Realme Buds Air comes with a wireless charging-equipped case.
The wireless buds work on all platforms without any need of a specific app.
Buds Air offer about 17 hours of battery backup along with the case.
Realme launched its first pair of “true wireless” earbuds alongside the Realme X2 smartphone. The company also showcased all the new features that it has added on the Realme Buds Air. Realme has taken yet another step, continuing its push in the smartphone accessory market. Earlier, the company launched a number of audio products. These include the neckband form Realme Buds Wireless, Realme Buds 2, and original Realme Buds.
The Realme Buds Air is available for Rs 3,999. You can buy it from Flipkart and Realme.com. With the launch, the company also joins a number of local and Chinese companies in the quest to provide a truly wireless experience. The company claims to offer a total battery life of 17 hours. The charging case also supports Wireless Charging, not something offered by others in this price segment. But how does it differentiate itself from its rivals? Let’s find out in our Realme Buds Air review.
Specifications and features
Before we talk about the design, performance, and battery backup of the device, let’s talk about pure specifications. The wireless buds come with a custom R1 chip and Bluetooth v5.0 connectivity. This adds a number of important features in the wearable including “Super Low Latency” for gaming, and more. The R1 chip can reduce the audio latency almost by half. It also claims to come with a Dynamic Bass Boost solution to improve bass reproduction. Realme also claims that the wireless earbuds feature environment noise cancellation during calls.
Watch: Realme Buds Air Review
The company has added an LED indicator on the top of the case for information regarding the battery levels and connectivity. One can also find two other LED lights with one on the back of each earbud for touch controls. Realme claims that the Buds Air will provide a battery backup worth 17 hours along with the case. Buds Air also comes with USB Type-C port at the bottom of the case along with support for 10W wireless charging. The device also includes features like instant auto-connect, smart-in-ear detection with an optical sensor, and built-in Google Assistant support. It is also worth noting that all these features work both on Android and iOS. Realme made it a point to make these features platform agnostic so they work without any software or app.
Design and Comfort
After the specifications and features, let’s dive into the review of the Realme Buds Air. First up, let’s talk about the design of the latest Realme Buds Air. The earphones sport an Apple AirPods-like arch design. This brings the best things about the design as well as the less than stellar things of the design to the Buds Air. Best things include the instant product recall value along with pure wireless experience. Most of my friends confused the Realme Buds Air for the Apple AirPods which is both surprising and a testament to the design influence.
Cons likely include the ease to lose one of the earbuds in crowded spaces. The rigid plastic design also makes it difficult for the Realme Buds Air to be one fit for everyone. This may or may not make them comfortable for you for extended periods of time. I found myself constantly checking the buds for proper fit while traveling in public transport. This is likely because the earbuds sometimes become loose and drop out of my ears after some time of not checking for the fit.
In fact, the experience to wear them in crowded areas like a peak-time local train was something I refrained from. Thankfully, the company is currently selling individual buds and the case to buyers who may lose them. Buyers will likely have to depend on third-party accessories to make it more adaptable to their ear shape.
Audio performance: Bass, Treble, and Clarity
Now, let’s focus on the audio quality of the Realme Buds Air. I tested the buds in a wide range of situations ranging from watching Netflix shows, movies, streaming albums on Spotify, to playing Call of Duty: Mobile and more. Overall, the buds offer an impressive level of sound. In addition, they also offer an adequate sound stage for good audio reproduction. Though, I would stop shy of calling them good because there are bound to be limitations. I tested a number of test tracks to check the overall performance and here are my thoughts. Realme Buds air showcased their dynamic range in the SICKO MODE by Travis Scott. However, it fell short in the extremes present in the This is a Test by Armin van Buuren.
I was pleased with the mids and mellow instruments rendered in the Hymn to the Fallen from Saving Private Ryan by composer John Williams. While playing Das Spiegel by The Chemical Brothers, I found the sound stage to be a bit limiting with the bass not being as profound. This was further demonstrated when I played Hurt by Jonny Cash where the bass was not as profound as the vocals. Buds Air perform quite well for a first-generation wireless audio product. However, the company can do some improvements to make it even better in the future.
The wireless earbuds performed as per the advertised expectations of the company. To clarify, Realme claims that each earbud offers a total of about 3 hours of battery backup. The case adds another 14 hours of battery backup bumping the number to 17 hours. One could extend it further buy only using one earbud at a time. In the real-world, both earbuds lasted for about 2 hours 45 minutes to 3 hours. There were occasions when one bud stopped working before the other one. However, the lack of a master-slave connection implementation helped Realme in this case. Talking about charging, the device took about 1.5-2 hours to charge from 0 to 100 percent including the case. Taking a look at the design, the smartphone
Overall, Realme has done a good job with its Realme Buds Air. The company managed to give a good fight to the competition in this segment with its first product. There are some areas where the company can improve including the design and the sound quality. However, beyond the specific caveats, it is a really good product. For the price of Rs 3,999, I would recommend it for anyone looking for a true and affordable wireless pair of earbuds.