Redmi Buds 3 Lite Review: Sounds good but you can buy BETTER

    The Redmi Buds 3 Lite makes for a good sounding pair of TWS earbuds that does not cost a bomb to own. Should you buy it though?
    By: AMRITANSHU MUKHERJEE
    | Updated on: Aug 12 2022, 09:22 IST
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite come with a price of Rs. 1,999 (Amritanshu / HT Tech)
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite come with a price of Rs. 1,999 (Amritanshu / HT Tech)

    In a segment where brands like Boat, Noise and other local entities have created a monopoly for themselves, it becomes tricky for others to enter. Xiaomi hasn't been an eager player in the affordable TWS earbuds category and the ones we have had so far are usually lacking behind. For less than Rs. 2,000, look carefully and you can find features like Active Noise Cancellation, equaliser settings and more. The Realme Buds Q2s launched a while ago did not have all of this but pleased us greatly with its overall proposition. Now Redmi enters the crowd.

    The Redmi Buds 3 Lite is the newest audio product from Xiaomi and as usual, it tries to rely excessively on the price factor. You can buy it for 1,999, which sounds reasonable for a simple pair of earbuds. However, the Realme Buds Q2s is here and so are the numerous options from Boat as well as Noise; the latter options offering ANC and some other fancy stuff. The Redmi Buds 3 Lite looks too bland in comparison. Is this any good then? I used it for a week to find out.

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite Design

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)

    Unlike the Realme Buds Q2s that goes playful with the design, the Redmi Buds 3 Lite looks bland. The case is made of matte plastic material that feels cheap and it doesn't inspire confidence when exposing it to some daily abuse – scratches and smudges are normal here. The earbuds themselves look simple and have fins to help with the in-ear fit. While my ears were happy to welcome the Buds 3 Lite, it wasn't a similar case for my colleagues. The touch controls are a nice touch (got the pun?) and they are responsive as well. The earbuds are rated IP52 for water resistance, which means these can survive sweat and rains easily.

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite Audio Quality

    Expectations are usually low with these affordable earbuds but it is nice to see Redmi spending efforts to tune it well. The Redmi Buds 3 Lite sounds surprisingly nice for a single driver setup. There is a substantial emphasis on the mids followed by a meaty low-end. Hence, whether you are listening to bollywood party numbers or Indian classical music, you will be assured of a good bassy output and a strong mids performance. The highs are decent but there is a lack of clarity and finesse. To trained ears, the audio profile sounds largely muffled with a notable lack of details in the mids. The extreme focus on bass does create a lot of pressure.

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)

    No ANC here but there's a decent amount of passive noise isolation that dials down the high pitched sound and generic ambient noise. The Bluetooth 5.2 allows for reliable connectivity as well.

    For attending calls, the in-built mics are decent but strictly suited for closed rooms with fewer ambient disturbances. The mic quality itself isn't that great and the voice sounds muffled on the other side.

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite Smart features

    The “Lite” moniker deprives one of all the basic smart features and even the luxury of a companion app. Hence, no customisation options and not even the ability to summon the voice assistant. There is a low latency gaming mode that can be activated with a long tap on both earbuds simultaneously, and it works decently.

    Redmi Buds 3 Battery Life

    The Redmi Buds 3 Lite does not have class-leading battery life ratings but in the real world, these earbuds are good to go for an entire week, if your usage involves up to 3 hours of music and 2 hours of calls on an average. Charging is taken care of by a USB-C charger but it takes over 2.5 hours to fill up the case.

    Verdict

    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite (Amritanshu / HT Tech)

    The Redmi Buds 3 Lite can be considered decent at best, considering everything that's on offer here. The audio performance is the sole reason you should consider this, especially if you love booming bass. I can also consider the battery life and a secure in-ear fit as two other reasons to take a look at this. However, everything else falls in comparison to the Realme Buds Q2s and the bunch of TWS products from Boat and Noise.

    In fact, the Realme Buds Q2s looks much better, is better built, sounds as good, has even better battery life, and is loaded with smarter features – it even has a companion app! Simply put, this Realme Buds Q2s is “better”. And it costs Rs. 1,999, the same as the Redmi Buds 3 Lite. I can say the same for similar options from Boat and Noise. Hence, why would you buy the Redmi Buds 3 Lite that simply seems inferior? I wouldn't.

    Rating
    2.5 out of 5
    Price
    INR 1,999/-
    Product Name
    Redmi Buds 3 Lite
    Brand Name
    Xiaomi
    Pros
    • Sounds nice
    • Long battery life
    • USB-C charging
    Cons
    • Flimsy build quality
    • Lack of smart features
    • Rivals are better
    Specifications
    • Connectivity
      Bluetooth 5.2
    • App Support
      N.A
    • Noise Isolation
      Passive isolation

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    First Published Date: 12 Aug, 09:22 IST
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