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TCL is most well-known for its low-cost TVs and soundbars. The TCL MOVEAUDIO S600 is the company’s first foray into truly wireless earphones. While it bears close similarities to the Apple Airpod, it does have a decent App and works with Android and iOS systems.
Who should buy the TCL MOVEAUDIO S600?
- Those looking for a hassle-free audio experience will appreciate this product’s stable connection and OS compatibility.
- Those who need active noise canceling (ANC) features.
- The seamless TCL experience can be enjoyed by anyone looking for high-quality audio and dependable touch controls.
- TCL earbuds are an excellent option for gym rats looking for workout earbuds that don’t look like they belong in the gym.
Using the TCL MOVEAUDIO S600 earbuds
It’s impossible to avoid drawing similarities to Apple’s AirPods with TCL’s MoveAudio S600, which has the now-common stem design. However, there are a few noteworthy differences between the TCL design and Apple’s.
Yes, I’m going being honest with you. The glossy plastic casing on the earphone’s charging case isn’t more appealing to me than the matte finish of the AirPods, unfortunately. I decided to use the white MoveAudio S600 in this review to minimize fingerprints since I felt it would be less noticeable. A matte coating, such as that found on the Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro, eliminates this problem.
The TCL MoveAudio S600 earbuds have a more aggressive tilt to the stem than conventional stem earbuds, which helped them fit better in my ear. When I run or bike, I can wear the TCL MoveAudio S600 without a problem, but my AirPods tend to slide out of my ears with even the slightest movement. The unique tips also play a role in keeping the earbuds in place since they provide a snug fit.
The TCL MoveAudio S600’s earphones are dust and water-resistant to IP54 standards, making them ideal for workouts. A splash or perspiration won’t hurt them, but they won’t be able to withstand submersion into a pool. You’ll want to keep the wireless charging case out of the water if it doesn’t have an IP certification.
The earphones’ lightweight and the case’s durability should keep them safe, but the plastic will scratch if you drop the case or earbuds frequently. The Liberty Air 2 Pro’s slide-out design isn’t as appealing to me as the drop-in design of this case. Compared to the AirPods charging case’s dimensions, the wireless charging case is not as small but is cheap. Thanks to the strong magnetic closure, your earphones won’t fall out if the case falls on them.
The TCL MoveAudio S600’s design is good from a practical aspect, but I’d like a matte finish and a smaller chassis.
TCL MOVEAUDIO S600 Control System
Various instructions can be executed by tapping or pressing the earphones of the TCL MoveAudio S600. A single tap on the left earbud turns off Google Assistant, and a double-tap lets you listen to notifications and activates your digital assistant (Google/Siri) by default. When you push and hold the right earbud for three seconds, it switches between noise canceling and transparency mode. Play/pause audio can be controlled by just tapping once while skipping to the next song with two taps or returning to the previous song with three taps.
The touch controls on the TCL Connect earbuds are among the best I’ve used on any earbuds, and they can be customized in the app. Light tapping or pressing will activate the command, which is wonderful since it is irritating to have to touch anything in your ear repeatedly. Using the controls was a breeze; I never had to re-enter a command more than once.
The TCL MoveAudio S600 has in-ear detection as well. While playing, you may remove one or both of your earphones to stop the music and restart it when you insert them back into your ears. Either earbud may be used on its own as well.
The TCL MoveAudio S600 is compatible with Google Assistant and Siri. I had no problems with the microphones picking up my commands. Touch controls require users to keep pressing on the earbuds until they finish talking to the assistant, which can be annoying if you’re dictating a lengthy text or email. ‘ Using your phone or saying “Hey Google” to activate the assistant circumvents this problem.
Performance and Noise Cancelling Feature
The earphones do a good job of canceling out background sounds. Deep low-frequency noise like that of a jet is reduced with ANC, yet a high-frequency hiss appears to hover above it all. ANC circuitry is not a big deal, but it’s noticeable in the background. As for the mids and low-mids, the ANC did an adequate job of reducing background noise when we used near-field monitors to play back an audio clip of a noisy restaurant. Like many low-cost ANC, this one problem with high frequencies; thus, this tape sailed through it without a hitch.
The MoveAudio S600 ANC is somewhat less effective than the Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro in all the areas listed above, but it’s never far behind. Lows and highs seem unaffected by activating or disabling the ANC, suggesting that this feature has no impact on audio quality. This is exactly what it should be, although cheap ANC might have an adverse effect on the sound quality when activated.
The earbuds generate a considerable low-frequency wallop on tunes like The Knife’s “Silent Shout,” which have a lot of sub-bass material. The drivers don’t distort at high volume levels, and the lows don’t overpower the mix at lower volume levels.
