Edifier is a company that primarily manufactures high-quality speakers, but the company also works on wearable devices. It has a selection of headphones and earbuds for you to take your audio on the go. The company recently launched its premium NeoBuds S totally wireless earbuds, and they aim to take on the higher-quality earbuds on the market. So, how do they perform?
The sound is light (maybe a little too light)
Let’s start off with the sound quality. When you’re dealing with most mainstream earbuds, headphones, and speakers nowadays, you typically run into the same scenario: TONS OF BASS. That’s good for more modern bass-heavy music like EDM, pop, dubstep, and whatever else the kids listen to. This is effective to get the energy flowing, but it can end up having a negative impact on other genres of music.
The Edifier NeoBuds S take the opposite approach. They deprioritize the bass and focus on delivering a more balanced sound. They almost remind me of the Jabra Elite 4 Active earbuds. The buds are pleasant to listen to because they pay attention to the higher frequencies. Vocals sing through clearly as does the higher percussion.
This also helps when you’re listening to orchestral music. When listening to classical, I found that the lower instruments didn’t come through muddy and overly bassy as with other headphones.
That being said…
The sound is tuned to be a little too light on the bass. You miss out on some of the punch and immersion you get with more bass-heavy headphones. There are also times when the audio gets to be a bit tinny. I feel like Edifier could have added a little more emphasis on the bass to help even the sound out.
So, the sound is great for listening to more balanced music. It’s not really for the bumping and thumping bass-heavy music that you often hear. Even turning up the bass with the EQ built into the app won’t give you as much bass as other earbuds.
The noise cancelation is superb
The Edifier NeoBuds S have both an ambient mode and ANC (Active Noise Cancelation). There are three ANC modes that you can activate: low noise cancelation, high noise cancelation, and wind reduction. Low noise cancelation cancels a good amount of the ambient noise, but it’s the high noise cancelation that delivers the magic.
The high noise cancelation on these earbuds is amazing. It does a great job of eliminating noise from cars, AC units, and light breezes. It really isolates the sound coming through the speakers even if you’re walking outside.
Wind reduction mode does a good job at getting rid of most of the noise and letting the sound cut through. I’d say the ANC is one of the high points of these
The app offers a TON of customizations and options
Most premium earbuds come with a companion app that you use for controls and customizations. The Edifier Connect app is one of the most in-depth companion apps I’ve ever seen for a pair of earbuds.
You use the app to monitor your earbuds’ battery level and the level of the case. It shows the battery levels in 1% intervals, so you’ll know exactly how charged they are. The same goes for the charging case, but you’ll need to have at least one earbud in it to see its power.
Along with that, you can switch between the three ANC, normal, and ambient modes through the app. Also, you can choose between the different EQ modes (but more on the EQ later).
Heck, you can play/pause and skip the current track that’s playing in the app. If you want to turn the earbuds off without using the case, there’s a power button in the app as well.
Lastly, your case has a colored LED strip on the front that adds an aesthetic flair to it. Using the app, you can change the color of that LED strip to your liking.
Now, let’s talk customizations
There are a TON of ways you can customize your earbuds and the sound using the Edifier Connect app. The Edifier NeoBuds S are touch-sensitive, and you can choose what actions happen when you tap them as well as the touch sensitivity itself. There are 31 levels of touch sensitivity you can choose.
These earbuds use voice prompts to tell you which mode you switch to and when the battery is low. The app actually lets you adjust the volume of the prompts and mute them altogether. However, muting the voice prompts will not disable them. This means that you’ll still hear a delay when you switch modes.
The built-in EQ is something else!
Audio companion apps sometimes offer an equalizer to edit the sound profile. The Edifier Connect app has a beast of an EQ. It’s a four-band equalizer, and you can adjust each band between -6dB and 6dB. So, that already gives you a lot of control.
If you’re an audiophile, and you want to have more control over your sound, you can. For starters, you can adjust the Q Factor of each band.
From left to right, the bands, intrinsically, affect the 100Hz, 2000Hz, 4000Hz, and 8000Hz frequencies. If you’re unhappy with those numbers, you can adjust them. The app lets you dial in your own frequencies for each band. You can adjust them down to the individual Hertz. That’s an extremely deep level of customization!
You can add and save multiple EQ profiles to switch back and forth between. Also, there are two preset EQ modes that you can use, Dynamic and Classic.
The Edifier App has a notification that will stay in the shade consistently so that you can switch modes on the fly. You can disable the notification if you don’t want to see it.
You don’t have many options when it comes to touch controls
With most other earbuds, you have a combination of single-tap, double-tap, triple-tap, and tap & hold controls. This gives you a plethora of different options to control your media.
However, the Edifier NeoBuds S only have double-tap and triple-tap options. This only gives you a total of four control options. The typical control options people use are play/pause, volume up, volume down, skip track forward, skip track back, cycling between hearing modes, and activating the voice assistant. Other earbuds let you do all of those things. However, you’ll need to pick and choose which controls you want to leave off of the earbuds.
The battery life on the NeoBuds S will more than get you through the day with heavy usage. Your mileage will depend on whether you have ANC activated. Without ANC on, the earbuds themselves lasted about six hours on a charge, and the case can charge the earbuds about four times.
With the feature on, (High Noise Cancelation) it knocks about an hour off of the time, and the case was able to charge them about two and a half times.
Should you buy the Edifier NeoBuds S?
At $179.99, it’s hard to sell you on these earbuds on the sound out of the box. If you’re looking for a more complete out-of-the-box experience, and if you’re looking for a really bassy and punchy sound, you might want to look elsewhere.
However, you still get a well-balanced sound. Also, there is a massive amount of customizations that you have access to in order to tailor the experience to you. If you’re really into diving into the settings and finetuning your experience to your specific needs, then these earbuds are just for you.