Huawei FreeBuds 3
Hello / Greetings to Everyone, So Today I am going to put my true views on Huawei Freebuds 3 Review.
The new headphones Huawei FreeBuds 3 ($120) managed to combine open “earbuds” and active noise cancellation. Here and the innovative Bluetooth 5.1, and a case with a wireless charger and autonomy of 20 hours. Can they be called the “killer” AirPods? And will there be any benefit from such a combination – all the details in my Huawei FreeBuds 3 review!
Manufacturers of the first magnitude, racing with Apple in everything related to the production of gadgets, are haunted by the laurels of the most popular Apple AirPods – a series of wireless headphones that have won the massive love of users around the world. The lineup has recently been expanded with a new model with Active Noise Cancellation, and naturally, Huawei’s response was not long in coming.
The manufacturer immediately presented an alternative in the form of true wireless headphones with active noise canceling, but at the same time exactly copying the shape of regular AirPods. That is, the shape of the liners. The one in which Apple itself did not even try to achieve noise reduction. Today we’ll tell you what happened to the Chinese as a result of this “symbiosis” by testing the world’s first in-ear headphones with active noise canceling Huawei FreeBuds 3.
Huawei Freebuds 3: Equipment
The headphones come in an unusually large box for wireless headphones with a dust jacket that is twice as large, for example, the packaging of Samsung Galaxy Buds +. The volume of the package is not determined by anything, including the size of the contents. It contains everything that the others have: a plastic case with headphones laid inside, and a Type-C cable. There is not even a set of removable ear cushions here, which is understandable: the headphones have the finished shape of the earbuds and cannot change their size due to replaceable ear tips, like in-ear ones.
No one voluntarily reads paper instructions, it’s boring, but in this case it was also useful. For some reason, it is completely incomprehensible why, the manufacturer made a mechanical button on the case and hid it so that you would never guess its presence without accidentally reading the manual. In all cases, such a button is usually located in the center and in the most conspicuous place, but here everything is exactly the opposite.
Note: The attached paper note that to work with a smartphone you need to download a program called AI Life also helped a lot, because the manufacturer has spawned so many mobile applications that you just break your head in the store looking for what you need. We downloaded it, tried it, but about the program – later.
Huawei Freebuds 3 : Case Design
At first glance, a giant like HUAWEI could not create anything new – the same flat round shape resembling a puck. But, it so happened that the case turned out to be the most convenient of all that had to be tested. What are its benefits?
- It is compact (60 mm in diameter and 20 mm in thickness)
- Incredibly light (about 60 grams), including the weight of the headphones
- Glossy and sleek. Fits in any purse or pocket without scratching other items.
Even with their appearance and stunning design, these headphones seem to say: “Buy me!”
When reviewing Huawei FreeBuds 3, special attention should be paid to workmanship. Often in expensive TWS headphones, where the case is designed rather dull, some parts are loosely adjacent to each other, there are gaps between the elements, and much more. However, FreeBuds 3 has no problems with this, the job is done perfectly. Perhaps this is due to the fact that the case is compact and without unnecessary elements.
It will take some effort to open the case, and the fact that it has a precise fixation in extreme positions certainly inspires confidence. Of course, the case closes with magnets, so the lid cannot open on its own. The device is sturdy, well made and works without loosening. Closes without difficulty, with an appropriate click. On the back of the box there is a small HUAWEI metal insert.
They went on sale to the market in two colors – black and white. The black case looks extremely stylish and mesmerizing, especially among the TWS headphones there are few accessories in deep black.
At the bottom there is a USB-C connector and a device charging indicator, it is also duplicated under the cover. There is a small round button on the side of the case to connect and set up the synchronization of headphones and a smartphone.
To summarize, the case fits perfectly in the hand, it is comfortable to carry and pleasant to the touch, the design is made taking into account the needs of the user.
Huawei Freebuds 3 : Earbuds Design
Let’s be honest, it’s not so easy at the present time to create a unique design of headphones, since the most important thing is convenience and protection from falling out. According to the developers, the Huawei FreeBuds 3 headphones resemble a dolphin in their shape and are optimal. The headphones can be easily removed from the box: you just need to pull a little on the protruding “bulge”.
They can be easily inserted and fixed into the case, and the reason for this is the same magnetic holders. Do not fall out of the ear on their own. There is a small test for opening the case and fixing the headphones in it. It is necessary to take the case and make a sharp throw forward (of course, do not let go of it). And if it opened, but the headphones remained in place, then the test is passed. FreeBuds 3 passed this test perfectly!
The headphones have 3 microphones, proximity sensors and a bone sensor (bone conduction), which is necessary for responding to knocks on the headphones (switching music, turning ANC noise canceling on or off, etc.) and for clearer voice transmission during a conversation. Bone sensor detects voice vibrations, cleans and transmits or receives sound. That is why, the interlocutor and you can hear each other perfectly without unnecessary noise.
The new Mic Duct technology has been implemented in the main microphone design. The principle is that almost all headphones have an open microphone and are usually constantly exposed to the wind. In Huawei FreeBuds 3, the headphone tube is made in such a way that the design of the tip prevents the wind from entering directly into the microphone, thereby eliminating wind noise. And it really works!
It’s worth noting that the FreeBuds 3 are in-ear headphones. They differ from intracanal ones in that they isolate sounds less passively, but they sit much more comfortably in the ears, so there is no pressure on the eardrum.
