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Huawei FreeBuds 4i review: It’s all about the value

True wi-fi earbuds have turn out to be a mature product class in only a few quick years. Dozens of manufacturers are competing within the section, pushing costs down and making options like energetic noise-cancelling (ANC) extra accessible than ever.

The Huawei FreeBuds 4i characteristic energetic noise-cancelling, water resistance, and strong battery life, all for underneath £80/€100. However has Huawei reduce any corners to make this enticing worth doable? We inform you in our Huawei FreeBuds 4i evaluate.

About this Huawei FreeBuds 4i evaluate: I used the FreeBuds 4i for 10 days working software program model 1.9.0.132. The FreeBuds 4i evaluate unit was offered to Android Authority by Huawei.

What it’s essential know in regards to the Huawei FreeBuds 4i

huawei freebuds 4i 10

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

  • Huawei FreeBuds 4i: £79/€99 (frequent reductions and promos accessible)

The FreeBuds 4i are Huawei’s most reasonably priced true wi-fi earphones. Usually, the “i” mannequin is a follow-up to the “mainstream” mannequin, however on this case, Huawei hasn’t introduced the FreeBuds 4 but.

Huawei is promoting the FreeBuds 4i in black, white, or crimson colorways for an inventory worth of £79 (~$111) within the UK or €99 (~$119) in European markets. As with many Huawei merchandise lately, there are enticing offers available — for example, as of the time of this writing, UK prospects can get a free Huawei Band 4e fitness tracker with their buy from Huawei.com.

The FreeBuds 4i characteristic ANC and three sizes of silicone ear ideas, making them a viable selection for customers in search of good noise isolation. They’re not very rugged although — should you favor sportier designs, the “neckband”-style FreeLace Professional are value testing.

How’s the design?

huawei freebuds 4i true wireless earbuds 2

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The FreeBuds 4i have an AirPods-like design that doesn’t stand out by way of a lot. That’s to not say this inoffensive design is unhealthy — quite the opposite, it’s gentle, smooth, and cozy.

Each the earbuds and the case are smaller than final 12 months’s FreeBuds 3i. This welcome change comes with an annoying downside: the earbuds are infuriatingly exhausting to take away from the case.

The FreeBuds 4i are gentle, smooth, and cozy.

The FreeBuds 4i could also be petite, however Huawei’s principally trimmed away the plastic — the capability of the batteries contained in the earbuds is 48% increased than on the earlier era (extra about that within the battery life part under).

Do the FreeBuds 4i sound good?

huawei freebuds 4i 3

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The Huawei FreeBuds 4i sound surprisingly good for his or her reasonably priced worth. They reproduce clear audio and keep away from widespread pitfalls of cheaper earbuds the place bass notes make it exhausting to listen to midrange and treble notes.

Additionally learn: The most effective true wi-fi earbuds underneath $50 you should purchase

Mids and highs sound clear and the bass is loud, however not overwhelming. Should you favor heavy, thumping bass, there are higher choices on the market. General, I discovered the FreeBuds 4i frequency response very pleasant.

Sound-wise, the FreeBuds 4i are barely higher than the FreeBuds 3i, however I wouldn’t say the distinction is apparent. Don’t improve to the 4i only for higher audio. In comparison with the high-end FreeBuds Professional, the extra accessible 4i maintain their very own, however I like to recommend the Professionals to extra discerning listeners.

How’s the noise-cancelling on the FreeBuds 4i?

huawei freebuds 4i 14

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

Lively noise-cancelling has turn out to be a table-stakes characteristic on premium true wi-fi earbuds, but it surely’s nonetheless uncommon within the mid-range section the FreeBuds 4i belongs to.

To activate ANC on the FreeBuds 4i, faucet and maintain on both earbud. The gesture works reliably, although it’s just a little sluggish. Faucet and maintain once more to enter Consciousness mode, which will increase the amount of voices and different ambient sounds. That is helpful once you need to hear what’s happening round you with out eradicating your earbuds.

Learn extra: What are the most effective noise-cancelling earbuds?

The FreeBuds 4i noise cancelling tech isn’t the most effective that’s come out method, but it surely successfully hushes low, monotone sounds. Don’t count on eerie silence when strolling down the road or in different noisy environments. If you would like sturdy ANC, the FreeBuds Professional are the higher selection from Huawei.

Is the battery life good on the FreeBuds 4i?

huawei freebuds 4i 1

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

Huawei quotes a battery lifetime of as much as 10 hours on a single cost, some circumstances utilized. Specifically, you’ll get the most effective battery life should you disable ANC, pay attention at decrease volumes, and use the AAC Bluetooth codec. When ANC is on, the rated battery life decreases by 25%.

