We did some basic internet research and found a lot of snarky reviews of these headphones. Many individuals in the blogosphere took one look at the press release and said, "oh man, those headphones are probably pretty bad." We here at HeadphoneInfo.com do not judge products based on appearance or our own subjectivity, however, so we took our three Gummy Bear headphones review units into our labs and put them through our rigorous scientific testing procedures. Now that we've compiled the data we can objectively state that yeah, these headphones are pretty bad.
The Sakar Gummy Bear headphones bear the appearance of their namesake candy. When you wear the headphones, it appears that there's an edible gummy bear protruding from your ear. Do not be fooled, however: the bear is not edible, at least according to some small text on the packaging. We confirmed this in scientific testing that claimed the life of one (1) internet scientist.
Removing the sleeves, you can get a good look at the nozzle, which is guarded by a fairly porous mesh. We're not sure how much protection this mesh actually offers the internal speaker elements.
The side view of the ear buds allows you to peer through the bear's translucent flesh to see its internal components.
The back of these headphones are the star of the show, assuming that show is the Gummy Bears cartoon from the mid 80s. The bears feature small smiles and stubby paws and legs. This bear face is what will greet the legions of delighted onlookers as they clamber over each other to catch another glimpse of your whimsical headphones.
The Gummy Bear headphones' cable is just shy of four feet in length and ends at a standard, straight 1/8-inch plug.
The plug is a standard, straight 1/8-inch plug.
The cord guards aren't the most robust we've seen. The plug has a standard guard that should help ease the effects of wear and tear. The ear buds don't have much of a cord guard at all.
There's really nothing in the box except for the headphones and their ability to inspire childlike wonderment.
Unlike actual bears, which are known for their hearty, rugged survivability, these headphones seem cheap. Their cable is a relatively thin gauge and the cord guards aren't great. These are $10 headphones; don't expect the Shure SE535s here.
Much like the Monster Turbine Pearls, the Sakar Gummy Bear headphones hinge on their aesthetic quality. Where the Turbine Pearls are designed to appeal to professional adult women, the Gummy Bear headphones have tiny plastic bears.
The frequency response graph wasn't great, but it also wasn't terrible. They try to emphasize the base as hard as they can, and they appear to have a boost at around the 5kHz range in the right channel and 7kHz range in the left. After that peak, the response drifts down, down, ever downward.
It appears the Sakar Gummy Bear headphones have some issues with distortion. We rarely see distortion above 1%, and anything over 3% is annoyingly audible. We're not sure how much distortion is in the right channel because our chart wasn't built to accommodate THD over 10%. Fortunately for the headphones as a whole, the left channel's distortion peaks at a much more modest 6.5%. Based on these results, we wouldn't recommend these headphones for audiophiles.
The headphones also seemed to have problems with tracking. Lower frequencies have a bias towards the right channel, which wanders back over to the left as you move up the frequency spectrum. Towards the high end the right channel is again a bit loud, at which point the volume suddenly shifts to the left channel for its own inscrutable purposes.
The Sakar Gummy Bear headphones actually do isolate quite a bit of noise, especially in the high end. We suspect up to 80% of this passive isolation is due to the bears on the back of the ear buds. Bears are fiercely territorial, and we suspect they ferociously defending your ears from incoming soundwaves.
Likewise, the bears don't easily let go of soundwaves they believe to be their own. Don't expect much sound to escape into the outside world. If you wear these headphones in quiet, public areas, you will only disrupt those around you with your cute headphones, not with audio leakage.
Given these headphones poor distortion scores, we were surprised we could pump them up to about 118dB without exceeding 3% distortion. Expect loud, mediocre playback from your Gummy Bear headphones.
We didn't find the Sakar Gummy Bear headphones all that comfortable, and it's because of their namesake bears. There isn't much space between the portion of the ear bud you actually insert in your ear and the tall, protrusive bear. That means you have to jam the hard plastic bear against your outer ear in order to get the ear bud into your ear canal.
As time goes on, the hard plastic bear you've wedged between your concha and antihelix will really start to hurt. These really aren't comfortable headphones.
The only customizability option available is to buy a different color from the onset. Once you've purchased your Gummy Bear headphones there's nothing you can do. There aren't any sleeves to customize fit and there aren't any accessories to add functionality to your fruit-scented headphones.
The Sakar Gummy Bear headphones' cable is just under four feet in length. This is a good length for a set of in-ears, since that's typically the distance between your ears and the front pocket of your pants. The Gummy Bear headphones don't come with any additional connectivity accessories, however, so you won't be able to hook them up to your home stereo system out of the box.
As in-ears, the Gummy Bear headphones are pretty portable. They have a thin gauge cord that isn't very long, so it's easy to just ball up the cord and shove the headphones in your pocket. The Gummy Bear headphones don't come with a pouch or tools for managing the cable.
There's not much you can do to maintain your headphones. Just about the only thing you can do is remove the sleeves for cleaning. You can't replace the sleeves, though, since they only come with the one pair. There's also no easy way to clean the nozzle grating, so if something gets between those giant holes in the mesh it's just there for good. Additionally, if the wires inside the cable fray there's no easy way to replace it. We'd recommend just buying another set of headphones for $10.
The only other feature you'll find on your Gummy Bear headphones is a fruit scent. We found that this scent was only perceptible for a few days before it had dissipated.
The Gummy Bear headphones do not require a battery to power their scent or their bear shaped ear buds. Since batteries are a pain, we award points to any headphones that don't require batteries.
