In this review, we’ll take a close look at the OnePlus Buds 3, which are the latest earbuds that a lot of people are talking about.
I’ve used them myself and tested them thoroughly to see what they’re all about.
We’ll talk about their cool design, how comfy they are to wear, how good they sound, and how well they block out noise.
These earbuds are priced competitively and have some impressive features, so we’ll see if they’re as good as people say.
I’ll share my experience with the OnePlus Buds 3, talk about what they’re good at and where they might have some drawbacks, and help you decide if they’re a good buy.
OnePlus Buds 3 Review
The OnePlus Buds 3 really stand out among all the true wireless earbuds available.
They give you excellent sound, easy-to-use features, and a strong design, all without costing a ton of money.
If you want great earbuds that won’t break the bank and offer lots of features, the OnePlus Buds 3 are a fantastic choice for most people.
- Affordable Price
- High-Quality Sound
- Effective ANC
- Comfortable Fit
- Decent Battery Life
- Convenient Features
- Limited Codec Support for iOS
- No Wireless Charging
- Sound Isolation
|Earbuds: 3.168 x 2.022 x 2.44 cm
Charging Case: 5.872 x 5.015 x 2.581 cm
Charging Case: 40.8g
|Splendid Blue, Metallic Gray
|Press once: play/pause
Press Twice: next song
|Press once: answer incoming call/hang up call
Press Twice: reject incoming call
|Touch Volume Control
|Slide finger up: Increase volume
Slide finger down: Decrease volume
|520 mAh (Case), 58 mAh Per Earbud
|44 hours (With Case)
10 hours (Earbuds)
|1 hour (Case)
|Earbuds x 1 pair, Charging case x 1, User guide x 1, Silicon eartips x 3 (S, M, L), Safety and Warranty card x 1, USB Type-C charging cable x 1
Design and Comfort
The OnePlus Buds 3 keep up the brand’s tradition of having a clean and simple design.
They look stylish, just like the previous models, but with some small improvements.
These earbuds have a shiny metal look that makes them look fancy and tough.
Each earbud weighs only 4.8 grams, so they won’t feel heavy, even if you wear them for a long time.
They’re built to be comfy, especially when you’re listening for a while.
The OnePlus Buds 3 come with three sizes of ear tips (small, medium, and large) included in the box, ensuring a customizable fit for different ear shapes and sizes.
This level of customization helps in achieving not only a secure fit but also optimal sound isolation, enhancing the overall listening experience.
The charging case for the OnePlus Buds 3 is small and thin, weighing about 40 grams.
It’s easy to carry in your pockets or bags, which is great for when you’re out and about.
The case is designed in a simple and easy-to-use way.
It opens easily and is strong enough to keep your earbuds safe when you’re not using them.
OnePlus has really focused on making sure the OnePlus Buds 3 are comfortable and fit well.
The rubber tips of the earbuds sit nicely in your ear, so they’re less likely to fall out when you’re running or exercising.
Related: Best earbuds for running
However, you can also check out my complete guide on how to prevent earbuds from falling out.
Plus, these earbuds have an IP55 rating, which means they can handle dust and water to some extent.
Related: Best waterproof earbuds
Moreover, they’re good for dealing with sweat and splashes, so you can use them indoors or outdoors without worry.
Now, let’s talk about the sound quality.
The OnePlus Buds 3 sound really good, and this is a big plus.
They give you a well-balanced and immersive sound experience that’s as good as more expensive earbuds out there.
Each earbud has two drivers – a 10.4 mm one for deep and strong bass, and a 6 mm one for clear and detailed high notes.
This combination gives you a dynamic and rich sound, which works well for all kinds of music.
Related: Best deep bass earbuds
One cool thing about the OnePlus Buds 3 is that you can customize the sound to your liking using the companion app.
So, if you want more bass for your workouts or a more even sound for listening to podcasts, you can adjust it to fit your taste.
The OnePlus Buds 3 also feature a gaming mode with up to 94ms latency, which is sufficient for casual gaming.
However, if you play FPS games like BGMI or COD Mobile, these earbuds may not provide the best latency on the market.
Related: Best gaming earbuds
Additionally, these earbuds support the latest Bluetooth 5.3 connection and use the LHDC 5.0 codec, which allows for high-quality audio streaming.
