Apr 30th, 2022

True wireless earbuds are all the rage these days and it’s not hard to see why. The concept of wireless earbuds aren’t new, but back in the day, they still required a cable that connected one earbud to the other. I found the cable resting on the back of my neck to be rather annoying.

This is why I was pretty excited when Oppo sent over the Enco X2 for review, because believe it or not, this is actually the first pair of true wireless earbuds that I’ve tried. I have to say that after spending a week with them, I was very pleasantly surprised to discover how much I enjoyed them, not just in terms of sound, but also in its convenience.

Design

Taking a look at the design of the Enco X2, to be honest it doesn’t look or feel very remarkable. The Enco X2 is offered in either a black or white plastic finish and it looks rather plain, but I don’t think it’s a bad thing especially if you’re going for the minimal look.

Some companies tend to get a bit too fancy with the charging case by using fabrics or metal, which yes, they do look better, but it also makes me worried about damaging it, like if the fabric gets ripped or if the metal gets scratches. I don’t foresee this being an issue with the Enco X2.

The actual earbuds of the Enco X2 are also pretty plain and are largely made out of plastic (save for the silicone ear tips), but once again, we don’t think that’s a bad thing. Keeping it simple and understated so they don’t stand out is a good choice for me personally, so unless you’re the type that wants to match their accessories to their clothing, the plain design of the Enco X2 isn’t necessarily a negative point.

If there is one thing that I didn’t really like is the use of the shiny plastic which felt very slick and slippery in my hands. More often than not, I would fumble trying to slip the earbuds in and out of the charging case and I can foresee scenarios where people might drop it on the floor and damage it or cause it to roll into a drain. Thankfully that has not happened but it’s a point to consider, especially if you happen to have sweaty hands.

The charging case features a single external button that you have to press and hold to get it into Bluetooth pairing mode. On the bottom there is a USB-C port for recharging, along with a small LED indicator to let you know when it’s charging. Inside of the case in between the earbuds there’s another LED indicator that changes to a flashing white light while in pairing mode, and red/green to indicate the battery levels of the earbuds.

We would have loved to see multiple indicator levels for more detailed battery information, but it is what it is.

The earbuds themselves feature built-in touch controls. All you have to do is press/squeeze on either stem to pause/play music, long press to enable or disable noise cancellation, and slide your finger up or down to adjust the volume.

For the most part this worked just fine, but it took me a while to figure out the volume adjustment. This is because you actually need to tap and hold your finger on the stem of the earbud for a fraction of a second before you slide it up or down. This is probably because Oppo didn’t want users to accidentally adjust the volume levels just by touching the earbuds, so it’s an understandable design choice.

I found that ultimately I was better off just using the volume rockers on my phone to make volume adjustments.

Sound

With the Enco X2, Oppo has continued its partnership with Dynaudio, who for those unfamiliar is a company that specializes in audio equipment, and we think it’s a partnership that has paid off. The Enco X2s feature a coaxial dual-driver system with support for hi-res audio and LDHC 4.0 ultra-HD transmission.

To give you some context, I rarely ever use headphones or earphones. One of the perks of working from home is that you can blast music from your speakers and not worry about disturbing your co-workers, so putting on a pair of earbuds after such a long period of time, I found the sound to be a bit lackluster, but that changed after a spending a week with them.

Throughout the week I would consciously use the Enco X2s to listen to music on my phone and watch videos while at the gym or before bed, and over time, the sound profile of these earbuds really grew on me.

I would say that these headphones feel very mids-heavy, but not overwhelmingly so. Songs with clean guitar tones and piano notes played on higher octaves still managed to come through just fine, but you can definitely tell that the emphasis are on the mids.

The low-ends on the Enco X2 are also pretty interesting. I found them to be a bit “loose”, or as some might also say, “elastic”. This results in a very boomy bass (as opposed to tight or punchy), so depending on your listening preference and the type of songs you listen to, this may or may not be to your preference. I found that this boomy bass sound actually worked out better for TV shows and movies rather than music.

If the app you’re using to listen to music or watch movies doesn’t have a built-in equalizer, users can also choose from three different sound profiles in the HeyMelody app.

The Enco X2s also come with active noise cancellation and to be honest, I was skeptical at the effectiveness considering how small these earbuds were compared to headphones, but I was pretty blown away. The noise cancellation is very effective and when enabled, I couldn’t even hear myself typing on my keyboard.

