Home » Huawei Freeclip in the test: Perfect open-ear headphones for cycling and jogging

Huawei Freeclip in the test: Perfect open-ear headphones for cycling and jogging

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Huawei Freeclip in the test: Perfect open-ear headphones for cycling and jogging

True wireless headphones are indispensable these days. In-ear headphones dominate (best list), which effectively shield users from the environment with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). However, there are two problems with this type of headphones: For some people, they simply do not fit well into the ear canal and are therefore uncomfortable or painful. They are also not a good option in traffic, for example on a bicycle, as you hardly notice anything of your surroundings.

With the Freeclip, Huawei has now introduced a very unusual open-ear headphone. Users simply clip the feather-light earphones (5 g) onto the auricle and a small speaker brings the sound from there into the ear canal. This allows you to still hear external noises – parallel to music, podcasts or calls. The test report from TechStage shows how the Freeclip perform in everyday life.

Design & comfort

The Freeclip consist of a round, elastic clip – Huawei calls the design C-Bridge – with an oval knob on the one hand and a round speaker on the other. You simply slide the c-shaped holder over the auricle and the headphones then hold surprisingly well on your ear. Visually, the whole thing is reminiscent of a mixture of piercing and alien artifact. It doesn’t matter which headphones you put on which ear.

You can hardly feel the Freeclip on your ear, they are so light. This ensures a high level of comfort. People who generally don’t like in-ears get a comfortable alternative. The headphones also hold tightly enough so that they don’t fall out of your ear during exercise. They are also a good option for people who wear glasses as they do not get tangled on the frames.

From the outside they look more like earrings than headphones. However, you have to be careful when you put on a wool hat or hood that the small headphones don’t get lost. If necessary, you can adjust the Freeclip to hear the sound optimally. The rounded charging case also looks stylish.

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Operation & app

Typical for headphones from Huawei: To pair them for the first time, you open the case and then press the round button on the side for several seconds. Now the Freeclip go into pairing mode. An app is not absolutely necessary.

Optionally you can use the app AI Life Download from Huawei. However, this is not available in the Play Store, so a sideload from another source is required. You can use the app to update the Freeclip’s firmware or adjust the audio settings, for example to improve the playback of voices or to improve the volume or pitches. Unfortunately, there is no bass boost or an equalizer like the Freebuds Pro 3.

To stop playback, users need to double-tap the C-Bridge. Triple tap to select the next track. There are no other gesture controls as standard. However, you can specify in the app that tapping the left earpiece three times will reset the track to the beginning while the right earpiece jumps to the next track. This is somewhat limited compared to the Huawei Freebuds Pro 3 (test report), where you can even adjust the volume. If you pick up the receiver, playback stops automatically.

Huawei Freeclip – photo series

Huawei Freeclip – photo series

Sound quality

The sound of the Freeclip is really good and impresses with its clear, balanced and bright sound. Overall, the listeners emphasize the highs a little too much for our taste, which can sometimes sound a bit shrill and distorted. The bass is present, but cannot keep up with the deep fullness of in-ear headphones like the Huawei Freebuds Pro 3 (test report). So if you like electronic music or hip-hop, this isn’t necessarily the right place for you. This sounds less serious with podcasts, acoustic music or rock and pop. In quiet environments, the headphones are minimally audible to others.

The special feature of open-ear headphones is that they allow external noise to penetrate. This makes the Freeclip the ideal companion when cycling, on an e-scooter or jogging – because you can clearly hear when a car is approaching. With in-ear headphones that would be irresponsible. In principle, the music accompanies you like a soundtrack while you still hear the ambient noise. It also offers advantages at home so that you can still notice your roommates or the postman ringing.

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The other side of the coin of open construction: isolation is not possible. You should know this before you get the Freeclip. Anyone who is used to ANC from in-ears might be disappointed. This limits your listening pleasure when there are loud ambient noises, for example on a plane or during loud announcements on the platform – but at least you will notice that the train isn’t coming again. During a brisk ride on the e-scooter, wind noise is also annoying in bad weather. Making calls also works well with the Freeclip, the other person you are talking to understands you well enough and vice versa.

Furnishing

Important when doing sports: The Freeclip are at least protected against splash water according to IP54. The drivers offer a fairly generous 10.8 mm and cover a frequency range of 20 Hz to 20 kHz. A microphone is integrated. The wireless connection takes place via Bluetooth 5.3, and a connection to two devices at the same time via multipoint is possible. SBC and AAC and even the high-resolution L2HC and LC3 are available as codecs.

battery pack

As slim as the Freeclip appear, they offer a decent battery life compared to the Huawei Freebuds Pro 3 (test report). Huawei claims a running time of around 8 hours for the headphones, which almost corresponds to our experience. However, the running time is shorter when making calls. The charging case extends the running time by another 35 hours. The case charges the headphones in around 40 minutes. If you charge the clips for about 10 minutes, they will last for almost 2 hours. The charging cradle offers USB-C as a connection and can therefore be charged via cable in around 50 minutes. The case also supports wireless charging as an option, but this isn’t quite as fast.

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Price & alternatives

Conclusion

The Huawei Freeclip are light as a feather and comfortable to wear – you just need to be careful when putting on a hat. They also hold firmly during sports and offer an exceptional design. Thanks to their open design, the Freeclip are a good option on a bike, e-scooter, running or in an environment where you want to be aware of your surroundings.

However, this advantage is also the biggest disadvantage – in very loud environments it significantly reduces the listening pleasure. In addition, the bass is not as powerful compared to in-ears. The highs are sometimes a bit too pronounced. Overall, a convincing option for podcasts and fans of acoustic music who consciously don’t want to completely isolate themselves or who can’t cope with in-ear headphones.

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