Transparent design has become a new trend in electronics ever since Nothing gadgets blew up. The RedMagic 8 Pro that we recently reviewed also had transparent elements incorporated in its design, which definitely added something unique to the phone’s overall look.
Many brands decided to jump on the bandwagon since, and Acefast is one of them. In this review, we’ll tell you about the latest true wireless earbuds by Acefast inspired by Nothing Ear (1) design. Let’s check out the Crystal (2) T8 model, so you can decide whether you should buy them as your next earphones.
Acefast Crystal (2) T8 Earbuds: First Impressions & Specs
While most modern smartphones look increasingly similar, earbuds manufacturers strive for authenticity, coming up with new trends and innovative designs. Being able to see the inside of your gadgets might be my favorite trend yet.
Acefast Crystal (2) T8 is a TWS headset that will catch the attention of the people around you. These lightweight earbuds are pleasant to look at and nice to touch. But once you get past the flashy design, you wonder whether the contents correspond with the looks.
Before we dive into the Acefast T8 review, here’s the full list of tech specs of these earbuds:
- Type: in-ear true wireless earbuds
- Weight: 0.4oz headset only, 1.65oz total (11g / 47g)
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.3, USB-C
- Audio codecs: SBC/AAC
- Frequency response: 20Hz~20kHz
- ANC: no
- Speaker: coaxial aluminum moving coil, 10mm drivers, 6mm dome tweeters
- Water resistance rating: IPX4 (splash resistant)
- Color options: bright black, ice blue, mint green, lotus pink, alfalfa purple, white moon
- Battery: 45mAh headset battery + 480mAh charging case battery
- Price: $69.99 (on sale) on the Acefast website and $66.59 on Amazon
Design and Unpacking
The earbuds come in six different color variations – black, white, blue, green, pink, and purple – all of them with transparent bits that expose the insides of the charging case and the buds. We had the ice blue version for testing.
What’s in the Box
Here’s everything you’ll find when unpacking your Acefast earbuds:
- Crystal T8 earbuds by Acefast
- Charging case
- USB-C cable
- Silicone case + silicone lanyard
- Four pairs of different size ear tips + storage box
- User Manual
The charging case has a 3D LED digital display that features breathing light and shows the remaining battery percentage on the case and each earbud. When you remove one of the earbuds from the charge, only the other half of the display is lit up. When you put the two earbuds back, the indicators on both sides of the display light up.
All of that is most likely inspired by the Nothing Ear (1) design. However, what makes the Acefast earbuds different here is how the buds attach to the charging case – via magnets on each side. When the earbuds attach, they make a distinctive click. During testing, I often found myself repetitively taking earbuds out of the case and putting them back. I can only compare that to a fidget spinner. If you’re a fidgeter like me, you’ll enjoy this.
The half-transparent case doesn’t have any buttons on it, and you can only control the earbuds via the touch controls on the buds themselves. It’s a shame, as I feel like a physical button allowing you to turn the display on and check the battery level would be a great addition. As it stands now, you have to take out one of the earbuds to switch on the display.
Each earbud weighs 5.5 grams, and the total weight of the buds with the charging case is 47 grams. These aren’t the lightest earbuds I’ve tested, but they’re definitely on the smaller side and compact enough to carry them in your jeans pocket.
The case is made of plastic and feels solid and smooth. The earbuds don’t fall out of the case and stay in once you put them there. On the bottom of the charging case, you’ll find a Type-C charging port. The earbuds have white lights on them that light up while charging or connecting.
The accessories are where Acefast Crystal T8 shines. When unpacking your earbuds, you’ll find three different compartments, each with a different add-on for your Crystal T8. You’ll find a silicone gel case matching your earbuds, a lanyard strap, and the extra silicone ear tips housed in a separate plastic container.
While the extra accessories are a nice touch, they mostly seem useless. The lanyard and the protective silicone case are both something I’d love when I was a kid, so they may be a good addition if you’re gifting these earbuds to a child. But the plastic storage box for the ear tips is utterly pointless, and you can bin it right after you’re finished with the unboxing experience.
