Huawei FreeBuds 4i review: It’s all about the value


True wi-fi earbuds have transform a mature product class in only some quick years. Dozens of manufacturers are competing within the section, pushing costs down and making options like energetic noise-cancelling (ANC) extra out there than ever.

The Huawei FreeBuds 4i characteristic energetic noise-cancelling, water resistance, and cast battery lifestyles, desirous about below £80/€100. However has Huawei minimize any corners to make this horny value imaginable? We let you know in our Huawei FreeBuds 4i evaluate.

About this Huawei FreeBuds 4i evaluate: I used the FreeBuds 4i for 10 days operating tool model 1.9.0.132. The FreeBuds 4i evaluate unit was once supplied to Android Authority via Huawei.

What you want to grasp concerning the Huawei FreeBuds 4i

huawei freebuds 4i 10

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

  • Huawei FreeBuds 4i: £79/€99 (widespread reductions and promos to be had)

The FreeBuds 4i are Huawei’s maximum reasonably priced true wi-fi earphones. Generally, the “i” fashion is a follow-up to the “mainstream” fashion, however on this case, Huawei hasn’t introduced the FreeBuds 4 but.

Huawei is promoting the FreeBuds 4i in black, white, or crimson colorways for a listing value of £79 (~$111) in the United Kingdom or €99 (~$119) in Eu markets. As with many Huawei merchandise at the moment, there are horny offers available — for example, as of the time of this writing, UK shoppers can get a loose Huawei Band 4e health tracker with their acquire from Huawei.com.

The FreeBuds 4i characteristic ANC and 3 sizes of silicone ear pointers, making them a viable selection for customers searching for excellent noise isolation. They’re now not very rugged although — for those who want sportier designs, the “neckband”-style FreeLace Professional are value testing.

How’s the design?

huawei freebuds 4i true wireless earbuds 2

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The FreeBuds 4i have an AirPods-like design that doesn’t stand out via a lot. That’s to not say this inoffensive design is dangerous — to the contrary, it’s gentle, swish, and comfy.

Each the earbuds and the case are smaller than ultimate yr’s FreeBuds 3i. This welcome alternate comes with an aggravating downside: the earbuds are infuriatingly arduous to take away from the case.

The FreeBuds 4i are gentle, swish, and comfy.

The FreeBuds 4i is also petite, however Huawei’s most commonly trimmed away the plastic — the capability of the batteries within the earbuds is 48% larger than at the earlier technology (extra about that within the battery lifestyles segment under).

Do the FreeBuds 4i sound excellent?

huawei freebuds 4i 3

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The Huawei FreeBuds 4i sound strangely excellent for his or her reasonably priced value. They reproduce transparent audio and steer clear of not unusual pitfalls of inexpensive earbuds the place bass notes make it arduous to listen to midrange and treble notes.

Additionally learn: The most efficient true wi-fi earbuds below $50 you’ll purchase

Mids and highs sound transparent and the bass is loud, however now not overwhelming. If you happen to want heavy, thumping bass, there are higher choices in the market. General, I discovered the FreeBuds 4i frequency reaction very stress-free.

Sound-wise, the FreeBuds 4i are rather higher than the FreeBuds 3i, however I wouldn’t say the adaptation is apparent. Don’t improve to the 4i only for higher audio. In comparison to the high-end FreeBuds Professional, the extra out there 4i keep their very own, however I like to recommend the Professionals to extra discerning listeners.

How’s the noise-cancelling at the FreeBuds 4i?

huawei freebuds 4i 14

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

Energetic noise-cancelling has transform a table-stakes characteristic on top class true wi-fi earbuds, however it’s nonetheless uncommon within the mid-range section the FreeBuds 4i belongs to.

To turn on ANC at the FreeBuds 4i, faucet and keep on both earbud. The gesture works reliably, although it’s slightly gradual. Faucet and keep once more to enter Consciousness mode, which will increase the amount of voices and different ambient sounds. This turns out to be useful when you wish to have to listen to what’s occurring round you with out getting rid of your earbuds.

Learn extra: What are the most productive noise-cancelling earbuds?

The FreeBuds 4i noise cancelling tech isn’t the most productive that’s pop out manner, however it successfully hushes low, monotone sounds. Don’t be expecting eerie silence when strolling down the road or in different noisy environments. If you wish to have sturdy ANC, the FreeBuds Professional are the easier selection from Huawei.

Is the battery lifestyles excellent at the FreeBuds 4i?

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Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

Huawei quotes a battery lifetime of as much as 10 hours on a unmarried price, some prerequisites carried out. Particularly, you’ll get the most productive battery lifestyles for those who disable ANC, pay attention at decrease volumes, and use the AAC Bluetooth codec. When ANC is on, the rated battery lifestyles decreases via 25%.