That takes us to overall audio performance, which we were thrilled with right out of the gate the first time we cranked these buds up without any tuning, save for good ear tip fit. To ensure a solid seal between the bud and your ear canal, in-ear wireless earbuds must be fitted with a suitable size tip. Unfortunately, this step is sometimes forgotten. To get the appropriate fit, I had to use the kit’s biggest tips, but once I did, these earbuds performed well, particularly considering their low price.
As far as dynamic range is concerned, the TCL MoveAudio S600s provide a balanced middle and open, natural sound by default. This results in crisp and clear voices. Even with a solid EQ utility, it’s not always possible to strike the perfect balance when in-ear buds lack adequate low-end or are too low-end heavy. The kickdrum of Sade’s chilled house jams or the guttural punch of Velvet Revolver has accurately reproduced thanks to these buds’ ample, but not excessive, low-end. Instead of the muffled bacon frying tones you may occasionally get from lesser wireless buds, and high hat cymbals sound sharp, clear, and metallic. If you’re looking for some of the finest sounding wireless earbuds under $100, the S600s are among the best we’ve heard. We believe that the TCL MoveAudio S600s will sound fantastic on music, movies, and even gameplay.
In addition, the S600s could handle 2.5 Geeks live streaming without a hitch, and the acoustics were excellent. The MoveAudio S600 and its six-mic system outperform the OnePlus Buds Pro we tested in terms of sound quality while making regular phone conversations. For Skype or Zoom conversations, the microphone sound quality of these earbuds is rather good and may be used in professional conference environments. TCL’s MoveAudio S600s can be used as in-ear monitors for Zoom calls or podcasting while working from home or in a creative studio.
The only codecs available for Bluetooth are AAC and SBC. AAC provides iPhone users with the finest possible audio quality. AAC is unstable even compared to SBC in terms of performance for Android users. Compared to AAC, SBC’s default codec can’t transport as much data (under ideal conditions). For AAC/SBC earphones, the S600’s latency is 270ms, within the acceptable range.
The TCL MOVEAUDIO S600’s Bluetooth 5.0 ensures you can connect and remain connected without any issues. Additionally, the MOVEAUDIO S600 reconnects quickly after it has been connected. My phone and earphones are only connected in a long, winding corridor of around eight meters. Leaving your cell phone in a locker at the gym may not be necessary for this short distance.
Pairing mode with your phone?
TCL’s Android app encourages you to download the app when you enter pairing mode, which is an excellent touch for speeding things up and letting users know where the goods are. If you wish to fiddle with it later, you may ignore it and continue to use the earbuds. TCL offers suggestions on how to improve your experience, but it never forces you to take any action. Anyone who loves to pick and select features will find this quite convenient.
In terms of battery life, how long can you expect the TCL MOVEAUDIO S600 to last?
With ANC enabled, the MOVEAUDIO S600 lasts 6 hours and 11 minutes, which falls short of the 8-hour playback period. However, the case gives two additional charge cycles, and the earbuds may be quickly charged via the case. The listening duration is doubled with only 10 minutes of storage. The TCL Connect app’s battery monitor is helpful, and low battery warning sounds.
The right earbud failed to charge fully on our first evaluation unit. To avoid this problem, we had to place the case completely upright, which was challenging due to the case’s spherical bottom. However, it is unreasonable to think that most listeners will use our propping strategy. Instead of speculating on the reason, seeing how the left earbud charged adequately, it’s very conceivable that this was an isolated incidence and not representative of every MOVEAUDIO S600.
TCL MOVEAUDIO S600: Should You Buy It?
Several AirPods Pro twins are out there, but the S600 seems more refined than many. You can’t go wrong with these headphones. For touch controls, TCL’s software is a godsend. The controls nearly never fail. Both operating systems can use the software, so you won’t have to worry about compatibility in the future if you decide to use different devices.
The S600 doesn’t do a great job at noise cancellation, but it does reduce annoying background noise. It presents to users the best of both worlds, from wireless charging functionality to a high water-resistant rating. However, unlike studio headphones, the S600 doesn’t have a “neutral” sound. iPhone users have an advantage if the TCL earbuds can’t play AAC files. If you don’t care about codecs or EQ tweaks, the TCL MOVEAUDIO S600 is a good choice.
Other alternatives to consider
Apple’s AirPods Pro is a no-brainer if you’re already a fan of the company’s products, but they’re also more than twice as pricey. A better alternative than the TCL earbuds is the Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro if you want to stay in the same price range. When looking for a superior codec for their Android phone or tablet, customers need to look no further than the Anker Liberty Air 2. Still, there isn’t a lot of competition in that price range.
The JBL Tune 230NC TWS, despite its faults, is a great option. There is complete software support, ANC, and high-quality audio provided (in-app EQ and more). If you don’t mind a restricted SBC and AAC codec compatibility, these $100 earbuds are great for people who want to customize their listening experience.