Tronsmart Apollo Bold Review
A full featured budget TWS for the bass lovers.
Pros: – Suitable for bass lovers without loosing overall fidelity
– Active noise cancellation that works well
– Ambient pass through
– Configurable touch controls
– Good battery life
– Good build quality
– Budget friendly
Cons: – Not suitable for the purist
– Fixed equalizer non user configurable
– Several stability issues
Tronsmart Apollo Bold TWS
A TWS for the bass lovers
To be honest we didn’t know anything about Tronsmart and their products until they called out for reviewers here at Headfi for their latest product a budget friendly TWS iem with the name Apollo Bold.
Specs and photos were promising so we applied for the review and luckily we were selected so Tronsmart provided a free sample of Apollo Bold to be reviewed.
Tronsmart Audio never asked for a favorable review or any other kind words.
As always our subjective but honest review is provided below after an extensive testing period.
Apollo Bold TWS
The Apollo Bold is a true wireless stereo plus ear bud with active noise cancellation and a very affordable price of 100€ for the EU market but with the almost always active promo coupon they can be bought as low as 80€.
You can find them at Amazon.de
Specs are really impressive as the Apollo Bold features a 10mm customized graphene driver driven by the latest Qualcomm flagship QCC5124 chip with aptX , bluetooth 5.0 and 6 microphones together with True wireless Stereo Plus technology and low latency.
True wireless stereo plus means that each unit gets its own signal from the supported device so that there is no master / slave relationship and each one can be used independently to answer calls.
The obvious benefit except for the better sound quality is that when the one ear bud runs out of battery we can use the other one.
Touch control is supported plus an auto pause feature when they are taken out and resume when you put them back in.
Dustproof and waterproof IP45 rating allows for use under all conditions without the risk of damaging the units.
Battery rating is up to 10 hours for the ear buds plus another 30 hours from the charging case which supports quick charging from the usb C port.
Inside the package we find three pairs of ear tips , a carrying pouch and a usb charging cable.
Build quality and fit
The round shaped ear buds are discreet enough and offer a good fit that could be better and more stable if the nozzle was a bit longer.
The supplied ear tips are not enough to tailor the fit and double flanges would be a nice addition.
Weight is about 7g for each unit and 54g with the charging case as for build quality it is very good but not premium made from hard plastic with nice finish and touch really nothing to complain about for the asking price.
Usability and features
The Apollo Bold is supported by a specific application for Android and iOS which allows for OTA firmware upgrades , features a five preset fixed equalizer and offers us the ability to fully customize the touch controls.
The touch control system is pressure free and very responsive so we didn’t experience any problems controlling the Apollo Bold.
Connection is very stable but there are some minor problems here and there like for example the ear buds will not automatically reconnect after they are pulled out and then back in to the ears or sometimes manual connection was required after a charging cycle.
Voice assistance is supported and call quality is good and crystal clear both for the caller and the answerer.
The noise cancelling system is a simple on / off one plus an ambient feature and both perform surprisingly well as the first option will effectively block the outside noise by a fair amount of dB and the second will mostly block low frequency noise while allowing for voices and other sounds to be heard.
The music reproduction is not affected with the main effect being some kind of raise to the overall volume we even preferred to listen with the ANC on as in contrast to some other reviewers opinion we thought that it even tightens the bass.
Real life battery is surely lower than the advertised one but still very good as we were able to have about a full 6 hours of mixed usage and with the charging case we didn’t need to charge for about 4 days.
Listening to music
The default tuning of the Apollo Bold is with a bass emphasis above the neutral point so we can call them bass heavy.
There is a very full sounding low end with great extension down to the sub bass with great dynamics and rumble.
Now don’t expect audiophile quality sound as this isn’t the tightest nor the most clear and layered bass performance.
But the good news is that despite the bass amplification there is only a little bleed to the mid-bass and the rest of the frequencies sound surprisingly clear without getting fogged by the bass.
So this is a bassy headphone done well because we can equally experience mid and higher frequencies clarity with ample detail resolution and an airy and spacious presentation.
There is the usually expected loss of high register fidelity due to the bluetooth connection but other than that the Apollo Bold is a well executed basshead ear bud.
But audiophiles don’t step away as we managed to fine tune the sound to our liking with the use of the Jazz equalizer preset and the ANC on , managing to have satisfying results at least for on the go listening sessions.
Fine tuning is going to be even better if Tronsmart will offer us a user defined equalizer with a future firmware update.
Compared to the Sennheiser CX 400BT
Compared to the three times more expensive Sennheiser CX 400BT the Apollo Bold manages to stand strong.
For a much lower price we get active noise cancellation with ambient feature , true wireless stereo plus performance , better battery life especially from the charging case and almost the same kind of fit and build quality plus the IP rating.
The Sennheiser on the other hand offers an even balanced and natural tonality with a touch of brightness that is , more stable connection and performance and last but not least a far superior fully customizable equalizer.
So as always judge your needs and budget before the final decision.
Compared to the RHA Trueconnect 2
The RHA is two times more expensive than the Apollo Bold and it’s main advantage is that it sounds great despite the lack of aptX codec.
It is the most balanced of the three with a very cohesive presentation and pleasing tonality suitable for all kinds of music.
The other notable features are better IP55 protection and greater battery life especially from the charger but this comes at a cost as it is heavier and bulkier.
The Apollo Bold takes a leap in all the other features as the RHA don’t offer active noise cancellation , you can’t configure the touch controls or apply equalizer due to the lack of a dedicated application and are a little bulkier because of the extra antenna.
So again judge carefully before you buy.
At the end
The Apollo Bold is not by any means a bad performing TWS ear bud but on the contrary it packs all the features a modern TWS should have for a bargain price.
Surely there is room for performance improvements through future firmware upgrades but the only thing that holds it from being truly outstanding is it’s coloured sound signature.
But let’s not forget that one person’s craziness is another person’s reality so if you are a fan of heavy bass presentation this is the TWS to have without breaking the bank and not missing a single feature.
As always rating is according to the asking price.
Copyright – Laskis Petros 2020