Wireless earbuds are a staple of today’s electronics. In the past few years, we’ve seen wired headphones disappear from the market, replaced with true wireless earbuds that aren’t limited by a cord. They offer an improved listening experience without the messy tangle that many of us have became accustomed to. Additionally, most offer better durability and the same rich sounds most of us crave.
Taking a quick glance on Amazon, you’ll find thousands to choose from. Many are offered by leading brands such as Sony, Beats, Bose, etc. However, those often come with a substantial price-tag. If you’re like most, you probably don’t want to fork over $100+ for a pair of earbuds. No worries though, as there are plenty of no-name or up and coming brands that offer promising features without the high price.
Take the new AOPOY X12 True Wireless Earbuds for example. They’re priced substantially less and boast a slimmed-down appearance with many qualities that we often seek. Today we’re going to take a comprehensive look at them to see exactly what they have to offer. We’ll take an honest and helpful approach to see if they’re a decent alternative to the expensive brands you’re familiar with. In the end, we’ll render a final verdict on whether or not they’re a good choice or a hard pass.
Unboxing the AOPOY X12 True Wireless Earbuds for the first time, you’ll see that they come included with a charging case with the earbuds resting inside, a USB-C charging cable, extra ear-tips, and an instruction manual and quick guide pamphlet. The charging case is built from a hard, matte-black ABS plastic that has a clamshell design. Open them up and you’ll see both the left and right earbuds nestled into their charging ports. The first thing you’ll want to do is remove the small piece of plastic that blocks the copper charging ports. This will enable the case to charge the earbuds whenever they rest inside.
It’s recommended that you let them charge-up before fully testing, so leave them in for a couple of hours. However, if you can’t hold back, use them right from the start since there’s probably enough of a charge to set them up before using them until the batteries are drained.
The charging case isn’t the most compact case we’ve ever seen, but it’s suitable in many regards. Measuring just under 4 inches wide, 2.5 inches deep and about 1.25 inches in height, it’s a good size to fit within your pocket, purse or backpack. On the back is the USB-C charging port with the brand name “AOPOY” written on top of the lid. You’ll notice a magnetic force when opening the lid, so they don’t fall out on their own in any situation.
Comfort and Fit
The AOPOY X12 TWS earbuds boast a simple semi-in-ear design that’s comprised of a soft, elastic hook that wraps around the backside of your ears. Each earbud is accompanied by its own silicone tip. Included in the box are an extra pair of large-sized silicone tips. The first thing you’ll want to do is place them in your ears and figure out which tips you want to use. Select the pair of tips that fit snug but not too tight. The last thing you’ll want to do is create a pressure point, so take a few minutes to figure it out. Once you do, the earbuds should fit snug with no wiggling, but not too tight that they feel uncomfortable. A proper fit is very important as it’ll provide the best listening experience in the long-run.
We’re a big fan of the way they fit. Yes, the earhook design is a bit bulkier than some in-ear only earbuds on the market, but they assure they’ll virtually never fall out, even with vigorous activities. We think they’re better suited for those who want to use them while working out or during sports. This is simply because they don’t seem to fall out, even with forces generated by running, jumping, etc.
They’re pretty comfortable as well. The silicone is very soft and they seem to be made in a way that properly mends to the contour of your ears. During our first listening session of 3 hours, we can confidently say that they never become a nuisance with any sort of discomfort.
Once you’ve achieved a proper fit with the AOPOY earbuds, you’ll want to wirelessly pair them to your Bluetooth-enabled device. To do this, simply open the charging case and take out each earbud. Once you do that, you’ll see the LED on each earbud blink intermittently. This means that they’re automatically pairing to each other. Once that completes, the LEDs will quickly flash between red and blue, indicating that they’re ready to be paired to your device.
Make sure the Bluetooth setting is enabled on your smartphone, laptop, or whichever supported device you want to pair them with. Scroll down the list of available connections until you see “X12” or “AOPOY”. Select it, and within seconds they’ll be fully paired and ready for listening. Best of all, you’ll only need to do this one time. Once you perform the initial pairing procedure, the earbuds and your device will automatically sync when you remove them from the charging case.
Now that we’ve placed them in our ears and paired them up, it’s time to enjoy them! At first, we ran through our playlist and played a wide variety of music from all sorts of genres. We wanted to see what the AOPOY X12 earbuds were capable of. Although most music seemed decent, we must say that they shined through with ideal mids and high tones that seemed true to life. The only area that they lacked were in the bass department. The lower tones were apparent but not that rich or vivid. The bass didn’t seem to resonate that well, but the vocals and higher tones were very pleasing.