If you’re using an iPhone, you won’t get the absolute highest quality because of some codec limits, but the sound will still be really clear and detailed, no matter what device you’re using.
ANC and Transparency Mode
The OnePlus Buds 3 have Active Noise Cancellation (ANC), which is pretty amazing considering their price.
It can block out up to 50 decibels of outside noise.
When you combine this with the snug fit you get from the customizable ear tips, it means you can enjoy your music without being bothered by unwanted sounds.
ANC works really well, especially in places where it’s noisy, like on a crowded bus or in a loud office.
It makes your music sound even better because you can really focus on it.
Related: Best ANC earbuds
Besides ANC, there’s also a Transparency Mode.
This mode is useful when you want to hear what’s happening around you without taking the earbuds out.
For example, if you’re walking on the road and need to hear traffic for safety, or if someone is talking to you, you can switch to Transparency Mode.
This makes the earbuds let some outside sound in, so you’re more aware of your surroundings.
You can easily switch between Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and Transparency Mode with the OnePlus Buds 3.
You can do it right from the earbuds themselves or through the app on your phone.
This gives you the freedom to pick the mode that works best for your current situation.
Whether you want to block out noise or stay aware of your surroundings, you can switch back and forth as needed.
Features and Connectivity
The OnePlus Buds 3 are packed with features that make them stand out, especially considering their price range.
They offer seamless connectivity options and several smart features that enhance the user experience.
1. Bluetooth 5.3 and Fast Pairing
These earbuds use Bluetooth 5.3, which means they connect quickly and easily to your devices.
This Bluetooth version also helps in maintaining a stable connection, so you don’t have to worry about your music cutting out.
For Android users, especially those with OnePlus phones, there’s a Fast Pair feature.
This makes connecting your earbuds as simple as opening the case near your phone, and a prompt will appear to connect them instantly.
2. Customizable Controls
The stems on the OnePlus Buds 3 are not just there for looks, they serve a purpose.
You can control your music, answer calls, and switch between Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and Transparency Mode with easy taps on the stem.
What’s even better is that you can customize these controls to work the way you like them best in the settings, so it’s super convenient for you.
3. Dual Connection
Another handy feature is the ability to connect to two devices at once.
This means you can be connected to your laptop and your phone simultaneously, switching between them without needing to manually disconnect and reconnect.
Battery Life and Charging
The battery life of the OnePlus Buds 3 is quite impressive, especially given their small size and the many features they have.
When you use them with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) turned on, they can last up to 6.5 hours on a single charge.
If you choose to turn off ANC, the battery life goes even longer, reaching around 10 hours.
This is fantastic for people who have long commutes, like to listen for extended periods, or occasionally forget to charge their earbuds regularly.
However, the battery life of the OnePlus Buds 3 can vary under different scenarios.
Related: Best earbuds with long battery life
Therefore, I went the extra mile to thoroughly test them, and here are my findings on the OnePlus Buds 3’s battery life performance:
|With Charging Case
|ANC Off, 50% Volume, AAC Codec
|ANC On/Transparency Mode, 50% Volume, AAC Codec
|ANC Off, 50% Volume, LHDC Codec
|ANC On/Transparency Mode, 50% Volume, LHDC Codec
|Talk Time (ANC On/Transparency Mode, 50% Volume, HFP)
When it comes to charging, the OnePlus Buds 3 are really fast.
Just 10 minutes of charging can give you approximately 7 hours of playback time.
This is incredibly convenient and one of the key highlights of their battery performance.
Charging the case for the OnePlus Buds 3 is also simple.
You can use a USB-C cable, which is now the standard for most devices.
This makes it convenient because you can carry just one cable to charge multiple devices, reducing clutter and the hassle of having to keep track of multiple chargers.
Controls and Usability
The OnePlus Buds 3 are great at giving you an easy and user-friendly experience.
They have smart controls that are simple to use, so you can manage your music, calls, and noise cancellation without having to grab your phone.
It’s all designed to be really convenient for the user.
1. Interactive Stems
One of the standout features of the OnePlus Buds 3 is the interactive stems.
These stems let you control your audio experience right from the earbuds.
You can do things like play or pause music, skip tracks, or answer phone calls with simple taps.
You can even customize these controls through the OnePlus app or HeyMelody app if you’re not using a OnePlus device, so you can make the earbuds work exactly the way you want them to.
