The brand 1MORE is a relative newcomer to the earbud market but that hasn’t stopped it from releasing a blizzard of new earbuds to the market. The company first introduced its QuietMax ANC Technology back in 2020 with the flagship, THX Certified True Wireless ANC and its neckband-style sibling, the Dual Driver ANC Pro.
Now, 1MORE has included its proprietary noise-canceling technology to a brand-new pair of true wireless earbuds, the affordable PistonBuds Pro. These true wireless earbuds pack plenty of features besides their noise-canceling function. For instance, there is 1MORE’s Wind Noise Resistance (WNR) Mode that helps to calm the microphonic noise created by light to moderate winds.
Also included is a transparency mode that enables the listener to let in surrounding sounds with a tap of the earbud. It’s ideal for listening out for travel announcements or even casual eavesdropping. And as for the ANC feature, the PistonBuds Pro offer up to 38dB of hybrid active noise cancellation without reducing the quality of the audio experience.
As with other 1MORE earbuds, the designers have teamed up with Sonarworks to include SoundID technology. SoundID technology enables the user to customize the sound of these earbuds to suit their hearing with a quick hearing test that’s included with the free 1MORE app that supports 1MORE’s range of earbuds.
Also included in the app is a selection of studio-grade EQ presets and 12 equalizer settings to play around with, enabling users to customize the sound of the earbuds to suit their listening style, whether that be bass-heavy or a more natural tone for vocals.
The signature or default sound of these earbuds has been tuned by Luca Bignardi – a four-time Grammy-winner. Making the most of the PistonBuds Pro full range 10mm dynamic drivers, listeners are promised a powerful sound, one that can also reproduce bright vocals and full details, offering a well-balanced, high clarity auditory experience.
At this point, I must throw a bit of cold water over 1MORE’s claims because, having had the opportunity to audition the PistonBuds Pro myself, I can say that the default sound is rather thin and slightly disappointing. Then I turned on the ANC function and the sound went from black and white to color. I’m not sure why these earbuds have such a weak sound with the ANC turned off, but I wouldn’t rate them in their default mode. What this means in practise, is the earbuds only have a playtime of five hours because you need ANC turned on to get the best from them.
With up to 30-hours of playback time and earbuds that can play for up to 7.5 hours on a single charge, that’s a lot of power for a pair of earbuds that are beautifully small and well designed in both black and white versions.
The earbuds can be given a quick five-minute burst charge which transforms into one hour of listening. This feature is useful if you are about to go for a run and forgot to charge your earbuds.
When it comes to wearing comfort, the PistonBuds Pro feel comfortable in the ear thanks to a 33-degree angle design and a choice of shallow silicone ear tips in a range of four sizes, making them ideal for use whilst exercising. As well as being comfortable to wear, the PistonBuds Pro have an IPX5 water-resistance rating so no excuses for not going jogging in the rain. The earbuds have also been given a UV coating to keep them looking good.
Finally, there’s a low-latency Gaming Mode that can be switched on using the 1MORE app. When this is switched on, the bit rate drops slightly to give virtually zero latency and that means gaming sounds or movie dialog remain in sync with the audio signal.
Like virtually all true wireless earbuds, the PistonBuds Pro have built-in microphones for picking up the user’s voice when making phone calls or taking part in a video meeting. The PistonBuds Pros use an intelligent DNN (Deep Neural Network) algorithm that works with the two microphones in each earbud to make the user’s voice sound clearer and to filter out unwanted background noise.
Verdict: The 1MORE PistonBuds Pro are a great-looking pair of earbuds with excellent build quality and bags of features that are designed to improve the user’s listening experience. Along with Sonarworks’ SoundID technology, the PistonBuds Pro should deliver a sparkling sound. However, for my ears, the default sound straight out of the box was thin and harsh. Once I’d done the SoundID calibration and turned on the ANC function, the sound was far better so I don’t understand why the default sound couldn’t have been better. That said, these are pretty good earbuds if you want ANC and a choice of EQ Presets to get the sound you like. There’s a lot here for the money but there are a lot of great true wireless earbuds with ANC for around the same price from the likes of Tribit and Tronsmart.
Pricing & Availability: The 1MORE PistonBuds Pro are available now from Amazon and cost $69.99. UK readers can grab a pair from Amazon UK for £64.99. To celebrate the launch, 1MORE is offering a $15 discount for the next 30 days using the discount code ‘PistonPro15’. UK buyers can get a £15 discount for the next 15 days using the same code.
More info: 1MORE.com
- Model No: ES302
- Drivers: 10mm dynamic
- Playtime: 5 hours (ANC on) 7.5 hours (ANC off)
- Total playtime with case: 30 hours
- Impedance: 16Ω
- Wireless range: 10m
- Bluetooth version: 5.2
- Bluetooth profiles: HFP, A2DP, AVRCP
- Audio codecs: SBC, AAC
- Earbud weight: 4.5g
- Case weight: 30.5g
- Gross weight: 39.5g
- Charging time: 2 hours
- Charging method: USB-C