer than otherwise and will also be more comfortable with the softer fleece material.
The battery may not blow you away, but it too is reasonably good. It features 6 hours of continuous playback time. This is not great, but it is definitely higher than average. On top of the play time, the Pococina Bluetooth beanie only takes 2 hours to fully recharge its battery. Again, this is not the quickest recharge that we saw, but it is still definitely better than average.
The real downside of this beanie is its sound quality. Aside from the fact that the sound quality itself is subpar, the speakers themselves have a low maximum volume. In fact, the volume is so low that you will be unlikely to hear a phone call unless you are in a somewhat quiet room. Definitely part of the issue with this is that the Pococina Bluetooth beanie only features a single speaker. This is the only product that we reviewed which does not come with two speakers.
So, What is the Best Bluetooth Beanie?
Well, that question will heavily depend on exactly what features you are looking for, what style you demand, and how much you are willing to spend. The best quality version of any product generally comes at a higher price, but it usually makes up for it with clearly superior quality.
For those of you looking to listen to music, we recommend the Rotibox. The 10W speakers produce by far the best audio quality that we found. The highs are crisp, the mids are clear, and bass has a surprising kick to it. Though, this is the most expensive Bluetooth beanie we reviewed.
If you intend to use your Bluetooth beanie for more practical purposes, like answering calls in colder weather, we recommend the Blue Ear. While the audio quality is nothing to brag about due to the 0.5W speakers, they are more than powerful enough for phone calls. On top of that, this has one of the best performing mics that we found.
How to Choose the Best Bluetooth Beanie: Buyer’s Guide
When looking for the best Bluetooth beanie, it is important to remember that a wide range of qualities and features will ultimately determine which is the best Bluetooth beanie for your needs. While the first thought is to the Bluetooth connection and numerous functions, generally more basic hardware actually determines the overall performance of the beanie. Things like the materials, the audio output, the controls, and yes, the Bluetooth protocol, all add up to a complete experience that can be ruined by one or more of those qualities being too poor in quality.
The materials will not actually affect your listening experience too terribly much, and, in fact, if the material selection is proper, you will not even notice the benefits provided. This is because the material you choose will likely reflect when and where you plan to wear your Bluetooth beanie. Considering the product, chances are you will be outside of your home which at least puts you outdoors for a time. As such, a good rule of thumb is to choose a Bluetooth beanie made out of a material which would be comfortable without additional features.
Nylon – Nylon is arguably one of the best and most versatile materials in the world–hence why it is found in so many different products. For Bluetooth beanies, nylon is one of the more popular materials used, likely because it offers a number of great benefits–many at the top of the list–without too many real drawbacks. For instance, in terms of raw strength, nylon is the most durable fiber commonly used for Bluetooth beanies–keeping in mind that there are some specialty brands which might use exotic materials like kevlar or another ballistic weave. Regardless, nylon is also lightweight and even provides a reasonable amount of insulation making it a great material for virtually any climate. It does have a slight water resistance for light drizzles, but it is also more susceptible to UV damage. Because of its inherent strength, nylon can be spun in many different ways allowing it to provide some of the softest finishes.
Polyester – Polyester is fairly similar to nylon in a number of ways, but the 2 materials distinguish themselves along subtle differences. For instance, while nylon may provide a modicum of natural water resistance, polyester actually offers enough such that you can easily walk in or out of the rain without having to worry about the water soaking through. Another benefit that polyester has over nylon is natural UV resistance – though it should be noted that this primarily an aesthetics concern as the damage done is unlikely to be enough to actually weaken the beanie. It is worth noting that while polyester is not nearly as strong as nylon, it is still one of the stronger fibers used for Bluetooth beanies and should be seen as a plus. Polyester is also less expensive than nylon, though the difference in price is often minimal. Polyester insulates about as well as nylon – making it okay, but not great – but cannot be spun as soft as nylon can.
Cotton – Surprisingly, cotton is actually one of the least common materials used for Bluetooth beanies, and it is especially rare to be used on its own. Bluetooth beanies made from a blend of cotton and other fibers are fairly common though – the exception to this is the rare suede beanie. The primary benefit of cotton is that it is one of the least expensive materials commonly used – though it is not the absolute least expensive. Another benefit of cotton is that it is exceptionally light, but that is less likely to be useful if you are wearing a beanie for anything other than fashion in the first place. On the flip side, cotton is easily one of the least durable materials used and is the most likely to stain. It offers no protection from water and even provides the least amount of insulation – ultimately, the best setting for a pure cotton Bluetooth beanie would be a warm-weather climate.
