Nathan looks at the rather unknown LiteXim Aerobuds, a budget Bluetooth fully wireless IEM
Disclaimer: LiteXim sent Aerobuds directly for the purposes of this review. Aerobuds are a single-driver Bluetooth earphone. They go for about 60$, are compatible with a host of wireless tech. You can find out all about them here: LiteXim Aerobuds Truely Wireless Earphones.
After a lot of reviewing – and more than a little fiddling – I consider 60$ more than adequate to manufacture, distribute, market, and sell a quality wireless earphone. Aerobuds aren’t the best wireless earphones I’ve tried, but they get a lot right, and they get a few things wrong. Jack of a bunch of trades and all that.
One thing LiteXim got right was nomenclature. Case in point: Aerobuds. Sure, not everyone can spell it, but practically everyone can say it. And, it’s easy to remember. LiteXim, however, isn’t. In fact, at every editorial pass, I double check the box. It’s not a small x, it’s not a z. And for some reason, it’s lite, as in highliter, as in lite beer, etcetera. Come to think of it, Aerobuds’s weighing in at 5 grams, may have something to do with it. Lite, like a feather.
Whatever the case, Aerobuds (Air O Buds) is a catchy name for LiteXim’s most expensive wireless earphone.
Aerobuds bear two metal contacts on each channel that when mashed into the case, connect, and charge the earphones. A micro USB port connects the case to the mains. The channels can be independently charged and/or used. I’m told that Aerobuds will get up to four hours of playback between charges. I reckon I get about that. What’s sort of a bugger is that I get that from AirPods, and the case is smaller, easier to use, doesn’t look as much like a stealth pill box.
Aerobuds have a couple of advantages up their sleeves. First, they stay ins the ear really well. Not that AirBuds don’t, but AeroBuds stay in better, and they come with a couple of different fit-kit wing sets. Like Apple’s AirPods, they push in easily. If you want the best sound out of them, you need to find a good seal. And, depending on your ear shape, getting a good seal may or may not be a chore.
That is, Aerobuds’s thick sound tube coupled with a short flange, means that they won’t easily go in narrow ear canals. But when they go in, they stick right to the skin, close and personal; despite this, the short-ish canal bits ensure that they don’t invade too much. In fact, I’ve found anti-IEM people get on reasonably well with Aeorobuds. That’s a cool thing.
If you don’t like the silicon wings, you can take them off. And when off Aerobuds are no less comfy. Nor are they really less firm fitting. Okay, if you take them running or wear them under a helmet and you sweat, maybe they are less firm. But overall, they stay put really well. Aerobuds are well designed for use. They aren’t, however, pretty. In fact, I don’t see any indication that they are endowed with – as their marketing department assures – oriental aesthetics. Aerobuds look, feel, and work like a slightly upscale, but wholly generic Chinese-made earphone (advertising copy issues and all) which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s just that there is nothing particularly unique about them.
In perfect line-of-sight with little to no wireless interference, I’ve gotten Aerobuds out to 35 metres and a bit more with only intermittent signal cutouts. They are rock solid out to 25 metres, and cross-body maintain signal well, which has been especially nice for me in the last few weeks as I’ve been holed up in wood workshop, crouching, bracing, honing, and hammering at strange, yoga-like angles. Through it all Aerobuds’s connection was solid.
The faceplate doubles as an ON/OFF button. It also pauses and adapts to software calls. If you want stereo, you have to pair the two by first turning on one side, then the other. This is a bit annoying, but the utility of nearly independent channels isn’t something to look in the mouth.
Sound and more after the jump: