Features & Stability
Fostex’s adapter features Qualcomm’s QCC3026 Bluetooth 5.0 chip. It also supports Qualcomm’s TrueWireless Stereo Plus feature. TS+ is a great technology that helps increasing battery efficiency for both of the earbuds. Normally, BT earphones and adapters work in a master-slave configuration. The master side handles the connection and slave stays connected to the master. This means higher battery usage for the master one. TS+ means that both of the chips left and right stays connected to the source and use less power to transmit & receive. TS+ optimizes the master-slave system to equalize the battery usage between sides. It also greatly improves latency and transmission range. I used the Fostex TM2 every day for almost a month. My experience was delightful. I did not experience any latency issues. No audio drop-out, nothing. Signal was stable as long as I remained in a 10m radius during my time with it. The amplification level is also quite good, it has enough power to drive many audiophile IEMs & CIEMs on the market.
As for controls, you get a touch sensor and multi-purpose button for each adapter. You can touch the sensor area (outer side of the adapter) and slide up to increase volume, slide down to decrease volume. You can also touch the sensor area for more than 2 seconds to fast forward a song. By using the multi-purpose button, you can accept and refuse calls, start and stop the playback, skip to next or previous song. The controls are easy to use and touch sensor works great. Unlike TWS IEMs, you won’t accidentally touch it when adjusting the fit as it sits behind your ear.
Moving on to battery life, it is rated at 10 hours. In my testing, the TM2 went from 100% to 0% in 9 hours and 49 minutes so the data seems to be accurate. Charging the adapters via the cradle takes around 1.5h and it is not bad for 10h playback. Different chargers may shorten this duration. In my opinion, the battery life is great. My daily listening sessions last around 2.5 hours so this means I will have enough juice for 4 days per charge, that’s good in my book. If only it had a battery inside that cradle…
The adapters are IPX5 water-resistant. IPX5 means it is resistant to small water jets. You can simply enjoy your music under the light rain and you will be fine. This also means that no amount of sweat will damage the adapters. That’s good if you’re going to use your CIEMs or IEMs in the gym with Fostex’s brilliant little adapter. However, I would still dry it properly after each use, just to be on the safe side.
The Fostex TM2 also has app support. Fostex’s TM Sound Support App recognizes your TM2 immediately and there are a few features that you can use here. You can receive OTA firmware updates via the APP and you can toggle the landscape mode on and off. In landscape mode, the TM2 enables the microphones to pick up noise from your surroundings and it gives you an awareness boost. In the app, you can also check the battery levels of each adapter. Plus, Fostex promised 5-band EQ support which is coming in the near future.
Let’s talk about the call quality for a bit. These adapters have MEMS omnidirectional CVC enabled microphones but proximity is king when it comes to microphones. It doesn’t matter how good microphones you use, if the source is really far, there is not much you can do about it. The TM2 sits behind the ear and it is far from your mouth. During my testing, I actually found out that it does a good job when there is not much environmental sound, however, if you try talking in a cafe or somewhere where there is a lot of chatter, things start to get messy. This is the case with nearly all TWS we’ve tried here. It is a physical issue rather than an implementation one. We’ll together see what technology will come up in the future to overcome this.
The part on sound starts on the next page. Just click here or use the jumps below.