It does not happen often but every now and then, a new brand or product comes along in the tech industry with the potential to rattle the existing establishment. Brands like OnePlus and Xiaomi that simply redefined what users expected from smartphones at certain prices. Well, the Tevi from Lypertek have the potential to do exactly that in the world of truly wireless earphones (TWS).
With high prices comes high-quality TWS sound…NOT!
And that is because the Tevi shatter one popular TWS belief – that great sound ONLY comes with a relatively high price tag. In general, the more you invest in a TWS, the better quality sound you get. Well, we are going to put this out there – at Rs 6,999, the Tevi deliver the kind of sound that you get in devices that are two to three times as expensive. And we are not the only ones to say so. In terms of sheer sound quality, the Tevi have even been compared to the likes of the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2, the Bose SoundSport Free, and of course, the Apple AirPods Pro. What’s more, the comparisons have been favorable.
This is why we are going to start this review with the sound on the Tevi. In a segment that is broadly defined by bass, and indeed prides itself on bass, the Tevi go for what is largely a very balanced sound signature. Indeed, some might even consider it to be a little on the brighter side, as it manages to bring out treble very well. And that too without drowning out the mids. No, you will not get thundering and ear shaking bass from these, but that does not mean that bass does not exist. It does, but in its proper place – alongside the mids and trebles and popping up when needed to be stressed.
Punching well above their price…and not relying on punchy bass!
In simple English, if you are the kind of person who likes folk, country, jazz, classical or any other music where vocals and stringed instruments play a very important part, then you will love the Lypertek Tevi. The level of clarity is astonishing at this price point and so is the sound stage – you can actually get a sense of sound coming from different locations. If you really really love your thump and beats, then you might find the Tevi not to your liking. It is not as if the beats disappear altogether, but they will not rumble in your ears as they do from TWS from a number of other brands. Volume levels are very good too – we would recommend listening to them at around 75 percent, else sometimes things can get a little piercing.
Is the sound on the Tevi as good as the Sennheiser Momentum 2 True Wireless, which many consider to be the gold standard in TWS? We think it is a little less refined. The Momentum too have a slightly cleaner and well, warmer sound. They are more bass-friendly, so to speak. But the Tevi are not far behind. Unless you are a beats maniac, these are easily among the best sounding TWS out there. Irrespective of price.
“Inspired” case design, Inspiring battery life
And all this comes in a package that is smart enough. The case is a bit like that of the AirPods Pro in terms of shape: rectangular with very curved edges (we refuse to use the term ‘rectangoval’!). Mind you, it does look uncannily like the case for the Sennheiser Momentum TWS with its grey fabric cover. It looks very very distinct, although a little on the larger side. It also comes with a cord on the side to dangle it from – not something we see every day and honestly, we think it detracts a little from the design, but then some might like it.
The Tevi themselves are lodged inside the case and are magnetically attached to their charging points. The case shuts magnetically and have a four-light panel to show battery status. There are no buttons on the case – the lights light up whenever you move one of the buds, giving you an indication of how much battery is left. Incidentally, battery life is awesome – the case gives you close to sixty hours, and the buds a very comfortable eight to nine hours. Charging happens vis a USB Type C port on the back. All in all, these are the sort of TWS whose case you need to charge once every 10-14 days at the most. We have not seen many (and this author hasn’t seen any) like it.
The buds themselves are small and button-like and fit snugly in the ear – there are eartip options in the box, but the default option suited us fine. They fit snugly and kept a lot of external sounds out (we still think a snug fit beats ANC any bad in the bud department). Each bud has a tiny LED for showing battery and connectivity on it. On top of each bud is a shiny metallic band and the Lypertek logo that some might like and others might not – we liked the fact that they were unobtrusive and did not stick out from or dangle from our ears. The Tevi come with graphene drivers, support AptX and AAC, and also have a triple-core Qualcomm chipset for processing Bluetooth audio.
