Anker is a newer kid on the block when it comes to portable electronics. If you don’t know who Anker is, then you should. Their accessories and home products are sold everywhere from Walmart to Amazon. Now they have a new Zolo audio brand that they are launching with the inaugural device being the Liberty Wireless Earphones. Anker was nice enough to send a unit our way, and here’s what we had to say.
Design and Fit
The age of the physical headphone jack is soon to be a distant memory. Phone makers are moving towards wireless and even physical connections are being replaced by multi-purpose ports like the Apple Lightning connector or the standard USB-C connection. Anker’s Zolo Liberty earphones come to the table with some good things towards going wireless. They fit well in the ear with the familiar bullet earpiece that you slightly twist to lock them in your ears. If the defaults out of the box don’t fit you, try the other four combinations of silicone earpieces for a better fit.
Another thing I like about the snugness of the fit is that it blocks out surrounding noise. I wouldn’t consider them true “noise canceling” headphones, but they do offer a good enough seal to dampen sounds. The second sidenote: these things pick up dirt and lint like crazy. As you can see in most of my photos, I was constantly fighting to keep “the fuzz” off these earbuds. It’s certainly not a deal breaker, but I wanted to keep it in my photos and make mention of it during the review.
Sound and Controls
The best word to describe the Zolo Liberty earphones is decent. The bass is okay, but not great. It lacks the punch of most of the bigger players in the market, but it’s acceptable for the form factor. Mids and highs are pretty good and the Liberty hold their own. Overall, the sound is just good. Your not going to be blown away, but you won’t be disappointed either.
All of the controls for the earbuds are handled by the single button on each earpiece. You tap once to answer/end a phone call as well as play/pause music. Long press to ignore a call and press on the left earpiece for previous track and the right for next track while playing music. The Liberty True Wireless Earphones are also capable to launch your respective voice assistant whether it be Siri or Google Assistant. This can be accomplished by a double tap of an earpiece.
Connection and Battery Life
Both the connection and battery life exceeded my expectations. I’m not a huge fan of Bluetooth, as I’ve found it frustratingly unpredictable from device to device over the years, but the Zolo Liberty’s connection was solid throughout my time with them. I had zero issues pairing with Anker’s PUSH AND GO technology and they had a good service area that allowed me to be over 90 feet away without dropping out. As with many wireless earbuds in this new category, the right earbud is the dominant one. It serves as the source of calls and mic controls as well as controlling the stereo pairing to the left bud. One negative to this dynamic is that they only single earpiece you can use exclusively from the other is the right one. You can’t use the left one while the other charges, but you can use the right one while charging the left.
Battery life was also good. Anker rates the Liberty earphones at 3 to 4 hours and I found this spot on. During mixed use throughout my day, I had no problems getting through 3.5 hours of casual use for random calls or podcasts. Even if I did find myself needing a recharge, the carrying case does give you more than a spot to hold the earbuds when not in use.
Much like Apple’s AirPods case, the Zolo case doubles as a charging bank while on the go. It offers a sturdy constructed plastic case for extending your potential to 24 hours worth of listening by recharging multiple times per charge of the case itself. Again, I found this estimation accurate. You can easily recharge the Liberty earphones 5-6 times with the charging case before having to plug it in. Unfortunately, that’s also the only way you’re going to charge the earbuds, so don’t lose that case. The case charges via micro-USB, and while you could make the argument for USB-C, I bet you still have a drawer of micro cables laying around.
I rather enjoyed my time with the Zolo Liberty earphones by Anker. They offer a great fitting design, decent sound, and good battery life for the $99 price tag. If you want a truly wireless experience for running, working out, or just being lazy, the Zolo Liberty earbuds deserve a look. Throw in the sound isolation and water resistance and you have a steal! You can buy them directly from Anker or via the Amazon link below.Purchase Zoho Liberty Earphones