Audio

Klipsch T5 Wireless: Stellar sound quality and battery life

The Klipsch T5 Wireless comes in a metallic charging case resembling a Zippo lighter.
The Klipsch T5 Wireless comes in a metallic charging case resembling a Zippo lighter.

True wireless in-ear headphones are the craze these days and many brands have joined the fray.

Renowned audio firm Klipsch has just launched its first such headphones - the T5 Wireless.

It sports the familiar oval shape that many of its peers have, although you will not mistake it for the others with the prominent Klipsch wording taking up most of the headphones' exterior shell.

Hidden beneath the exterior of each earbud is a clickable control button.

The standout feature is its sleek metallic charging case that looks like a Zippo lighter - and whose top opens up like one. There is a USB-C port at the case's rear for charging.

The charging case is prone to scratches, though. And there is no pouch included to protect the case.

Furthermore, the case is a tad heavy at nearly 100g. But the earbuds are light at only 5.5g each. They come with Klipsch's contour ear tips, which are designed to sit snugly inside the ear canal.

The earbuds feel comfortable in my ears. I listen to music for hours and forget they are there.

  • FOR

    • Great build

    • Sleek-looking charging case

    • Comfortable

    • Long battery life

    AGAINST

    • Confusing controls

    • Heavy charging case

    • Companion app not available yet

    TECH SPECS

    PRICE: $349

    DRIVERS: 5mm dynamic moving-coil

    CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth 5.0

    WEIGHT: 5.5g (earbud), 96.9g (charging case)

    RATING

    FEATURES: 3/5

    DESIGN: 3.5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5

    BATTERY LIFE: 5/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 3/5

    OVERALL: 3.5/5

But they have a tendency to slip out of my ears even when I am walking. Certainly not a pair of true wireless in-ear headphones to wear for jogging.

Plus, with the physical buttons, there is a tendency to push the earbuds deeper into the ear canal each time you press a button.

My quibble with the buttons also extends to their confusing control schemes. This is because each normal press or long press on either earbud elicits a different response.

For instance, pressing once on the left earbud activates the voice assistant (Siri or Google Assistant, depending on your smartphone), but pressing once on the right earbud will pause or play a track.

You press and hold the left earbud button to lower the volume, but it is the opposite - increase the volume - if you do likewise on the right earbud.

But the T5 Wireless shines in terms of audio quality. The bass is punchy with crisp mids and clear highs. I could discern the various instruments playing, such as the drums and guitars.

One downer is the music will continue to play after you take out the earbuds, unlike the Apple AirPods 2 and the Sony WF-1000MX3, which will stop music playback.

Battery life is rated at eight hours on a full charge, with the charging case giving an additional 24 hours of mileage. I found its battery level dropping to 45 per cent after four hours of music playback at 75 per cent volume.

So, it seems the rating is pretty spot-on and the battery life is much better than most of its peers' three to four hours.

At press time, the Klipsch Connect app is still not available. It is supposed to add features such as mixing in ambient noise and adjusting equaliser settings.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 21, 2019, with the headline 'Stellar sound quality and battery life'. Print Edition | Subscribe