I promised you more reviews this month and I’ve still got time folks: Here’s an offering from Tribit. The Tribit X Free Tune Wireless Headphones are Over the Ear, Basic Black and loaded with flavor. Impressive sound, comfortable fit, I can barely hear my 3 year old with them on, and old school looks. The X Free Tunes even have some voice prompts for power and pairing, so to quote Joey Ramone : “hey hey, let’s go!”
Hey Hey Let’s Go
There was a time I spent many a night under the covers wearing my Radio Shack Headphones listening to FM radio, or LPs through my very first stereo system. In my career as an Audio Engineer I have had gigs where having my Sony 7506 headphones were the difference between presenting an amazing show from behind the PA, where I couldn’t hear, or not. In recent years with companies like Beats and others making Big Bulky Over the Ear headphones, both wired and wireless, it seems everyone has a product to sell. But not everyone can make me smile from the first second the headphones are on my ears. Realize I am used to so called “flat response” headphones for work, and that consumer headphones try to emphasize the low end, and most fail to provide smooth, cushy, fat low end until one has raised the volume to damaging levels. The engineers at Tribit have hit a home run with these X Free Tune Wireless Headphones. I’m presently listening to 80s pop hearing and loving all the clarity, highs, mids, and a nice smooth low end of a much more expensive system, in a 50 dollar pair of wireless gems. Let’s look deeper.
Boxed with Bits
Tribit, like many manufacturers these days recognizes that everyone has more charging cables and wall warts than we need already. But along with the stylish and comfortable basic black X Free Tune Wireless Headphones folded into the box, there’s a package with a convenient 1 foot micro USB charging cable, a 4 ft 3.5 mm aux cable for the times your battery is dead, and an easy to read instruction booklet with really only two pages. Simple. Basic. Sound. Like many of the new headphones and earbuds on the market these are noise cancelling. I could barely
hear the TV in the next room, or my children when they wanted food or water today. The Tribit X Free Headphones are that good. They quickly paired to my various test equipment, but my first taste of these headphones and their sound quality, was when I first powered them up, and paired with my Samsung Galaxy phone. George Michael started singing, the low end, the mids, the highs, all clear and thumpy bass. There’s even decent bass response at very low volume levels. The other test equipment I use include various iPad models, Amazon tablets/phones, and Kindle Fire. All systems and devices had no problem finding the Tribit XFree Tune label in the bluetooth pairing menus, and pairing was fast across all devices. I was able to move all over our office space warehouse of 4000 sq ft, in and out of rooms with no drop out and no loss of Bluetooth signal.
The Tribit X Free Tune has very basic controls which reside on the right earpiece of the headphones. There’s the +/_ button in the rear which is of course, multi functional, and what Tribit calls the MFB (Why do I keep thinking Samuel L Jackson?) on the front of that same earpiece. That earpiece has the micro USB jack for charging, and the left side holds the 3.5mm Aux Jack for wired operation. I’ll speak about the difference between wired and wireless in a bit. I found a random USB power wall wart, slapped in the cable and waited 3 hours (per manufacturer) for a full charge. The led indicator is red while charging and green when fully charged. As with just about every other Bluetooth device I’ve touched in the last 5 years: the LED blinks red/blue when ready to pair, and slowly blinks blue when paired with a device. The Tribit X Free Tune Wireless Headphones blue LED also blinks faster to indicate device disconnection or even faster during an incoming phone call. The Tribit folks have given the majority of the functionality to the +/_ buttons. The MFB button is used to Power up/Down, Play/Pause tracks, and to Answer/Reject phone calls. The +/_ buttons are used to adjust volume up/down, skip tracks forward or backwards, or move calls from the X Free Tune Headphones to your phone or vice versa. Using the +/_ buttons on your Tribit Wireless Headphones will also allow you to connect to Siri, or even factory Reset them completely. The location of the buttons is instinctive and well thought out: when you touch them on the back of the headpiece, the + button is on top, and the – on the bottom. No guessing needed. My only complaint about these features is that from time to time I have pushed both MFB and +/- buttons simultaneously by accident a few times, mostly when trying to use the MFB button. There is a small rubber cover over the Micro USB port to protect it from dirt. There is no such cover for the 3.5mm Aux Jack. Tribit claims the headphones can be used when fully charged for up to 24 hours. My readers well understand that depends on sustained volume levels, louder: shorter play time, etc. like any other wireless device. Like the better, more expensive headphones it effectively competes with: when that time is over, you can plug directly into the headphones. Like the other manufacturers, the X Free Tune Wireless Headphones lose all Bluetooth functionality and the buttons are equally dead when the battery is dead. Remember: when directly plugged in, most if not all of these headphones get much, much louder depending on the tracks and device volumes. Take care, hearing doesn’t grow back.
You’re a Phone E
This is the real deal. Tribit X Free Tune Wireless Headphones operate like a class A speaker phone. The buttons work as previously described allowing me to answer and reject phone calls, and to redial my last DIALED phone number. Some of these devices will dial your last number received, and others only the last one you dialed, so it’s important to understand. The folks I spoke with over the last few days (24 hours of headphone life takes a while in the real world!) didn’t even know I was using the X Free Tune Headphones until I told them. They thought I was just speaking into my Samsung Galaxy phone, as usual. No hollow sounds, no weird echoes to greet your friends or business associates when making those important calls. One of my test calls even indicated they could hear the other voices of people in the room clearly, and not with odd aural artifacts. Two days and they are still sitting on my head. I do have to sleep so they haven’t crapped out yet.
Bottom line everyone knows I only care about one thing when it comes to consumer electronics: Value to our readers. These Tribit X Free Tune Wireless Headphones exhibit the sound quality of many more expensive headphones. The 40mm Drivers put out great full range sound and the headphone design emphasizes the low end brilliantly. Even at loud volumes the Bass in the X Free Tune Headphones doesn’t get mushy, and it’s obviously thumping at mid volumes which is really helping me keep the volume down today. The folks at Tribit have dropped the price from $99.99 to $49.99 recently, which is what helps me give these very functional, very thumpy, high quality, comfortable basic black Wireless Headphones a solid 9.5. All complaints are minor in my mind, mostly just ergonomics, and as a lefty, I will never love right handed control systems. A crispy clear phone companion, and simple controls make for a great device at a better price than most. Thanks for the great birthday present Tribit, these are going to stay off the shelf and maybe even go under the covers soon. Keep listening to music of all kinds, it’s the voice of humanity. See you soon!
|Buy from Amazon|
*Average price is based on the time this article was published
Bluetooth version: V4.1, A2DP, AVRCP,HSP, HFP
Driver size: Dual 40mm
Music play time: Up to 24 hours (varies by volume level and audio content)
Charging time: 3 hours
Product dimensions: 4.5 x 1 x 1 inches
Item Weight:10.1 ounces
Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
1 x Foldable Over-Ear Wireless Headphones
1 x Micro-USB Cable
1 x 3.5mm Audio Cable
1 x User Manual
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