UGREEN has built a reputation selling computer accessories, cables and chargers through online platform. Even I myself have bought a few products from them. Now, they have also launched their own true wireless earbuds, and thanks to Lester Chan for the referral, UGREEN reached out to me for a review opportunity.
I like that UGREEN gave me options on choosing the product I would like to review. I choose the UGREEN HiTune because of the attractive price and the specs, which I believe would appeal to readers. They allowed me to order from Shopee and sent me a voucher code to apply before checkout so that it covers the cost. The earbuds reach me within a week, which is impressively fast.
Unboxing and Design
The HiTune design is simple and functional, while the case is compact and lightweight using good quality plastic material. The earbuds can last 9 hours per charge and with the charging case you get up to 27 hours total. Throughout my review period, I have not charged once, so it seems the charge retention is quite good. Charging with USB-C cable for 15 minutes extends usage by 2 hours. They are also IPX5 water rated.
The overall build quality is better than Redmi AirDots S and the battery life is also way longer too. I find the ear tips fit better on the HiTune as well, given the tip shape is more conical while AirDots S is more spherical.
HiTune TWS uses the premium Qualcomm QCC3020 chipset supporting aptX codec and concurrent connection from the smartphone to both earbuds. Pairing is hassle free: when no device is connected, the earbuds will go into pairing mode.
The controls are touch-based, and supports only playback controls: tap once to play-pause, tap twice to skip track, and tap three times to go to previous track. Press-hold will activate the voice assistant like Google or Siri. Thankfully, there are also no voice prompts, only beeps.
With a good tight tip seal, the UGREEN HiTune delivers tight and full bass that is balanced with the bright treble. The sound is comfortable to listen to without too pushy and brittle. There is no lacking in clarity although they are not the brightest sounding earbuds. The midrange provides a little more more warmth and fullness to the whole mix. There is no audio artifacts over aptX codec on the OnePlus 8 Pro.
As UGREEN does not specialise in audio products, I am surprised that the HiTune audio tuning has good balance. It goes to show that earbuds have commoditized so much that it’s actually not difficult for manufacturers to build good quality products at a low price.
That’s not to say the HiTune is better than some branded earbuds costing many times more. There are intrinsic details that casual listeners won’t notice. At the end of the day, you buy a budget-priced earbuds not to expect first-class experience. But I feel the HiTune get great value for money.
Audio sync with video is neglibly ok, though I do notice slight almost unnoticeable lag. True wireless earbuds really struggle at times to match the latency of wired earbuds.
The voice quality is warm and chesty, towards the muffled side, but if you speak at normal levels, it should be good. Under windy conditions, the mic struggles to pick up sounds between the wind and your voice, but if you can speak out loud, the other party could still hear you.
During calls, the left earbud remain as the primary mic earbud and even when the left earbud is docked, the right earbud mic does not get switched over. Interestingly, the call is still connected but the other caller cannot hear any sound.
Redmi AirDots S – AirDots bass is more prominent but less full as the upper bass is slightly thinner. The treble more brittle, so you get a more V-shaped tuning. It supports only SBC. HiTune is less fatiguing, bass is more extended, less pushy.
Earfun Free – The Earfun free offers similar bass feel, but it feels more prominent because the treble is slightly more recessed into the mix compared to the HiTune while remaining clear. It transmits wireless audio up to AAC only. HiTune offers a clearer audio impression.
Creative Outlier Gold – The mid-treble (vocals) on the Outlier Gold is more prominent, the upper-treble (percussion) is less sizzling, while the bass has a firmer less prominent mix.
The UGREEN HiTune true wireless earbuds offers above-average features and design quality at a budget price of S$52.59 on Shopee. Its compact design and long battery life makes it an excellent travel companion.
This year I have reviewed a handful of true wireless earbuds around the price range of below S$100. The UGREEN HiTune stands out so far due to it’s simple design and overall quality. There are so any new TWS earbuds launching every month, from established brands to new entrants. Today, this might be the best, but tomorrow there will be another winner. One should not simply pursue for the “best” but simply to enjoy the experience of shopping, ordering, waiting, receiving, unboxing, listening, and owning.