Convenient logic of use and a more stable connection make TWS headphones more and more popular. In recent years there have been more and more TWS on the market with support for ANC. For example, on November 12, Xiaomi introduced new Redmi Buds 3 wireless earphones. They immediately appeared in stores at the recommended price of about $48.
The device is distinguished by its original design and has an an-ear type design. The size is very small, and the weight of one earphone is only 4.47 g, which ensures lightness and comfort.
The model name of these headphones is M2104E1. We can also read the specifications on the back of the box. At the bottom of the box there is a QR code to check the authenticity of the earphones.
Inside there is a charging case with earphones, a USB Type-C charging cable, a warranty and a user manual. That’s it! The recommended retail price is $48.
Where to buy:
If you like headphones of small size, you will also like the Redmi Buds 3. The material a simple white plastic and a fairly small case will easily fit in a pocket or a bag.
On the front of the charging case you will find an LED indicator showing whether your headphones have finished charging, and a USB-C port at the bottom. That’s almost all. The top cover is securely fixed with magnets, while you do not need to put a lot of effort to open it: a slight movement of your finger and you’re done. The headphones inside the case are fixed with magnets. Everything is reliable.
The Redmi Buds 3 are touch sensitive, so you can skip tracks and answer calls without touching the phone, which is already standard even in the cheapest segment. There are no tips, but the buds are comfortable enough, and have a completely plastic construction, which makes them versatile. However, as with other products with a similar design, scratches will inevitably appear after prolonged use. Fortunately, thanks to the white color, even if the surface is slightly scratched, it will not be so noticeable. Don’t worry about it.
The case and body are quite elegant, the buds are easy to put on and take off, the build quality is remarkable. Separately, it is necessary to highlight the pleasant sound of closing the lid of the case. The fit in the ear is comfortable, does not cause unpleasant sensations, and the earphones fit like a glove. From the outside, too, everything looks neat.
According to the official statement, the Redmi Buds 3 supports 5 hours of continuous music playback. With a charging unit, they can work up to 20 hours. With normal use, charging can be done once a week. Of course, the actual endurance indicators largely depend on the habits of each user. By the way, the headset also supports fast charging, just 10 minutes of charging and you have an hour and a half of music playback.
This buds are equipped with three touch gestures: double tap, triple tap and long press. The left and right earphones allow you to set different functions for the same gesture. Unfortunately, due to the relatively small effective touch area, the volume cannot be adjusted from headphones when listening to music.
Some other functionality that, in my opinion, modern TWS headsets should have can also be found in the Redmi Buds 3. For example, connection is supported with the lid open, and the battery status of each earphone and charging case can be seen in the mobile phone interface. In addition, using the built-in sensor, the buds put the track on pause when removed. If you are the owner of a Xiaomi mobile phone, it will be much more convenient to use this model.
The Redmi Buds 3 uses the Qualcomm QCC3040 chip, released last year. Compared to the previous QCC3020, the obvious update is the addition of aptX Adaptive codec. In addition, this buds are equipped with 12 mm dynamic drivers and support Bluetooth 5.2 connection.
As for the actual sound quality, Redmi’s strategy is the same as that of many manufacturers. The earphones highlight the mid and low frequencies more, which corresponds to the wishes of the general public. The sound is good enough. There is little bass here, partly due to the design. You feel it in music, where there are practically no low frequencies. But the overall sound profile is not bad, in fact, the sound is quite balanced and clean, and at the same time not harsh. YouTube videos and podcasts sound good, and you can make phone calls thanks to additional noise-canceling microphones in your headset. The Redmi Buds 3 support special processing for call scenes – the so-called CVC (Clear Voice Capture) noise reduction technology, with two microphones built into the headset, which can significantly reduce ambient noise to improve the clarity of the call.
As I mentioned, the earphones have a small touch area on top. You can use it to answer and end calls (double tap the touch area), play/pause music (press and hold) and play the next track/previous track (double tap for the next track, triple tap for the previous track). The touch area is very small, so you need to be precise. But it works well and sends commands instantly, although it is impossible to adjust the volume of the sound. However, the Redmi Buds 3 will automatically play and pause the track when you insert and remove the earphone from your ear, and I think this should already be a standard feature for all buds.
On most smartphones, the AAC codec is used automatically, but in some cases (for example, on OPPO smartphones), you need to go to the settings and activate it manually. You can also go to the developer menu and look at the codec there and switch between AAC and SBC (First you need to activate the developer menu – quickly click on the assembly number in the info about the phone 10 times).
For iOS devices, a different solution is suitable to improve the sound quality. After connecting the headphones to the iPhone, you need to go to: Settings – Bluetooth – Blue exclamation mark opposite Redmi Buds 3 – Device type – Headphones.
The Redmi Buds 3 earphones have enough energy for 5 hours of operation on a single charge and 20 hours if we add the case. At least this is what the manufacturer claims. Not so much, but with normal use, you don’t have to worry about charging for a few days.
There is no wireless charging, although this is expected for the budget segment. The Redmi Buds 3 don’t have lots of features, but they cover all the major ones. Regarding the actual usage – you actually get 5 hours of playback. And 20 hours of playback with a case is a solid indicator for this price category.
Any inexpensive product implies that the manufacturer is forced to sacrifice some functions. This was to be expected. The question is whether it offers good value for money – and the Redmi Buds 3 certainly meet this requirement. Especially if you are an owner of Xiaomi or Redmi smartphones. The headphones are resistant to water splashes, have an IP54 protection class and all the advantages of Qualcomm.
In addition to the low cost, they are lightweight and very comfortable to wear. The sound quality is good enough for everyday use, the latency is low, and 20 hours of battery life with a charging case is quite enough for most users. The pairing process is quite simple and works well, and some touch controls make life easier. Only the smartphone app is missing.
Overall, this is a solid offer that won’t ruin you. And if you want more features, choose Redmi Buds 3 Pro, reviewed by Eugenia Faber.