Fairphone is the first sustainable phone company but it is definitely not the first in making sustainably designed headphones. And so yes, the company that makes sustainable phones has introduced its first pair of audio cans, the Fairbuds XL Headphones.
The cans share the same concept as the phone and that’s modularity that allows for replacement of faulty or worn parts thus extending its lifespan. From the looks of it, the Fairbuds XL is even more modular than AiAiAi which we have reviewed a couple of times.
Each pair of cans is made up of a headband cover, headband, headband base, a speaker-to-speaker cable, left and right speaker, ear cushions, headphone battery, speaker covers, and a joystick. All told it has no less than 11 modular parts. That’s right. Eleven. It is that modular.
In addition, the headphones are manufactured responsibly. Fairphone is the first headphones maker to integrate Fairtrade gold into its supply chain. The product is made from 100% recycled aluminum, 100% recycled tin solder paste, and 80%r recycled plastics. Plus, it has vegan cushions and it comes with a 100% recycled textile pouch for storage and easy carrying.
Fairbuds XL Headphones promised to deliver superior sound with clear highs, warm mids, and deep bass through its 40 mm dynamic drivers. You can further unlock the cans’ full potential with the free app. In addition to EQ settings, the app also offers a personalized audio experience made possible through a collaboration with sound calibration specialist, Sonarworks.
You can choose to enjoy your favorite tunes while zoning out with active noise cancellation or let the world in with ambient mode. Finally, it is outfitted with an 800 mAh battery that offers up to 30 hours of playback on a single charge.
But being sustainable comes with a pretty high price. The Fairbuds XL Headphones will run you back at €249 (around US$268) and that does not include the USB-C 3.2 cable and the USB-C-mini jack 3.5 mm cable that would allow for wired playback. Those two items are available optionally for €34.95 and €12.95 (about US$37.60 and US$13.90), respectively.