The Tevi come with an IPX7 rating, so they can actually take a fall in the water – the case is not water-resistant though! The snug fit, the water resistance, and the slightly understated design (we got the black ones) make them as at home at gyms as at offices (which now are homes!). Build quality incidentally seems very solid.
Call quality is excellent, incidentally, which is again a rarity on TWS at this price point – we were able to hear people perfectly clearly and people could hear us without any trouble as well. We actually even used them to record a couple of podcasts over the phone!. If you wish you can use a single bud at a time, by simply putting the other back in the box. Music, however, does not pause if you pull one of the buds out of your ears. There is a little latency in gaming but nothing noticeable in videos (and these are great for shows with a lot of atmospheric sound – think Sherlock and creaking doors!).
A slightly odd UI
Where the Tevi come slightly undone are in terms of interface. Each bud has a button on its back, and these are slightly stiff so you need to press hard to use them, and that generally involves pushing the bud further into your ear. The pairing process is also slightly odd – you take the buds out of the case and press the button on any bud twice to enter pairing mode. Interestingly, one of the two buds then shows up in the Bluetooth connections display of your phone, you tap on it to accept the connection and then the other one too appears on the display and you need to tap once more to connect that one too. Kind of odd and a little drawn out. The bud which pairs first is called the master unit, and you can switch any bud to master status by simply putting the other one back in the case.
A single press on either bud is what’s needed to play and pause sound and also to answer and end calls. A slightly longer press lets you reject a call. A long press on the master unit also invokes your virtual assistant. Things get a little complicated after this. An increase in volume requires two presses of the right bud, a decrease two presses of the left. Three presses of the left take you to the previous track and three pressed on the right to the next one. Of course, as the Tevi fit snugly in your ears, every time you press the button you actually push it a little deeper inside, which is not a very comfortable feeling. We ended up switching to controls on our notebook or phone often for most functions. Incidentally, they can connect to one device at a time, and automatically connect to the last device they were paired with. Once paired, all you need to do is take the buds out of their case to connect them.
It is a control system one gets used to by and by but buttons on the back of TWS that go right into your ear are troublesome. Perhaps the ones on the Tevi will get a little “looser” with time. This was actually the only real flaw we found with the earphones, and believe us, it was not a dealbreaker.
An irresistible option…unless Baby ko really Bass Pasand Hai (read “you really like bass”)
So, should you be going for the Lypertek Tevi? Honestly, this is one of those products where there are no really good reasons to not go for it. At Rs 6,999, the Tevi is in a zone of its own as regards its blend of sound quality, battery life, and water resistance. We have seen some TWS with slightly more sound (the Sennheiser Momentum 2 and even the AirPods Pro), but those cost a fair deal more. Add the water resistance and the battery life to the equation and the Tevi become close to irresistible for anyone who values balanced and clear audio. They are well ahead of not just other TWS in their price range but those that are priced well above them too.
Yes, the interface needs a little work, and some might find the design of the case too similar to the Sennheiser Momentum TWS, but neither really is a dealbreaker. In fact, the only folks who would NOT like the Tevi are the bass bhakts – those who worship at the altar of those thumping beats and dance tracks. These are definitely not for them.
Who are they for, then? Well, even if you are not obsessed with audio quality, that battery life and call quality make them contenders, as does that workout friendly IPX rating. But if you love audio, well, we would recommend them to anyone who wants a near-audiophile experience for not just under Rs 7,000 or Rs 10,000 but perhaps even Rs 20,000.
Yes, they are that good.
- Great (balanced) sound
- Water and dust resistance
- Fantastic battery life
- Good call quality
- UI can be fiddly (those buttons)
- Design of buds and case might not appeal to everyone
- Some might want more bass
- Pairing process is a little odd
|Build and design||
When was the last time you heard of a Rs 7,000 gadget being compared with one that cost more three times as much? Well, that is exactly what the Lypertek Tevi have been doing. We review the TWS that are shaking up not just their own price segment, but the ones above them as well. Could they be the perfect TWS for anyone who wants to get rid of a lot of wires and not too much money?