Today we’re looking at the upcoming $169 USD WH2 True Wireless Stereo In-Ears from HiBy.
Disclaimer: HiBy sent us the WH2 for this review, free of charge. I only covered customs taxes and fees. All thoughts and experiences with the product are naturally my own. You can find more about them here. Let’s get to it.
HiBy Music is a company that specializes in the research & development of portable audio devices. They have been in the industry since 2011. They designed and developed a wide range of products from DAPs to various Bluetooth devices. HiBy is a very innovative company and they have a huge R&D team with over 40 professionals. Their HiBy Music App has a user base of 2 million users in over 100 countries around the globe.
You can find all of our HiBy reviews here.
After the WH3, HiBy’s skilled engineers are here with a new TWS. The WH2 will debut in two different configurations. The engineers preferred to use a single dynamic driver in the first version and two balanced armature drivers in the second version. We have the 2-BA version and the review will be based on that configuration. The WH2 will be the first TWS earphone that features LDAC, therefore we are witnessing an important moment for the audio industry.
Since this review was written before the official launch of the earphones, we will not be able to fully test the details and features that will be available on the Hiby Blue app. The pricing of the WH2 is as follows, the dynamic driver version costs $149 USD and the dual BA costs $169 USD. HiBy is also preparing a Kickstarter campaign for the launch of the earphones and further discounts will be offered to those who pre-order the product. For more information about that, you may want to check HiBy’s Kickstarter page.
Packaging & Accessories
The WH2 comes in a 2-piece, well-designed cardboard box. Hiby listed some of the features on the sides of the box. Upon removing the top cover, the charging case of the HiBy WH2 welcomes you with its gorgeous shade of blue. Under it, there is a compartment where all the accessories lie. You get 8 pairs of silicone tips in various sizes and apart from that, you get a USB-A to USB-C charging cable. The accessories are good, quality-wise and the whole package provides a great unboxing experience for the price.
HiBy is an innovative company when it comes to design and aesthetics. I always imagined the first LDAC equipped earphones would be big in size, but HiBy surprised us again and presented the WH2 with a very small chassis.
The earphones are compact and the 2-color finish looks very elegant. The inner side of the shell is matte blue while the outer shell is glossy blue. I liked the overall design as the earphones are quite compact and light compared to the market average. Although the WH2 is built really well, there is no mention of an IP-rating anywhere so I think you should keep them away from water and excessive moisture. Not only the earphones but also the charging case is quite compact and small. The case has a 350mAh battery inside it and it is not very light despite its compact size. The charging case features a metal build and it has a matte blue finish. It looks chic and elegant up close. Inside it, there are 3 LEDs to let you know about the battery status. The earphones themselves also feature a single status light that is located on each touch-sensitive faceplate.
The inner part of the charging case is made of hard plastic and it has a leather texture. It looks quite premium although I didn’t like the hinge mechanism at all. It looks out of place compared to the rest of the case. It also wobbles a bit. The case’s magnets are powerful and the case can be opened and closed with one hand. The magnets that hold the earphones are also strong and you won’t need to worry about the earphones falling off at all. The tips cut-out of the cradle is not very wide therefore if you are planning to use aftermarket tips with the WH2, you may need to carry them separately. The USB-C charging port is located on the side of the case and it feels durable and stiff. There is a little LED next to the port that lets you know about the charging status.
To sum this section up, I really liked the case, it may be the most elegant TWS cradle I’ve ever used except for the ugly hinge mechanism. Additionally, if you are wondering whether its matte surface retains fingerprints or not, I have an answer for you. Not as much as you would expect it to. The matte blue finish does not easily show fingerprints. Note that there is no reset button anywhere on the case.
This section is going to be a little tricky because the unit I have has the beta firmware on it and the full features are not released yet on the app side. Let’s start with the connection stability.
The WH2 features Airoha’s AB1565 Bluetooth 5.2 chipset with LDAC. I have to admit that I have experienced audio cut-outs with it while I was streaming music from my Android phone. I tested both Tidal and Spotify and the issue was present on both of the apps. Note the ”force 990kbps” setting was toggled on during my testing to get the highest possible sound performance possible. The audio cut-outs stopped as soon as switched to my internal music. I have successfully streamed FLACs via LDAC in forced 990kbps mode, therefore I found out that the cut-outs were firmware related and not a hardware issue. That was, of course, quite relieving for me and I passed my findings to HiBy. They will most likely fix all of these issues before the launch and you won’t experience these. The connection was stable after switching to local files instead of streaming services and the sound performance was very satisfying. We will talk about it in the sound section.
The review continues on Page Two, after the click HERE or by using the jump below.
Page 2: App Features, Controls, Battery Life, Call Quality, Latency, UAT, Amplitude
Page 3: Sound Quality, Comparisons, Last Words