The Shure SE115s are a well-constructed set of in-ears. They feature a thick cable for increased durability, a modular cord for adding in-line accessories, and feature an understated design. The Gummy Bears headphones have cute plastic bears and will likely break within a weak.
The SE115s have the frequency response the Gummy Bears headphones might have had if they'd only calm down a bit. As it is, the Gummy Bears' frequency response is erratic, its channels are out of sync, and its dynamic response is a bit too dynamic.
The Gummy Bears headphones feature quite a bit of distortion.
The Shure SE115s have much better tracking than the Gummy Bears headphones.
The SE115s block out much more sound than the Gummy Bears headphones.
We thought the SE115s were pretty comfortable for a set of in-ears, and they come with a decent selection of sleeves to help you customize the fit. The Gummy Bears headphones require you to jam a plastic bear into the folds of your outer ear.
This comparison mainly boils down to how many times you want to run to the store to buy Gummy Bear headphones. If you think you'd start getting self-conscious after the 8th pair breaks because the store clerk has begun to recognize your face, it might be worth it to opt for the SE115s.
We were mainly going to hinge this section on some kind of bear/fish pun, because the Sennheiser 680is have those crux fins, but we just couldn't make it work.
Again, the Gummy Bear headphones have the right idea with their frequency response graph, but it's just everywhere. It's like asking someone to duplicate the CX 680is graph with their non-dominant hand.
The CX 680is feature very little distortion, while the Gummy Bears feature quite a bit of it. Legend has it that this distortion is actually caused by the bears growling to each other. In our testing we found no factual evidence to this legend and instead attribute it to the headphones' inaccurate drivers.
The Gummy Bears' do not have consistent tracking. Some say that the gentle slope before 1kHz is supposed to be the protruding stomach of a hibernating bear, and that the portion after 1kHz is just bad tracking. Sakar has neither confirmed nor denied this hypothesis.
The Gummy Bears headphones actually isolate better than the CX 680is, since they put more plastic between your inner ear and the outside world.
Again, we wouldn't recommend the Gummy Bears headphones for their comfort. We found the bear's non-ergonomic shape caused minor contusions to our outer ear.
If you spend only $10 on headphones this year, then the Gummy Bear headphones are pretty much the only game in town. If you choose to spend a realistic amount on headphones, we'd guess the CX 680is were the better buy.
Neither set of headphones look like they cost you a lot of money. The Gummy Bears feature cute bits of plastic while the Triqiis elicit a primordial fear of bees.
The Triqiis' frequency response is dynamic but still sensible. Note how the response does bounce around a bit to emphasize different frequencies, but doesn't stray too far outside our bounds.
The Triqiis feature a lot of low-end distortion because they're on-ears with foam pads: they form a poor seal with your head. The Gummy Bears feature a lot of mid-range distortion due to using poor quality speakers. Neither set of headphones is a winner here.
The Triqiis have a pretty consistent tracking, even if it's slightly biased towards the left channel.
As we said earlier, the Triqiis are on-ears with foam padding, which really doesn't create a tight seal with your head. As a result, they don't isolate well at all.
We didn't think either set of headphones was particularly comfortable. The Triqiis foam padding was scratchy and the pieces that fit over our ears didn't rest flat. The Gummy Bear headphones require you to imbed plastic bears into your skull in order to fit the headphones into your ear canal. We wouldn't recommend either set of headphones for their comfort.
While neither set of headphones is perfect, in terms of usability the Triqiis are better than the Gummy Bears. Sure, they're not as cute, but they're functional and offer decent audio quality. If you value the cute factor, though, it's not like you're giving up a stellar set of headphones by choosing them over the Triqiis.
We'd say both headphones were similar in terms of design. The Apple iPod headphones feature the company's all white design, and at this point they're probably retro. The Gummy Bears feature their namesake candy on the ear buds. Neither set of headphones is particularly well constructed.
The Gummy Bears' frequency response is closer to what the average dynamic frequency response actually looks like, but the iPod headphones keep their channels outputting the same volume.
The iPod headphones had quite a bit of distortion, but the Gummy Bear headphones simply dwarf them in this regard.
The iPod headphones have a fairly erratic tracking in the low end, but level out afterwards. The Gummy Bears are more stable in the low end than the high end. Neither are particularly good.
The Gummy Bear headphones actually fit inside your ear, allowing them to block out external noise. The Apple iPod headphones just loiter outside your ear, allowing all kinds of external sound to pass into your ear.
The Gummy Bears aren't really comfortable, since in order to fit them securely in your ears you have to jam the back of a hard plastic bear into your hear. The Apple iPod headphones aren't comfortable because you can't securely fit them in your ear. They just kind of hang loosely between your tragus and anti-tragus feeling like they're going to plummet to the ground any second.
The reason we wanted to do this comparison was to see if the Gummy Bear headphones were better than a set of headphones you probably already have lying around your house. As it turns out, they're not. If you really think those bears are cute, we suppose it wouldn't be the first time someone spent money on a novelty, but just be aware that is, in fact, what you're paying for.
What exactly is $10 worth these days? Sure, a set of headphones that costs $10 isn't going to be great, but the Sakar Gummy Bear headphones are worse than the average set of headphones that come packaged in with audio devices. Basically, you're paying $10 for something that looks like a Gummy Bear candy. We'd recommend just getting an earring instead, since it achieves the same sort of effect but will still let you wear decent headphones.
Meet the tester
Mark Brezinski is a senior writer with seven years of experience reviewing consumer tech and home appliances.
Checking our work.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.Shoot us an email