Most buyers choose this type of headphone because it is as comfortable as possible. Personally, that’s what I use. Even when playing sports, these headphones do not fall out and stay firmly in your ears.
Connection and operation
Huawei FreeBuds 3 can and should be used with a smartphone, any devices running Android, Windows and iOS are supported. When connecting, you need to open the case and hold down the side button for a couple of seconds. When the internal diode starts flashing, you can navigate and connect in the Bluetooth settings. At the same time, on Huawei’s own smartphones, it is enough to simply open the case next to it, and synchronization will take place accompanied by “magic” animation right on top of any applications that Apple has introduced into use.
On the Huawei FreeBuds 3 headphones themselves, there are no hardware buttons or even touch pads: all control here is implemented based on tapping a finger on the earphone case, to which the built-in accelerometer reacts. Moreover, tapping on different earbuds leads to different actions. So, double tapping on the left activates noise cancellation, and interactions with the right lead to the start of playback or the transition to the next track. Turning on / off the noise canceling system is accompanied by a voice announcement in a pleasant female voice in English, but this can be reconfigured in the AI Life app.
Neither the volume level nor the ANC intensity can be adjusted by any touch of the headphones themselves, only through the smartphone. And, of course, detailed reconfiguration of gestures and voice assistant for yourself is possible only on Android OS, but not on iOS, where there is only the most basic functionality.
Headphones, like smart watches, remember all these readjustments, which can be reset by resetting again through the smartphone application. Moreover, there are limitations even on Android: the elementary and familiar function of pause playback when removing the earphone from the ear is possible, for some reason, only on smartphones with the proprietary EMUI shell. Probably, they should fix it over time.
Sound quality and stuffing
The earbuds have a new 14mm mini-tube driver to create stronger bass. The latest Kirin A1 processor controls the entire electronics of the device. It was developed and implemented by Huawei specifically for headphones and other wearable gadgets. A fast and stable connection to devices occurs thanks to the Bluetooth v5.1 + BLE 5.1 protocol. The ability for the processor to determine the ranges that are affected by 2.4 GHz signals and automatically switch to other channels is provided by the intelligent adaptive technology of frequency redirection.
HUAWEI’s proprietary dual-channel Bluetooth technology transmits high-quality stereo sound to the device, Simultaneous connection to both wireless headphones is carried out thanks to Huawei’s own development – dual-channel Bluetooth technology. The ability to receive both audio channels from a connected smartphone or other device and direct communication without delays or interference is provided by channel synchronization technology, and an ultra-low latency of 190 ms is achieved through synchronous signal transmission.
Also, the developers have built a digital audio processing module operating at 356 MHz into the Kirin A1. “
In my opinion, the sound in FreeBuds 3 is better than the first generation FreeBuds and Lite versions. They better handle low frequencies, cleaner mids, and highs are also at the highest level. The frequency range is from 30 Hz to 17 kHz. Sound quality is a relative thing. For me, the headphones are good enough for their price and the sound is good.
Most of the time FreeBuds 3 was used by me on the road, which took me 2 hours. All this time, the headphones worked at 50% volume with ANC on. During this period, the battery on both “ears” is discharged by 40% (20% per hour). Thus, it was experimentally found that the battery life is 4.5-5 hours.
If you do not activate ANC, then the headphones will function for about 6 hours, so there is no particular reason to turn off noise cancellation.
In the case, the headphones are recharged promptly – 40 minutes. The case will be able to charge the headphones 100% full two times.
ANC is a separate topic here, because Huawei FreeBuds 3 were the first in-ear headphones with active noise canceling. How can these two characteristics be combined? As mentioned above, this type of headphone has scanty passive isolation from external noise, so you need to get rid of noise in a different way. We managed to implement it 100%!
The FreeBuds 3 headphones have been tested in completely different circumstances and conditions:
- Underground. Huawei earbuds primarily block medium and high frequency hum, even in such a noisy place. Of course, harsh loud sound, noise and clatter of wheels cannot be eliminated, but the absence of annoying hum is guaranteed.
- In the bus, car and minibus Huawei FreeBuds 3 also do not allow unnecessary sounds, you can ride quite comfortably and not pay attention to extraneous noise.
- As for gyms and gyms, 80% of sounds are blocked here too without any problems.
It is worth noting that the degree of noise reduction (ANC) is configured in the Huawei AI Life app . It is easy to adjust the control methods: if you touch the right earphone twice, the voice assistant will be activated or put on play / pause, and by touching the left one you can enable / disable noise canceling. Updates are constantly coming in this application – during the review of the FreeBuds 3 headphones, there were several updates that improve the sound quality and connections, the work of active noise cancellation.
I can say with confidence: ANC in Huawei FreeBuds 3 works well, especially if I take into account the type of headphones.
So Lastly, It’s safe to say that the Huawei FreeBuds 3 earbuds are some of the best earbuds I’ve experienced. They have everything you need:
- Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). Excellent suppression of extraneous sounds, despite the special design;
- Battery life (5 hours with ANC);
- High quality sound;
- Reliable design and comfortable fit in your ears;
- Stylish and ergonomic carrying case.
As a result, I can say with confidence that the headphones are really good: they look impressive, great sound with ANC and a unique design. I recommend using HUAWEI FreeBuds 3 for purchase!