Klipsch is best known for its incredible line of Heritage loudspeakers and high-end home theater systems; the American audio company holds a special place in the hearts of many hi-fi enthusiasts. More recently, the company has dipped its expertise into more mass-market products, like portable Bluetooth speakers, headphones and earbuds. Enter the Klipsch T5 True Wireless ($199), the company’s first true wireless earbuds and a bonafide AirPod competitor. If you’re wondering: yes, they wanted the charging case to look like a Zippo.
The Good: First, the sound quality. Klipsch has been able to transition from the world of high-end (and high-priced) loudspeakers to accessible earbuds with relative ease. The T5 True Wireless really excel in the high and midrange frequencies – they’re clear and while – while the bass still hits you as most other true wireless earbuds. The sound quality on par with the likes of Sennheiser Momentum TW, Master & Dynamic MW07 or the most-recent Sony WF-1000X, but at just $199, the Klipsch T5 True Wireless are significantly cheaper.
Second, the design of the charging case and the fit of the earbuds is each unique. The charging case is meant to look and, to some extent, feel like a Zippo, and it pulls this off pretty well. The one caveat is it’s considerably heavier than a Zippo, but this extra weight makes the charging case feel premium in the hand. In terms of the actual earbuds, Klipsch has sort of trademarked the oval shape earbud design – the tips of the T5 True Wireless are flattener than those on most other earbuds; the idea being that they’ll fit deeper and more securely in your ear.
Who It’s For: The T5 True Wireless are for most people that want true wireless earbuds, just so long as they don’t work out in them. They’re a little more expensive than Apple AirPods or the Jabra Elite 65t, but they also sound noticeably better. If you like great sound quality and/or the Klipsch brand, these are pretty great true wireless earbuds to buy.
Watch Out For: The “deeper” fit of the earbuds won’t be for everybody and the elongated body of each earbud causes them to stick further out when in your ears. Even though they’re water-resistant, these aren’t sport-focused earbuds and I probably wouldn’t exercise with them. The on-button controls work well – except when controlling the volume. The Klipsch Connect app, which will allow you to tweak the EQ settings of the T5 True Wireless, isn’t available at launch (though it’s expected this fall). Lastly, the Zippo design of the case might not be your cup of tea.
Alternatives: In terms of audio quality, two direct alternatives of the T5 True Wireless are the Sennheiser Momentum TW ($299) and the Master & Dynamic MW07 ($299). Both are excellent headphones but they’re also significantly more expensive. If you want noise-canceling as well as excellent sound quality, the Sony WF-1000X are also are an outstanding option.
Verdict: There’s really little to complain about with the Klipsch T5 True Wireless. If you can get over the arguably tacky design of the charging case, and you know that the earbuds fit well in your ears (the fit is unique compared to most other true wireless earbuds), these are one of the best sounding true wireless earbuds that we’ve tested. The fact that they’re $100 less expensive than most other “audiophile-grade” wireless earbuds, makes them even more attractive.
What Others Are Saying:
• “Ultimately, this is a very good first stab at true wireless for Klipsch. These headphones are a little expensive at $200 and not everybody is going to love the fit, but they’re certainly worth checking out if you’re considering a set a premium set of true wireless headphones.” — David Carnoy, CNET
• “The Klipsch T5 True Wireless feature the signature Klipsch sound, which is warm, detailed, and never harsh. That’s not to say the Klipsch are neutral, though – they’re simply closer to neutral than the Sennheiser Momentum when it comes to bass. Mids are where the Klipsch shine, allowing vocals to really shine as acoustic music, which favors mids, are lush and detailed. The detail extends to the highs as well, allowing the headphones to sing in the higher registers without ever being harsh. .” — Lewis Leong, TechRadar
• “Klipsch has one key advantage over the competition: price. Most “flagship” true wireless earbuds cost around $300, except for Sony’s stellar WF-1000XM3 ($230). You might get better sound from the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless or the Master & Dynamic MW07, but you’ll have to pay $100 more for them. I also still like Jabra’s Elite 65t as a solid all-around option, especially for $170. Audio quality is slightly better on the Klipsch, but Jabra has a better overall experience — including comfort and controls. However, if you don’t mind spending a few extra dollars, you’ll be much happier with the WF-1000XM3.” — Billy Steele, Engadget
Driver: 5.0 mm dynamic moving coil micro speaker
Frequency Response: 10Hz – 19kHz
Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0
Battery: 8 hours per earbud; up to 24 additional hours with the charging case
Klipsch provided this product for review.
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