Punches above its price. Feature-packed.
- Well-balanced sound
- Seamlessly connects to two devices at the same time
- Decent ANC
- Good battery life
- Competitive price
- Needs more audible notifications when enabling/disabling ANC<br>
- Case feels a bit flimsy
Arriving hot on the heels of the excellent Redmi Buds 4 Pro, the Redmi Buds 5 Pro seem determined to set a new bar for affordable true wireless earbuds. With a refreshed design, active noise canceling, long battery life, and better audio drivers – these earbuds which only cost PHP 3,399 pack some serious surprises.
Design and Comfort
The Redmi Buds 5 Pro uses a subtle matte plastic exterior and smoothly contoured surfaces for a refined, almost premium look and feel.
The pill-shaped charging case too has an understated high-end aesthetic with its rounded edges and textured finish for the bottom half.
You get an indicator light for pairing and charging, and a dedicated pairing button, which I would’ve preferred to be somewhere in the back or front rather than at the bottom.
Weighing in at just 5.1g per earbud, the Buds 5 Pro are exceptionally lightweight and comfortable for prolonged listening sessions. Redmi includes 3 sizes of silicone eartips in the box to help get a secure noise-isolating fit for most ears.
Features and Connectivity
Easily the most impressive feature addition at this price point is active noise cancellation (ANC). Granted, performance is not on par with more expensive brands, but it works decently enough at eliminating constant low-frequency rumbles like fan or car engine sounds and it is also able to decently reduce the noise of a plane engine, in case you’re in a window seat.
There are two Noise Canceling settings in the app, one for personalized which, if I were to guess, is based on the fit test that you can do in the app as well, and the other is Adaptive, which adjusts the ANC level depending on your surroundings. You can manually select the level of noise canceling yourself, which is a nice-to-have feature.
There is also a transparency audio mode that pipes in outside ambient noise when you need situational awareness.
Connectivity is handled by Bluetooth 5.3 for efficient power consumption and extended range when paired to your phone or tablet. The earbuds also have an IP54 rating for dust and water resistance, so they should have no issues withstanding sweaty workouts or surprise rain showers.
Touch controls let you control music playback, answer calls, enable/disable ANC, and activate your phone’s voice assistant without taking out your device. They worked reliably in our testing with highly sensitive panels. It would’ve been nice to have a setting for a sliding gesture as well, preferably for adjusting volume. I also wish that the sound notification for cycling between ANC, transparency, and off was much louder. You can barely hear it when there’s music in the normal volume level that I would listen to. Lastly, it would be nice if it mentioned what mode I was in, instead of just different types of beeps.
I was able to go as far as 5 meters with a couple of walls in-between before the signal started dropping off.
But perhaps my favorite feature of this product is the ability to connect to two devices at the same time, and you don’t have to disconnect from one device to connect to the other. You can just play your music from, say your phone, then if you want to switch, just pause playback, and play music from your other source, in my case, a PC. It’s that seamless.
Audio Performance Punches Above Its Weight
With its custom coaxial dual driver design which consists of an 11mm bass driver and a 10mm piezoelectric ceramic tweeter, the Redmi Buds 5 Pro really punches above their price in terms of sound quality. Thanks to the overall balance, this fits a lot of the genres I listen to, including pop, ballad, RnB, electronic, EDM, and new age.
Bass reproduction hits hard enough, but probably will not impress bassheads. Better drivers also help separation between lows, mids, and highs – avoiding the muddiness that plagues other earbuds. Vocals come across clear with good texture. Treble frequencies have good detail and sparkle, while avoiding being harsh. Soundstage exhibits better width than typical budget models as well for a more immersive listening experience. Volume is also more than sufficient, as I was comfortably listening at around 80% to 85%.
If, by any chance, you’d like to tweak the sound, there are available presets in the Redmi Buds App, and even a dedicated equalizer that you can work with. Personally, I have set mine to Enhance Treble.
With Noise Canceling set to adaptive, Personalized Noise Canceling enabled, and volume at around 80%, we got around 5 to 6 hours of battery life, which is pretty good. The Redmi Buds 5 Pro delivers excellent endurance for both daily use and say, those short cross-country flights. Fast charging gives about 2 hours of playback from 5 minutes plugged in.
Should You Buy the Redmi Buds 5 Pro?
For its PHP 3,399 price tag, the Redmi Buds 5 Pro deliver features and audio performance you typically see in wireless earbuds costing more. Their sleek and lightweight design, surprisingly decent ANC, customizable controls, and well-balanced sound make these compelling contenders for one of the top value buys in true wireless earbuds. If you’re on a budget but still want modern conveniences without too many compromises, don’t overlook this overachiever.
Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.