The Tribit QuietPlus noise cancelling headphones are a third of the cost of similarly spec’d headphones from big brands like Bose and Sony. They have a compact foldable design, up to 30 hours of battery life and support the higher quality aptX and AAC codecs.
I’ll briefly run through their features before discussing how they sound and just how effective their active noise cancellation is? And you’ll be able to hear for yourself in the sound tests that I’ve recorded with binaural microphones. I’ll also be comparing them to the popular Taotronic BH046s I reviewed recently.
Inside the box you get a hard case with the headphones themselves, a USB-C charging cable, a 3.5mm audio cable for a wired connection and an instruction manual. There’s no included airline adapter.
Their foldable design makes them quite compact measuring 175mm by 135mm by 70mm when folded, with their length increasing to 190mm when unfolded. Both ear cups snap into position with a positive click.
They have a clean understated design with a matte black finish and subtle Tribit branding on each ear cup, which is more oval than round. Their design is similar to Bose’s QuietComfort headphones.
These are cheaper than big brand noise cancelling headphones from Bose and Sony, but they’re still more expensive than some ANC headphones I’ve tested recently from MPOW and Taotronics. But they do look and feel quite premium with no creaking and seem like they could take a bit of abuse, although they don’t have any IPX weather proof rating.
The headband expands with positive clicks only needing a small amount of expansion for my head. The inside of the ear cups are clearly labelled L and R which is a nice touch.
The synthetic ear cup pads aren’t as thick as some, but feel comfortable. As does the headband, which uses the same material. I did find I got quite hot ears with extended use on a long train journey.
The ear cups don’t rotate but do have a small amount of movement around a central pivot and I was able to get a comfortable fit, although they are on the smaller size, just fitting around my ears.
They are fairly light at 260g, around 30g lighter than the Taotronics, and apart from getting hot ears as previously mentioned, are barely noticeable most of the time.
The headphones are charged via the latest USB-C port which is always nice to see. You can use the supplied USB-A to USB-C cable but they’ll also charge with a dual ended USB-C cable which isn’t always the case.
The status LED lights red whilst charging and turns blue when fully charged which took three hours from completely flat.
They are meant to support relatively fast charging up to 1A, but I got less than a third of that with various chargers I tried them with, even when they were empty.
The left ear cup has no controls, just the ANC microphone and two vent holes at the bottom.
The right ear cup has the power button with the volume controls either side, the ANC switch which turns on with an accompanying blue status LED, a 3.5mm audio in port for a wired connection with the supplied cable, the USB-C charging port, and the microphone for voice calls. Like the left ear cup there’s also the ANC microphone and vent holes.
You can turn on ANC without powering on the headphones and even with a wired connection. It’ll also work while the headphones are charging. But although you can listen over a wired connection while the headphones are charging, you can’t use the headphones wirelessly.
To pair to the headphones turn them on with a long press of the power button until the status LED flashes red and blue indicating they’re in pairing mode. Tap on Tribit QuietPlus in your device’s Bluetooth settings.
To pair to a second device, turn them off with another long press and then again enter pairing mode. Turn the headphones off. When you turn them back on, they’ll connect to both devices. You can now switch between your two paired devices by pausing playback on one device, and starting playback on the other.
You can connect to another device in the same way – the headphones will drop one of your previous connections.
If you want to reset the headphones and delete all pairing records, plug them into your charger. Press and hold the power button and volume plus button together for 5 seconds. The status LED will flash blue for a couple of seconds, which is difficult to see with the red charging LED but you’ll also hear the headphones beep twice. When you unplug them and power them on, the status LED will flash red and blue indicating they’re reset and ready for pairing. You’ll need to “Forget” any previous connections in your device’s Bluetooth settings.
The controls are well placed. I could use my right thumb to feel for the ANC switch, volume controls and power button, which is slightly recessed below the volume buttons.
The power button has multiple functions, more than I’d like. A short press will pause and resume playback or handle phone calls. A double press and triple press are used to skip tracks forwards and backwards respectively. I always prefer a long press of the volume buttons for this function. Which on these headphones just adjusts volume continuously.
A one second press of the power button activates your voice assistant. But press it too long and you’ll switch the headphones off.