2. Automatic Ear Detection
The OnePlus Buds 3 come with an automatic ear detection feature, which pauses your music when you remove one earbud and resumes playback when you put it back.
This smart feature is particularly useful when you need to quickly pay attention to your surroundings or have a brief conversation.
3. Easy Switching Between Modes
Switching between Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency Mode with the OnePlus Buds 3 is really smooth.
This means you can quickly change your earbuds’ settings when you go from a quiet place to a noisy one, or the other way around.
It helps you keep the best listening experience no matter where you are.
App Integration and Software
The OnePlus Buds 3 work well with an app that makes them even better.
If you’re not using a OnePlus phone, you can use the HeyMelody app.
It helps you customize how the earbuds work to make your listening experience just the way you like it.
If you have a OnePlus phone, you can do these things right in the phone’s settings without needing the app.
It’s all about making the earbuds fit your preferences.
The app provides these features for you to customize:
1. Customizable Equalizer
The app lets you change the sound of the OnePlus Buds 3.
You can make the music have more bass, clearer voices, or a mix that you like.
The app’s equalizer settings can be adjusted to match your taste.
So, no matter what type of music you love, you can make it sound just right for you.
2. Golden Sound Feature
One really cool thing you can do with the app is called Golden Sound.
It’s a special feature that checks the shape of your ears and adjusts the sound to make it perfect for you.
This means the sound will be super clear and just right for your ears, making your listening experience even better.
3. Firmware Updates
With the app, you can quickly update the firmware of your earbuds.
This ensures that you always have the newest features and improvements.
It keeps your OnePlus Buds 3 fresh and makes them work better and even adds new stuff as time goes on.
4. Advanced Settings for ANC and Transparency Mode
In the app, you can also fine-tune the Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency Mode.
This means you can change how much noise gets blocked out or how much of the outside world you can hear.
It makes the OnePlus Buds 3 work well in different places or depending on what you like.
5. Game Mode and Other Features
For gamers and those who want the sound to match up perfectly with what’s happening on the screen, the app has a low latency mode that reduces any delay.
Also, you can use features like the earbud fit test, which checks if your earbuds are fitting just right to give you the best sound quality and noise cancellation.
These features make sure your OnePlus Buds 3 work as well as possible for your needs.
The OnePlus Buds 3 come with a mic setup designed for clear and reliable call quality, which is essential for users who often make calls or participate in virtual meetings.
Each earbud is equipped with three noise-cancelling microphones that work together to ensure your voice is heard clearly, even in noisy surroundings.
These microphones effectively filter out background noise, allowing the person you’re speaking to on the other end of the call to hear you without being interrupted by surrounding sounds.
This feature makes the OneBuds 3 a great choice for taking calls outdoors, in busy offices, or while commuting.
Related: Best earbuds for calls
The microphones are finely tuned to accurately pick up your voice, ensuring that your speech is transmitted clearly, whether you’re speaking softly or in a louder environment.
Additionally, the OnePlus Buds 3 tackle the common issue of wind noise during outdoor calls with technology that reduces wind interference, guaranteeing uninterrupted calls even on breezy days.
What’s more, the microphone quality remains consistent across various devices, whether you’re connected to an Android device, an iPhone, or a computer.
This versatility ensures reliable call performance, regardless of the device you’re using.
Price and Value for Money
The OnePlus Buds 3 stand out in the competitive true wireless earbud market with their compelling value proposition.
Priced at just 5,499 INR at launch, they undercut many of their rivals, even those with fewer features and higher prices.
This aggressive pricing strategy makes them a compelling choice for a broad spectrum of users, from budget-conscious individuals to tech enthusiasts seeking the latest features without breaking the bank.
When you assess the extensive features these earbuds offer, including high-quality sound, effective active noise cancellation, a comfortable design, impressive battery life, and convenient features like fast charging and customizable controls, it becomes evident that the OnePlus Buds 3 provide exceptional value.
They incorporate many capabilities typically found in more expensive models, making them a savvy choice for those looking for premium features at a mid-range price point.
Comparison with Competitors
The OnePlus Buds 3 are in a market with many choices at different prices.
To really understand how good they are, it’s important to compare them to similar options like the Oppo Enco Air3 Pro and other earbuds in the same price range.
