Xiaomi has been one of the leading names in the budget audio segment for the past while. The company has built a large portfolio of audio products in the country, including wired earphones, TWS earbuds, sound bars, speakers, wireless headphones and more. Just now, electronics giant Mi Neckband announced the new wireless neckband earphones in the form of Bluetooth Earphones Pro. Priced at Rs 1,799, the main highlight of the device is that it comes with ANC (Active Noise Elimination) capabilities… which is a very common feature in this segment. Xiaomi is very skilled in delivering quality products for the price and in this review, I will see if the trend continues.
In terms of design and comfort, the Mi Neckband Bluetooth Earphones Pro is no different from the recently released Redmi Sonicbass Wireless Earphones. The neckband is made from a flexible rubberized material that has a textured finish on the top and a plain finish on the bottom. I have a black variant, which seems to be the only option available for purchase. The curved neckband is comfortable to wear for a long time. Extensions on both sides are made of plastic, with controls on the right side. The power and volume buttons are placed on the outside, and on the inside you have a dedicated ANC button. Other than that, there is a micro-USB port covered with a flap for charging purposes, although the USB C port is the best. The earbuds sit well through the ear canal and have three pairs of silicone tips provided by Xiaomi. The pre-installed ones make a pretty impression on my ears and I don’t feel any discomfort even after wearing them for two, three hours.
Looking at the features, you get the ANC, which works surprisingly well considering the price. A single tap on a dedicated button will drown out most of the external noise. You can still hear a TV or speaker explode at full volume but the noise of the fan or the hum of the car engine are reasonably well suppressed. ANC is not the best, but still a great feature at this price. Other than that, one of the other features of earphones is the IPX5 rating, which should protect the earphones during sweaty workouts, but I do not recommend digging them out in the rain. The pairing process with just a three second press on the power button is also very simple. On the flip side, you don’t get multi-device support when you get on the Redmi Sonicbass. Xiaomi is also claiming anti-serum design on earphones to keep ear wax away from silicone tips, but I have not found it to be particularly effective. As always, you get the AI Voice Assistant option on your smartphone. Earphones are magnetically locked around your neck, but they do not provide any additional benefit (such as power on / off) other than preventing them from wrapping around.
Speaking of sound quality, the Mi Neckband Earphones Pro Pack of 10mm drivers are specially enhanced for bass. It is important to adjust the expectations on the Rs 1,799 earphones. They may not appeal to audio lovers, but for everyone else, the Mi Neckband Earphones Pro looks great. The focus on the bass is very clear when listening to some hip-hop tracks, but the mids are also good on sound devices. The voices do not come to the fore and strike a balance with the beat in the background. The EDM and electronic music also feel good enough and the volume is considerably louder. For its price, it’s hard to find good-sounding earphones, even when Redmi’s SonicBoss comes close. Xiaomi also mentioned low-delay transmission, which I find to be mostly on point, but if you’re an avid mobile gamer, it’s still a good idea to use a pair of wired earphones for the best experience.
As far as battery life goes, Xiaomi argues that earphones last up to 20 hours on a single charge. This has been mostly true in my use and it translates into about 4-5 days without the need for juice. The only problem I have is the micro-USB port and the very small cable that comes in the box. It’s stretchable as USB C expects at this price, but if any company can do it, Xiaomi is definitely one of them. This justifies the use of ‘Pro’ in the moniker of earphones.
Xiaomi is known for great value proposals for money in the smartphone world as well as in the audio segment. In the case of the Mi Neckband Bluetooth Earphones Pro, you get a very respectable battery life combined with a pleasant listening experience. Ear tips do not cause discomfort even when worn for a long time and most importantly, you get ANC, which is very good for the price. They actually use the micro-USB port on the Mi Neckband Bluetooth Earphones Pro and do not support pairing with multiple devices at once. For real bass-heads on a budget, Redmi Sonicbass earphones may seem like a good choice, but they do not boast ANC. For everyone else, the neckband earphones pro from me should be the top choice.
Editor Rating: 4/5
- ANC works well
- Excellent price
- The neckband is very comfortable
- Good sound signature
- Magnetic locking does not provide additional functionality
- Micro-USB charging
- Multi-device not supported