Best wireless headphones you can get for $80

With most of us working from home these days, having a pair of true wireless in-ear headphones, whether for making conference calls or listening to music to keep distractions away, sounds like a good idea.

This is especially so when there is a pair as affordable as the $79.90 Soundpeats TrueShift2. But is it too good to be true?

For starters, its charging case offers a generous 3,000mAh in rechargeable backup power, though the case has to be the largest I have seen, easily twice the size of the Apple AirPods Pro's.

It has a USB-C charging port and a USB-A output port. So you can use it to charge your smartphone. But it does not support wireless charging.

The earbuds are black and have a triangular facade with the Soundpeats logo, which is touch-sensitive and supports touch gestures.

The earbuds power up the moment you take them out of the charging case.They look rather big and will certainly not win any beauty contest. Included are three pairs of different-sized ear-tips and ear-fins.

Despite their bland looks, the earbuds feel solid and fit snugly in my ears, with the ear-fins doing a great job of keeping the earbuds in place.

Whether I am jogging with them or shaking my head vigorously to try to dislodge them, the earbuds remain in place. They also feel comfortable to wear even for five hours straight. With their IPX7 waterresistance rating to protect against rain and sweat, you can wear them during workouts without worrying about water damage.

On the downside, the touch gestures take a while to get used to and remember. For instance, you tap the right earbud once to increase the volume. But to decrease the volume, you have to do the same to the left earbud. Double-tapping on either earbud will play or pause a track. But to skip a track, you have to press and hold the right earbud for 1.5 seconds. To return to the previous track, you do the same to the left earbud.

I keep forgetting these gestures, especially when I am jogging, and end up using my smartphone to adjust the volume or skip tracks.

Understandably, given its price, the TrueShift2 does not come with active noise cancellation. The good thing though is that the earbuds provide a good seal against ambient noise.

Another plus is that the headphones sound good, with clear mids and distinct highs. The bass is well-controlled, even if not as punchy as some of its higher-priced competitors'. I can easily discern the different instruments playing when listening to classical tracks.

For calls, I can be heard loud and clear when calling from my study or in a quiet environment. When there is music playing in the background, my voice becomes less clear, but is still audible.

  • FOR

    • Very affordable

    • Great audio quality

    • Superb value for money

    • Charging case doubles as power bank


    • Bland looks

    • Touch controls need getting used to


    PRICE: $79.90

    DRIVERS: 6mm graphene

    CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth 5.0

    WEIGHT: 10g (earbuds), 185g (charging case)


    FEATURES: 4/5

    DESIGN: 3.5/5




    OVERALL: 4/5

Battery life is pretty good at nearly six hours of music playback. The charging case is able to charge the earbuds up to 16 times, so you can theoretically get nearly 100 hours of playback time.

The TrueShift2 has truly shifted the goal posts for what you would expect of low-priced true wireless in-ear headphones. In fact, you will not find anything better at this price.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 15, 2020, with the headline Best wireless headphones you can get for $80 . Subscribe