Fit

Oppo has included several ear tips with the Enco X2, ranging from small to medium and to large which are all really easy to swap around. I will say that fitment is quite important for several reasons so you should really take your time to figure out which ear tips fit you best.

For starters, a good fit ensures that sound doesn’t leak in or out of the earbuds. A more secure fit can help with the overall sound staging and also improve the overall noise cancellation experience.

It also helps prevent the earbuds from slipping out of your ears, especially if you plan to use it at the gym or while you’re out on a run.

Lastly, trying to shove incorrectly sized earbuds could result in you shoving earwax deeper in your ear canal, which could lead to your hearing sounding dull and potentially leading to an ear infection. As someone who has made that mistake and required several trips to an ENT specialist more times than necessary, I cannot stress this last point enough.

Users can actually download the HeyMelody app where they can run a fitment test to see if the current ear tips they’re using is the best choice for them.

Battery life

Oppo claims that the Enco X2 offers up to 40 hours of battery life in total, but there are several caveats to this claim. According to the tech specs on Oppo’s website:

  • Music play time (LHDC, Default setting, 50% volume): Max Noise Cancellation: 5 h (single charge) / 20 h (with charging case),Noise Cancellation Off: 6.5 h (single charge) / 27 h (with charging case)
  • Music play time (AAC, Default setting, 50% volume): Max Noise Cancellation: 5.5 h (single charge), 22 h (with charging case), Noise Cancellation Off: 9.5 h (single charge), 40 h (with charging case)

Based on my tests, after about 3 hours of listening to music streamed from Apple Music at around 60% volume with noise cancellation off, both earbuds dropped to the 70% mark. It then dropped to around 50% at the 5 hour mark, before falling to 30% after about 7 hours, but what’s a bit strange is the discrepancy in battery life between the earbuds.

At 7 hours, one earbud said it had 30% but one earbud said it had 10%. We’re not sure why the difference is so big, but this explanation by Google for their Pixel Buds could offer up a possible reason why, even though we understand they are different brands and models and might have different battery algorithms running.

That being said, close to the 8 hour mark, one earbud died while the other was left with 20% battery. While not the most scientific of testing methods and definitely not 9.5 hours as advertised, getting close to 8 hours is still pretty fantastic. We then popped it back into its charging case for 5 minutes and it juiced up the dead earbud to 40%, while the one with 20% remaining jumped up to 60%.

Connectivity and features

Similar to a lot of other true wireless earbuds, the Enco X2 is quick and easy to pair with your computer or mobile devices. All you need to do is press and hold the button on the charging case to start the pairing mode, launch your Bluetooth settings to find the Enco X2, and you’re done.

I found the quick connection to be fast and impressive. The earbuds would automatically disconnect when I placed them inside the case and shut the lid, but would automatically pair when I opened the lid and put the earbuds into my ears. This seamless connectivity certainly made using them a breeze compared to older Bluetooth headphones and earphones which would sometimes lose connectivity.

The Enco X2 also offers multipoint connectivity which means that it can be paired with two devices simultaneously, so if you want to swap it between your phone and computer, or tablet and phone, or phone to phone, you can without having to go to your Bluetooth settings each and every time.

The earbuds were also excellent when it came to detecting when one pair was out of my ears, which then automatically paused the music and resumed it when I put it back. It might not seem like a big deal to some, but it’s these little conveniences that make the Enco X2 such a delight to use.

For the most part, the earbuds work great right out of the box, but for further optimization and customization, you will need to download the HeyMelody app.

The app will let users customize what the gestures do on the earbuds, turn on/off noise cancellation or enable transparency mode, check how well the ear tips fit, and also choose from different sound profiles. It will also display battery information like the battery levels of the left and right earbuds and the charging case.

There is also a Golden Sound test that supposedly runs a test to determine the best possible sound profile for your ears, and users can also opt to enable Game Mode which supposedly reduces the latency of the connection.

Conclusion

OPPO ENCO X2 Rating: star_emptystar_25star_50star_75star_full (4 / 5)

The Good

  • Great overall sound
  • Very effective noise cancellation
  • Fantastic battery life

The Bad

  • Materials used a bit too slippery
  • Volume gesture control not very intuitive

The Bottom Line

There are many things to like about the Oppo Enco X2. While I wouldn’t necessarily call them the perfect pair of earbuds, all of its pros definitely outweighs its cons, and at an asking price of €200, it’s actually a pretty decent value for money set of earbuds that comes with a ton of features and a fantastic sound profile to boot and might be worth considering if you’re after a new pair of true wireless earbuds.

 

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