Tech companies see the future of mobile devices to be free of wires, which is why true wireless earphones like the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro exists.
Since the release of the first Apple AirPods, completely wire-free earphones have really hit the mainstream. However, their ludicrous prices made them too intimidating to get.
Thankfully, Xiaomi has came up with an affordable alternative that’s as cheap as most traditional wired earphones. And here in our Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro review, we shall see if this device can actually perform well despite its very economical price tag.
Design and Build Quality
As stated earlier, the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is a true-wireless earphone — that’s why we’re obviously not seeing any wires here. Actually, the only cable that it has is a reasonably long USB Type-C cable that’s included in the box for charging.
The actual earbuds’ design is identical to the Apple AirPods. It has a long stem that dongles down your ears. But unlike the former, the AirDots offer an in-ear design.
Probably my only gripe about the design is how large the actual body is. Depending on the size of your ears, the buds will noticeably protrude from your ears, which looks a little awkward. It’s almost identical to the Samsung Galaxy Buds, but with a stem hanging from it.
Since the body is so large, I find it hard to shove the buds deep in my ear to get a comfortable fit. This is important as having the right fit will greatly affect the sound quality and isolation.
I tried using the biggest extra ear tip included in the box to no avail. Fortunately, the tips from my previous earphones were able to do the job. The only problem is, since it’s slightly bigger than the standard tips that the AirDots came with, it doesn’t sit flush with the carrying case. I have to wiggle it a bit so I can close the case.
Still, the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is comfortable to wear. You can also go running with it without the fear of them falling out of your ears easily. The earphones also have IPX4 waterproof rating, so don’t hesitate to go out with it on a rainy day.
Both earbuds have touch-sensitive panels, has their own built-in microphones for active noise-canceling, infrared sensors for auto play/pause when you take them off, battery LED indicator on the top, and contacts for charging, and another microphone (for calls) at the bottom of the stem.
The Mi AirDots Pro touchpanels have circular patterns that you can feel it by the touch. It then has chamfered edges to add some lush.
The included charging case is a bit thicker than what the AirPods has. But, that’s primarily due to accommodate the large earbuds. Also, the case looks like a miniaturized Xiaomi smart rice cooker.
Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is also made with plastic, with a matte coat on the outside, and shiny finish on the inside. A tiny LED indicator is on the front to check the battery status, a function button on the right, the USB Type-C port on the bottom, and a long list of government compliance on the back. The font is very subtle that you’d barely notice the ugly writing unless you look closely.
Features and Connectivity
One of the main features of the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is its Active Noise Cancelling feature. How it works is pretty simple: It improves the noise reduction depending on your ambient sound. It uses the built-in microphones to analyze the surrounding noise.
However, there are times where the left or right earbuds will have a higher volume than the other, to compensate for the noise coming from a particular direction. I found the unbalanced volume a little annoying, so I always leave the ANC (Active Noise Control) feature off.
You can tap and hold the touch-sensitive buttons to enable/disable the ANC. The problem is, the indicator that says whether it’s on or off is in Chinese — which makes it hard to distinguish if it’s actually enabled or not.
Besides that, the battery-low indicator is also in Chinese. But you’d easily know if it’s indeed running out of charge when the LED light starts to blink. I wish it gets updated to English soon, but since the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro doesn’t have any app support, I’m not sure if its current software will get updated anytime soon.
To pair the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro, you have to press and hold the function button on the case for a few seconds to enter pairing mode. You can also hold it for 10-seconds to clear the pairing history.
The Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro can work in unilateral mode. This means that each earbud can work with different devices at the same time. To pair, put the single earbuds back in the case, hold the pair button, and connect it to your desired device.
However, I noticed that all of the pairing function on our unit doesn’t work unless the case is plugged in on a charger. This might be an isolated case, so make sure you test it in-store before purchasing it. If you bought it online, return it immediately if you face the same problem.
Probably the only main problem I had with the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is the occasional connectivity issues. There are times where my smartphone would get tossed around my bag or in a loose shorts pocket, and the sound from both earbuds would get choppy. This is probably due to the fact that it only has Bluetooth 4.2 instead of the more reliable 5.0 version.
These incidents happened very rarely, and your mileage may vary depending on how you use it. In fact, I was able to use it with my MacBook Pro while working and listening to music, move to a different room (even downstairs) to do a different task, and the music never stopped playing.
Switching different paired devices is also easy. I have connected my Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro to my MacBook Pro and iPhone XR. To switch, all I have to do is disconnect it to the current device it’s connected with, and tap the Connect button on the other device.
Now let’s head on to the important part, the actual quality of audio that you can get out from the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro.
The Mi AirDots Pro has a 7mm Neodymium magnet and titanium-plated diaphragm moving coil speaker. As stated earlier, if you can get a pair of ear tips that would fit perfectly in your ears, it can deliver sound with deep and thumping bass.
But for a pair of true wireless earphones at a very economical price, we can only get too many perks. While its drivers do deliver great low/bass signatures, the mids and the highs lack clarity and crispness.
Still, it’s great for listening to different kinds of music. From techno, bass-heavy tracks, to rock and indie. It may not be the best in-ear headphones around, but it sure is a step up to the free earphones that came with your smartphone.
The microphone quality is also pretty decent, but definitely not the best. It sure is handy for making calls on the go.
One of the best qualities of the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is its battery life. The company claims that it can deliver 3 hours of continuous music playback, with a total of 10 hours together with the juice provided by the battery case. We’re happy to report that those figures were close to the numbers that we got in our tests.
I was able to get at around 3 hours and 21 minutes in one continuous use. That’s with playing music and watching videos at 70% to 100% of volume. But at around the 3 hour mark, you will start to hear one of either earbud notifying you that it needs to get back to the case to recharge.
Partnered with the case, I was able to get a total of 10 hours and 3 minutes of charge. That’s three full solid charges. You can check the LED indicator on each earbud and the case to see if its time to plug them in.
Speaking of which, it was thoughtful for the company to use USB Type-C implementation on the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro. There’s a short cable included in the box, which I never took out since I already have one in-use with my other devices.
The true wireless earphones business took off very fast since the introduction of the first Apple AirPods. So much that budget-friendly options came out very quickly.
Calling the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro an affordable alternative is an understatement. This one is probably the most decent budget-friendly true wireless earphones out there.
For a lot less money than its competitors, the Mi AirDots Pro offers a clean design, deep bass with decent noise isolation, and very impressive battery life.
But still, it’s no surprise that this cheap device has its shortcomings. For one, it’s active noise cancellation is a little buggy. Also, despite the good bass, the highs and mid-tones are definitely not the best.
The included ear tips might not fit everyone. There’s also the random connectivity issues.
In the end, there’s no denying that the Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is the best option for the price. Clearly, the company has surprised us again by offering a great product for a really affordable price.
Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro price and availability in the Philippines
The Xiaomi Mi AirDots Pro is available at Mi Store branches nationwide for a price of only Php3,490.
- True wireless design
- Long battery life
- Cheap price tag
- Deep bass
- ANC is a little buggy
- Poor highs/Treble sound signature
- Random connectivity issues
- Eartips might not fit everyone