Plantronics is one of the best brands when it comes to true wireless earphones. The Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 and 3200 are two of their offerings in this category. Which one is the better choice? Should you go for the more expensive Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200 or the cheaper 3100? Find out in our comparison below.
Plantronics 3100 vs 3200 Comparison Chart
|Model||Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100||Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200|
|Amazon product||Amazon product|
|Price||Amazon product||Amazon product|
|Water and Dust Resistant||Yes||Yes|
|Range||30 meters||30 meters|
|Ear Tips||Always Aware Ear Tips||Noise Isolating Ear Tips|
|Battery Life||5 hours|
Soft-shell charging case: 10 hours
Soft-shell charging case: 16 hours
|Quick Charge||15 mins for 1 hour playback||15 mins for 1.5 hours playback|
|Available Colors||Black, Grey||Black, Teal|
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 and 3200 are pretty much the same when it comes to design.
Looking at these earphones, you can tell that they are built for people with active lifestyles. They are true wireless earphones with flexible ear hooks that keep them secure while you move. Both of them are great for activities such as swimming – with IP57 certification, both earphones are water and sweat proof, working out, running, cycling and more. The build quality is solid and they don’t disappoint in the design department as well.
When it comes to the included ear tips, the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 features the Always Aware ear tips, while the 3200 comes with a noise-isolating ear tip design. The Always Aware is great if you want to hear your surroundings while using the earphones. This is great for safety but sound quality suffers. As for the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200, the noise-isolating ear tips are great for sound quality. For safety while using them outdoors, you can use the ambient setting feature to hear your surroundings.
Both earphones feature touch controls on the left piece while the right piece has a tactile button. Both of these earphones have quality written all over them and are on par with each other when it comes to design.
Both earphones are great for outside activities where your focus is on what you’re doing and not what you’re listening to.
Due to the Always Aware ear tips that come with the Plantronics 3100, sound quality is not the best. It doesn’t create a seal, so low frequencies are lacking. However, you do have to remember that these earphones are not for “audiophiles,” these are for athletes or people with active lifestyles. When you are running, working out, or cycling, you don’t really have time to focus on the music you’re listening to. The sound quality, while not the best, is still acceptable.
The Plantronics 3200, on the other hand, has eartips that work well for music. The eartips create a seal so you will hear the low frequencies better, it’s great for intense workout routines to keep you motivated. Using earphones with noise-isolating eartips is usually not recommended for runners or cyclists due to safety reasons. However, this is not a problem with the 3200 because of the ambient sound feature. You can turn it on and you can be well aware of your surroundings.
Both of these earphones are great for their intended use. Sound quality is not the best, with the 3200 edging out the 3100 due to its noise-isolating ear tips. If you are buying a wireless earphone strictly for listening to music, these two shouldn’t even be on your list. However, for workouts and other activities, these wireless earphones are some of the best.
Connectivity and Controls
The 3200 is more consistent when it comes to maintaining connection.
Both earphones operate via Bluetooth 5.0 but only the 3200 has multipoint connectivity, which means it can connect to up to two devices.
Upon testing both earphones, we found that the Plantronics 3200 has a more reliable connection. It didn’t have problems with dropped or intermittent connections to up to 30 meters. The 3100, in contrast, was great until we reached a distance of about 20 meters. The connection became spotty (and it was kind of annoying) but it didn’t drop the connection entirely. The 3200 wins when it comes to connection reliability.
These two earphones both feature touch controls on the left piece and a tactile button on the right. The left earpiece controls the volume and you can change it on the BackBeat App while the right control is for calls and playback. When removed from the case, the units are activated and gets deactivated when returned.
Battery Life and Other Features
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200 sports a longer battery life.
The battery life for the Plantronics 3100 is 5 hours, with the case providing an extra 10 hours. A quick charge for 15 minutes gives you 1 hour of playback. For the 3200, the battery life is 8 hours and the case gives an extra 16 hours. Quick charge for 15 minutes affords you 1.5 hours of playback. Clearly, the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200 has the better battery performance. In fact, it is quite an upgrade to the 3100. Both use a micro USB cable for charging.
If you have a Plantronics BackBeat earphone, it’s recommended that you download the BackBeat App. It gives you a lot of customization features for the left earpiece’s touch controls. You can enable the ambient sound awareness, choose preset EQs, set it to voice assistant access (only available for the 3200), set it to play Spotify playlists and more. Other features such as Find My Headset is great as well. The app is a must for Plantronics users.
The Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200 is the superior pair of earphones.Amazon product
Both the 3100 and 3200 are quality earphones. However, the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3200 is clearly the better one. It produces better sound due to the included eartips and it boasts a longer battery life, making it more ideal for longer activities while outside. It also has the advantage of being able to connect to two devices. Overall, it’s just the better choice. The Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 is more suited for people that just want a cheaper pair of workout earphones.
Yes, the IP57 certification certifies it to be water resistant.
Yes, they are one of the best in the earphones market.
Taken from the Poly (Plantronics) website:
– Starting with your headset powered off, press and hold the power button until the LED flashes red and blue.
– Activate Bluetooth on your phone and set it to discover new devices. To do so: …
– Tap PLT_BBT to complete the pairing.
Ultimately, the main differences between the 3100 and the 3200 are the included ear tips and battery life.