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OnePlus Buds Z2 review: Is it the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market?

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Pros
  • Great audio quality with 11mm bass tuned dynamic drivers
  • Good connectivity with Google Fast Pair
  • Excellent battery backup, living up to the claimed hours
  • ANC actually works
  • Mic quality is good
  • Touch area at the rear circle of the earbuds
Cons
  • Charging case design and quality could have been better
  • Lacks wireless charging facility
OnePlus Buds Z2

OnePlus has recently launched the OnePlus Buds Z2 in the Indian market. It was launched on 18th January 2022 on Amazon and was available a day before on the OnePlus Store.

The OnePlus Buds Z2 has been priced at Rs 5,999 but has been discounted to Rs 4,999 for now. I bought the OnePlus Buds Z2 on the same day of its launch in the Indian market from Amazon for Rs 4,999.

I have used it for the last 2-3 days and would now like to share my review so that you all can decide if it is the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market.

OnePlus Buds Z2

In the box

The OnePlus Buds Z2 comes in a well-packaged box. It comes with these things:

  • OnePlus Buds Z2
  • Type C charging cable
  • Silicon eartips
  • User manual
  • Warranty card
  • Red Cable card
OnePlus Buds Z2

Specifications

  • Active Noise Cancellation: Up to 40 dB noise cancelling with 2 modes – Faint (+/- 25dB) & Extreme (+/- 40 dB) through manual adjustment via OnePlus mobile or HeyMelody App.
  • High Quality Sound: 11mm dynamic drivers acoustically tuned for bigger, bolder beats with razor-sharp treble & Dolby atmos support delivers immersive, true-to-life sound using industry leading spatial audio
  • 3-MIC ENC Call Noise Reduction: To keep your calls sounding smooth, the 3-MIC design trims down wind noise caused by air friction. It sharpens voice-pickup & cuts down surrounding noise for crystal clear speech.
  • Worry-free Battery Life: Enjoy up to 38 hours of music and a quick fast charging of 10 minutes for 5 hours of playtime.
  • Built for Mobile Gaming: Your winning advantage starts here with latency as low as 94ms, with Pro Gaming mode activated

Design and build quality

The OnePlus Buds Z2 comes in a bit elongated oval charging case, just like its predecessor. I would have liked OnePlus to change the case design this time. The case lid is also average and could have definitely been better.

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However, the charging case doesn’t hold any fingerprint, which is very good considering India is a hot country so even if you touch the earbuds with sweaty hands, the earbuds will be perfectly fine. It also has an IPX4 rating. So sweat won’t be any problem. It also has an indicator lamp.

Now coming to the buds, they have been upgraded from their predecessor and you can instantly feel the difference. The buds are very beautifully designed that it fits perfectly in the ear. You can try out the other ear tips given in the box to figure out the best ear tips size for you. It generally doesn’t come out of your ears even if you are moving. The buds weigh approx 4.6g each. They have an IPX5 rating.

The buds also feature touch response. If you touch the rear circle area of the buds it will play/pause, go to the next track or even turn on/off your active noise cancellation. The long stem of the buds helps to house the 3 mics which make your calling better.

Personally, I find it quite a bit difficult to use in-ear headphones for a long time. But I didn’t find any trouble wearing these buds for a long time.

Connectivity

The OnePlus Buds Z2 comes with the latest Bluetooth 5.2 version. It also features Google Fast Pair.

Pairing for the first time:

If you’re using an Android phone, just turn on the Bluetooth and take out the buds. You’ll get a Google Fast pair prompt and will be connected seamlessly. (People using OnePlus phones, only OnePlus 6 and later versions are supported). I have tested it with my OnePlus Nord, and the Google Fast Pair actually works quite good.

If you’re using an iPhone, turn on the Bluetooth. Then open the lid of the case and press the setup button at the back of the case for 2s until the indicator shows white. You can find ‘OnePlus Buds Z2’ showing in the list of available devices. I have tested it with my iPhone 12 and couldn’t connect at first until I found out about the setup button. After that the connecting became seamless.

