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OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2 - There's hope

  1. Shivang Joshi
    Starting Point Expert Jul 2, 2019

    Shivang Joshi , Jul 2, 2019 :
    Introduction

    Hello, I’m Shivang Joshi – Oh damn! I forgot this introduction wasn’t meant for me. [​IMG] As you can read from the title of the thread, it’s going to be my review for the OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2. And yeah, so the introduction is also meant for the same.

    OnePlus introduced their first pair of Bullets Wireless last year with the OnePlus 6. I was excited and I was going to buy them as soon as possible. And luckily, I was able to grab them in the first sale itself. There was a musical contest going on in the forums, hosted by one of our favourite staff members, @Ruby G. and I was all in for participating in that. So, as soon as I received my pair, I began my testing. After quite a lot of testing, I was ready to share my review with everyone – and that’s what I did.

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    Right after reviewing them here, my journey as an Accessory Tester began. This year, OnePlus launched the OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2 along with the introduction of the OnePlus 7 Series of smartphones. As an Accessory Tester, I had the prototype unit sent to me for the testing purpose. And that’s exactly what I did. I tested them and provided my feedback about the same. But after over a month of the launch event, I’m here to share my entire review with this community. So, let’s just dive into it.

    Build and Design

    You might be wondering why there isn’t any unboxing part here? Well, as mentioned above, it’s due to the fact that it was a prototype unit. Oh, you weren’t wondering about that? Ah, alright. Then, let’s start with what you want to read.

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    The build quality of the earbuds seems to be solid. It’s having a metal construction with glossy polish on the top which gives them that premium look. Also, the red coloured ring around the earbuds themselves make it stand out from the usual pair of Bluetooth earphones. Again, I’m really happy to see the build quality of the OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2.

    You might know that I like the Earplugs + Fins design as they allow for a much more secure fit in the ears. The Bullets Wireless 2 have ditched the Fins, but I’m glad to say that they stay right there in your ears even without the Fins. But it’s just not able to provide me with that confidence of an ultra-secure fit which I had with the Fins.

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    There’s an in-line remote control on the left side of the earphones which can be reached easily. You can control the volume directly by using the volume buttons present on the in-line remote control. Also, you can play/pause the music (or videos, if you’re watching one), go back to the previous track, go ahead to the next track and also activate the Google Assistant. It’s important to note that the microphone has been finally shifted to this in-line remote control which is a better position to take some calls.

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    Coming to the neckband, I prefer it over the wires hanging around the back which is quite uncomfortable – at least, for me. Also, the battery can rest comfortably around your neck. This is much better than those earphones which have their battery floating on either side of the earphones on a thin wire. To charge the battery, you have the Type-C Port right on the neckband itself – One cable for everything. Also, the tiny white LED is present and does the job well. There’s also a small circular button near that LED, and it has a special function which will be listed below. Other than all that, I’m in love with the minimal branding on OnePlus Bullets Wireless. I appreciate it a lot more than some fancy branding.

    Comfort and Convenience

    With the fins being gone, I was also worried about how comfortable these would be. But I’m glad to say that it wasn’t a problem for me – even with the medium-sized tips which were the only ones which came with the prototype. But for the retail package, it’ll come with different size of eartips so that you can select the ones which you’re comfortable with. Also, the material of the tips is changes and these new tips feel a lot better.

    The pairing process for these earphones will be a breeze to go through especially if you have a OnePlus 5 or any later OnePlus device. A simple notification will pop up for you to pair the Bullets Wireless 2 with your device. Technically, that should happen, but it never happened for me – But I would say it’s only because this is a prototype unit.

    You might have seen that I mentioned about the circular button having a special function. So, the special function of the button is to quickly switch between two devices. Let’s say I paired the Bullets Wireless 2 with my OnePlus 6T. And later, I paired them with the OnePlus 5. Now, if I want to switch back to the OnePlus 6T, all I must do is just double press that circular button and it’ll connect to the OnePlus 6T. Note that these are Bluetooth earphones. So, you must have the Bluetooth turned on for the other device to make it happen.

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    The Bullets Wireless 2 have Bluetooth 5.0, the best in the market right now. And along with that, they also support Qualcomm aptX HD which means higher quality sound can be transmitted to the Bullets Wireless 2. Overall, the range and stability of the connection with the earbuds has been great for me and I haven’t faced any issues with that yet.

    Along with all these, the magnetic controls are still present here and they work – just as you expect them to. Take apart the two earbuds and they’ll turn on and will connect to the last connected device. And clip them together to turn them off and pause your music – that’s great use of the magnets there.

