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Realme Buds Q2 (ANC) Review: Solid TWS Offering In The Budget Market
The budget true wireless earbuds are dominating the sub-5k market. Almost every OEM now offers a few pairs of TWS earbuds with promising features to lure smartphone buyers. While the audio performance might not be audiophile-grade, the aggressive price of these budget TWS earbuds makes them a good choice for consumers looking to buy a pair of wireless earphones/headphones for regular use.
- Value For Money
- Effective Active Noise Cancellation For The Price
- Long-lasting Battery
- Customizable Touch Controls (Companion App)
- Comfortable In-Ear Fit
- IPX5 Rated Design
- Average Microphone Response
- Sound Signature Isn’t For Avid Audiophiles
- Build Quality Could Have Been Better
Realme is quite active in the budget TWS earbuds space. The brand's latest true wireless buds bring active noise cancellation (ANC), Type-C charging port and long battery life. Priced at just Rs. 2,499, the Buds Q2 takes on the OnePlus Buds, Oppo Enco W11 and Redmi Earbuds S in the budget TWS space. Should you consider buying these aggressively priced TWS earbuds? Let's find out in the review of Realme Buds Q2.
Design & Comfort
Not much has changed in terms of appearance and wearing experience. The Buds Q2 looks identical to their predecessor and feels equally comfortable in the ears. You can wear these earbuds for long hours without much discomfort. Each bud weighs 4.5 g and the case with buds within has a total weight of 45 grams. Keeping these earbuds clean is a task since the plastic material is dust and fingerprint magnet. The earbuds are IPX5 certified, a welcome upgrade over the IPX4 rating on the predecessor. The IPX5 makes these buds prevent splash, rain, and sweat resistant.
The tiny cobble-shaped charging cradle has a matte finish and now comes with a Type-C charging port, which is a welcome change. The build quality is decent but not quite impressive. The Buds Q2 are available in two colors, Active Black and Calm Gray.
Similar to the Realme Buds Q, the Buds Q2 offer touch controls that work as advertised. There's a gradient pattern on the buds that allow you to perform useful functions. Importantly, you can customize the touch controls in the realme Link App. The buds support the following touch controls by default.
- You can double-tap to play/pause music and answer an incoming call.
- Triple-tap to go to the next track.
- Press and hold one side to reject an incoming call.
- You can switch between ANC mode and transparency mode by pressing and holding both sides of the buds.
It is worth mentioning that you cannot control volume from the buds, which is a bummer. There's no touch/tap combination to let you control the volume levels.
For its price, the Buds Q2 works fairly well for casual listening. The budget earbuds are powered by 10mm bass boost drivers that produce loud and engaging audio. The sound produced is U-shaped giving more emphasis on the bass delivery. You would like the thump if you are fond of bass-heavy audio delivery, especially with hip-hop and percussive electronic music genres. However, I would have preferred a slightly tighter bass response this time since these are second-generation Buds Q from Realme.
Moving on, the treble response is decent and the vocals also sounded clean. You can also play around with some presets in the realme link companion app that helps to some extent. Enable the bright preset if you prefer listening to vocal-heavy tracks. Interestingly, the budget TWS earbuds get the imaging right and I could easily figure out different instruments playing in the complicated tracks, for instance- Sol by Alef and Prisionera by Otilia.
Overall, if you are a casual listener, the engaging sound delivery by these budget earbuds will impress you. Does ANC help? Let's find out.
How Good Is ANC?
The ace feature- ANC on a budget is surprisingly good and makes a strong case for buying these budget TWS earbuds. Of course, the tight in-ear fit helps but the ANC itself is pretty powerful in effectively cutting down the environment noise. These budget earphones can easily cancel out low-frequency noises if you are streaming music even at lower volume levels. For better noise isolation, make sure you are using these buds with the right ear tips to enhance passive noise reduction.
Battery Life & Connectivity
Depending upon your usage pattern, one full charge can give you up to four and half hours of battery life on these earbuds. Enabling the ANC does affect some battery life but the overall difference isn't deal-breaking. The charging case adds three charge cycles to the earbuds. The Buds Q maintained a solid connection to the smart devices (Bluetooth 5.2) and did not trouble us with any connectivity issues. As far as the calling functionality is concerned, these budget buds serve well for voice calls; however, the microphone response could have been better.
The Realme Buds Q2 is a solid offering in the budget TWS earbuds space. Priced aggressively at Rs. 2,499, these affordable earbuds gets most of the things right. The in-ear fit is comfortable, ANC works pretty well and the audio delivery is pretty engaging for its price. The good battery life, Type-C charging port, IPX5 rated design and the comfort of the realme link companion app are some additional benefits. For the next iteration, it would be good to see touch volume controls and a new design language for the Buds Q.