Truly wireless stereo solutions, or TWS, could now be considered the standard method for consuming digital audio whilst on the go. Some of this was driven by the death (protracted as it is) of the 3.5mm headphone jack on smartphones, whilst others might simply prefer the wire-free design. Regardless of the reason, the industry has undoubtedly doubled down on TWS solutions, and they can now be found everywhere. The latest to hit our review bench is the Lypertek TEVI, offering IPX7 protection and 10 hours continuous playback, all in a small portable package.
- Great neutral soundstage
- Excellent battery life
- IPX7 protection
- Type-C charging case
- Button position can put pressure on the ear
- Lack of any ANC
Let’s start with the hard-hitting, deep-diving, exposition of the device; their logo is awesome! It just jumped out at me on the included charging case. Perhaps it is the attention to detail I’m noticing here which is a microcosm for the entire experience with the Lypertek TEVI in reality.
Breakdown – Lypertek TEVI
- Graphene drivers
- Frequency response – 20-20 kHz
- cVc 8.0 noise cancellation
- Bluetooth 5.0
- Qualcomm aptX, AAC, SBC codecs
- IPX7 waterproofing
- Battery – up to 10 hours continuous playback (70 hours using charging case)
- Accessories – Silicone and Comply tips, USB Type-C charging cable, charging cradle, quick start guide.
Design & Performance – Lypertek TEVI
The TEVI buds are relatively standard to look at, come with a number of sized tips to choose from as well as a pair of comply foam tips which can help with isolation and is nice to see included. Whether you’re using the comply or silicone tips on the TEVI, they fit into the ear nicely and sit snugly. They are comfortable for short sessions and won’t cause fatigue in longer listening sessions either.
The charging case, along with that logo, has a grey nylon material finish coating what is hardened plastic so it should deal with drops just fine. The case closes with the satisfying click of a relatively strong magnet, but more importantly, it delivers USB Type-C charging. It’s nice to see this starting to become mainstream. Also nice to see is that each of the TEVI buds has the “L” and “R” clearly positioned. It might not matter to some, where there’s symmetry between the two, but if a particular song is utilising stereo channels independently and you get these mixed up in your ear, it will hinder your listening experience.
The design of the entire package is clean, simple whilst looking premium, and delivers what is required in terms of accessories.
Using the Lypertek TEVI buds is much the same story. By pulling the TEVI buds out of their charging case, they turn on and sit in pairing mode (unless already paired). Simply connect to the bud that shows up as available in the Bluetooth settings menu. Once paired and connected the device will prompt to pair the second bud also. Accept that prompt and away we go!
Approaching this review slightly differently than normal, I started my testing by listening to some audiobooks. The narration was clean and crisp and due to how well the tips sit in the ear canal, I felt quite immersed too. There is no active noise cancellation here but the TEVI buds do a good job of keeping unwanted sounds trespassing on your listening experience. The lack of ANC does show when you’re in a more noisy environment, however.
Switching to music, and my usual playlist of some Hip-Hop and more acoustic tracks provides an interesting point to note. Regardless of whether I used any built-in equalizer, the soundstage is quite neutral and flat. This isn’t a bad thing, but some might find it a little bland. For me, it allowed me to hear the full breadth of some songs. I was listening to the Ed Sheeran track, “Best Part of Me” and when the featured artist, YEBBA, started her vocals I heard something I hadn’t noticed before using any previous headphones; I think they were bongos in the distant background accompanying her. It is the little details like that which made me sit up and take notice of the TEVI buds more than I perhaps thought I would.
The lows are deep enough for me, but bass heads will need to look elsewhere. This is no Beats by Dre deployment. They are more subtle and accomplished in my opinion than one can expect in something more aimed at the bass-heavy musical style. The midrange is very crisp and present in every song that I’ve tested these with. Post Malone’s “Saint-Tropez” is a bass-heavy track, but the combination of lows and mids are kept clearly separate here which is excellent. Highs are pleasant and accompany the mids well and provide a focus to the tracks I tested with.
I often overlook call quality in a device such as this as it is by far a secondary function for me, but I’m glad to say it’s quite good here. I found it marginally harder to hear people over a train announcement on a platform thanks to the lack of any ANC. Recipients, however, suggested they had no issues hearing me so job done I suppose.
An area I did find a little difficult to deal with is one that sadly I see all too often. Controlling the features of the Lypertek TEVI buds is managed by a button on each bud. The button is positioned directly above the ear canal and as such, each time you click to play/pause, double press for volume controls or triple press for track skipping, you’re applying pressure on your ear. Given the buttons are quite resistive, and the TEVI buds are already quite embedded into one’s ear canals, this can be, and often is, uncomfortable. If you’re a track-skipper like me, you’re going to get a sore ear quickly. I’d much prefer a touchpad approach or even the button to be situated at the top of the bud. This would allow the user to offset the pressure with a thumb underneath. On the TTEVI buds though I do understand that real estate is at a premium but it doesn’t make this any less troublesome.
Less of an issue is battery life. I managed to get just shy of the marketed 10 hours of continuous playing before I had to reach for the charger. Testing was made at 60% volume which was more than enough for me, but others’ mileage might vary of course. When using the charging case I could get quickly back to listening as you can manage 2 hours of playback juice after just a 15-minute charging cycle which is great.
Final Thoughts – Lypertek TEVI
The Lypertek TEVI has almost everything I could want from a set of TWS buds; great battery life, a good soundstage, an easy to use charging case as well as good isolation in many situations. The price tag of £99 is also a head-turner when you compare these to other TWS buds with these specifications and attention to detail.
Whilst it does lack any active noise cancellation, this is a feature often found on higher-end, and frankly more expensive options from the likes of Sennheiser and Sony. It also doesn’t deliver a bass-heavy soundstage that I know others might prefer. Having used the Sony WF-1000XM3 at their launch at IFA 2019, I know first hand that the Sony offering has much more bass. There isn’t a lot in it in terms of the clarity of the highs, mids and lows though; the Sony buds are just a little punchier and over double the price!
In a nutshell, the Lypertek TEVI buds are perhaps the best sub-£100 TWS offering I’ve used, for my use cases. I don’t think anybody picking these up could have too many complaints.