To be honest, most in-ear headphones struggle in the bass department, so it’s almost expected. And don’t get us wrong, the bass is still present, just not as rich as we’d like. For sports and working out, the sounds is good, but don’t expect studio-quality sound like you would if you had a pair of over-ear headphones like the Tranya H10 or something similar.
One area that the X12 earbuds don’t excel in is noise cancellation. There’s only passive noise cancellation, meaning the only cancelling you’re getting is from the snug fit. No active noise cancellation means that there aren’t any internal algorithms that work in conjunction with the music to diminish outside distractions. With earbuds in this price-point it’s not really a big deal, but for some it can be a game-changer. If you feel that you require ANC, take a look at the new updated Mpow X3 ANC earbuds.
It’s really nice to have a dedicated charging case such as the one that comes included with the AOPOY X12 earbuds. Not only does it protect them when you’re not using them, but it keeps the earbud batteries fully charged. Inside the case is a 1050 mAh lithium-ion battery that can charge the earbuds up to 7 times before you need to plug-in the USB-C charging cable.
As far as the earbuds themselves go, you can expect around 5 to 8 hours of battery life before you need to place them in the case again. Of course, this is a variable estimate that depends on many things. Factors such as volume, ambient temperature and music-choice will all have an effect on how long the earbud batteries last.
We tested the earbuds out for about 10 consecutive days. In that time, we felt that AOPOY’s estimate is extremely accurate. We achieved 7 full recharges before the case needed charging, and the earbuds themselves lasted roughly 6 hours each time.
Holding the earbuds in the palm of your hands, you’ll notice that they’re lightweight and seemed to be built quite well. Every little crevice is sealed for intrusion of dust, debris and moisture, giving them a sufficient IPX6 rating on the IP-rating scale. What this means is that you can use them in virtually any environment other than underwater. They’ve been laboratory tested to resist high pressure water jets, but did not pass the water submersion test. In other words, you can take them in the snow and rain, but you should definitely avoid dropping them in a puddle of water.
The AOPOY X12 earbuds have a special nano coating, making the rubber feel almost slippery. It’s not a bad thing, however. This “slipperiness” actually repels moisture and wicks it away. If you take a close look when the earbuds get wet, you’ll notice tiny beads of water. Think of it as “Rain-X” for your earbuds. Pretty effective and downright smart of them to include it.
One unique feature that’s worth mentioning are the touch controls. Although the power and volume button is a physical button located on the top of each earbud, the glossy area on the outside of each earbud is actually developed for touch controls. What this means is that you can perform almost any function by simply pressing this area with your fingertips. Here is a list of the touch-commands you can perform:
- Hand-free calls – Touch any area to answer an incoming phone call.
- Reject phone calls – Press and hold for 1.5 seconds to reject a call.
- Play/pause music – Touch once to play/pause your music.
- Previous track – Touch twice on the left earbud to play the previous track.
- Next track – Touch twice on the right earbud to play the next track.
- Volume up – Press the power button on the right earbud to turn up the volume.
- Volume down – Press the power button on the left earbud to turn down the volume.
- Siri voice mode – Press and hold the touch area for 2 seconds to activate Siri.
The touch controls might seem a bit confusing at first, but after a couple days it’s easy to memorize them. The functionality is excellent and comes in handy in most situations.
If you take a close look at the underside of each earbud you’ll immediately notice a tiny pin-hole. This is the integrated microphone that’s utilized for making and receiving phone calls. We tend to reject more calls than we care to admit (since we’re usually so-involved with our music). However, when the time comes to participate in a phone call, it’s nice to see this feature included.
We tried two separate phone calls in the past week. Both seemed to go excellent with no distorted tones or blurry vocals that emitted to the caller on the other end. Crystal-clear voice transmission was apparent with no complaints in any regard.
As you can see, the AOPOY X12 True Wireless Earbuds are adequate for most scenarios. The audio quality is great for the price-point and the comfort they provide seems to excel for those who love working out and keeping busy. Yes, there’s a lack of noise cancellation and a little bit of a letdown when it comes to the bass department, but we still feel that they’re excellent in most regards.
They fit snug, although the earhook design might offer a bit more bulkiness than some people are looking for. In our opinion, it seems AOPOY did well by including a sufficient charging case with plenty of battery “juice” to keep them working for long hours at a time.
The touch controls are awesome and very easy to use. They’re responsive and effective at carrying out almost any control you want, without having to take out your phone and manually skip tracks, adjust volume, etc.
All in all, we recommend the AOPOY X12 TWS earbuds to those looking for a nice blend of affordability and value. A perfect pick for those looking to spend under $50 without compromising too much.