I’ve already discussed the ANC switch which is also conveniently placed, but like most of the ANC headphones I’ve tried, it’s all too easy to leave the ANC on and drain the battery.
Audio quality & performance
The 40mm drivers deliver a very good, well balanced sound with a wide range of music I tried. They have excellent clarity whilst still maintaining good bass and mids sound particularly good. There’s little distortion even at maximum volume, which is louder than I can comfortably listen at. The Taotronics have slightly more bass, but at the expense of some clarity, and they’re not as loud.
I found that overall the headphones sounded better with ANC turned on. The bass is more controlled and they have slightly improved clarity. But for some music, you might prefer the more open sound with ANC off. They also support the higher quality aptX and AAC codecs, depending on your device support, or you can listen with a wired connection for the best sound quality.
There’s no accompanying app to adjust EQ like on more expensive headphones, but you can use your phone’s EQ settings.
You can listen to the headphones in the following sound test, with ANC on and off and also hear how they compare to the Taotronics BH046s. I’ve recorded the sound test with binaural microphones that capture stereo sound, to try and provide the closest representation of what I’m hearing. Please listen with headphones for the best experience. Use the timestamps below to skip ahead if you like.
The headphones have hybrid active noise cancellation, with dual microphones on both ear cups. Together with their passive noise cancellation, they do a decent job of quietning constant background noises like you get on a plane or train, or the noise of an air conditioning unit or dehumidifier. But they’re not so good with the more varied sound of a coffee shop for example.
They certainly don’t completely block out background noise and unsurprisingly they’re nowhere near as effective as headphones which cost over three times the price, like Sony’s 1000XM3s. I found them similar to the Taotronics BH046s and although Apple’s AirPods Pros have much more effective ANC, the additional over ear passive noise cancellation of these headphones results in fairly similar overall noise reduction, and I like be able to listen to music or podcasts in noisy environments without having to have them at maximum volume.
Unfortunately they don’t have any pass through mode, which I’d like to start seeing on more ANC headphones, so they’re not so good if you want to hear what’s going on around you.
You can hopefully hear for yourself the effectiveness of both the passive noise cancellation and active noise cancellation, with the simulated sound of a noisy underground train.
The headphones have a built in microphone on the right cup with Qualcomm’s clear voice capture or CVC version 8.0, and do an ok job in a quiet environment. In a noisy coffee shop, they do struggle a bit, like most headphones I’ve tried.
Battery life is quoted as up to 30 hours, although they don’t state whether this is with ANC on and at what playback volume. In my testing, battery life was extremely good, and I got at least 15 hours at medium to high volume with ANC on. Even accidently leaving ANC on overnight, which is easily done, the headphones still had charge the following day.
They have the latest Bluetooth 5.0 and the connection was reliable and the range was good, easily making it to the next room of my house around 10 metres away.
If you want a good sounding pair of over ear noise cancelling headphones, with a comprehensive feature set and don’t want to pay a lot more money, the Tribit QuietPlus are definitely worth considering, with their compact foldable design, 30 hours of battery life and USB-C charging. And they have probably the best sound I’ve heard from ANC headphones under £100 or $100. They sound well balanced with excellent clarity.
You will have to pay a fair bit more for more effective noise cancellation, but the noise cancellation is still good enough for many situations.
My only minor concern is the price. They are more expensive than both the Taotronics BH046s and MPOW H10s I’ve reviewed recently, which have similar features. Although check the latest price down below – I imagine it will come down when they’ve been around for a while.
I do slightly prefer the sound of the Tribits and they have the latest USB-C charging and higher quality codec support, that neither the Taotronics or MPOWs have.
Don’t forget to take a look at my YouTube video at the top of the page, and subscribe to my YouTube channel where I’m releasing videos every week on the latest technology and how to get the most out of it. If you tap the bell icon when you subscribe you’ll get a notification as soon as I release a video, and there’ll be a link to my site here for the written article. YouTube is also the best place to leave a comment. I read all of them and respond to as many as I can!
Tribit QuietPlus ANC wireless headphones: https://amzn.to/2QFLXkf
TaoTronics TT-BH046 ANC wireless headphones: https://amzn.to/3dnWMBu
Sony WH-1000XM3 noise cancelling wireless headphones: https://amzn.to/2vJLcQ7