Oneplus right they make smartphones earphones watches well the reason this exists is that last year the guy who started Oneplus carl pay he decided to leave and create a completely new tech company called nothing and this is nothing’s first product it’s a fascinating situation because Oneplus already makes really good tech for the most part but for this guy to then leave Oneplus and start a new company in the same lane he must be sure that he can make something even better this guy has spent nine whole months slowly teasing out details of this mysterious company how they’ve rethought everything and come out with nothing how their entire mission is extreme minimalism to create tech that disappears into the background he’s even got his fans to become investors in the company before they even knew a single product coming from it there’s been so much talk and so much build up and it all culminates in this this pair of earphones is nothing’s one chance to blow people away it determines the trajectory of the entire company whether they fly straight to the top or just get labeled as yet another tech firm who will say anything to just get a headline and they’re calling it the nothing ear one it’s a small package but a pretty unique one and i think that’s important if the brand messaging is going to talk about a revolution then the unboxing experience has to feel distinct you get a pretty tiny USB cable I won’t be using that some small and some large ear tips the medium ones come pre-fitted and manuals so the primary thing that you’ve got to keep in your mind here is the apple air pods pro are 249 Samsung galaxy buds pro are about 200 now Sony’s XF whatever they’re called are 280
The nothing ear ones are 99 and considering that they are off to a flying start because even at that price they have splash and sweat resistance wireless charging auto paws when you take one of them at your ear the latest Bluetooth 5.2 for higher quality audio and better battery and the option to make them blast out a high-pitched squeal next time you inevitably lose them under the sofa cushion apart from some kind of spatial audio this is the full feature set i think the fact that this company sells primarily direct to the consumer online and the fact that they seem to generate most of their hype using free media just means that their costs are lower and they’re probably also willing to make a little bit less profit because this is their first product and they’re trying to make a good impression but okay when i judge a pair of earphones there are five key things that i look for design fit noise cancelling battery and sound and I’m going to be honest I’m not blown away by the design i thought i was going to love them the concept of this look really appeals to me but I’m a little disenchanted by the execution of it like for anyone who’s ever seen these tech teardowns you’ll know that this whole transparent section is not easy to pull off it’s one thing to try and make internals that work well but then also making those internals look pretty while hiding all the glue between the scenes is a whole.
Other ball game never mind like if you just got a pair of airpods and took the outer layer off they’d look pretty horrific also for the most part this is just intelligent design what do you think so that’s not very intelligent how each earphone has its own color dot to quickly tell left from right which also helps you line them up in the case fantastic the squared off stems makes them more grippable and also allows for a larger microphone than if you had to worry about curvature and just as far as the general quality is concerned you can’t tell that these are half the price of apples i’ve even dropped this case three times two of them on purpose and so far no marks however i do think this product suffers visually because of how late nothing after the game like if you’re an unknown company trying to create a new product in a market that’s already reached some level of maturity then the only real way to squeeze your way in is to be different i think nothing has taken this thought process to the absolute extreme and so while i really do believe in their whole text should fade into the background mantra.
