Practical testing …
The recommended audiodo app was downloaded via Google Play for the obligatory practical test; version 1.5.00 initially occupies about 24 MB on the smartphone used for the test. The aforementioned app allows selecting various equalizer presets that are oriented towards certain genres or predefined frequency ranges. This technical feature gave us enough opportunity to evaluate the Tribit in-ears from several settings for each song, whereby the personalized “initial variant” was relevant for the criterion of the sound. The other EQ modifications belonged to the point of technical finesse for us, since we have only ever tested the standard sound of classic headphones. The personalization is mentioned here as an exception, since the initial self-test is now a fixed product feature.
There is an option for manual EQ adjustment under “Customized”, but it is difficult without professional frequency response measurements. Furthermore, the Android device was a very weak audio source in terms of hardware. Such a circumstance can strongly influence the listening results, but it is an absolutely conceivable practical case. Powerful amplifiers and DACs were not used, although impedance and sensitivity of in-ears are not a special challenge for a cell phone.
During the personal self-review of the app, which tested the audibility of differently frequented tones on the left and right ear, a divergent hearing sensitivity was found. Perhaps resourceful manufacturers will benefit from sending customized test subjects to OCinside in the future. At least it would now be feasible with this test result, assuming the accuracy of the snapshot. In (most) people, a significant sensitivity for the single-digit kHz range up to about 5 kHz can be assumed, as Amir from Audiosciencereview explained it. Thus, the level of the harmonic distortion plays a significant role in the upper mids, although the second harmonic harmonics in the sub-bass – in absolute terms – are generally higher. A gradually changing sensitivity for the high frequency range is within the range of what might encourage people to do a self-test now and then. It decreases with increasing age, which according to some “evil tongues” is also supposed to have caused the very garish tuning of various Grado headphones. These are and were apparently “manually” “optimized” by the owner John Grado himself, who is said to have started at the family business at the tender age of 12 – mind you, in 1965. However, that’s just a side note. Very exciting was the – depending on the ear quite or relatively – linear course in the lower frequency range, whereby the exact values in Hertz were missing on the x-axis of the diagram. Thus, it remains unclear how far the app’s display basically extends into the lower and upper frequency spectrum. This detail should definitely be added for transparency reasons.
In other listening tests, the tester’s hearing extended into the range between 16 and 17 kHz – in the sense of an active perception of the vibrations. Above that, the ears of certain dimensions were indefinably occupied. In this range, the pure airiness in the sound perception is to be located.
On the app’s homepage, other models can theoretically be created and called up besides the FlyBuds, and a total charging status in percent is already displayed. After selecting the device, the app differentiates even more precisely between the left and right earbuds. However, there should rarely be a reason for a significant difference in the charging status.
A selection of different music tracks from a wide range of artists and genres was listened to subjectively. In the case of the Android smartphone, the musical lineup of a well-known streaming service was used. According to the provider’s nomenclature, the quality of the music tracks reached HD or Ultra HD. Our listening process is always meant to cover as broad a spectrum of music as possible and to find out the special talents and shortcomings of in-ears. For comparison purposes, we used the wired Hifiman RE800 Silver, which is roughly on par with the Tribit model at just under 120 Euros, but has already been reduced in price several times due to high age.
The impression of the FlyBuds changed a bit after creating the personalized profile. The music no longer seemed quite as boomy in the bass and more structured in the mids, but the basic timbre did not change. This personalized mode was used in the following listening test, since it represents a central product feature. In addition, this individual standard setting was supplemented by EQ profiles that match the song, in order to at least explore the possibilities of the app a bit.
