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Tribit XFree Tune Review

Offers a decent listening experience for a relatively low price, but certainly doesn't stand out in any aspect
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Price:   $50 List | $40 at Amazon
Pros:  In inexpensive, reasonably good sound quality, portable
Cons:  Poor noise isolation, not comfortable for large ears/heads
Manufacturer:   Tribit
By Max Mutter and Steven Tata  ⋅  Feb 12, 2019
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56
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#12 of 14
  • Sound Quality - 30% 6
  • Noise Isolation - 25% 4
  • Comfort - 25% 5
  • User Friendliness - 10% 6
  • Portability - 10% 9

Our Verdict

The Tribit XFree Tune is a huge step up from the listening experience of earbuds, for a reasonably low price. However, a lack of great sound isolation and a fit that is only comfortable for people with small ears make these headphones less than ideal for many people. If you're shopping on a budget and really care about sound quality, we would recommend spending just a bit more on the TaoTronics TT-BH060. These headphones both sound better than the Tribit XFree Tune and, possibly more importantly, offer active noise cancellation that blocks out much more ambient sound. On the other end of the spectrum, if you're not super fussy about sound quality the Mpow Bluetooth Over Ear sounds nearly as good, offers similar sound isolation, is much more comfortable, and generally sells for a similar price. Bottom line, if you have small ears and find the Tribit XFree Tune on sale, it might be a good option. Otherwise, there are probably better choices available


Compare to Similar Products

 
This Product
Tribit XFree Tune
Awards  Editors' Choice Award   Best Buy Award 
Price $50 List
$39.99 at Amazon
$400 List
$399.00 at Amazon
$350 List
$348.00 at Amazon
$280 List
Check Price at Amazon
$86 List
$58.99 at Amazon
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Pros In inexpensive, reasonably good sound quality, portableExcellent sound quality, field-leading noise cancellation, comforatbleGreat sound quality, great noise cancellationGreat sound, comfortableGood sound quality, active noise cancellation, inexpensive
Cons Poor noise isolation, not comfortable for large ears/headsExpensiveExpensive, touch sensitive controls can take a little getting used toNoise isolation not on par with other high-end modelsEarcups on the smaller side
Bottom Line Offers a decent listening experience for a relatively low price, but certainly doesn't stand out in any aspectOffers one of the best personal listening experiences we've enjoyed with any deviceExceptional sound quality and noise cancellationA great choice if you don’t care for active noise cancellationThe best value for those that want good sound quality but don't want to pay top dollar
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Rating Categories Tribit XFree Tune Bose Noise... Sony WH1000XM3 Bose SoundLink... TaoTronics TT-BH060
Sound Quality (30%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
Noise Isolation (25%)
10
0
4
10
0
10
10
0
9
10
0
5
10
0
7
Comfort (25%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
6
User Friendliness (10%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
Portability (10%)
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
Specs Tribit XFree Tune Bose Noise... Sony WH1000XM3 Bose SoundLink... TaoTronics TT-BH060
Noise Cancelling No Yes Yes No Yes
Manufacturer Reported Battery Life (hours) 40 20 30 15 30
Weight (ounces) 10.25 9.2 9 7 7.6

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Tribit XFree Tune isn't a bad pair of headphones, but it fails to convincingly separate itself from the rest of the field in any capacity. Audiophiles shopping on a budget, or those that don't care too much about sound quality and just want a cheap pair of headphones can both find better options elsewhere.


Performance Comparison


The Tribit XFree Tune performed fairly well in our sound quality testing, but otherwise saw middling results, resulting in an average overall score.

Sound Quality


This is one area where the Tribit XFree Tune turned in a relatively good performance, earning an around average score.


In our testing the Tribit XFree Tune was able to produce decent clarity, with most compositions sounding relatively well defined and separated. However, it does tend to muddle some of the finer details in more complex movements, something the TaoTronics TT-BH060 does a better job of avoiding. Also, certain voices on podcasts do have a very slight hiss to them that iss absent with the TaoTronics TT-BH060.

The XFree Tune sounds good  but falls well short of exceptional.
The XFree Tune sounds good, but falls well short of exceptional.

When it comes to bass power, the Tribit XFree Tune is on the lower end of the spectrum. It has enough punch to satisfyingly anchor most music, but it lacks that deep, well-defined bass that can really bring a song to the next level. This is again an area where the TaoTronics TT-BH060 performs noticeably better, and even the less expensive Mpow Bluetooth Over Ear is a slight cut above.

Noise Isolation


Lacking any sort of active noise cancellation, the Tribit XFree Tune fell towards the back of the pack in our noise isolation testing.


Most of the non-active noise cancelling models we've tested fall into the same bucket, providing decent noise isolation if you play music loud, but offering nothing more than a muffling effect if you play music quietly.

If you want over-ear headphones so you can listen to music while you work in a coffee shop and not be too disturbed by the noises around you, the Tribit XFree Tune will likely work. With music on a moderate volume we could still faintly make out the clicking of our keyboards, but conversations and glasses tinkering farther away were muffled enough that we didn't find them distracting.

We could still hear our own typing when listening to music on a moderate volume with the XFree Tune  but it was quite muffled.
We could still hear our own typing when listening to music on a moderate volume with the XFree Tune, but it was quite muffled.

However, if you're looking for noise isolation that will really improve how your music sounds, the Tribit XFree Tune isn't going to past muster. It fails to offer a secluded enough listening experience that the finer points of music can shine throug. For that you really need active noise cancellation, with the TaoTronics TT-BH060 being the least costly yet effective version of that technology we've found.

Comfort


The Tribit XFree Tune falls into the trap of skimping on size and padding to present a slimmer profile, which results in too little space for larger sized ears.


If your head and ears fall on the smaller end of the spectrum, chances are you're going to find the Tribit XFree Tune quite comfortable. If your head size is average, chances are you might notice some hot spots on the edges of your ears, and that the headband will be a bit on the snug side. If you have a larger head your ears are likely going to feel scrunched on the top and bottom, and the combo of slightly more rigid cushioning and a tighter headband may lead to an uncomfortable amount of pressure.

The padding is slightly stiffer than that of most other models.
The padding is slightly stiffer than that of most other models.

The competing TaoTronics TT-BH060 is a bit more forgiving for larger heads, but still can feel a bit cramped. If you have a large noggin and are looking for a budget option, we've found the Mpow Bluetooth Over Ear to be by far the most comfortable headphones in this price range.

User Friendliness


The Tribit XFree Tune offers the kind of user experience you'd expect from a pair of headphones. A long press on the power button turns the headphones on and off, and with a short press it functions as a play/pause button. A set of volume buttons on the back of the right earcup raise and lower the volume with a single press, and can skip tracks with a quick double press.


To enter Bluetooth pairing mode you must hold the power button down for 3 seconds. We didn't have any issues with pairing the Tribit XFree Tune to our various wireless devices.

Portability


The Tribit XFree Tune is quite portable, earning one of the highest scores in this metric.


The earcups of the Tribit XFree Tune fold up, creating quite a small package that easily fits into the included semi-rigid carrying case. The headphones themselves weigh just over 10 ounces, which puts them right in line with their competitors. The manufacturer boasts a 40-hour battery life, which is much longer than competing models like the Mpow Bluetooth Over Ear (13-hours) and the TaoTronicsTT-BH060 (25-hours).

The XFree Tune folded up into its carrying case.
The XFree Tune folded up into its carrying case.

Value


The Tribit XFree Tune is oddly positioned in that we would suggest most people either spend a little more on the better sounding TaoTronics TT-BH060 or a little less on the nearly-as-capable Mpow Bluetooth Over Ear. However, if you have a smaller head and find the Tribit XFree Tune on sale, it's a worthwhile purchase.

Conclusion


The Tribit XFree Tune is a decent pair of budget headphones, but we would only recommend buying them if you find a sale, and if your head is at least on the smaller end of average


Max Mutter and Steven Tata