This focus on being excessively unique has almost achieved the exact opposite of that like look at these two earphones which one of these two fades into the background more probably this one and this is bright red nothing has tried so hard to be different that this doesn’t even really look like a cohesive product you’ve got a transparent half which is sophisticated and technical and then that’s joined onto plain white it’s like when someone rocks up with a replacement car door that’s clearly not color matched and they’ve done the same thing with the case as well we’ve ended up with this multi-tiered asymmetrical text sandwich with a weird mickey mouse indent that i’m assuming is there to keep the earphones in place is it unique absolutely would it have looked better if they’d just done something like this and kept it simple almost definitely but overall i’d give the designer these a six out of ten what happened here they are very comfortable though the fact that a lot of the circuitry has been put in the stem means that the main chamber which is the bit that sits in your ear can be made a little smaller so in contrast to their rather loud appearance they’re actually only slightly less
Comfortable than the pretty svelte airpods pro when they’re in your ears and comfort was one of those earphones best features you do get a lot of cheaper earphones that when they seal up your ears like this not here it’s got little air vents that equalize it and they’re so lightweight that i’ve had these in for like hours at a time i’ve tried gaming with them in i’ve tried sleeping with them in i’ve even showered with them in not sure if i was meant to do that but the point is in almost all cases i forgot they were there also this is a bit obscure but with some earphones i have found that when i’m lifting weights for example and i clench my face a bit they’re so tightly fit that that alone is enough to dislodge them again not an issue here the only two things that aren’t comfortable are sprinting with these in as part of this review i literally put myself through a bleep test if anyone knows what those are and while they won’t fall out you do feel the slight up and down motion within your ears but also the touch controls you get a touch sensitive strip on both earbuds which you can use for things like adjusting volume it does work some of the time but the bigger issue is that when your ears are sealed off like this and you find yourself let’s say triple tapping to skip the song then even if you’re being really gentle it’s sending such a concentrated sound wave directly into your eardrum it kind of just hurts you can try it like if you cover your ear with one finger and then tap that finger with another finger it’s not pleasant the airpods cleverly get around this by having an actual button that you don’t need to hit you can just kind of gently push it but on balance i would still give the fit to these
Earphones an 8 out of 10. at this point in my testing i was a pretty happy guy and if you are enjoying this video then a sub to the channel would be sound and as soon as i turn them on i was met with another pleasant surprise so just like other buds that have active noise cancellation the ear ones have a microphone on the outside which listens in to external noise and feeds you a sound wave that’s basically the exact opposite of the incoming sound wave where there’s a peak in the noise around you the headphones will feed you a trough and thus the waves cancel each other out and you end up with silence i’m gonna sound like a right special case here but i basically sat in front of my fan for like 15 minutes straight just cycling different earphones and seeing how they blocked the sound and my conclusion was that these are on about the same level as the airpods they don’t quite have that disappearing into your own bubbly feelings that you can get on some airplanes but given how light and airy they feel while they’re in i think the noise reduction is about as good as i think you could expect and the flip side of good isolation is that they also don’t leak sound we’ve all been there sitting in like a train or a bus and someone in that cabin is using earpods and unwittingly sharing their entire playlist with the whole cabin that’s not an issue here and if there’s another level if you hold down on these stems it’ll enable transparency mode which is basically the exact opposite of noise cancelling it detects incoming waves and it amplifies them so you can actually have a conversation with someone and not need to take them out but you do get a fair bit of white noise while using this mode for 99 though i would still give noise cancelling an 8 out of 10. it’s just generally tough to fault how these feel to use and that also applies to the battery assuming you have the case with you it sits anywhere.
Between 20 and 35 hours of listening time depending on what volume you’re set at and if you use the active noise cancellation that’s 600 replays of my favorite song and it just adds to that feeling of being able to forget that they’re there so eight out of ten but there is one big question mark hanging over these how do the ear ones with all this talk of the sound of change actually sound well this isn’t like reviewing phones one thing worth knowing about earphones is that you can read the entire spec sheet and still have absolutely no idea how they perform one of the only metrics that does give you some bearing is the size of the driver unit the piece inside that’s actually moving to output the sound see we always talk about sound in waves but when you hear something that you’re really hearing is.
Just the compression of air particles which is translated to a force that causes the inside of your ear to move and then your brain interprets that movement as sound like if I smack my hands together the reason that’s loud is that because I’m moving quickly I’m creating a significant compression of air particles and therefore the sound wave that comes from it is powerful anyways the point is a larger driver does mean that an earphone can create bigger compressions thus resulting in a sound signature that has more impact and so for some perspective the nothing ear ones have 11.6-millimeter drivers which compares favorably to the AirPods pro which is around 11 millimeters but it’s less extravagant than what you would get on Samsung’s earphones which actually have two drivers per earphone an 11 millimeter one for the base notes and a 6.5 millimeter.