Particularly small and lightweight without sacrificing features – that’s what Earfun wants to offer with the Free Pro. The company even says that they are “the world’s smallest active noise-canceling true wireless headphones”. What’s more, the in-ears are said to be able to last up to seven hours on one battery charge, and run for another 25 hours when paired with the charging case. Touch control and good audio quality are also promised.
What is really true to all this, and how the Earfun Free Pro for its price of € 77.50 * [test time: 51 €] do in practice, we clarify in the following test.
Technical details (manufacturer specifications)
|Battery life:||7 h + 25 h without ANC|
|Battery life / capacity:||50 mAh per earpiece, 400 mAh charging case|
|Charge time:||1 h headphones, 2 h charging case|
|Weight:||4.1 g per earpiece, 42 g charging case|
|Weight (measured):||4.6 g per earpiece (with medium silicone caps), 41.4 g charging case|
|Features:||ANC, shooting mode, touch control, single operation, IPX5 certification (protection against water jets, no protection against submersion)|
|Price||€ 77.50 *|
Scope of delivery
As usual for TWS in-ears, the Free Pro come in their charging case. This also serves to charge the headphones. In addition, Earfun also includes instructions and a plastic carrier for the other accessories. These are silicone caps in three additional sizes, two additional sizes of silicone rings for hooking in the ear and a USB charging cable with a length of just under 30 cm.
Design & Workmanship
The case of the Earfun Free Pro has a sleek design: From the outside, the roughly oval exterior can be seen, with the centrally inserted plastic, on which the manufacturer’s logo is applied, having a high-gloss finish. The surround, on the other hand, is matte, just like the rest of the case.
The charging case of the in-ears is also made exclusively of plastic: the base case is matte, while the lid including the logo is high-gloss.
The build quality of the headphones as well as the charging case is good. The individual case segments are firmly connected to each other and even under load, no creaking can be heard nor can the case be felt to give way. Visually and haptically, almost everything is thus flawless, only the hinge of the charging case has more play on the side than necessary.
Practicality, wearing comfort & battery life
After unpacking, the Earfun Free Pro would first need to be adjusted to one’s preferences. The four included silicone caps for insertion into the ear canal should offer enough choice to cover all common demands. The choice of silicone hooks to attach the in-ears in the ear, however, is smaller: There are only two sizes to choose from, which do not fit all wearers. However, you also have the choice of putting an attachment without hooks on the in-ears if you don’t like the hook attachment.
We found the in-ears comfortable to wear in practice. It’s not quite enough for a top rating, but they are comfortable. The Free Pro’s operation also works well: the headphones’ grip is not compromised by tapping around on the casing’s outer wall.
The aforementioned touch control covers the usual functions. Three taps, depending on the page, can play the next track or switch through the operating modes (normal, ANC, ambient recording). Tapping twice pauses the current song, tapping once changes the volume, and tapping and holding (de)activates low-latency mode.
The input recognition worked well in our eyes; we never experienced inexplicable incorrect inputs. Whether you like the volume change by repeated tapping instead of the widespread press-and-hold is probably up to the individual. Fine tuning is easier, but large volume changes take a while.
In terms of battery life, the Free Pro were even able to exceed the manufacturer’s specifications in our test, with continuous music playback without ANC. At a pleasant volume for a quiet room, the in-ears achieved a runtime of almost exactly eight hours with one battery charge; the charging case made an additional 26 hours possible. With activated ANC and higher volume – for example, while jogging or in public transportation – the battery runtime should naturally be lower. For usual use, however, the Free Pro are definitely enduring enough.
ANC, recording and playback quality
With regard to playback quality, the Free Pro do well: the bass kicks in at frequencies from around 40 Hertz and has a good presence in the sound image. The in-ears also don’t show any major weaknesses in the mids and trebles, in our eyes. However, some competing products and the Air Pro we tested a few months ago offer a bit more in terms of detail and spatial awareness. Since the Free Pro offers additional features like ANC for a relatively low price, this is easy to get over.
Unfortunately, the recording quality is a bit worse, because the Free Pro is only moderately successful here. You can understand the recorded voice, but the sound is unfortunately not true to the original, and there are sometimes unpleasant background noises in the recordings. This is probably not a problem for shorter phone calls, but we do not recommend the in-ears for long conversations.
Besides normal operation, Earfuns Free Pro support two additional modes. On the one hand, there is a recording mode where the microphones pick up the ambient noise and play it back in the ear. Active Noise Cancelling, which is supposed to suppress recorded noise, goes in the exact opposite direction.
Both functions worked well in our test: The recording mode has a quiet background noise, as is often the case. However, ambient noise is reproduced well so that the user remains responsive while listening to music. The ANC mode suppresses background noise quite reliably: Of course, the outside world is not completely inaudible, but ambient noises, such as conversations, are clearly muffled. In our eyes, there is nothing to criticize here.
For € 77.50 * [test time: €51 ], Earfun wants to offer particularly small as well as lightweight ANC in-ears with the Free Pro, and at the same time not make any concessions in the other features. In practice, this mixture works: The Free Pro are technically well done.
The build quality of the in-ears as well as the charging case is good, the ergonomic options are diverse and the battery life was also convincing in our tests. However, the headphones’ longevity is probably bought by a very aggressive discharge curve, so the battery life might decrease after long use.
The Free Pro’s playback quality is good: You cannot expect more for the price and especially the equipment level; there are no weaknesses worth mentioning here. We would have hoped for a bit more in terms of recording quality, but at least this does not harm either the ANC or the recording mode.
The bottom line is that the Earfun Free Pro are probably suitable for all users who have a use for the recording mode and ANC and do not want to spend too much money at the same time. We cannot determine a noteworthy advantage in the reduced weight/volume of the in-ears, but fortunately, there are no disadvantages in battery life or price as a result. However, some users would probably have liked to still have an automatic pause when taking them out.