Fairbuds XL headphones

Welcome to the forum and thanks for your input.

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The XL buds are fine. I really appriciate the repairability, through i never had any issues with the repairability of headphones earlier. The previous inear Fairbuds are a disaster though.
The app isnt open source, which could mean the that the longterm longlivety of the useability of the headphones isn’t that good.
Also i hope and expect some modularity for the headphones in the near future.
Larger earpieces for those that want it.
An upgradeable earpice with an additional usc-c slot to conect an usb-c mircophone to use as an good headset. Not being usable as a decent headset is a big minus.

Also would be nice if Fairphone releases the dimensions of the circuitboard then maybe maybe some 3-rd party circuitboards would come to the market. That would be cool.
The modularity of the XL is something that the XL buds has some true advantage if the would go that route. To be able to customise your headphone the way you like it, could also appeal to people that isnt into the whole right to repair and sustainability and in that way atleast expose them to the concepts of right-to-repair and sustainability of consumer electronics.


The missing extended mic is also for me a reason not to buy it. Hopfully it can be added soon, as I am in need of a proper headset for online meetings.


Just some random experiences having just received the Fairbuds XL today.

So far I have only tried them with my old MacPro (2009) desktop computer tower. Some of the following observations might sound trivial to the experts here, but to me there were some surprising findings given the Fairbuds are connecting to a 14 y.o. outdated desktop computer here.

  • All music playback functionality appears to work. The Fairbuds joystick button can control the computer volume without problems and also skipping forward and back between tracks and pausing. However …
  • Minimum volume level via USB cable(s) is quite high (computer’s USB-A out to extension cable’s or keyboard’s USB-A out to Fairbuds USB-C in ) and forces me to tune down volume not just on the computer output, but additionally in each media program as well, unlike through bluetooth (lower minimum volume level).
  • Most surprising for me: The sound differs a lot depending on whether it’s transferred via USB cable or via Bluetooth. The cable sound has less bass while the bluetooth sound has much more bass.
  • Nice find: If both connections are there, I can easily choose any of the two:
  • NEW find (28 July 2023): I received the USB-C-to-Audiojack cable today. Nicer sound (from old DENON receiver DRA-365RD) than with the USB-A-to-USB-C cable and works (as promised by Fairphone) without battery. Just switching on the Fairbuds XL (battery back in, of course) amplifies the volume level.
    BUT when (USB-C-to-AJ) plugged into the Fairbuds XL, the latter refuse to bluetooth-connect to the computer (original source of sound). When plugging in USB-C-to-AJ whilst bluetooth playing back, the bluetooth connection stops.

I have hardly tested it yet on any of the Fairphones I have here, just to the point where I could briefly test the four EQ presets on the Fairbuds app on my FP3+ running /e/OS. “Tokyo” is the “bassiest”.


I would like an external battery charger to charge spare batteries.
At the moment charging a spare is a real pain in the ass.

Check out this thread:

I have not tried mine on the Fairbuds XL battery, yet. But I see no reason why it shouldn’t work.
As I just realized checking the linked thread: I have actually tested it with the Fairbuds XL battery and it worked just fine. :see_no_evil:
Beware, though, that all those universal chargers usually don’t charge to 100% but maybe around 80% at most.

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I can await its invention. I may just keep my second for when this one kicks the bucket.

New testing, a third, indirect way to connect to the same audio source:

Plastic snapped

Perhaps using recycled plastic wasn’t the best idea. Mine has snapped while adjusting on my head.
Very brittle plastic.

Ouch. That could also be a material defect. Make sure to contact support about it.
Mine went through some rough stuff already and I had no issues with broken pieces so far. :crossed_fingers:


In some review videos they are quite rough on them, as already mentioned, this is probably a defect.


I have but no reply as yet. I’ve only had them a couple of weeks so I hope I get a free replacement part. The Headband Base.

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Still trying to get support to send me a return label. My messages to them are being undelivered and blocked for some reason so tried via Twitter. This is becoming an epic pain in the ass.
I wanted to be positive about the concept of these headphones and phone but I am rapidly becoming disenchanted by the reality.
When they said easily repairable I didn’t think that also meant easily breakable.

I am now having to use my Thomson wireless headphones which are ancient yet no damage. How can this be.

You’re saying yours broke easily too? I don’t think this is by design. Can you explain what kind of handling broke it?

Mine broke simply adjusting the fit on my head as my ears were uncomfortable. I am currently using my old, very old, wireless set and I can drop them adjust them without any damage for years. Thomson brand, very ancient.
The temperature here at the time of breaking might’ve had something to do with it.
Support are currently ignoring my request for a return label, seems they wish to analyse the damage.
I hope they don’t try and blame me because that will kill their reputation.

Has anyone tried the new firmware yet. It seems quieter to me, is there a way to restore the original.

I have it installed since it was released. Some changes that were listed and that I could confirm:

  • max. volume was reduced - this is likely the change you mean?
  • volumes when operating with cable have been smoothed out between headphones turned on and off
  • additional EQ editor in the app (not tested by me)

But there are observations by more audiophile people than me (or at least one, @dblake) that the new firmware does not seem to remember the EQ presets any more and the Fairbuds app has to be opened every time to actually apply them. Discussion in German here:

My experience has been exactly like that. Thanks for the help.
Do you suppose this company will ever get anything correct.

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Maybe if the devs and support staff have to use their own products, including the beta releases. Since these and many other issues are found by simply using them for 5 minutes. I’m personally not bothered by the max volume, but he minimum volume is still too high when I connect via Bluetooth to my laptop. It’s also annoying to then still have the ANC announcement quite loud, and the volume goes up before the announcement, rather than relatively lower to the current volume.

I’ll make an issue tracker in the hope FP will fix them. In the meantime I’ll have to return these headphones, it’s just not the kind of quality I’d expect for 250 euros.

BlockquoteIn the meantime I’ll have to return these headphones, it’s just not the kind of quality I’d expect for 250 euros.

my problem is that I have them to long to return them and I gave my “old headphones” to a friend of mine so I need to use them … :frowning:

but I don’t think that I will buy anything of Fairphone directly after launch in the future … and to be honest … I don’t know if I’ll buy anything of fairphone in the future … I like the idea but the quality of their products is just to lame … :frowning: