My first rendezvous with TWS devices was with the first generation of the Samsung Galaxy Earbuds which were understandably unimpressive considering that it was a maiden product of the type. But the product type showed promise and the TWS device category has since grown to include some excellent products.
And while this category of devices has a lot of different products in a lot of different price points, the real budget segment is where the actual challenge lies. The constraint of value vs features is where the true intention of a tech company manifests. This is where the new Realme Buds Q2 comes in as a competitor for the budget segment of this market.
While Realme has introduced a couple of TWS in India already, its newest addition to that list of devices, the Realme Buds Q2 is definitely the strongest product in the category yet.
The Realme Buds Q2 is essentially the rebranded Realme Buds Air 2 Neo which is available in the global market. This is launched in India as the successor to the Realme Buds Q TWS that launched in India last year. For the price, the Realme Buds Q2 offers ANC and features which makes it a compelling competition against the likes of OnePlus Buds Z, and Amazfit PowerBuds, and more.
Check out the Realme Buds Q2 on Amazon
Realme Buds Q2 price and availability in India
The Realme Buds Q2 have been priced at Rs 2,499 and will be available for purchase on Amazon. The Realme Buds Q2 are available in two colours the Active Black and Calm Grey.
- Realme Buds Air 2 review
- Best true wireless earbuds under Rs 2,000
- Best true wireless earbuds (TWS) in India for 2021
Design and ergonomics
With the Realme Buds Q2 the company has taken a detour and foregone the stems that are part of the other Realme TWS. These earbuds are more on the lines of rounded earbuds that we have seen from Samsung and are slightly bigger than the Realme Buds Q.
I personally prefer this design as the design with the stems seem ill fitted with my ear type. With each earbud weighing at just 4.5 grams, these seem to sit in the ears without any effort. The earbuds fit comfortably in the ear canals and come with different size options for earbuds to fit different size canals.
The outer touch panel on the earbuds have a shiny chrome colour finish with the rest of the body in a matte texture. The charging case is made with a similar finish and can be mistaken for an egg when viewed from a distance.
While the charging case comes with the Realme branding, curiously the earbuds don't have any visible branding on them. The charging case comes with a USB-C port that is used to charge the device. It also has a pairing button inside the flap and a battery indicator LED on the outside.
The earbuds come with microphone holes on the top and the bottom for both the left and right pair. These earbuds latch on magnetically to the slots when brought near the sockets in the charging case.
At a price point of Rs 2,499 the Realme Buds Q2 comes with a pair of 10mm dynamic drivers on the earbuds. Realme is not strictly an audio company, but it has provided standard audio in its preview TWS devices. And this is no different on the Realme Buds Q2.
The earbuds with Boost Bass and come out with the bass being its strongest audio feature followed by the highs and with the mids getting the least attention. This is pretty standard with most earbuds of this price range. The bass is strong, but not punchy enough to distinguish the instrument, the treble comes across as well while the voice is what suffers the most.
At this price point, the TWS is definitely not made for audiophiles, but rather targeted towards those with a budget of around Rs 2,500 and want the convenience of a TWS.
Software and features
The Realme Buds Q2 comes with support for Active Noise Cancellation up to 25decibels and app support, there is also Google Fast Pair and offers 88ms latency for gaming. It is IPX5 water-resistant making it a perfect companion for gymming and exercise sessions.
What is truly the most noticeable among these features is the ANC which along with the Transparency mode makes the feature accessible at this price point. While the ANC is not as effective as we would like it to be, it still makes a significant difference when it comes to silencing some of the environmental sounds.
For connectivity, the Realme Buds Q2 uses Bluetooth 5.2, and supports the SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs. This means some of the best fidelity audio is transmitted wirelessly from the main device.
What is most impressive is the Realme Link app that shows the individual battery levels of each earpiece. It also allows the user to switch between noise control modes, activate the low latency gaming mode, and even control equalizer presets.
The default touch controls of the Realme Buds Q2 include double-tap for play/pause, answer/reject call, a triple tap for next track, pressing and holding one earbud to reject the call, and pressing and holding both buds to switch noise cancellation mode and transparency mode. These can be modified in the app as well.
The app also allows to modify the touch controls, and update the firmware, among other things. The scope of customization on the app is plenty.
The battery is where the Realme Buds Q2 becomes rather average. Each pair of earbuds with a full charge and ANC turned on lasts for about 4 hours before they need to be recharged. The case offers around three full recharges before it needs to be recharged as well.
This should get better with just the transparency mode on. We have to note here that we did have the low latency gaming turned on for about 30 minutes per charge cycle for playing games as well. Realme does promise that the Buds Q2 can provide 3 hours of battery backup with just 10 minutes of charge, which we honestly could not test.
Buy it if…
You are looking for absolute value for money
The Realme Buds Q2 at Rs 2,499 is easily one of the best TWS at this price range and offers excellent features and value including TWS, transparency mode, and even a gaming mode
You want effective noise cancellation at this price
While not the textbook definition of noise cancellation the ANC feature of up to 25decibels on the Realme Buds Q2 is effective enough to be noticed and make a difference
You want decent ergonomics
This is what impressed us the most about the Realme Buds Q2, the ergonomics and the comfortable fit of the earbuds with the light weight made it easily wearable for hours
Don't buy it if…
You want the best audio quality at this price
The audio quality is one of the areas that the Realme Buds Q2 does not excel and there are other options to look into like the OnePlus Buds Z
You want the best battery life possible at this range
Again an area where the Realme Buds Q2 just middles it out is the battery and something like the Nokia Power Earbuds Lite edges it out