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Choosing headphones can be overwhelming since there are so many options: in-ear or over-ear headphones, colors, features, battery life and more. That’s one big reason to read reviews of headphones, so you know ahead of time what to expect. The Edifier NeoBuds Pro recently landed on my desk, and in this review, I’ll share what their key features are, what sound quality is like, and whether I think they’re a good pair to add to your cart.
What’s in the box?
I will give a virtual high five to Edifier for creating a really chic-looking package for the NeoBuds Pro. The box is lined with what looks like soundproofing foam and inside, the buds are on display along with a veritable rainbow of different size eartips; there are seven sets in all, so Edifier is truly going out of its way to make sure you’ll find the right fit.
Also included: a carry bag and a USB-C cord for charging.
Looks and Styling
The Neobuds Pro have long V-shaped stems (which hold the sound drivers), and these result in the buds’ distinctive shape. The earbuds are made of aluminum and plastic and seem reasonably durable.
Edifier NeoBuds Pro are IP54 rated, which is a little low for earbuds you might use to exercise or in the elements. IP54 means they’ll keep most dust and dirt out and that they’ll be okay with light rain and sweat, but not against jets of water or being immersed. If you’re looking for swimming headphones, these are not them.
Charging and Storage Case
Like most earbuds, these have a charging and storage case. This case has an added glowing red LED light that ripples across the front seam of the case when it’s opened or closed.
Noise Cancelling and Ambient Mode
The Neobuds Pro use three microphones in each earbud to manage Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). Edifier claims the noise cancellation will remove surrounding sound up to 42 decibels, whereas most earbuds top out near 30 dB.
There are two levels of ANC in these buds: High or Low.
There’s also an ambient sound mode that will allow external sounds in — which is great for situations where you need some awareness of what’s going on around you.
I have to say the noise canceling on the NeoBuds Pro is a bit disappointing. I tested the noise-canceling by using the feature both with music playing and without. On the NeoBuds Pro, there’s really only basic dampening of outside noise and it’s definitely not as strong as I’d prefer. While it’s best when music is playing, you don’t get much canceling if you’re not actively listening to audio.
I was impressed with the sound quality of the NeoBuds Pro; they sound pretty good and are reasonably well balanced with a possible lean a wee bit to the low end. I enjoy my bass so I didn’t find this concerning. The bass overall is powerful and but did seem a bit buzzy. Yeah, I’m definitely a lot tougher of a judge than most folks would be on headphones so while I think audiophiles and discerning listeners would be less than impressed, I do believe most listeners would really enjoy these.
Phone Call Quality/features
With three microphones per earbud and quality ANC, it’s no surprise that the NeoBuds Pro have no problem helping you sit through phone calls, allowing you to hear the other party clearly. As important, your callers should have no issues hearing you, even in windy and noisy environments.
Battery Life and Charging
A full charge will give you five hours of listening time with ANC enabled, and six without. I’d say that’s pretty average for earbuds today. The charging case adds about 24 hours of listening without needing a recharge. The quick charge feature will give you an hour of listening time in 10 minutes. There is no wireless charging feature, however. You’ll need to plug in to recharge the case.
The Edifier App manages most of the key features for the NeoBuds Pro, including letting you manage ANC and Ambient Sound, plus equalization (EQ) and Game Mode. Important to note: I couldn’t find any way to manage the ANC/Ambient on the buds themselves; it seems you must use the app to enable noise-canceling or ambient, which for some folks might seem like a pain.
The NeoBuds Pro have touch controls or what are labeled Click Sensors in the manual. There are no actual buttons so ‘click’ seems like a bit of an odd name. I struggled with exactly how I was supposed to manage these controls since Edifier shows them in a certain location on the manual’s diagram, but the majority of the time nothing would happen when I’d press there. In my review period, I’d say the touch controls worked maybe 10% of the time, which was kind of disappointing.
There are both good and not-so-good to Edifier NeoBuds Pro. When it comes to the pros, the packaging and the great choice of eartips are welcome, and the cool LED lighting effect is fun. The sound quality is also good and the battery life is average.
On my list of cons, the noise canceling is not as strong as it could be, and I couldn’t see that it was possible to get management of ANC on/off on the buds — you must use the app. Plus the touch controls wouldn’t work for me.
- Sound good
- Great packaging, included accessories
- Fun LED lighting
- Solid phone call quality
- Noise-canceling not the best
- No ANC management on the buds (app needed)
- Touch controls didn’t work
Should You Buy Them?
The Edifier NeoBuds Pro sell for $129. As long as you know what you’re getting, go ahead and buy these. But if you’re looking for something to blow you out of the water with features, sound and longer battery life … these aren’t the best earbuds for you.
How Long Will They Last?
With headphones, especially ones in the more inexpensive range, it’s pretty much impossible to know how long they will last. Earbuds can be delicate. Even so, these seem like they should hold up a while assuming you take proper care of them.
What Are Some of the Alternatives?
Looking for other options in the earbud space? Well, you came to the right place. Below we’ve listed some worthwhile options if you’re looking to venture outside of Edifier.
Apple AirPods Pro
The original and probably still the best choice for seamless use in the Apple universe.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7
It’s hard to find earbuds that have it all, but Bowers & Wilkins PI7 are packed with features including the ability to listen privately to TV.
Tribit Flybuds 3
They’re among the lowest-priced wireless earbuds you can get, and they sound surprisingly good for the price.