It would be fair to say that true wireless earphones have been commodified. You can get a pair at nearly every price point, from the budget-focused Redmi Earbuds S to the high-end Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless. We’re now coming to a point where, like smartphones, we’re starting to see the emergence of products that deliver a high-end experience without the premium price tag.
The Oppo Enco X is one such pair. It isn’t Oppo’s first pair with noise cancellation, but it bridges the gap between audio quality and an extensive feature set at a fantastic price point. On paper, there’s little to complain about it then. In Android Authority’s Oppo Enco X review, we try to see if the true wireless earphones can truly bring a high-end audio experience to the value segment.
How’s the design?
The Oppo Enco X mimic the design of Apple’s AirPods. The stalk placement differs from the AirPods, so they’re not quite a facsimile, but they get close. The stalk has a dual-tone finish, and the gloss white colorway looks pretty good. I’m not a huge fan of the plastics used — they feel a bit cheap — but at least they fit well.
The in-ear styling sits snug in the concha and is very comfortable for long listening sessions. Each earbud weighs 4.8g, so you’ll notice its presence but it won’t weigh you down. This should also come in handy for long runs or workouts. Speaking of which, the Oppo Enco X has an IP54 rating, so you should have no trouble taking them out in light rain or dropping them in the dirt.
Oppo bundles a variety of silicone ear tips to help you find the best fit for your ear. The medium size worked best for me. Oppo doesn’t include foam ear tips, which is a shame, but corners had to be cut somewhere with these affordable noise-canceling earbuds.
Like most true wireless earphones, the Oppo Enco X relies on tap-based gestures for controls. A series of taps can play or pause music, as well as control noise-canceling. I didn’t come across any false positives, nor did I have issues with missed taps — something I noticed with previous Oppo ‘buds.
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Of course, no true wireless earbuds review is complete without acknowledging its charging case. I love the small, pebble-like design with rounded corners, and the case fits well in the coin pocket of my skinny jeans. A flip-top gives you easy access to the earphones.
Do the Oppo Enco X stay connected?
A definite stand out is the connection stability, thanks in no small part to the Bluetooth 5.2 firmware. I could walk the length and breadth of my apartment without skipping a beat, which is impressive given its 10-meter wireless range. This is even more impressive once you consider that my 2,000 square-foot apartment has thick brick walls that are anathema for good wireless connectivity.
Bluetooth codec support includes LHDC, AAC, and SBC making them as versatile as they come. They lack aptX support, which means certain Android handsets may be better off streaming over SBC, rather than AAC for the sake of stability.
Do the Oppo Enco X sound good?
Over the last year, Oppo has introduced a range of true wireless models — all of which delivered standout audio quality for the category. The Oppo Enco X ups the ante and further improves the audio specs. The dual-driver design is made up of an 11mm dynamic driver and 6mm balanced membrane driver. This delivers an enjoyable sound that’s sure to please most consumers. Oppo tuned the earphones in collaboration with Dynaudio — a Danish speaker manufacturer, turned GoerTek subsidiary in 2014.
I enjoyed listening to the songs Tadow and Route 66 (feat. EST Gee) by FKJ and Jack Harlow, respectively. The bass notes are easy to hear and don’t mask the vocals. Vocals sound clear and are easy to pick out above lower notes. On more mellow tracks like Tadow, it is easy to pinpoint the intonation in Masego’s singing, and acoustic music in particular shines.
The de-emphasized treble response makes it harder to hear things like cymbal clashes. Take the piercing saxophone in Pharaoh Sander’s song You’ve Got To Have Freedom: it doesn’t have nearly the loudness you’d expect. Thembi by Pharaoh Sanders was enjoyable, because these earphones do a great job of recreating a sense of auditory space. It was easy enough to pinpoint individual instruments in the presentation.
How good is the active noise-canceling?
The Oppo Enco X features rather effective active noise-canceling (ANC). The earphones come with two different noise-canceling settings, and when I enabled the high setting, the Enco X cut ambient noise dramatically. In fact, it may even compete with the more expensive Sony WF-1000XM3.
However, turning up the noise cancellation raises the noise floor, and you can hear a bit of hiss when not playing music. A transparency mode is included, too, but it makes the piped-in audio sound very artificial.
How’s the battery life?
The Oppo Enco X features slightly below-average battery life for noise-canceling earbuds. The company claims four hours of battery life with the ANC enabled, which is right in line with what I observed. With the volume set a bit lower than 50%, I pushed this closer to four hours and 30 minutes.
The Enco X cribs the Airpods Pro styling but offers a comfortable all-day fit.
With ANC disabled, I clocked closer to six hours of use. Not bad, but not impressive either; you can get much longer playtime from the compact Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus. The charging case packs enough juice for five full recharges and it took over 80 minutes to charge the earphones. Charging the case itself took roughly two hours. You can connect via USB-C or plop the case onto a Qi charging mat.
Are the Oppo Enco X good for calls?
Over the course of my time with the Oppo Enco X, I used it extensively for calls and meetings. The earphones worked exceptionally well with audio sounding clear and natural at both ends. The ‘buds will easily serve in a pinch if you expect to make a lot of audio calls.
Oppo Enco X microphone demo:
Oppo Enco X review: The verdict
The Oppo Enco X set a new standard for what you can get at the price point. Priced at just Rs. 10,990 (~$150) in India, it manages to best earphones at much higher price points while still delivering a well detailed audio reproduction.
In fact, the Oppo Enco X has quickly become my go-to pair of earphones for daily listening. In Europe, the earphones are priced at €179 or £169 in the UK, but can be had for €134 or £135 over at Amazon.
The Oppo Enco X are a safe bet with high-quality audio output, and top-notch noise cancellation for the price.
Overall, for most users, the Oppo Enco X would be a very safe bet. The quality here is leaps and bounds above what you’d expect for the price and I have no qualms in recommending Oppo’s ‘buds for all but the most discerning buyer.
What should you buy instead of the Oppo Enco X?
Alternatives at the price include those from Samsung like the Galaxy Buds Plus that deliver much longer battery life but skip out on active noise cancellation.
Another strong competitor would be the Jabra Elite 85t. This headset is a bit more expensive but affords excellent active noise-canceling, an effective microphone system, and Bluetooth multipoint. If you want a powerhouse of a headset that you can use anywhere, Jabra is a safe investment.
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