    Coming the neckband, it’s still great and now I can tuck it under the collar without having to worry about the microphone getting blocked. The neckband is comfortable to wear even for longer period. And you’ll probably even forget that it’s there.

    Sound Quality

    Just as a normal disclaimer, I do not consider myself as an audiophile here. So, your experience might say something different than what mine does.

    The sound quality of the Bullets Wireless 2 is good. It’s good, but nothing exceptional. The vocals are crisp and clear, even at high volume levels. The bass, it’s there – just not enough to satisfy someone who likes to listen to bass heavy songs. For me, it’s absolutely fine. I don’t listen to much bass heavy songs and prefer a clean, balanced sound much more than having a ton of bass. And the Bullets Wireless 2 does that right.

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    The Bullets Wireless 2 can get pretty high at 100% volume. Most of the times, that is not even needed. When everything around me is silent, I can enjoy watching videos or listening to music even around 50% volume. But when the surrounding isn’t as quiet, then I would listen to the music at 60-80% volume. For videos, I would pump it up to 70-90% volume which would make for an immersive experience. Google Assistant can be heard when it’s activated but I wish it was a bit louder. It would be even better if the Google Assistant’s volume was also adjusted according to the current volume level of the earphones itself.

    Overall, the sound quality is clean and rich. And you’ll enjoy listening to music and watching videos and movies with these earphones – if you’re not looking for too much bass.

    Battery Life

    According to OnePlus, a simple 10 minutes of charge can give you 10 hours of playback. Also, a full charge can go up to 14 hours of playback. Well, I was more interested in checking the second claim, and I did that. You’ll find some of the results here.

    During the first charge, I casually listened to them in batches of time without making a clear note about them. Also, the volume levels weren’t the same for every batch of time. But I did note that they lasted quite long. How long was still an unknown factor and so, I decided to do a proper test for the same.

    After recharging them to 100%, I connected them to my OnePlus 6T and started playing music through Spotify. For the testing purpose, I kept the volume level at roughly 50% so that it can be a specific test. Also, for getting accurate time results, I started the timer on the OnePlus 6T when the music started playing and turned it off as soon as the music stopped – after the battery died. When the music stopped, the battery died and I stopped the timer, I was extremely happy to see 14 hours 03 minutes 53 seconds on the clock. There might be a slight difference in this time as I manually turned on the timer after starting the music and manually turned it off when it went off. But the difference wouldn’t be too much – surely not more than 03 minutes 53 seconds. So, my testing does back the claim of 14 hours on full charge.

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    There is no claim on how much time it’ll take for full recharge. But I tested it and the results are quite good. Note that I charged them with the Fast Charger and Cable – if you don’t know, that’s the one which is 20W. And in my testing, it took a total of 38 minutes 47 seconds to charge from dead battery to full. That’s much better than most other headphones or earphones in the market, especially in the price range.

    Also, as you might’ve read earlier, the charging port is USB Type-C which future proofs them. And you’ll only have to carry a single charger and cable for your device and the earphones.

    Price

    The OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2 are priced at ₹5,990. That’s quite a bit higher than what I expected. Also, they are priced at US$99 which is the same as the Explorer Backpack but here, the converted price went up by ₹1,000. For that, I won’t blame OnePlus or anyone else as the current conversion rates would’ve priced it even higher but then again, it’s something to take a note of.

    For this price, we have several options in the market. And here, we even have some truly wireless earphones which undercuts the price of the Bullets Wireless 2 by a huge margin. Are all the earphones same? No, definitely not. Every device has its own set of pros and cons. Yes, cons also exist for every device as no device is perfect. So, here I’m breaking it down so that you can make a better purchase decision.

    Conclusion

    This is going to be divided in three parts – The Bad, The Good and The Hope.

    The Bad

    Yeah, I’m talking about the bad part first. And first thing which I felt wasn’t good was the price. At US$99, it’s about $30 away from the Galaxy Buds, which is a truly wireless pair of earphones. If these were truly wireless pair of earphones as well and if they were priced at $99 or $109, it would have been a better deal. The upgrades made in the BW2 do not justify the increase in price – at least not for me.

    I wouldn’t say the pricing is necessarily bad. But probably, I was just expecting it to be better. The Bullets Wireless 2 could’ve either be priced better or it should’ve been a better upgrade – so that the increase in price could’ve been easily justified. But none of those things happened, and so I wouldn’t consider this under good.

    Other than price, I don’t think there’s anything else which I would consider under bad.

    The Good

    I would be keeping this part short because if you’ve managed to read till now, you might be knowing what I’ll say here.

