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realme has had quite the success in the Buds Air and Buds Air Neo, both offering a nifty set of features and decent sound for their price.

For the new realme Buds Q however, the brand has decided that it’s time to change things up a bit.

What’s in the Box?

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Design

realme-buds-q-first-impressions (6)realme Buds Q comes in an extremely compact and light case. It’s made of plastic, but it doesn’t feel cheap or like it’s a knockoff. These were actually designed by José Lévy, the cooperated designer of Hermes.

realme-buds-q-first-impressions (7)They’ve also kept things clean and simple with only subtle branding on the lid and an led indicator for when it’s charging. Speaking of which, you get a micro USB port.

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realme calls this design “cobble,” which most likely because the device has a similar shape as a cobblestone. At only 3.6g, Buds Q also weighs less than a sheet of A4 paper.

Unlike the Buds Air and Buds Air Neo, Buds Q uses an in-ear design which delivers better passive isolation at the cost of comfort, at least for some people. I’ve worn these for hours and did not encounter any major issues.

You’ll find a number of tips in the box which you can try out to see which fits your ear the best. They also do a good job of staying in place even when you’re moving around.

Controls

realme-buds-q-first-impressions (1)The device uses touch controls which can be customized using the realme Link app. Assign actions for double tap, triple tap, and tap and hold for both the left and right earbuds. Of course, there’s a slight delay before the buds actually respond to your taps, but it’s very negligible.

So how do these sound? overall, it’s a warm sounding pair of earbuds. The bass is punchy enough to make an impact, without trying to show-off or impress. Mids come across with decent clarity and detail, while the treble is laid back. The non-piercing upper-range lets you enjoy music for long hours without fatigue.

There’s also Game Mode (courtesy of a dedicated R1Q chip), which reduces latency for better communication in-game, and Bluetooth 5.0 for almost instantaneous pairing.

Battery

realme claims up to 4.5 hours of music, or 20 hours of total playback, which we still have to test. Like the Buds Air Neo, these also miss out on wireless charging.

At the time of writing, realme hasn’t yet announced the realme Buds Q’s local price, but it’s set to officially debut alongside the realme 7 and 7 Pro on September 30.

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.