TaoTronics SoundLiberty 88 Truly Wireless Headphones Review
My favorite design feature of the SoundLiberty 88 is the same thing I like about the SoundLiberty 92: the earbuds do not “seal” to your ear canal, similar to the original Apple AirPods. This allows you to hear what is going on around you, making them ideal for running near traffic or even at the office when you need to know when a co-worker is trying to get your attention.
And while the TaoTronics SoundLiberty 88 earbuds share a similar design to the AirPods, the stems are a little thicker (but don’t have the “notch” like the SoundLiberty 92). They SoundLiberty 88 earbuds are still very lightweight and I find them comfortable to wear for extended periods of time.
Like the SoundLiberty 92 earbuds, the SoundLiberty 88 earbuds don’t quite reach the sound quality levels of the Apple AirPods. Does that mean they sound bad? Not at all! Music is still very enjoyable on the SoundLiberty 88 headphones with great mids and highs.
Typically with these “open-air” earbuds, you miss out on a strong bass response that comes with the earbuds that “seal” into your ear canal. Accordingly, the SoundLiberty 88 earphones don’t have as much bass as some other earbuds and just a tad less bass than the SoundLiberty 92. You still get a decent bass response, just not quite as strong as the AirPods.
- Single Earbud Use: Like the AirPods, you can use both or just one SoundLiberty 88 earbud. You can use either the left earbud or the right earbuds by simply placing the unused earbud back in the charging case and closing the lid.
- Ear Detection: Taking either earbud out of your ear automatically pauses the music (and automatically resumes the music when you place the earbud back in your ear).
- Touch controls: There are no physical buttons on the SoundLiberty 88 earbuds. Instead, each earbud has a touch sensor that allows you to quickly play and pause your music or adjust the volume.
- Water-resistant: The IPX8 rating on the earbuds means that they can be submerged in water temporarily, so they would be fine for sweaty runs and gym workouts. It’s still not a bad idea to wipe them down with a damp cloth afterward as sweat can be corrosive. It’s important to note that the charging case is not water-resistant.
Differences Between SoundLiberty 88 vs 92
The main difference between the SoundLiberty 88 and the SoundLiberty 92 is that the 88’s microphones have noise cancellation technology. This makes the SoundLiberty 88’s ideal for phone calls as it helps to filter out background noise such as fans running, conversations, etc. Please note that this is not the same as “Active Noise Cancellation” which prevents you from hearing outside sounds.
Below is a sample microphone recording between the SoundLiberty 92 and the 88. Notice that the recording of the 88 virtually eliminates the background hiss.
The earbuds themselves can last up to 5 hours. The charging case can provide 4 additional charges, providing a total up to 25 hours of playback before you need to find a wall outlet to recharge the case.
The charging case can be recharged with USB-C, but does not feature wireless Qi charging.
The TaoTronics SoundLiberty 88 earbuds have improved call quality over the SoundLiberty 92 thanks to noise-canceling microphones. For listening to music, the SoundLiberty 88 do not disappoint and are a great alternative to the Apple AirPods. The open design allows you to hear what is going on around you and you can use one earbud at a time if you want. .
- Great sound quality
- Open design allows you to hear outside sounds
- 5-hour battery life
- IPX8 water resistance
- Case has no wireless Qi charging
- Touch controls sometimes slow to respond