OnePlus Nord Buds Review: A Compact and Affordable TWS

When OnePlus introduced Nord in 2020, it was the company’s first smartphone outside its core range, and was priced significantly lower than its main No.-series model. The Nord smartphone range has grown significantly since then, and has now expanded to include audio products. Among the company’s many recent launches is the OnePlus Nord Buds True Wireless Headset.

Officially priced at Rs. 2,999, but is available for Rs. 2,799 at the time of this review, the oneplus nord buds It’s the company’s most affordable true wireless headset right now. Like the Nord-branded smartphones, this one too comes with a better equipped . is an affordable and more basic true wireless headset than OnePlus Buds Z2 And oneplus buds pro, There aren’t any fancy features like active noise cancellation, but this pair of true wireless earphones promises good sound and long battery life. Is this the best true wireless headset under Rs. 3,000 that you can buy now? Find out in this review.

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The earpieces of the OnePlus Nord Buds feature a refreshed design, with a large and tactile touch area for controls

Interesting new design, faster charging on OnePlus Nord Buds

OnePlus’ design language for its true wireless earphones has been pretty consistent so far, with curves all around the earpiece; round, thin stems; And the charging case devoid of sharp lines. The OnePlus Nord Buds go in a completely different direction with a particularly large stem on the earpiece and large, distinctive touch areas for controls. The charging case is also boxier, with sharp edges and flat surfaces for the bottom and top.

Available in two colours, Black Slate and White Marble, the OnePlus Nord Buds look quite unique, with the mirror-like touch-sensitive areas on each earpiece garnering the most attention. The earphones have an in-canal fit, which is customizable using replaceable silicone ear tips in various sizes. Although the earpieces have a glossy finish, they look neat, and the white unit I looked at didn’t attract much grime or dust.

Three pairs of ear tips of varying sizes are included in the box, as well as a short USB Type-A to Type-C charging cable. The earpiece is rated IP55 for dust and water resistance. The charging case has a large OnePlus logo on the top while the USB Type-C port for charging and the pairing button are on the back. There is a single LED indicator at the front. I found the size and shape of the case to be a bit inconvenient to keep it comfortably in my pocket.

The touch controls on the OnePlus Nord Buds are quite convenient and easy to use, thanks to the large, touch-sensitive areas on the earpiece. These are customizable via the HeyMelody app, and it’s possible to control playback, invoke the default voice assistant on your smartphone, and quickly switch between the last two paired devices with touch gestures. The app also shows the battery level of the earpiece and charging case, and lets you switch between four equalizer presets and update the firmware on the earphones.

At the time of my review, only the HeyMelody app on Android supported the OnePlus Nord Buds; The iOS version did not detect these earphones even when paired. The Nord Buds are said to support OnePlus Fast Pair, and you should be able to see all the settings and customization options for the earphones directly within the Bluetooth menu on supported OnePlus smartphones, without the need for an app. However, this is my . didn’t work on oneplus 9 ,Analysis) I had to pair the earphones as normal, and only basic pairing options appeared in the Bluetooth menu, like with any regular Bluetooth headset. I hope this is fixed with a software update.

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There’s no ANC on the OnePlus Nord Buds, but the in-canal fit offers decent passive noise isolation

The OnePlus Nord Buds have 12.4mm dynamic drivers, and support Dolby Atmos sound on select OnePlus devices (OnePlus 7 or higher, but not the Nord series). For connectivity, the earphones use Bluetooth 5.2 with support for SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs. There are two microphones per earpiece, and AI noise reduction for better voice clarity on calls.

The battery life of the OnePlus Nord Buds is pretty good for the price, with the earpieces lasting around five hours on a single charge at medium volume levels and the case offers three additional charges for a total runtime of 20-21 hours. charge cycle. Fast charging means you should get five hours of listening time with 10 minutes of charging, and it took about 25 minutes to fully charge the case and earpiece.

Nice sound, useful quick switch mode on OnePlus Nord Buds

Although many people would consider this OnePlus Buds Z2 to be the successor of oneplus buds z, OnePlus Nord Buds fits that role better. While there are features like fast charging and Dolby Atmos support, the core experience is focused on delivering good sound quality, and for its price, I think OnePlus has got it right.

Starting with Hot Like Dimes by Pretty Lights, the Nord Buds’ big drivers immediately demonstrated impressive volume capabilities. Even at about 50 percent volume level, these earphones delivered a loud, immersive listening experience, well aided by the in-canal fit that provides good noise isolation. The bass-friendly sonic signature made for a lot of thump and drive in this electronic sample-based track, especially the beginning of the track which had an impressively atmospheric feel.

Despite the aggressiveness in the lows, the OnePlus Nord Buds never pushed too much, thanks to careful tuning that improves upon the similar situation offered by the OnePlus Buds Z. That said, the mid-range and highs felt a bit held back compared to the lows. Listening to Where You Go by Avalanche, the vocals and soft elements were clean and enjoyable to listen to, but the strong bass in the middle beats of the track certainly grabbed my attention more than anything.

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OnePlus Nord Buds have great battery life and have fast charging

In terms of detail, the OnePlus Nord Buds are a bit small. Although the sound is completely comfortable and easy to hear even at low volumes, it is not as revealing and cohesive as Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro Which cost Rs. I have a little more. 3,499 and also has active noise cancellation. The Nord Buds will adapt well to popular genres, but buyers looking for a little more nuance and tone in the sound won’t be particularly impressed.

Dolby Atmos support on OnePlus smartphones made a slight difference to the soundstage when playing supported tracks in Apple Music, but the effect felt a bit unnatural, and I preferred sound without it. The quick switch feature worked well when I had to switch between my iPhone and OnePlus 9 or laptop. It works practically as well as multi-point connectivity, if you can handle the wait of about three seconds for each switch to complete.

Connectivity on the OnePlus Nord Buds was stable and hassle-free in my experience, with the earphones working flawlessly at a distance of up to 4 meters from the source device. Call quality was also good, both indoors and outdoors, but I found I needed to raise the volume a bit when I received or made calls, and then quickly lower the volume again for music Was.

Decision

OnePlus has managed to establish its Nord sub-brand with affordable, value-for-money smartphones, and the first Nord-branded audio product lives up to that philosophy. The OnePlus Nord Buds headset offers a fair amount of performance for under Rs. 3,000, which includes a sleek design, good sound quality and useful features like fast charging and quick switch.

That said, the lack of active noise cancellation on the OnePlus Nord Buds puts it at a disadvantage compared to the competition, especially the very good ones. Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro which Rs. Retails in for a little more. 3,499. If you are a fan of OnePlus or Rs. 3,000 and can manage without the ANC, it’s a worthwhile pick.


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