FiiO JW1 Review

In this article we’re looking at the FiiO JW1: the first TWS of FiiO’s new sister’s brand, Jade Audio, sold for just $39 USD.


Disclaimer: The FiiO JW1 were sent to us free of charge, for the purpose of this review.

About FiiO

Established in 2007, FiiO has become a powerhouse in the audiophile realm, offering an impressive line-up of affordable and high-quality products. From IEMs, headphone amps, DACs, to DAPs, FiiO has consistently delivered top-notch devices, setting benchmarks for other brands to follow like the FiiO M17, the mighty FiiO Q7, or the everlasting E10K, which has remained on the market for more than a decade now.

An unceasing saga of success, propelled not only by a steady flow of high-end devices but also by the introduction of smart, budget-friendly products. Their latest series of USB DAC/Amps is a prime example—compact dongle-sized gadgets that hark back to the venerable FiiO E5 and E3, first revealed over a decade ago. An expansive range that includes the delightful FiiO KA3, the formidable FiiO KA5, the diminutive FiiO KA1 and KA2, and the whole new KA13 we had the chance to listen to a few weeks before.


An already extensive range of products that never seems to run out, as the brand continues to expand its lineup month after month, with models like the FiiO JW1. A bluetooth in-ear, that isn’t really an in-ear, and seems advertised as an Open True Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds, instead of your usual True Wireless Stereo (In-Ear). Should you get one? That’s what we’ll find out today. 

A quick word about Jade audio

Once more, this new product fits in the brands Jade Audio sub-category. A sub-brand advertised as a new quality/price queen. But I’ll let the brand’s marketing team explain that for me:

“Jade Audio” is a subsidiary brand of FiiO Electronics Technology Co., LTD. It is a stylish, technological, and youth-oriented brand aiming to provide high-quality yet cost-effective audio products with an excellent listening experience for the younger generation all around the world. The entity’s Chinese name is derived from “翡声” (Fei Sheng), meaning “the sound of Jade”. The name “Jade Audio” conveys our mission towards providing consumers with a crisp and pleasant listening experience while maintaining audio fidelity

As a matter of fact, there are now more and more Jade Audio devices such as:

  • FiiO KA1 : a DAC/Amp with a single ES9281AC Pro chip (reviewed)
  • FiiO KA2 : a DAC/Amp with a dual CS43131 chip (reviewed)
  • FiiO KA3 : a DAC/Amp with a single ES9038Q2M Pro chip (reviewed)
  • FiiO KA5 : a DAC/Amp with a dual CS43198 chip (reviewed)
  • FiiO KA13 : a DAC/Amp with a dual CS43131 chip (reviewed)
  • FiiO FF3 : a new-gen earbud with a 14.2mm large dynamic driver (reviewed)
  • FiiO FF5 : same but different earbud with a 14.2mm large dynamic driver (reviewed)
  • FiiO Q11 : a portable DAC/AMP with a battery, replacing the Q3 (reviewed)
  • FiiO JW1 : a new-gen earbud, wireless (today’s review)


Design & Build Quality


Visually, the FiiO JW1 is quite interesting. 

Blending the UTWS5 / UTWS3 ear hooks, and the FF3 / FF5 earbud main body, the JW1 presents a departure from the more ubiquitous designs seen in the market. Their black/white polycarbonate shells give them a more universal appeal, devoid of the “Tail” that’s usually prominent with similarly priced TWS.

A design choice that I find quite interesting, bringing the JW1 closer in aesthetic to the UTWSx series than the FWx from the brand. Apart from that, the JW1 boasts a modern and sleek look, highlighted by its aluminum faceplate, engraved with the earbud motto “ Jade Audio, Hifi Open TWS”. Just over, you’ll find a microphone, protected by a dust-proof grill and at the lowest end of the hook, the touch control that allows you to… control the ears on the go..


It’s quite a nice design actually, even if a bit too rigid for me – I expected the hook to be supple so to follow my ears – but that also make them easier to wear, as we’ll see later. Still, head to head with similarly priced competitors, the new FiiO doesn’t have to be ashamed and even compared to other chi-fi contenders, the JW1 is definitely well-designed.

Finally, let’s take a look at the charging case. Even if entirely made of plastic the case gives a real sense of premium from afar – a bit less once in hand –  thanks to the translucent panel and magnet fixation for the ears. Of course, it’s no match for the Devialet Gemini sliding panel, or the distinctive clap of the AirPods, but for less than 40 bucks… that’s more than fair. The only real drawback? It’s a bit big and not quite easy to carry on the go !

Build quality

As usual with FiiO, build quality remains impressive, even more if you take account of the price.

You can’t expect the same quality you’d get from the FF3 and FF5, who get the joy of metallic shells, but the plastic used isn’t cheap either. It’s a bit too stiff for my taste and I’m more keen to use the flexible ear-hook used on the UTWS3, but this stiffness is also the reason why they exude some kind of confidence.

The shell is quite robust nonetheless, but don’t expect them to be as shockproof as the Gemini, those won’t resist the stomping in case you step on them – with the hook, that should not happen. In addition to that, the ears also appear to be water-resistant (no IPX level here) as FiiO designed the JW1 to be wear under the rain, or during your gym session. Again, if you lose them in a pool, or completely immerse them in water, that doesn’t apply! 


Regarding the charging box, there’s good and bad. Yes, I find it marvelously good looking for the price, from the top lid to the flush USB-C port and sliding panels; but on the other way it’s way too bulky on a daily basis and you the slide seems way too fragile to withstand the test of time: it’ll break at some point, not by you maybe, but someone will take it out a bit too fast… Still, when idle, the whole setup really looks classy and this is one of the rare charging box that I’d happily let live on my desk.

Usage and Comfort

Everyday Use

As a Bluetooth earphone, the FiiO JW1 is quite easy to use on a daily basis. All you got to do is : 

  • open the case with the earbuds inside
  • get them out of the case and wait for the
  • connect your Gemini through the Bluetooth settings of your phone
  • et voila!

Once they are connected, just take them out of the box and put them in your ears, you’ll then be able to control them by tapping the bulby part of the hook.

  • 2x tap = play/pause/answer/end call
  • 3x tap (left ear) = previous track // 2x press (right ear) = next track
  • 4x tap = wake up the voice assistant
  • long press : power on


Strangely, FiiO didn’t give the Gemini any volume control, the only option remaining the phone or your source. All in all, if not as magical as Apple’s connection, the FiiO remains a good solution here and you should be up and running in a matter of minutes – and the auto re-pair function worked every time !

Last but not least, Bluetooth connection was quite good with my iPhone, the SBC codec offering an excellent balance between quality and range. Same with my FiiO M17, which recognized the JW1 instantly and got me up and running almost immediately.


Once fitted on, the FiiO JW1 feels both weird… and okay.

The good? The hook design and stiffness stick to you like nothing else, and even if you were running, I can’t see how you could lose them. It’s almost comical once you wear them, especially if you’re used to TWS like the AirPods (non pro) who slip out as soon as you begin to sweat.

The bad? After years of in-ears, getting something that just “hang” over your ear and do not seal or even touch your ear, feels like complete madness to me and more than once I tried to scratch my ear, to no avail.

On the other hand, if IEM are a no go for you and if you don’t like the roundness of earbuds in your earhole, those might be the comfiest ear you could ever get – if that’s your thing. Personally, I’m more perplexed than anything, but I do know a few people that might be interested – silly them. So, it would be best for you to try them beforehand.



Obviously, with a fully open design, isolation isn’t the FiiO JW1 forte. You’ll hear every sound coming from the outside and don’t expect to use those earbuds anywhere but in the most silent environment that you can get.

Or in the street, if you really want to be aware of your surroundings – at least that’s what FiiO advertises them for. So, time to check the specs!


Bluetooth 5.3 + 14.2mm dynamic driver

Even if the FiiO JW1 is an entry-level Bluetooth earbud, it carries all of FiiO latest technologies. By that, I mean their latest Bluetooth chip, which offers 5.3 compatibility with SBC/AAC codecs support and the same super-large drivers (14.2mm wide) found in the upper model. On paper, this one allows a clean and natural sound, that shall output “vigorous sound of beating drums, as well as energetic dynamics” – at least on the FF3. For the JW1, FiiO advertises “robust bass and a large, natural soundstage”.

No information regarding the dynamic range and frequency range, but honestly, that’s not surprising.

Battery life

FiiO claims that the JW1 should get you up to 6 hours of continuous listening on a single charge and 18 hours with the case. Full charge takes one and a half hour, which is typical for this kind of ears.

And, I could match the first number. With three days of listening on a single charge, after two hours of music every day, the FiiO decided to stop. No wireless charge here, but an USB-C port, that works flawlessly 

A good surprise overall.


Bundle and Accessories

Inside the box

For the price, I was quite impressed by the JW1’s bundle and especially by its charging case. In the box you’ll find:

  • the FiiO JW1
  • a charging case with sliding, translucent panels
  • a protective pouch for the case
  • a type-C USB cable
  • some documentations

So yeah, a (very) poor bundle, but for the price there’s nothing to complain about really, and I can’t put enough emphasis on how cool the charging case looks and feels in real life.

Additional accessories

The only accessories you can add with your JW1 will be a compatible source, to get the best sound out of them. They don’t support aptX, nor LDAC, but with SBC and AAC, you should be able to pair them with both Android and iOS phones with ease.


Full specs

  • Model: FiiO JW1
  • Type : True Wireless EarBuds
  • Driver : 14.2mm dynamic driver
  • Connectivity : Bluetooth 5.3 (AAC/SBC)
  • Battery Life : 18 hours (with the case) – 6h per charge
  • Battery: 65mAh earbuds, 250mAh charging case
  • Charging time: 1.5h earbuds, 1.5h case
  • Shell: PC-ABS (earbuds) / aluminium + TPU (case)
  • Frequency response Range : 50Hz – 20kHz
  • Water and dust rating: water-resistant
  • Dimensions: 91.6 x 55.6 x 28.6mm
  • Weight: 9.5g per ears, 85g with the case
  • Microphone : dual beamforming mics
  • Price : $39

The article continues on Page two, after the click here, or after the jump

Page 1: About the brand, design and build quality
Page 2: Sound performances

4.5/5 - (41 votes)

A nerdy guy with a passion for audio and gadgets, he likes to combine his DAC and his swiss knife. Even after more than 10 years of experience, Nanotechnos still collects all gear he gets, even his first MPMAN MP3 player. He likes spreadsheets, technical specs and all this amazing(ly boring) numbers. But most of all, he loves music: electro, classical, dubstep, Debussy : the daily playlist.

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