    Overall, these are a solid pair of earphones. They are built well, especially the actual earbuds. The design is also one of the unique ones I’ve seen in a while. I’m not a fan of the design, but they do the job really well and so, I like it. Also, the sound quality is good, especially for the vocals. It has crisp, clear and balanced audio, which I appreciate a lot. Also, how can I forget that minimal branding on the earphones – just love that.

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    Other than all these, the convenience of having just a single cable to charge the device and the earphones is amazing. Also, the support for Qualcomm aptX HD and Bluetooth 5.0 is a cherry on the top. That allows for having lag-free audio while watching videos. On the top of all that, the battery life is also good and will last more than your single session of music or binge session ever would – unless you’re travelling from one part of world to the other.

    The Hope

    It’s always good to have hope for something better. And I have that hope which I’ll share here.

    Let’s begin with the volume level of the Google Assistant. It’s there and everything can be heard as of now, but it can be better if we can adjust it to be higher or lower depending upon the volume level of the earphones itself. Also, when I long press the button to activate Google Assistant, there’s no feedback when I should start speaking. The Google Assistant itself does have that feedback through a slight tone, but it’s not there on the Bullets Wireless 2. It would be better to have that as well. And I guess this can be easily fixed through an update.

    There’s one more thing which can be done in a better way. When the device reaches lower volume, there’s only a small beep sound which can be easily missed when you are immersed into your binge/music session. So, instead of that beep sound, a small voice message can be said like “Charge your Bullets Wireless now or you’ll miss listening to the songs later”. This type of message won’t be missed by the user and can improve the overall experience. But note that any such message should only be said once as saying such messages multiple times can worsen the user experience.

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    Also, you might have noticed that I haven’t mentioned anything about the water resistance of the earphones. That’s because it isn’t mentioned on the official webpage as well. So, it would be better to have some sort of Ingress protection for the earphones especially considering that the price has already gone higher.

    Finally, I hope that the next generation of Bullets Wireless will be completely free of wires. Also, the name of those earphones can be changed to OnePlus Bullets Free. This new name is just a suggestion, but even if the name isn’t changed, I’m surely hoping for a truly wireless earphones by OnePlus.

    That's it from my side. Let me know if you have any more questions and I'll be glad to help you out.
     

    #1
  2. buntycubal
    Marshmallow Jul 2, 2019

    buntycubal , Jul 2, 2019 :
    Awesome Review , Very Informative:)

    Love to see water test video:D
     

    #2
  3. K1562126408473
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019


    #3
    Mike_Jiang likes this.
  4. G_rajesh_varupula_HDIE
    Froyo Jul 3, 2019

    G_rajesh_varupula_HDIE , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Really good stuff about BW2. what you have posted was picture clear about it, so anyone wanna buy BW2 then they must read your post and get proceed to buy. Really Cool stuff mate cheers [e]1f44d[/e]
     

    #4
  5. V1527310335610
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019


    #5
  6. Y1561457563928
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019


    #6
  7. Sandy_here
    Gingerbread Jul 3, 2019

    Sandy_here , Jul 3, 2019 :
    I'm using for last 2 weeks.
    as per my experience some improvements expected are

    1. Design is still need to change (like Boult pro bass curve neckband).
    2. Storage pouch is very small, earphone is not fit in it.
    3. Volume button should be at neckband.
    4. Maybe vibration motor need to add.
    5. Caller name announcement is to be add.

    all good [e]1f44d[/e]
     

    #7
  8. Helder_DAlmeida
    Honeycomb Jul 3, 2019


    #8
  9. Abdul_Aziz544
    Donut Jul 3, 2019


    #9
  10. parth_bagtharia
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019

    parth_bagtharia , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Can someone using small size ear tips please comment on how comfortable it is for people with smaller ear canals.
     

    #10
  11. Dhruv Weaver
    The Lab - OnePlus 7 Pro Reviewer Jul 3, 2019


    #11
    buntycubal and Shivang Joshi like this.
  12. johneebee
    The Lab - OnePlus 7 Pro Reviewer Jul 3, 2019

    johneebee , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Great review mate, I pretty much agree with you on every aspect! Love the pics they look super pro! [e]1f601[/e]
     

    #12
    buntycubal and Shivang Joshi like this.
  13. Matej Huba
    Froyo Jul 3, 2019

    Matej Huba , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Hi, I bought OnePlus Bullets Wireless 2 but..
    I am very disappointed. = 99€ vs 19,95€(OnePlus Type-C Bullets Earphones), worse sound quality - lower BASS, lower max. volume.
     