In a highly generalized manner, Hifiman reproduced tones in the upper half more transparently and more pointedly, while Tribit offered much more body in the sub-bass and a strong “slam” in the mid and higher bass range, just like the individualization. Neither model suggested a particularly wide space around the head due to the design, but a quite perceptible depth of space. Furthermore, the FlyBuds in particular had slightly recessed, partly very neutral sounding mids, as we will now demonstrate with concrete examples.
|Sound aspects – title 1|
|Title and band/interpret||If(>365)|
|Hifiman RE800 Silver||sharp and airy instruments and missing bass body|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, without EQ)||very full sound with dark timbre, decent slam, detail and transparency of instruments low|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, EQ gimmicks)||rather a general deterioration, see description|
In order not to misrepresent the imported characters, those interested can search for the music track “If” via Apple Music. The very foreground electric piano sounded quite musical and nicely warm on the FlyBuds without EQ, but the hihats in the background sounded too flat and too recessed. Here, despite personalization, there was apparently a lack of some energy around 7-10 kHz and/or the stronger bass made the hihats sound spongy. A rhythmic, slightly dominant “slam” accompanied the rich passages of the work. This really invited the listener to “bob along” and knew how to entertain, even if the precision and separation of the instruments from the digital sounds was somewhat lost with so many sounds crashing in at the same time. The saxophone, which sounded quite artificial and spacious, lacked a bit of airiness. In return, a clear warmth came through again and thus the frequency-technically upper bass foundation.
We didn’t miss the chance to play a bit with the equalizer presettings and, of all things, the instruments came out a bit clearer in Read Aloud or Podcast, certainly by means of increasing the levels in the mids. Here, human voices, whose fundamentals are between about 100 and 1kHz but whose harmonics reach into the double-digit KHz range, should be better accentuated. This audibly balanced out the otherwise very strong mid and upper bass range. The music sounded less romanticized, which speaks for a boost in the range of about 2-5 kHz, an adjustment range that was already very noticeable in the personalization. In return, the impact decreased significantly. With the “Dance” preset, on the other hand, the “slam” seemed even more physical and the hihats retreated into their spongy nothingness. It was striking to hear the impression of a lower volume in all settings, although no changes were made to the knob. The paradoxically named “personalized standard settings” rightly turned out to be the most suitable for the rating.
A distinctive sound characteristic can quickly be destroyed by too much EQ, which should happen more often than less often with the selection option. Nevertheless, despite the personalization, we raised the low treble range around 8kHz to +3 dB for fun, making the instruments sound a bit more sharp-edged. Together with the raised mids of the personalized setting, this resulted in the most detailed imaging of the instruments with untouched bass quantity at the same time.
The Hifiman sample does not have any tonal adjustment options and exhibited a somewhat reduced “slam” by default, which only entered the auditory canals at high volume in a snappy and clearly perceptible manner. In contrast, the piano tones and the saxophone already sounded a bit airier than with Tribit. Especially the highest notes of the saxophone were also presented more precisely and it reverberated a bit longer into the room. In general, the entire piece of music no longer seemed as full-bodied and was obviously somewhat thinned out in the upper bass range. The piano no longer played superficially, but really took over the majority of the presentation. Overall, the RE800 Silver can be described as a greater friend in accentuating individual instruments and at the same time as an enemy in terms of romantic presentation as well as warm timbre.
|Sound aspects – title 2|
|Title and band/interpret||Forest Floor – Fergus McCreadie|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, without EQ)||tiring fullness due to the dominating low frequency range|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, EQ gimmicks)||general deterioration, see description|
The Mercury Prize regularly honors excellent Irish and British songs, as it did in 2022, with “Forest Floor,” a modern classical award winner that Bowers & Wilkins said was inspired by Scottish landscapes. The low piano notes and the flowing caress of the even lower double bass strings unsurprisingly benefited from the FlyBuds’ dominant bass, but also tired the ear very quickly. With our manual EQ setting, the double bass disappeared a bit behind the more dynamic and faster piano strokes; nevertheless, a nice and full sound foundation formed. The occasionally intervening drums also emerged a bit more clearly from their shadow. EQ made it possible to “sustain” this piece of music a bit better than with the bulky standard bass. The equalizer presetting “Classical” again reduced the overall volume, which is why a grip on the volume control was made here. The instruments were separated a bit better here, which “brought out” the double bass more behind the piano.