This way, you can see how they stack up and if they offer good value and performance in comparison.
1. Sound Quality
When compared to competitors like the Oppo Enco Air3 Pro, the OnePlus Buds 3 hold their own, particularly with features such as dual drivers for richer sound and customizable EQ settings via their app.
While some competitors might offer slightly different sound signatures, the OnePlus Buds 3’s ability to tailor the sound to individual preferences through the Golden Sound feature is a significant advantage.
2. ANC Performance
Active Noise Cancellation is a standout feature for the OnePlus Buds 3, especially considering their price point.
With up to 50 dB of noise reduction, they are competitive with other mid-range earbuds.
Some higher-end models may offer more advanced ANC features, but the OnePlus Buds 3 provide an effective balance between cost and performance.
3. Battery Life
The OnePlus Buds 3 offer a competitive battery life, with up to 6.5 hours on a single charge with ANC on, and a total of 28 hours with the charging case.
This is on par with, or even exceeds, what many competitors offer, making them an excellent choice for users prioritizing battery life.
4. Design and Comfort
The design of the OnePlus Buds 3 is sleek and ergonomic, providing a comfortable fit for long listening sessions.
While design preferences are subjective, the OnePlus Buds 3’s lightweight build and IP55 rating for dust and water resistance make them as practical and durable as many of their rivals.
5. Features and Connectivity
The OnePlus Buds 3 have some impressive features like Bluetooth 5.3, low latency mode, the ability to connect to two devices, and customizable controls.
These are usually found in expensive earbuds, which shows that the OnePlus Buds 3 offer good value for what they offer.
They can meet the needs of many users with these features.
One of the most important things to consider is the price.
The OnePlus Buds 3 are competitively priced, making them a top choice for people who want great audio without breaking the bank.
While some competitors might have certain features that the OnePlus Buds 3 don’t, when you look at the whole package of price, performance, and features, they really stand out as a great option.
Who Should Buy the OnePlus Buds 3?
- Music Enthusiasts on a Budget: If you love music and want high-quality sound without spending a lot, these earbuds offer excellent audio performance, including deep bass and clear highs, at an affordable price.
- Commuters and Travelers: The effective Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is ideal for commuters and travelers looking to block out the noise of public transportation or busy roads, making your journey more peaceful.
- Casual Gamers and Movie Watchers: The low latency mode ensures that audio syncs up perfectly with your games or movies, providing an immersive experience without any annoying delays.
- Active Individuals: Thanks to their comfortable fit, lightweight design, and IP55 rating for dust and water resistance, the Buds 3 are well-suited for active individuals, whether you’re working out at the gym or going for a run.
- OnePlus Users: If you already have a OnePlus device, the Buds 3 seamlessly integrate with your phone, offering additional features and an optimized experience.
Who Shouldn’t Buy the OnePlus Buds 3?
- Audiophiles Seeking Professional-Level Sound: If you’re an audiophile looking for studio-level sound precision, you might prefer to invest in higher-end earbuds or headphones.
- Prioritizing Wireless Charging: These earbuds don’t support wireless charging, so if that’s important to you, you may want to consider other options.
- iOS Users Seeking Lossless Audio: Due to codec limitations, iPhone users won’t fully experience the high-res audio potential of the Buds 3. If lossless audio is crucial for you, there may be better-suited options available.
- Those Needing the Absolute Best ANC: While the Buds 3 have impressive ANC for their price, individuals requiring top-tier noise cancellation for extremely noisy environments might find more advanced (and pricier) earbuds more effective.
The OnePlus Buds 3 make high-quality sound affordable for everyone.
They are a great choice because they balance price, performance, and features well in the crowded earbud market.
They prove that you don’t need expensive earbuds for top-notch sound and features, making them perfect for budget-conscious buyers who want quality.
These earbuds excel where it matters: sound is strong and adjustable, noise cancellation works well for everyday use, the battery lasts long, and extras like low latency and connecting to two devices make them even better.
While they lack wireless charging and some sound isolation compared to pricier models, the value they offer outweighs these minor drawbacks.
For OnePlus users, they work seamlessly.
But even if you have a different Android or iPhone, they’re still a great choice with universal Bluetooth and app support.
So yes, you can definitely plan to buy these earbuds.