Wool – Wool is often considered one of the first materials used for beanies as the regions which grow cotton rarely require the degree of cold protection that wool provides. In fact, there is no other material on our list which provides more warmth than wool–though that is one of the few features it offers in the superior. Another quality of wool which is better than other materials is its feel as wool is a softer fiber than the others and can be made into some of the softest materials at all. While none of the materials used are truly expensive, wool is definitely the most expensive material commonly used – especially if it is spun into a super soft fleece. Wool offers no protection from water but can be blended with other fibers.
Acrylic – While acrylic is technically seen as the lowest grade of material used for Bluetooth beanies, it does still actually have some legitimate benefits. For instance, there are few materials outside of wool commonly used for this product outside of wool which will provide more warmth than acrylic. By the same stroke, there are few materials commonly used which are naturally more water-resistant than acrylic outside of polyester. That said, acrylic is by far the least durable material used and would do best with a hand wash to ensure its structural integrity over the long run. Acrylic is easily blended with different types of fibers and is also one of the least expensive materials used for Bluetooth beanies.
For a while, the Bluetooth protocol was not too terribly important so long as you kept the paired devices within the required distance. Unfortunately, these days Bluetooth protocols have advanced so much that people using current generation smart devices might actually have difficulty pairing or staying paired to Bluetooth beanies which use older protocols. At the very least, you should look for a Bluetooth beanie running protocol 4.0, though it is recommended with the release and current adoption of Bluetooth 5.0 that you get 4.2 to remain relevant a bit longer. Of course, if you have older hardware or smart devices, then the requirement for a newer Bluetooth protocol diminishes–though it is likely something you will have to get to sooner or later.
The overwhelming majority of Bluetooth beanies have some form of audio output – whether that is electrostatic speakers or compact drivers. This requires a power source, and since the point of a Bluetooth beanie is to be wireless, your smart device cannot provide the power. Instead, different types of batter options are used with the most common on being a combination of a Li-Ion rechargeable battery that connects via a USB cord. To be clear, this should be seen as the superior option and is more common than not, but there are some Bluetooth beanies out there which run on replaceable batteries – generally the kind you would use for a watch. Because Bluetooth beanies are a wearable product, the battery life matters not simply when you are using the product but when you are charging it as well. This is because you may not necessarily have 4+ hours to charge your Bluetooth beanie before you are going out again, so a quick charging beanie should also be favored.
Bluetooth beanies are rarely that complicated, but that does not mean there are not numerous things a manufacturer can do to ensure that their product is easier to use than their competitors. That said, the very nature of a Bluetooth beanie can make manual controls a bit difficult without taking extended, and ultimately limiting, steps. The problem lies with the fact that the controls will not exactly “stay put” in the beanie unless they are fixed in place which can make cleaning the beanie difficult. One way that manufacturers have tackled this issue is by using velcro on the back of the outputs and the interior of the beanie. Of course, you could skip that hassle altogether and opt for a Bluetooth beanie that is programmed to respond to voice commands.
The output refers to whatever is producing the sound your Bluetooth beanie makes which can either be a standard electrostatic speaker with a membrane or earbud drivers. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, but Bluetooth beanies with speakers will be far more dependent on the power than the compact drivers. On the other hand, the earbud drivers have a tendency to get lost in the interior of the beanie much like the controls–except you cannot reasonably use velcro with them. It is also worth noting that earbud drivers do a better job of isolating noise and are less likely to be heard by those around you.
While it is fairly common, a microphone is not a given with a Bluetooth beanie, and even when the Bluetooth beanie comes with a microphone, there is no guarantee that it will work well. As such, the ability to issue voice commands or make phone calls is moot when the microphone is too poor to properly make use of them. The issue can arise from 2 sources where the mic is either not sensitive enough to pick up the audio or it is too sensitive and picks up the smallest sound, amplifying many times over. Regardless of the source, the problem can render the function so frustrating as to simply not be worth bothering with making the selection of the microphone paramount if those are primary functions for your needs.