Phiaton BonoBuds True Wireless Earbuds Review: Active Noise Cancellation That Won’t Break Your Budget

Gear Diary is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn More.

The Lowdown

It’s best to frame the Phiaton Bonobuds as a budget set of earbuds that offer noise cancellation; from that perspective, they punch well above their weight.

Overall
4

Pros

  • Solid sound quality for listening to music and making calls
  • Stay in the ear well
  • Controls are responsive
  • Six hours of battery life, and the charging case adds 14 hours more

Cons

  • Ambient sound settings didn’t really allow me to hear what was going on around me
  • The earbuds start to hurt after four hours or so
Phiaton BonoBuds True Wireless Earbuds Review: Active Noise Cancellation That Won't Break Your Budget Listen to this article

One of the greatest things about true wireless earbuds is that they’ve become incredibly diverse, and they are available at just about any price point with multiple feature sets. And now you don’t need to wince at spending a few hundred on earbuds when you can get a solid listening and call experience for less money without giving up extra features like noise cancellation, as we’ve seen with the Phiaton BonoBuds!

Phiaton BonoBuds in a woman's ear; her hair is pulled back so you can see the ear buds.

The Phiaton BonoBuds tick off the main features you’d want in any wireless earbuds.

They come with a small charging case, which can be recharged via USB-C. They offer 6 hours of battery life and 14 hours of extra charge from the charging case, from which you can get an hour’s worth of battery life with 10 minutes of charging. That’s something all headphones should offer, as it’s a great way to eke out just enough battery life to make it through a long flight or an entire workday.

The charger case is sturdy and stays closed well, so there’s no chance of the buds falling out in your bag. The Phiaton BonoBuds come with small, medium, and large ear tips, so you have a decent shot at finding something that fits your ears well.

I found that the medium ear tips worked well if I wanted to seal off sound, but they did bother my ears after wearing the earbuds for 3 or 4 hours.

The Phiaton BonoBuds earbuds

I tested the Phiaton BonoBuds using them as my headphones for working out; I also tried them with my phone-use intensive day job. They sounded good even on windy days; I could take calls without the other person being able to tell it was noisy out.

I did note that I had to be careful when getting them adjusted in my ears; placing my fingers wrong meant that I kept accidentally pausing my music while trying to get the earbud situated. That level of sensitivity is good if you want to use the controls swiftly but bad if you’re just trying to fix a loose bud!

My day job has me on the phone a fair bit of the day, and I found the Phiaton BonoBuds to be more than adequate for voice calls. My biggest critique is that they felt uncomfortable after 4 hours or so, and I needed to take them out for about an hour for my ears to recover.

Even so, voices came through nice and clear, and the feedback from the people I spoke to was that I sounded clear, and they had no issues hearing me at all. A few people assumed I was in the office using my very fancy Jabra headset, so that’s a compliment to the Phiaton’s voice quality.

ThermoWorks Thermapen Mk4
A mouse on top with the Phiaton BonoBuds case on the bottom

Standard size mouse on top to show the scale of the Phiaton BonoBuds case

Officially, Phiaton rates the BonoBuds battery life for 6 hours with active noise cancellation switched on. I found that to be accurate, as I could make it through a whole workday with ease.

I did pop the BonoBuds into the case when I gave my ears a break which would have given them a top-off, but they made it a solid 8+ hours with about 20% battery life remaining. To be fair, I did not listen to music much; I mostly used them for voice calls.

Phiaton BonoBuds offer active noise cancellation as well as an ambient mode. Noise cancellation is pretty self-explanatory, and ambient mode lets you hear what’s going on around you while wearing the earbuds.

I’ll be brutally honest here; I didn’t find the ambient mode very useful. My hearing isn’t fantastic, and any noise in my ears sits right in the sweet spot of “I’m sorry, could you repeat that, please?”

728x90

While my son was watching television, I found that while listening to music, I couldn’t hear the TV well with the Phiaton BonoBuds offering noise cancellation, which was to be expected. In ambient mode, while listening to music, though, I still couldn’t hear voices on the TV.

I asked my son to talk about Pokemon as I cycled between ambient and noise cancellation without telling him which I was using. I noticed that I couldn’t hear him at all when noise cancellation was turned on; I could see his mouth going but couldn’t hear a word.

Ambient mode allowed me to catch stray words, and while I could tell he was talking in his usual tone, I  couldn’t fully make out the words. Turning the volume down helped a bit, but keeping the volume at a lower setting to hear voices around you doesn’t require an extra earbud mode.

But here’s the bottom line on the ANC/ambient mode issue: the Phiaton BonoBuds are $69.99. You’re not getting a $500 earbud experience for that price, and the fact that you’re getting noise cancellation that works is impressive. Phiaton BonoBuds sport an IPX4 water resistance, so you can get caught in the rain and not fry them.

It’s best to frame the Phiaton Bonobuds as a budget set of earbuds that offer noise cancellation; from that perspective, they punch well above their weight.

Phiaton BonoBuds retail for $69.99; they are available directly from the manufacturer.

Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample

What I Like: Solid sound quality for listening to music and making calls; Stay in the ear well; Controls are responsive; Six hours of battery life, and the charging case adds 14 hours more

What Needs Improvement: Ambient sound settings didn’t really allow me to hear what was going on around me; The earbuds start to hurt after four hours or so

728x90

As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. Thanks for your support!


About the Author

Zek
Zek has been a gadget fiend for a long time, going back to their first PDA (a Palm M100). They quickly went from researching what PDA to buy to following tech news closely and keeping up with the latest and greatest stuff. They love writing about ebooks because they combine their two favorite activities; reading anything and everything, and talking about fun new tech toys. What could be better?