Robust construction should stand up to hard knocks
Volume limited to 85dBA
Both over-ear and on-ear cushions included
Daisy-chain cable lets two sets of headphones listen to the same source
Battery power needed only for Bluetooth listening
Bass heads might not appreciate the flat frequency response
Pricey (for a kids’ headphone, at least)
The Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus is the best children’s headphone we’ve tested, in terms of both build and sound quality. Active noise cancellation isn’t on its otherwise long list of features, but that doesn’t detract from its overall appeal.
Price When Reviewed
Best Prices Today: Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus
It’s well known that headphone listening can cause irreversible damage to your hearing if the content is played too loudly. As an adult, you might chalk it up to aging, but imagine your child having difficulty hearing birds sing or the teacher giving classroom instruction because you let them wear your headphones while they watched YouTube or played games on the tablet you gave them.
Puro Sound Labs has a solid reputation for building headphones that limit the volume of sound pumped into kids’ ears, and their latest product—the BT2200 Plus Bluetooth headphone—is a superbly well-made product comparable to the best personal audio products designed for adults. Its key feature is that it delivers very good sound, with its output volume limited to 85dBA.
Design & build
Unlike most products in this category, these headphones use very little plastic in their construction. The headband, yoke, and earcups are fabricated from aluminum, and the exterior of the earcups have a polished beveled edge that provides a very attractive contrast to the brushed finish in your choice of six colors (black, blue, green, pink, purple, or teal).
This review is part of TechHive’s in-depth coverage of the best headphones.
All controls are on the left-hand earcup: There are reassuringly mechanical buttons for Bluetooth pairing and volume up/down, along with a sliding on/off switch. You’ll also find a 3.5mm analog input here, along with a USB-C port for recharging the headphone’s battery. Puro provides both types of cables in the box, plus a USB-C daisy-chain cable that allows two sets of headphones to listen to the same source.
The company promises 20 hours of active use on a full charge, and 200 hours of standby time. There is no fast-charge mode and no support for wireless charging.
The headband and earcups are generously padded with memory foam wrapped with patent leather that feels remarkably like the real thing used on luxury brands. The earcups have large indicators printed on the cloth covering the drivers to designate right and left. There are smaller markings on each interior side inside the headband, immediately above the sliders.
The non-indexed sliders extend up to 1.5 inches to accommodate different sized heads, and you can push them up into the headband when you want to store the headphone inside its hard-sided carrying case. The earcups fold in for that purpose as well.
When fully extended, the BT2200 Plus was just big enough for me to wear—and evaluate—although the cups weren’t quite large enough to accommodate the entirety of my outer ears. These aren’t active noise-cancelling ‘phones, but their padded cups deliver an adequate seal to provide considerable passive noise isolation. Puro says the headphones block 83 percent of ambient noise at 1kHz. An integrated microphone supports phone calls and remote learning situations.
I also handed these headphones over to my rambunctious 5-year-old grandson, and it has proven to be exceptionally durable after six months of daily not-at-all-gentle use. While I wouldn’t want to wear them for long listening sessions due to their clamping pressure, they aren’t designed for an adult’s head, and they seemed just right for my grandchild.
The BT2200 Plus ship with both on-ear and over-ear cushions, and there’s a mesh pocket inside the case to store these and other accessories. Should the need ever arise, Puro not only sells replacements of both styles of cushion—$19 for over-ear and $8 for on-ear—but a replacement case, also $19, cables, and more. Replacement parts aren’t a common feature of most headphones, let alone models designed for kids, who are more likely to need them. By the way, Puro offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and a full one-year warranty for these cans.
Should you buy the Puro Sound Labs BT2200 Plus?
After many hours of listening to jazz, pop, rock, and folk music, I’d say Puro’s claim of “studio grade audio quality” is a bit of a stretch, but these headphones do deliver a relatively flat frequency response, so you—well, your kids—will get close to hearing what the recording artist intended.
Whether your kids will appreciate that fidelity is another question. Not having to deal with an app to use these headphones is convenient for both parent and child, but it also means there’s no software for the EQ tweaking that tweens might want to engage in. Perhaps more importantly, they’ll be listening at volume levels that won’t permanently damage their hearing.
Dropping a hundred bucks on kids’ headphones might seem extravagant, but in addition to the level-limiting feature, the BT2200 Plus are exceptionally well built and offer great features—such as the daisy-chain cable—that you won’t find on the competition. That makes them a very good value.
Volume limited to 85dBA
Passive noise isolation
On-ear or over-ear (both types of ear cushions are included)
Bluetooth 5.1 or wired listening
Integrated mic for phone calls and distance learning
Two sets of headphones can share one playback device
20-hour battery life (200 hours on standby)
Hard-sided carry case included
3.5mm analog volume-limiting, USB-A to USB-C, and daisy-chain cables included