Blaupunkt is better known in India for its car audio equipment, but recent times have seen a new range of home entertainment and personal audio products launched by the iconic German brand. These include TVs, wireless speakers, soundbars, and headphones. While there's plenty of competition in each of these segments, brand recognition and strong pricing are big positives for Blaupunkt.
One of the company's recent audio launches is the Blaupunkt BTW-01. This new pair of truly wireless earphones from Blaupunkt is priced at Rs. 5,999, making it an affordable alternative to options from Apple, Samsung, Nokia, and Sennheiser. We've tested the new Blaupunkt BTW-01 truly wireless earphones, and here's what we think of them.
Truly wireless earphones are usually expensive, and most of them look and feel premium enough for their prices. The Blaupunkt BTW-01 is among the more affordable options available in this segment, and we found its design and build quality to be a step down from the more expensive options from Apple, Samsung, and Nokia. The earphones and charging case are all made of plastic, and are very plain-looking in our opinion.
That said, the design isn't bad, and gets the job done. The earphones are light and comfortable, and the included ear tips were good enough for us. There are no fancy features on either the earbuds or the case; unlike competing products, there are no sensors on the earbuds that detect when they have been removed from your ears to automatically pause music, and the lid of the case doesn't affect charging or power. The case has a Micro-USB port for charging, which is a bit disappointing given many truly wireless earphone charging cases now have USB Type-C ports.
The charging case does its job just fine though; it holds the earbuds securely when not in use and charges them. Taking the earbuds out powers them on automatically, while putting them back turns them off and starts charging them. The case is small enough to store in your pocket, and the lid snaps into place firmly. The sales package includes a short cable to charge the case, a total of three pairs of ear tips, and an instruction manual.
The Blaupunkt BTW-01 earphones have touch controls, and taps on the outer sides of each unit can be used to control music playback, answer calls, and trigger your phone's voice assistant. The controls are easy to get used to, but aren't customisable in any way. There is no app to control the earphones or any of their functions, and pairing with any device uses the standard Bluetooth pairing method. The microphone of each earbud is located at the bottom.
The Blaupunkt BTW-01 truly wireless earphones can be used individually, although each earbud has to be paired with the source device for this to work. When used as a standard pair, only one earphone needs to be linked as the primary unit, and the other will connect to it. This allows the Blaupunkt earphones to be used as mono headsets for calls, and you can choose to split the earphones into two separate headsets paired with different devices, if you want.
The earphones are IPX5 rated for water resistance, have Bluetooth 5, and support both the SBC and AAC Bluetooth audio codecs. The earbuds ran for about 4 hours, 30 minutes when used together on a single charge, and the case was able to top them up about four times. That gave us a total of over 22 hours of battery life with both the earbuds and case fully charged.
Sound quality is usually a factor of the price of any audio product, but the Blaupunkt BTW-01 truly wireless earphones are surprisingly capable despite being a fraction of the cost of options such as the Apple AirPods (2nd Gen) and Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless. Although you don't get quite the same level of sound quality, the Blaupunkt BTW-01 does offer good sound for its price.
The sound can be characterised as warm, with the lows dominating the sonic signature. The earphones deliver a pronounced bass and audibly elevated low-end responses, while the mid-range and highs are slightly less aggressive.
Listening to Night Is On My Mind by Oliver — a bass-heavy track with strong percussive beats — we quite liked the calculated punch of the sound. The low-end wasn't too overpowering, and certainly didn't drown out the mids or highs. Moving on to the much more lively Light It Up by Major Lazer, the excitement kept coming, without taking away from the relatively clean nature of the sound.
However, this track also brought out the weaknesses in the sound quality of the Blaupunkt BTW-01. While the sonic signature was largely clean and inoffensive, it didn't quite have the sharpness, refinement, or edge that some of the more expensive truly wireless earphones offer. We occasionally found the sound to be a bit dull, and these earphones didn't manage to bring out the fun in many of our tracks.
There's a little bit missing from the punchiness of the lows, the sharpness of the mid-range, and the sparkle in the highs, and this is what separates this pair of truly wireless earphones from its more expensive competition. The soundstage was decent, but not quite as wide and airy as what we experienced with the second-generation Apple AirPods.
The Blaupunkt BTW-01 supports both the SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs. This came in handy when using the earphones with an iOS device, and also improved the sound a bit on the OnePlus 6T (Review), which supports the AAC codec. Sound was a bit cleaner and more defined when using AAC, feeling just a bit more open and detailed than when using the SBC codec.
The Blaupunkt BTW-01 earphones can also be used for hands-free calling, and we had a decent experience using them. Sound on calls was clear and loud, and the microphones were able to pick up our voice even in noisy environments.
Truly wireless earphones are catching on quickly, but this is still an expensive product category. Although you can buy a pair for under Rs. 5,000, the better options usually cost around Rs. 10,000 or more, with the absolute best costing much more than that. This is what makes the Blaupunkt BTW-01 so easy to recommend: it's affordable, comes from a reputed brand, and has an inoffensive and agreeable sound that is decent for the price.
At Rs. 5,999, the Blaupunkt BTW-01 is much more affordable than any of the big-name options we've reviewed recently. It isn't quite as capable as the new Apple AirPods or even the Nokia or Samsung options we've recently reviewed, but it offers good sound, decent battery life, and a functional design. It's also quite easy to use. If you don't have the budget for the more glamorous options, the Blaupunkt BTW-01 is a worthwhile pair to get started with, and won't set you back too much.
Price: Rs. 5,999
Ratings (out of 5)
Which are the best budget Bluetooth earphones and headphones in India? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.