CNET First Look
Do Anker's Zolo Liberty earphones measure up to the AirPods?Anker has two totally wireless earphones. They're somewhat affordable, but how good are they?
Anker's better known for its mobile battery accessories but lately it's been making a serious push into the headphone market. These are it's totally wireless AirPods competitors, the Zolo Liberty and Zolo Liberty Plus. They retail for $100 and $150 respectively, which means they cost less than the AirPods. But at those price points, they're not exactly budget model. These are noise isolating buds from a design stand point are so different for Jaybird's run headphones and Bragi's entry level totally wireless earphones. What's different about the plus? Well for starters it's charging case. While it's slightly smaller it is a higher capacity battery inside so it's a little heavier as a result. That bigger battery gives you more juice for charging on the go, but the base battery life for both models is 3.5 hours. That's not quite as good as the AirPod's battery life. The Liberty Pluses other extra features include a companion app that allows you to tweak the sound, and toggle on a transparency mode. That mode comes in handy if you're a runner of biker who wants to hear traffic around you. It's also one of the first headphones to feature Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity. Though it wont do you any good untill Bluetooth 5.0 devices show up, hopefully later this year. As for the sound I thought they both sounded quite Decent for this type of totally wireless earphone although delivery plus does sound slightly clear and smoother, but here's the problem, the standard delivery fit me better, it's designed slightly [UNKNOWN] and for whatever reason the liberty plus just wouldn't stay in my ears as well as the cheaper model, and if you can't get a tight seal with this type of headphone the sound will suffer It's quite possible that you'll have a different experience because everyone's ears are shaped differently. But if I had to tell you which one to buy, I'd personally go with the standard Zolo Liberty. In the Zolo Plus's price range, you're going to be better off with the Air Pods, or for a little bit more, Jabra's Elite 65t, which also performs better as a headset for making calls. I'm David Carnoy for CNET.com, thanks for watching.