FreeBuds 4i battery life falls a bit in need of Huawei’s claims. however they nonetheless supply loads of use on a single cost.

The case holds a 215mAh battery — that’s about twice the capability of the 2 earbuds mixed. In different phrases, a completely charged case ought to provide you with as much as ~20 hours of additional listening time.

In actual life, FreeBuds 4i battery life falls a bit in need of Huawei’s claims, affected by issues like weak wi-fi connections and better volumes. In my expertise, I nonetheless bought 7-8 hours of battery life, with a mixture of ANC and non-ANC use, and that was greater than sufficient for my use.

The rest?

huawei freebuds 4i 5

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

  • Compatibility: The FreeBuds 4i work finest with Huawei gadgets working the newest model of EMUI. This will get you put on detection (the headphones pause playback once you take them off) and fast pairing (through the Huawei AI Life app). Should you don’t have a current Huawei gadget, they’ll behave like all Bluetooth headphones. This goes for laptops as nicely.
  • One gadget at a time: The FreeBuds 4i do not help multi-device connectivity. I’ve at all times discovered this operate extra annoying than helpful, so it’s not a serious challenge in my e-book.
  • Contact controls: You management the FreeBuds 4i by way of touches: tap-and-hold to cycle the ANC modes, and double-tap to regulate playback. There are a couple of customization choices accessible within the Huawei AI Life app. Sadly, the 4i’s don’t help swipes to regulate quantity just like the dearer FreeBuds Professional.
  • Water resistance: The earbuds are rated IPX4 — they will deal with sweat and rain, however don’t dunk them in water.
  • Mics: Mic and name high quality on the FreeBuds 4i are each enough. No points there.

Huawei FreeBuds 4i specs

  Huawei FreeBuds 4i
Dimension Earbuds: 37.5 x 23.9 x 21 mm
Case: 48 x 61.8 x 27.5 mm
Weight Earbuds: 5.5g
Case: 36.5g
Connectivity Bluetooth 5.2
Sensors Contact
Ear on/off detection
Batteries Per earbud: 55mAh
Charging case: 215mAh
Charging USB-C
Quick charging: 10m charging leads to 4h of listening
Speaker 10mm dynamic
Audio Codecs: AAC, SBC
Lively noise cancelling
Name noise cancelling
Colours Ceramic Black, Ceramic White, Crimson

Worth and competitors

Huawei FreeBuds 4i Tons of worth

ANC for underneath £100? The Huawei FreeBuds 4i ship noise cancelling, strong sound high quality and as much as 10 hours of battery life. That is a hell of a bundle for the worth.

There’s no scarcity of rivals within the sub-$100 section of true wi-fi earbuds market. Nonetheless, few merchandise supply ANC, just like the FreeBuds 4i do.

Should you’re a fan of noise-cancelling, the Panasonic RZ-S500W (£99 at Amazon) characteristic nice ANC, IPX4 water resistance, and fast charging, however their design isn’t for everybody and the battery life is shorter. The Earfun Air Pro (£69 at Amazon) are cheaper the Huawei FreeBuds 4i and still have ANC and water resistance.

Associated: The most effective AirPods alternate options for underneath $100

If ANC isn’t a should, our resident audio editor recommends affordable true wireless earbuds just like the Anker Liberty Air 2, the Edifier TWS1, and the older Samsung Galaxy Buds.

General, it’s exhausting to beat the worth and the options you get with FreeBuds 4i. They undoubtedly supply numerous worth on your cash.

FreeBuds 4i evaluate: The decision

huawei freebuds 4i 9

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The FreeBuds 4i present an amazing mixture of design, options, and worth. They don’t excel at something particularly, however these true wi-fi earbuds shine once you choose them as an entire.

Only a few rivals supply ANC at costs akin to Huawei’s FreeBuds 4i and that’s in all probability the most important purpose to purchase them. It’s not wonderful ANC, but it surely’s there if you’d like it.

The FreeBuds 4i present an amazing mixture of design, options, and worth.

Primarily based on my time with the FreeBuds 4i evaluate unit, I can suggest them to patrons who need to graduate from wired, non-ANC, or price range earbuds, however don’t need to spend an excessive amount of. Even when you have already got some expertise with higher-end earbuds, the FreeBuds 4i are adequate, so long as you’re not choosy about your sound.

What do you think?

Written by virajthari

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