- Good sound quality
- Good battery life
- Active noise cancellation (ANC) is impressive
- ANC can be turned on/off
- Good Bluetooth range
- Design not user-friendly
- Touch delay can lead to frustration
- Earbuds are big
- Charging case comes with only one LED light. No indication of how much battery life is left
We have reviewed quite a few true wireless earbuds here on Make Tech Easier, and the recent trend is the addition of active noise cancellation in the earbuds. Tronsmart Apollo Bold is probably the company’s first attempt at including an ANC feature in their product. Are these earbuds worth your money? Let’s find out.
It is always interesting to take earbuds out of their packaging to see what kind of case they come with. This case is a simple black, round casing with only one indicator light at the front. This is the first bumper I have with the product. The single LED light does not indicate how much battery life is left in the case. It will either flash white (which means it is active), or red (when it is in need of charging). Most earbud casese we have reviewed come with 4 indicator lights that show the battery level, and it is glaringly missing in this case. At the back of the case is a USB-C charging port.
The first impression of the earbuds is that they are big, probably bigger in size than most of the earbuds I have reviewed. Opening the case, you will feel like it contains two large earrings rather than wireless earbuds.
While trying to wear the earbuds, one issue that I have is that there is no indication of how should I wear them. It is easy to ask, “How difficult can it be to wear earbuds?” But in this case, whichever direction I tried to put them on always lead to them dropping off my ears. According to the instructions, you need to insert them into your ear and twist to lock them in place. That didn’t work for me. After several tries, I found a 45-degree upward direction fit the best for me.
Taking the earbuds out of the case immediately put them in pairing mode. Pairing with your computer/phone/TV is easy. Simply turn on your Bluetooth, select the “Tronsmart Apollo Bold” entry, and get connected in less than a minute.
The following are the specifications of the earbuds.
|Technology||Qualcomm® aptX™audio technology, Qualcomm® Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) technology, Qualcomm® TrueWireless™ Stereo Plus, Qualcomm® cVc®|
|Chip||Qualcomm® QCC5124, supports aptX, AAC, SBC|
|Transmission Distance||Up to 15 meters / 50 feet|
|Battery Capacity||Earphone: 85 mAh; Charging case: 500 mAh|
|Play Time||Earphone: ANC On: up to 7 hours (50% volume) ANC Off: up to 10 hours (50% volume); Charging case: over 30 hours (50% volume)|
|Charging Time||Earbud: 2 to 2.5 hours Charging case: 2.5 hours|
|Frequency Range||20 – 20K Hz|
|Dimension||Earbud: 16.86 x 23.13 x 23.96 mm / 0.66 x 0.91 x 0.94 inches Charging case: 29.45 x 19.03 mm / 1.16 x 0.75 inches|
|Net Weight||Earbud: about 7.0g / 0.24oz With charging case: about 54.0g / 1.90oz|
There are no physical buttons on the earbuds, with everything controlled via touch gestures (or taps on the back of the earbuds).
- A single tap will increase/decrease the volume, while a single tap and hold will switch to the previous/next track. Holding it even longer (three seconds) will activate the voice assistant on your phone.
- A double tap will play/pause music or answer/end a phone call.
- Lastly, a triple tap will switch between passive mode, ambient mode and active noise cancellation mode.
One frustration that I had is that there is a delay of one second for the tap to register. Many times I tapped once to increase the volume, and it didn’t register immediately, so I tapped it again, and it registered as two taps instead and paused the music. It took me a few times of trial and error to notice the delay issue.
As for the sound quality, they are decent quality. The high is clear and there is sufficient bass. The best thing about them is that the active noise cancellation really works and worked really well. You do get immersive music with the noise cancellation feature and can block all noise from the outside.
Another feature is the intelligent in-ear detection. It will automatically stop the music when you take the earbud out of your ear and resume the music when you put it back on. There is no way to turn this feature off, though.
The earbuds can play up to 10 hours of music on a single charge. Of course, this depends on whether you have ANC turned on. The case can charge the earbuds from empty to full three times before it needs to be recharged. So in total, you can get up to 30 hours of total usage before needing a charge. A quick 10-minute charge of the earbuds can provide one hour of usage.
At a price of $99, it is not a cheap or mid-range option. It is similarly priced as the PaMu Unique, which also comes with active noise cancellation, but is more stylish. If you consider the active noise cancellation feature, which is really good, this product is worth getting. Just bear in mind some of the poor design can lead to frustration at times.
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