The package also contains an extra leaflet with all the Acefast products and promo images. Overall, it’s a nice idea to put some thought into unique accessories, but in this particular case, they seem not very well thought through.
Audio Quality & Features
Regarding the listening experience, Acefast T8 delivers a pretty decent sound quality. Remember that these aren’t audiophile-grade earphones but rather a basic headset for everyday listening.
The earbuds come with 10mm drivers with an aluminum moving coil and 6mm dome tweeters. The sound produced appears too bassy for my taste. The vocals are clear enough, and the highs sound good, but the mids leave much to be desired. In general, I found that these earphones don’t handle well anything with a lot of musical instruments in them. However, the pop tracks sound fine. An equalizer could be Acefast’s saving grace in terms of audio quality. However, there’s no Acefast app and no such feature available.
When it comes to phone calls, the Acefast T8 works perfectly fine. The wireless earphones provided clear audio and no connectivity issues (tested with an Android smartphone, iPhone, tablet, and MacBook Air).
Once you get past the fascinating translucent design, the Crystal T8 falls a little flat in terms of features. The only audio codecs available are SBC and AAC, with no Hi-Res Audio support. There’s no in-ear/wear detection for pausing and resuming playback when you remove your earbuds and put them back in. There’s also multipoint pairing. The absence of a smartphone app prevents you from tuning the audio or updating your device to the latest firmware. Finally, there’s no ANC (active noise cancelation). Instead, these TWS earbuds have dual microphones on each earbud, offering ENC call noise reduction.
On a positive note, the buds support the latest Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity standard – something missing in the Tribit FlyBuds C1 Pro I reviewed recently. And, of course, the LED display on the charging case is one of my favorite features of the Acefast Crystal (2) T8. Whenever you remove the buds (or a bud) from the case or put them back in, the display lights up for a few seconds to show you the remaining battery. It’s very convenient; you don’t have to dig through your device’s Bluetooth settings to find this information.
Controls & Overall Fit
I have weird ears, and the fit of the earbuds is extremely important to me. The Crystal T8 sits pretty good inside the ears once you find the right size silicone ear tips. However, I wouldn’t run in them or exercise, as they’ll fall out pretty quickly.
The controls on the earbuds proved to be disappointing for me. The controls are done on the top part of both earbuds, and volume controls are the only ones I found very responsive. The rest—pausing the track, skipping songs, as well as answering calls – often took time before registering, and I had to perform them repeatedly to get the earbuds to work.
Having said that, I might be spoiled by having a physical button for controls on the earbuds. So far, that’s the only solution I found working with 100% efficiency when controlling your earbuds.
Since there’s no app allowing you to remap the controls, you have to get used to the Acefast pattern, even if your previous earbuds had a different control scheme.
The battery life of the Acefast T8 is pretty impressive. Each earbud has a 45mAh battery, and the charging case has a 480mAh battery. Crystal T8 has proven to last me about 7 hours on a single charge with continuous music playback and about 4-5 hours in calls mode, corresponding to what is advertised on the Acefast website. The charging case can extend the total listening time up to 30 hours. That’s more than many competitors offer in the same price range.
There’s a fairly short charging cable included with the headset. Full charging from zero takes about 1.5 hours, with every 10 mins of charge giving you two extra hours of usage.
There’s no wireless charging option, so you must be next to a power outlet to plug in your charging cable when the earphones and the case reach zero.
Should You Buy the Acefast Crystal (2) T8 Earbuds?
Acefast Crystal T8 earbuds lack a lot of features that I’ve become accustomed to as a TWS user, like the ANC mode or a smartphone app. But while there are better Bluetooth earbuds in the $100 price range, the Crystal T8 is currently on sale for $60-70, which puts them in a different price category.
As an entry-level headset, the Crystal T8 has plenty of great qualities, including excellent battery life, a magnetic storage case with the LED battery indicator screen, and of course, the stunning translucent design elements that will surely turn heads.