No matter which setting Tribit offered, the double bass nowhere came out as clearly as on the RE800 Silver, albeit with less “noticeable” sound body. The piano sounds spread a bit diffusely, but also turned out more detailed. Unfortunately, the music sounded much too bright, as if every note had – purely figuratively speaking – moved up an octave. With the Tribit in-ears, the rugged Highlands and Rannoch Moor appeared in front of the listener’s inner eye, which Hifiman did not intend to convey in its presentation. Gradually, the desire arose to form a hybrid out of Tribit and Hifiman, as both turned out to be more and more specialists of their own genre. However, the RE800 Silver originally had a suggested retail price of $599, and here age has determined the current price point. If Tribit were to see such relative price growth, and if users were to sit down to a somewhat thoughtful EQ profile, there is much to be said for advancement in the field of musical Bluetooth transmission.
|Sound aspects – title 3|
|Title and band/interpret||Mot Cu Lua (Du Dua Version) – Bich Phuong|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, without EQ)||Softness of the voice solid, dynamics on the other hand poorly transported|
|Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro (personalized, EQ gimmicks)||minor improvements|
So far, our Practical testing has lacked a representative of the vocals, and so the third track in the bunch was a modified song by Vietnam’s most popular pop musician. In the original version of “Mot Cu Lua” the vocals flow a bit more, which is why we recommend listening to both versions. At the beginning, the cheerful whistling came through very voluminously on Tribit without EQ and reverberated a bit as desired. The following verse, which chronologically serves as a build-up, featured the soft yet expansive voice of artist Bich Phuong. But where did the dynamics go – or rather – how could Tribit Phuong do such a thing? Despite personalized sound, the distinctly recessed voice came across as almost soporific on the tonal tablet. With our manual EQ settings, the transparency increased slightly in the higher of her pitches.
The whistling at the beginning seemed much more spatial on the Hifiman in-ears and Phuong’s voice more dynamic in the sense that the vocal pitch change from the softer passages to the higher tones of the “build-up” turned out to be more distinguishable. The sounds of mouth movements and audible pauses in breathing were also resolved in a bit more detail. Phuong’s voice is delicate, but not boring. Here the point clearly goes to Hifiman, as here the singer was given the more lively opportunity to develop. Minimalist “slam” or not…
After an extensive listening session and rest breaks without recharging, the FlyBuds had a displayed charge status of 60% and would have certainly lasted the entire afternoon after the long morning. We can thus confirm the approximate specification of eight hours of use – aka an office day. Those who occasionally come across a conventional USB-A port during their travels will never be without “juice” anyway. We managed wonderfully with about one hour for recharging. This stamina of the charging box and in-ears is sufficient for a manageable outdoor activity; the IPX4 certification against splashing water on all sides suggests using the earphones while on the go. However, the splash water protection of the audio source should not be underestimated during “wet” activities.
Since we place the FlyBuds in the scenario of being on the go, the setting of the noise isolation was the main object of our practical testing. However, even the transparency mode can by no means be called unsuitable for practical use, since the music from outside should not bother anyone from a distance of 20-30 cm. Without ANC and music, cars could be heard roaring over the asphalt through the closed window, but even when traveling by train or plane, background noise is hardly noticeable with the appropriate music volume. The sound signature even changes somewhat. Thus, the Tribit product played up with less bass pressure and the sounds hardly seemed surprisingly less enclosed.
Thus, this diversity emerged from the technical setting options. They might not lift the product into the Olympus of audiophile sound experiences, but Tribit covers many scenarios apart from a believably imitated live stage of a large scale. As long as the strong bass reflects the buyer’s preference, the FlyBuds can convince tonally.
Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro BTHA2 Overall impression …