We are back with another true wireless earbuds review. Yes, it is another one from TaoTronics and this time, its the new TaoTronics SoundLiberty 80. TaoTronics SoundLiberty 80 may be an affordable TWS earbuds, but it has one premium feature that is missing from some more expensive true wireless earbuds.
Before we get to the review, here’s a rundown of the specifications:
Driver: HiFi dynamic drivers
Playtime (Earbuds): 4 hours
Playtime (Total): 20 hours
Features: Qualcomm QCCC3030 featuring aptX audio, AI Noise Reduction Microphone, Voice Control, In-ear Detection, IPX8 rated, 1-hour use with 5 minute charging
TBH, I am not a fan of earbuds with a stem or pole made popular by Apple. On the flip side, because of the stem on each earbud, it makes gesture controls much, much easier. Like Apple AirPods, this pair has an ear tip-free design, which means fitting may vary. But more on that in a bit.
The earbuds are in glossy finish with metallic blue accent which means they are potential fingerprint magnet and slippery to handle. The latter makes retrieving it from the super tiny charging case somewhat challenging. It could be my gorilla-size digits that are getting in the way here.
Speaking of the charging case, it is even tinier than the SoundLiberty 94 we have reviewed last year. The charging case is pretty dope. The case’s rounded design is in matte white finish that is very nice to the touch.
As mentioned in the design section, it has no ear tips which may make fit a little trickier for some folks. It is not loose for me, nor it is very snug which I would prefer. It won’t pop off when I move around or shake my head in a non-violent way, though.
On the plus side, after hours on it, I almost forgot there are a pair of earbuds stuck inside my sound holes – if not the music playing. At this point, I was nearly 2 hours in using it. No feeling of discomfort yet.
The build is OK. But not as solid as the SoundLiberty 94. I noticed the split on each earbud is not consistent. There’s no obvious gap, though. Just that the outer shell of the earbud appears to be slightly larger than the main body shell making it feel uneven. At a point, that unevenness smoothed out, thus making it obvious. But bear in mind, this has no bearing on the performance.
Well, what can we say? The Bluetooth 5.0 is a winner like Bluetooth 5.1. There has been no drop in connection over the last hour of use, which I had with my daily driver (Soundpeats). If anything I more impressed with the connection I had with the 94.
I moved out of the room and managed go up to 36 feet (which is the farthest I can go without stepping outside) and the connection remained rock solid. Not even a hint weakening at all. Mind you, that was from one room to another and in between there’s a glass folding door and a part of a wall.
Two words: great sound. As you usual, I tested it with Steven Jablonsky’s Transformers soundtrack. Man, this little guy really does perform. The earbuds are even better for movies on my phone (Galaxy S20 Plus). I watched 40 minutes of Dark of the Moon (which has now become my de facto control).
I can hear every explosion in the foreground and background, here the faintest footsteps and whatnot, and the dialogues are clear and crisp (and get annoyed by Shia Labeouf’s constant chatting).
In addition to movie and soundtrack, bass is punchy and treble is crisp on other genres of music that I have tested, including alternative rock and electronic music. Not going to lie. I adore it.
I won’t say they will blow your mind, but they are good. But like the 94, I got serenaded by Sabrina Carpenter’s vocal on Alan Walker’s On My Way. Lets just say that this pair does make listening to music a joy. Given how much a pair costs, I’d say it is money well spent.
The earbuds are IPX8 rated, which means it is swear and light rain resistant. But I am not about to test it. We will take the company’s words for it. In any case, as long as you don’t dump it in the water, this guy will continue to serve you.
As for the battery, I can’t say I have tested it for long. I had it running continuously for nearly 2 hours and it had 50% battery left. Assuming everything is consistence, it should be around the promised 4 hours of usage.
There are countless budget TWS earbuds out there and I can’t it is the best, but given the asking price, I’d say it is a good sounding pair. No doubt about it. However, if you are a bass head, it may not be up to your standards. Like I have said, the bass is punchy, but it is probably not the best in its class.
The bass is enough to serve up pretty impressive booms in action films like DOTM and that’s good enough for me. It is also enough to do justice to Alan Walker’s music too, but if you are expecting house music, or euro dance kind of boom. It may not be up to task. Perhaps, a pair of over ear headphones would be a better choice for the DJ in you?
Interestingly, this pair sports a premium feature which some more expensive TWS do not: that’s in-ear detection and it works flawlessly. The moment you remove a side, the music/movie automatically pause without hesitation. The same goes for when you plug it back, the movie/music continues playing back. I will give extra points for that.
Moreover, since it is a pair of stereo earbuds, it can totally work with just earbud. Considering its sound and features, and the asking price of US$59.99, this may be a worthy TWS – if you don’t mind the stem design.
If you are down, you can pick up the TaoTronics SoundLiberty 80 TWS Earbuds from Amazon.com where, last checked, there is a coupon thingy that will save you an extra US$10.
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All images by Mikeshouts.com.