    #13
    babi99 likes this.
  14. Arnaud_Ieè
    Eclair Jul 3, 2019


    #14
  15. W1560454210516
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019

    W1560454210516 , Jul 3, 2019 :
    My complete honest review which will probably be ignored.

    Sound quality: far off from good or "bang for buck"

    Comfortability: the band that it's made out of is light weight and soft in the neck so I didn't mind it being there for the day.

    Esr earbuds themselves, don't fit well in my ear. Maybe it's just me


    Battery life: decent enough to last the whole day



    The main flaw of this product are as follows;

    Example: let's say you have a blue tooth speaker. You're going to put away the earphones in its nice addictive red pouch so you can disconnect the earphones without having to manually disconnect it under Bluetooth settings. Which BY THE WAY has to put in PERFECTLY in its pouch so it doesn't connect to the phone.

    This is biggest issue I've experienced and was so annoying I had to return them ASAP.
    Clearly didn't think about this problem with the design. Let alone trying to package it nicely to put it in the pouch in the first place.

    I'd personally and advise everyone not to buy this specific earphones. As it's just annoying. Unless you don't use the pouch and even then afrw times I had pairing issues and had to manually connect again for sound to appear
     

    #15
    _Alexander K_ likes this.
  16. Shivang Joshi
    Starting Point Expert Jul 3, 2019

    Shivang Joshi , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Thank youu soo much, Bunty [​IMG]

    I'm glad you liked it [​IMG] About the water test, I've a strong feeling they won't survive. But what would you recommend to be done? Splashing the water on them or putting them under water? [​IMG]

    You can get it here.

    Thanks a ton. Hope it'll help a lot more people as that's the intention behind this review. [​IMG]

    It's not exactly poor quality. But it's definitely not for those who want bass heavy earphones. Personally, I do prefer the balanced sound stage. Maybe, some pre-defined equalizer settings for better bass can improve things for those who like that bass.

    You can go ahead and buy them here.

    1. I just had a look at the Boult Pro Bass Curve, but I do prefer the current design of the OnePlus Bullets Wireless over that. But yeah, that's just personal preference.
    2. Can't say anything about that as mine didn't come with the same.
    3. It's much more reachable at the current position. Also, it can be a bit tough to click on the neckband.
    4. I don't think there's any need for vibration motor on the earphones.
    5. Enable it through this: Settings >Sound & Vibration > Earphone Mode > Speak Caller ID

    I'm glad you liked the review. [​IMG]

    Will test that and get back to you soon. But note that there's no way to check the exact battery percentage of the earphones.

    I can't answer that but I hope someone else who has experience with the same can answer that.

    Thanks a ton [​IMG]

    Thank you so much. [​IMG]

    And the pictures posted here are completely unedited - only cropped a bit. [​IMG] The Lightroom Catalog wasn't opening at all

    The Type-C Bullets are really good for their price. But both of them serve different purpose and have their own place in the OnePlus Product List.

    What exactly do you want to know about that? If you're asking about the audio sync issues while watching videos, then I would be glad to inform you that there's no audio sync issues for videos.

    No review gets ignored if it's just well-written. Some things are likely attached to user preferences. And as per you, the biggest issue you experienced was related to the pouch and not the earphones themselves. I can't comment anything on the pouch as I don't have that.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019

    #16
  17. W1560454210516
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019

    W1560454210516 , Jul 3, 2019 :
    Apologies, this is the earphones themselves.

    When using the pouch, if not put in correctly it'll disconnect the earbuds or unpaid them. Via the magnetic side on both sides of the sim earphones.

    FYI I like my desk clean, so putting it away in its case is nice to have but it's a flaw in its design because without disconnecting this device via Bluetooth settings. It'll bounce back and forth between the Bluetooth speaker and these earphones. Unless these earphones can detect that it's inside its case
     

    #17
    buntycubal likes this.
  18. G1561490444403
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019


    #18
  19. H1562137664380
    Cupcake Jul 3, 2019

  20. Shivang Joshi
    Starting Point Expert Jul 3, 2019

    Shivang Joshi , Jul 3, 2019 :
    I don't think it's the earphones itself. If the case is bigger than it is right now, it wouldn't have such issue. Also, as I said earlier, I don't have that particular case to try it out with the Bullets Wireless 2. I have the Bullets Wireless 1 and that came with a case as well, but that doesn't typically face such issues. It's only about getting the right technique to get them in the case. And once you get the grip of it, it gets easier. That doesn't mean I don't wish for a bigger case though.
     

    #20
    buntycubal and Sun90 like this.