FreeBuds 4i battery lifestyles falls slightly in need of Huawei’s claims. however they nonetheless be offering various use on a unmarried price.

The case holds a 215mAh battery — that’s about two times the capability of the 2 earbuds blended. In different phrases, a completely charged case will have to provide you with as much as ~20 hours of additional listening time.

In actual lifestyles, FreeBuds 4i battery lifestyles falls slightly in need of Huawei’s claims, suffering from such things as vulnerable wi-fi connections and better volumes. In my enjoy, I nonetheless were given 7-8 hours of battery lifestyles, with a mixture of ANC and non-ANC use, and that was once greater than sufficient for my use.

The rest?

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Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

  • Compatibility: The FreeBuds 4i paintings easiest with Huawei gadgets operating the most recent model of EMUI. This will get you put on detection (the headphones pause playback when you’re taking them off) and fast pairing (by means of the Huawei AI Lifestyles app). If you happen to don’t have a contemporary Huawei gadget, they’ll behave like all Bluetooth headphones. This is going for laptops as smartly.
  • One gadget at a time: The FreeBuds 4i do now not enhance multi-device connectivity. I’ve all the time discovered this serve as extra aggravating than helpful, so it’s now not a significant factor in my e book.
  • Contact controls: You regulate the FreeBuds 4i via touches: tap-and-hold to cycle the ANC modes, and double-tap to regulate playback. There are a couple of customization choices to be had within the Huawei AI Lifestyles app. Unfortunately, the 4i’s don’t enhance swipes to regulate quantity like the costlier FreeBuds Professional.
  • Water resistance: The earbuds are rated IPX4 — they may be able to take care of sweat and rain, however don’t dunk them in water.
  • Mics: Mic and phone high quality at the FreeBuds 4i are each ok. No problems there.

Huawei FreeBuds 4i specifications

  Huawei FreeBuds 4i
Measurement Earbuds: 37.5 x 23.9 x 21 mm
Case: 48 x 61.8 x 27.5 mm
Weight Earbuds: 5.5g
Case: 36.5g
Connectivity Bluetooth 5.2
Sensors Contact
Ear on/off detection
Batteries In step with earbud: 55mAh
Charging case: 215mAh
Charging USB-C
Speedy charging: 10m charging leads to 4h of listening
Speaker 10mm dynamic
Audio Formats: AAC, SBC
Energetic noise cancelling
Name noise cancelling
Colours Ceramic Black, Ceramic White, Pink

Worth and festival

Huawei FreeBuds 4i Lots of price

ANC for less than £100? The Huawei FreeBuds 4i ship noise cancelling, cast sound high quality and as much as 10 hours of battery lifestyles. That is a hell of a bundle for the associated fee.

There’s no scarcity of competition within the sub-$100 section of true wi-fi earbuds marketplace. Alternatively, few merchandise be offering ANC, just like the FreeBuds 4i do.

If you happen to’re partial to noise-cancelling, the Panasonic RZ-S500W (£99 at Amazon) characteristic nice ANC, IPX4 water resistance, and fast charging, however their design isn’t for everybody and the battery lifestyles is shorter. The Earfun Air Professional (£69 at Amazon) are inexpensive the Huawei FreeBuds 4i and still have ANC and water resistance.

Similar: The most efficient AirPods possible choices for less than $100

If ANC isn’t a will have to, our resident audio editor recommends reasonably priced true wi-fi earbuds just like the Anker Liberty Air 2, the Edifier TWS1, and the older Samsung Galaxy Buds.

General, it’s arduous to overcome the associated fee and the options you get with FreeBuds 4i. They certainly be offering loads of price in your cash.

FreeBuds 4i evaluate: The decision

huawei freebuds 4i 9

Credit score: Bogdan Petrovan / Android Authority

The FreeBuds 4i supply a perfect mixture of design, options, and price. They don’t excel at anything else particularly, however those true wi-fi earbuds shine while you pass judgement on them as a complete.

Only a few competition be offering ANC at costs similar to Huawei’s FreeBuds 4i and that’s most likely the most important reason why to shop for them. It’s now not wonderful ANC, however it’s there if you wish to have it.

The FreeBuds 4i supply a perfect mixture of design, options, and price.

According to my time with the FreeBuds 4i evaluate unit, I will be able to counsel them to patrons who wish to graduate from stressed, non-ANC, or funds earbuds, however don’t wish to spend an excessive amount of. Even though you have already got some enjoy with higher-end earbuds, the FreeBuds 4i are excellent sufficient, so long as you’re now not choosy about your sound.

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