The UGReen HiTune T3 are affordable true wireless earbuds modeled after Apple’s AirPods but cost a fraction of the price at only $39.99. They offer active noise cancellation, a comfortable fit, boosted bass, and solid battery life, but do they have the sound quality to compete in an ever more crowded market? Find out in this review.
- Current Price: $39.99 (Amazon)
- Driver Speaker: 10mm Dynamic Driver
- Bluetooth Version: Bluetooth 5.2
- Codec: AAC, SBC
- Work Time: 7 Hour single charge, 24 Hour with case
- Charge Time: 1.5 Hour for earbuds
- Charging Port: USB-C Port
- ANC: Yes, up to -25dB
- Ambient Sound Mode: Yes
- AI-enhanced call clarity
- IP Rating: IPX5
UGreen HiTune T3 - What Is It?
The UGreen HiTune T3 are true wireless earbuds designed for everyday use. They feature the classic AirPods design with a bud that fits in your ear and a stem that positions the microphone closer to your mouth. They feature nearly all of the key features you would look for in a set of earphones in 2022: active noise cancellation, water resistance, long lasting comfort, good battery life, and reliable touch controls. UGreen checks all of the major boxes so you can go in knowing that these buds lack nothing compared to the competition.
The buds come in two colors, white or black, and feature a glossy finish. It looks good during unboxing but is prone to attracting fingerprints, so you’ll need to wipe the case regularly if you want to keep it looking nice. A single, large dynamic driver lives inside of each bud and is enhanced for “bass with high-resolution treble and broader soundstage.” We’ll get into sound quality during the next section, but if you’re a fan of bass on a budget, these earphones deliver.
The buds are rated for 7 hours of battery life each, which is enough to get you through most of the day. Usually, these quotes are generous and are based on listening at 50% volume, but here I found it to be mostly accurate. The earbuds have plentiful volume, so you really don’t need to crank it much higher than that before they become quite loud. The charging case supplies between two and three recharges, bringing you to a total of approximately 24 hours of total listening time. Quite good at this price! You can also keep an eye on your remaining case battery thanks to three small LEDs on its front.
The other key feature these buds bring to the table is active noise cancellation. UGreen quotes up to 25dB of noise reduction. The ANC works well on low, droning noises (like the HVAC vent in my room) but isn’t great for higher-pitched sounds, like voices and keyboards. They will work well for commuting if you’re trying to block out engine noise, but you may want to look elsewhere if you’re aiming to cut out noisy roommates or the sound of your keyboard when you’re gaming. Playing music effectively blocks these things out when used with ANC, however, so overall noise isolation is still decent with these earphones.
The buds are controlled using a mix of taps and holds. If you’ve ever used touch earbuds, it’s easy to figure out without looking at the manual but is straightforward even if this is your first pair. There are no single-touch commands, which is helpful for preventing accidental touches when adjusting the fit, but limits the amount of commands UGreen was able to assign. Here, you get play/pause, track forward/backward, and hold to summon your virtual assistant or adjust ANC. Volume can only be controlled on your phone which is disappointing.
What the buds lack in volume control, they make up for in comfort. UGreen includes four pairs of silicone ear tips (XS/S/M/L) to help find the perfect fit. Like all earbuds, it’s important to take the time to find the proper fit. Here, it’s less about sound quality and more about making sure you have a secure and comfortable fit. When you do, they’re easy to wear for the entire day without any discomfort. I continue to be surprised at how comfortable this style of earbud can be when you find the right tip, and the T3 is a perfect example of comfort done right.
UGreen HiTune T3 - Listening and Daily Use Impressions
With that out of the way, let’s get into how they sound and what it’s like to live with the earbuds every day. The first thing to remark on is that these are a very easy wear, even when you’re on the move. After I had my tips set, the T3s stayed rock solid in my ears no matter what I was doing. If you have medium-sized ears like I do, you can feel free to exercise with these without fear that they’ll come loose or fall out. They’re also IPX5 rated, so you won’t have to worry about sweat wrecking them if they get a little damp.
The controls were also rock solid. Nothing negative to remark upon for what’s included. The lack of volume controls is a problem, however. While not unique to the T3s, the point of true wireless earbuds is to cut the tether to your phone. With these buds and others like it, you’ll always need to have your phone close at hand so you can turn up or down. Most of the time, it’s not a big deal but there will certainly be times when this omission is irritating.
Overall, living with the buds is easy. They work reliably, have good battery life, and are comfortable. Three major boxes, checked.
When it comes to the sound, what one person finds to be too much, another may enjoy. I state that clearly because UGreen wasn’t kidding when they said that the HiTune T3s are bass boosted, and that’s led to some divisiveness in the reviews on its Amazon page. Some people love that boost and want more. Others find it to be entirely too much.
I fall into the latter camp. The HiTune T3s are the most bass boosted earbuds I’ve listened to this year. While you can still make out what’s happening in the mids and highs, the bass bleeds into both which makes these earbuds sound veiled. If you like hip hop or bass-driven pop or electronica, you’ll probably find a lot to love here. For fans of rock, metal, acoustic, and vocal driven music, what you gain in body, you lose in clarity.
Listening to Coheed and Cambria’s new album, Window of the Waking Mind, the bass just overwhelmed every track. There are instances where this can be fun, but more often than not, it felt smothering. On other tracks like Church by Tom MacDonald or My Stress by NF, it was much better and matched the tracks well.
I also tried these earbuds with gaming, but they weren’t a good fit. The latency isn’t bad, but is noticeable and rules out first-person shooters. The bass boost can definitely be fun during games, but I found myself missing the added detail from my usual gaming headset.
Over the course of this review, I was able to spend about a month with the UGreen HiTune T3s. They have definite high points, like the comfort and controls, but the bass boost is just too much to make these a solid all-around bet. If you listen to tracks that emphasize bass, these could be a good buy, but their lack of balance limits their audience. UGreen is a brand to watch, but give these extra consideration before pulling the trigger.
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