Xiaomi has been doing pretty phenomenally when it comes to their phones, like the new Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro, which was an excellent phone for its price. Unfortunately, the Xiaomi Mi True Wireless Earphones 2 doesn’t live up to what we’ve come to expect from the brand, and quite frankly, it’s not even really worth the asking price of S$159.
This review is quite overdue, but I’ve had to test it for a longer period of time because of some issues I found with it, which we’ll go into later.
Let’s talk about the design first. The charging case is honestly, quite bulky. It’s slightly bigger than a lot of the other cases out there, but the main issue is the fact that it has sharp edges. Instead of using curved edges like most of the other brands out there, the case has hard edges that make it even harder to slide into a pocket, especially if you’re wearing skinny jeans.
The good thing is that there’s a physical button on the case for pairing, so you don’t have to deal with tapping and holding the earbuds or whatever. There’s a USB-C port for charging at the bottom, which is definitely a plus. The case is pretty lightweight, all things considered, and it’s made of matte white plastic, so it doesn’t look or feel too cheap.
Flipping open the lid, you see the two earbuds. These are an open fit design, which means noise isolation is next to zero. The earbuds have two different textures, matte on the stem and touch-sensitive area, and a glossy plastic on the part that rests in the ear.
It’s a pretty standard design, although I’m not a huge fan of the long stems. The stems are on the thick side too, which actually helps because it makes the touch-sensitive area just a bit bigger for when you want to tap to play or pause your music. I’m not convinced on the length though, since there’s no volume control, which means there’s no need to swipe up or down.
The touch controls were pretty finicky too, with quite a few taps not responding. That being said though, if you’re just looking to pause your music, taking out one of the earbuds will work.
So how do these sound? Well, they’re decent. You get a pretty balanced sound with bass that’s surprisingly not emphasised. This means you get a touch more openness in the mids and treble. These earbuds perform pretty well if you enjoy listening to acapella songs and the likes, where vocals are front and centre. If you prefer thumping bass, then I’d recommend you stay away from the Mi True Wireless Earphones 2.
The fact is that they’re open fit, so that means all the surrounding noise leaks in and you’ll have to increase the volume to compensate. But when you do that, you’ll also have sound leakage, so people around you will be able to hear what you’re listening to. I’ve never liked open-fit earbuds, and this is a perfect example of why.
On the other hand, if you just want something to bring for exercise or outdoor running so you can listen to music while keeping a ear on your surroundings, these might be okay. But I will say that the fit isn’t great for exercise, and there’s a very high likelihood that they’ll just drop out of your ears halfway through your run or exercise session.
We now come to the reason why this review took so long. These earbuds, or my unit at least, is extremely problematic when it comes to maintaining a stable connection. Some days, it works fine! I take the earbuds out of the case, and both sides turn on and connect to my phone.
Sometimes, both sides turn on, but only one side has music playing. And the other side just absolutely refuses to connect, even if I put both earbuds back into the case and take them out again, or disconnect and reconnect.
It’s just extremely frustrating. I tried to replicate it and figure out what the issue was, but it seemed to be completely random. It would work fine one day, and act up the next. Even a factory reset wouldn’t help. It’s most likely an issue that’s isolated to my unit because I haven’t actually seen many reports of this happening, but it’s definitely not something I would expect out of earbuds that cost over S$100.
Battery life is also pretty sub-par at an estimated four hours in the earbuds and 10 additional hours in the case, but this is totally dependent on the volume that music is being played at. At around 60% volume, I got around 3.5 hours, so I’d say it’s relatively accurate.
All in all, I can’t see myself recommending these for S$159. Thankfully, you’ll be able to find these on sale quite often, and if you’re fine with all the shortcomings that I mentioned above, I think it’s still acceptable to purchase these for S$100 or so. If you find a deal that’s around S$70 or S$80, even better.
Written by Cheryl Tan