OnePlus Buds Z2

Paring after the first time:

If you’re connecting to the last paired device, then it’s a piece of a cakewalk. Just turn on the Bluetooth of your phone and take out the buds, it will get connected automatically.

However, if you’re trying to connect with another device other than the last paired device, then turn on the Bluetooth of your device. Then open the lid of the charging case and press the setup button until the indicator turns white. Then you can find the Google Fast Pair prompt on an Android phone or see the name of the buds on the available devices list on an iPhone.

Audio quality

The OnePlus Buds Z2 features the same audio driver as the OnePlus Buds Pro, despite ranking in the Indian mid-tier segment, which is truly great. The buds pack 11mm dynamic drivers acoustically tuned for bigger, bolder beats with razor-sharp treble. It also features Dolby Atmos support, which delivers immersive, true-to-life sound using industry-leading spatial audio.

The audio quality of the buds is on the premium side and a lot better than the entry-level TWS earbuds. The music is loud and clear and the best part is even if you turn it to full volume (which you won’t need to in most cases), it won’t hurt your ear a bit. It feels like the sound is coming from somewhere else and you’re sitting in a room listening to the music. The bass quality is also actually great as claimed by its makers.

The active noise cancellation feature will help you to enjoy your music even in the middle of a crowded street. It has two ANC modes. The normal noise cancellation mode (+/- 25dB) and the max noise cancellation mode (+/- 40 dB). It can be manually adjusted via OnePlus mobile or HeyMelody App for all other mobiles. It also has noise cancellation off mode and a transparency mode.

The 3 mics fitted in the stem of the buds works like a charm and you can have a great call session. I tested this feature and the person on the opposite side of the call could hear me clearly without any distortion or noise.

The latency of these buds is also as low as 94ms, as claimed by OnePlus, with Pro Gaming mode activated. I have tried playing COD Mobile with these earbuds on, and have found no difficulty with sound lag. So it can definitely be used for casual mobile gaming.

So, overall the audio quality of the OnePlus Buds Z2 lives up to the expectations and even goes beyond them sometimes.

Battery backup

One of the most important factors of these TWS earbuds is their battery backup as it is extremely annoying to charge them frequently in the middle of your work.

The OnePlus Buds Z2 comes with a 40 mAh battery built in the earbuds and the charging case houses a 520 mAh battery.

OnePlus claims the battery backup to be:

  • Playback with ANC ON: Up to 5 hours
  • Playback with ANC OFF: Up to 7 hours
  • Combined playback: Up to 27 hours (ANC ON), 38 hours (ANC OFF)
  • Talk time: Up to 3.5 hours (phone calls)

I have used these buds for 2 hours straight with normal ANC on and the charge went down from 100% to 60%, so these earbuds do live to the claimed 5-hour battery backup with ANC on.

The OnePlus Buds Z2 also features flash charge which is quite great, because if you’re in the middle of something and your battery drains out, you can just plug it in for 10 mins and you’re good to go for the next 2-5 hours.

OnePlus Buds Z2

Verdict

From my personal point of view, the OnePlus Buds Z2 goes beyond my expectations coming for under the Rs 5,000 price range. If you own a OnePlus smartphone, then you should definitely buy these buds as the connectivity is seamless. Even if you don’t own a OnePlus smartphone, then you can buy it for just its quality.

For me, OnePlus Buds Z2 really is the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market.

Buy the OnePlus Buds Z2 from Amazon India: https://amzn.to/3Ipc3jY

Read: Lenovo Smart Clock 2 review: Your new bedtime friend

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REVIEW OVERVIEW

Design and build quality
Connectivity
Audio quality
Battery backup

SUMMARY

The OnePlus Buds Z2 goes beyond my expectations coming for under the Rs 5,000 price range. For me, it is really the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market.
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Rahul Roy
Rahul Roy
I am a computer guy by profession and a sports fanatic by choice.

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The OnePlus Buds Z2 goes beyond my expectations coming for under the Rs 5,000 price range. For me, it is really the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market.OnePlus Buds Z2 review: Is it the new mid-range king for the Indian TWS market?

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