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OnePlus’ $20 Bullets are the USB-C earbuds to buy

OnePlus’ $20 Bullets are the USB-C earbuds to buy


Irresistible value, comfort, and sound

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OnePlus Type-C Bullets
OnePlus Type-C Bullets.
Photo by Vlad Savov / The Verge

OnePlus wasn’t the company to start the great headphone jack extinction, but as of right now, it has the best solution with its newly released Type-C Bullets earbuds. I’ve had a pair of these $19.99 earphones for a few weeks, and I’ve found myself relying on them more and more. They work with my Mac and Windows laptops, they plug into every Android phone, and they’re tiny and simple enough to stash in any pocket. Basically, they’re the thing we used to have with 3.5mm analog connections, right down to the unbelievable price-to-performance ratio. These are now the essential pair of USB-C earbuds that everyone should own.

Only a month ago, I was singing the praises of Google’s $30 Pixel USB-C buds, which remain a very comfortable and pleasant listen. At the time, they were also priced far below the market for decent USB-C earphones, and thus, they were super attractive. OnePlus is completely undercutting all of that with its Type-C Bullets. These have better sound quality, excellent noise isolation (which the Pixel buds have almost none of), a tighter but no less comfortable fit in the ear, and a price that’s a third less.

The OnePlus USB-C Bullets are perfectly designed for the most common usage scenarios for earbuds of their kind. When all you want from your music is aural background filler to tune out a noisy commute or lively office, you just pop these in. I find them supremely comfortable, and I’ve worn them for multiple hours at a time without experiencing fatigue.

I’m a stickler for good sound, and the USB-C Bullets couldn’t keep my attention if they didn’t perform on this front. The way they’re tuned is extremely warm and friendly to the listener. Every potentially piercing or upsetting note in a recording is tamed by these earphones, while bass is given primacy in the mix. You might call this sound blunted, and it can occasionally be unexciting, but I find it to be an absolute pleasure in use. OnePlus’ bass has an addictive quality to go with its voluminous quantity. If you primarily listen to hip-hop like Jay Z’s The Black Album or electronic music like Home’s Full Sound, you’ll love these.

At their price, the USB-C Bullets are difficult to criticize. They have an extremely basic wire, which picks up kinks and doesn’t have strain relief at either the buds or the USB-C jack. But that’s right in line with anything else you can get for less than $20, and the wire does include a built-in mic, remote control, and DAC. OnePlus’ bass-heavy sound is something you’ll either love or forgive, depending on your preferences.

Just go ahead and buy a pair. These are the best deal this Black Friday, even without any discounts.

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