The surprisingly refined sound makes them worth a look.
At a list price of $59, the Wintory Air 1 Alloy True Wireless Earbuds are a decent set of earbuds priced right in the middle of the budget tier. You can usually expect to get enjoyable sound and some essential features at that price, and that’s what I found in these affordable headphones. Some may say they go above and beyond the essentials, and there is a case to be made for that.
Unlike most of the “me-too” TWS Earphones gracing the pages of Amazon, the Wintory Air 1 has a handsome diamond-cut metal charging case, which is meant to be reminiscent of retro aviation design. The polished metal finish sets them apart from the sea of plastic competitors sitting around my office, and it also keeps the case from picking up ugly fingerprints.
The smooth, round, charging case is nice and compact, which I like since it slips easily into a jean pocket. However, once the case is opened, there are some semi-sharp edges, which I don’t like as much.
When you open the case, you’ll find the plastic earpieces with a matching metallic finish, accented by ring-shaped lights on the side. The lights flash blue and red to designate when the buds connect or disconnect. I’m not a big fan of the rings, since I think it makes the earphones look cheap, but that’s just me.
The rings also outline the button on the side of each earpiece. A press of the button will allow you to play/pause music, skip tracks, take phone calls, or adjust the volume. The volume control is a nice feature since many other models make you take your phone out to change the volume level.
It was also nice to have actual buttons instead of touch controls. The learning curve is a lot less steep, and I had no problem getting the earbuds to do what I wanted them to do.
One-step pairing ensures smooth operation when you take the buds out of the charging case. Once paired to my phone, the earbuds’ connection to both the phone and each other was lightning fast. Connections are confirmed via voice prompts.
The fit is secure and comfortable, which is impressive since the Air 1’s don’t use any fancy silicone wings to hold them in. You do get three sets of soft silicone tips (S, M, L) to adjust them to your ears. Speaking of accessories, don’t expect to get much. Eartips and a short USB cable are the only things in the box outside of the earphones (and charging case).
These earphones have Bluetooth 5.0 on board, with support for the SBC and AAC audio codecs. AAC will provide the best sound quality for iPhone users, but aptX would be a better sounding option for Android users. Battery life is average, with a single charge giving you an average of 5-6 hours playback. The case will charge the buds four times, giving you about 24 hours of use before you have to plug the case in.
Phone call quality was good. I didn’t have any problem hearing the person on the other end, and they had no problem hearing me.
Listening to the Wintory Air 1 Alloy
Wintory advertises the Air 1 True Wireless Earbuds as having “balanced sound,” and I agree with that assessment for the most part.
The low end was nicely judged, and not overly boosted like they are on many budget earphones. Mids were done well, lined up right alongside the treble, giving the Air 1 a nice “airy” sound. The lower highs (or presence range) seemed to be lifted slightly, making strings sound a little exaggerated.
I wouldn’t call the sound bright per se since the upper highs are slightly rolled off, but there’s probably just a little too much sparkle in places. However, the presence boost also gave these budget buds some clarity and detail, which was welcome when I listened to Chick Corea’s “Armando’s Rhumba” from the Antidote album.
When I played the song, I really liked how fast and open the Air 1’s were, the interplay between the guitar, piano, horns, and percussion was presented with precision across a relatively wide soundstage. I was amazed at how well I could hear “into” the recording.
I compared the sound to the Coumi ANC-860, another pair of TWS buds that list for the same price and have Active Noise Cancelling. The Coumi had a little more weight on the bottom end and a wider soundstage, but the overall resolution and detail were nowhere near as good. They sounded congested in the mids compared to the Wintory buds.
The Wrap Up
The Wintory Air 1 Alloy doesn’t have a ton of features or accessories, and they may not be the best looking (even though the case is pretty slick), but the sound is quite refined for the price. They are also quite comfortable, and the compact case makes them easy to carry around. If you’re looking for a balanced sounding pair of earphones that won’t break the bank, check these out.