FiiO FW3 inherits the core technology of FiiO FW5 in Full-Link HiFi, and abandons the functions that are not related to HiFi, so that the price is greatly reduced – it becomes a very pure and easier-to-use HiFi TWS earbuds.
FiiO FW3 specs and features:
- Bluetooth 5.2 with AAC/LHDC/aptX Adaptive codec
- 7 hours playback of per charge
- Charging case can charge earbuds fully 2 times
- 10mm carbon-based dome diaphragm dynamic driver
- Comes with 6 sets of eartips, USB-C cable, user manual
- $79 – Check latest price on AliExpress, Amazon US or other Amazon countries
Below this FiiO FW3 review, you will find the soud style and specs comparisons of the FiiO FW5 wireless earbuds.
Appearance Design, Comfort and Control
FiiO FW3 is exactly the same as FiiO FW5 – which helps to control the cost. The charging box is made of plastic material with oil injection process, and the shell feels frosted. There are four power status lights on the front of the charging case, which can display the remaining battery when opening/closing the lid or charging.
The FiiO FW3 earbuds are lightweight and well-made, and the edge gap is well controlled. There are two physical buttons on the outside of the earbuds, which can control volume, play/pause, previous/next song, answer/hang up, pairing, etc. It takes some time to get used to these two buttons during actual use, and it is very convenient to operate after getting used to it.
In addition, FiiO FW3 does not support in-ear detection. The buttons feel a little harder, but the contact area is relatively large, which can prevent false touches and make blind operations easier.
FiiO FW3 uses a 10mm single dynamic driver, and the diaphragm is the carbon-based dome diaphragm. Also, the call noise reduction microphone has changed from two on FiiO FW5 to one.
FiiO FW3 earbuds are relatively light (each 6.1g), with very soft HS18 silicone eartips, there is no discomfort when worn for a long time. FW3 is pre-installed with HS18 eartips – the silicone eartips are soft and skin-friendly, without any foreign body sensation when worn.
The earbud cavity does not have too many parts that fit the ears, and basically rely on eartips to support the stability when wearing. Although the sound of HS18 is looser and more comfortable to wear than ordinary eartips – but when paired with FiiO FW3, it will lead to a more general wearing feeling. And if the size of eartips is not suitable, it is easy to cause low-frequency leakage.
Connectivity, APP and Calls
The transmission stability and call quality of FiiO FW3 are good. The headset uses Bluetooth 5.2 and supports LHDC/SBC/AAC/aptX/aptX Adaptive codec. If you use a Qualcomm chip mobile phone that supports Snapdragon Sound, then after connecting to Bluetooth, a prompt “Device support Snapdragon Sound” will appear on the mobile phone.
Also, FiiO FW3 support multipoint connection, which can connect two bluetooth devices.
FW3 adopts CVC noise reduction technology, combined with aptX-Vioce provided by Snapdragon Sound to improve the call quality of the earbuds, and has a good isolation effect on wind noise and environmental noise.
I personally think that among HiFi manufacturers, FiiO Control APP may be the most stable and the most comprehensive. The functions that can be set in the APP include indicator light on/off, charging protection, audio codec selection, volume adjustment (earbuds volume, prompt volume, call volume), preset EQ and digital filters, etc.
Charging protection can stop the charging after the earbud is charged to 80%, thereby reducing the number of charging cycles of the battery. The choice of codec allows users to obtain a more stable connection in extreme situations. Because FW3 has a built-in independent audio architecture, the volume is low after connecting to bluetooth by default, and the volume needs to be increased manually in the APP.
Battery Life, Games and Videos Playback
The game mode can be turned on in the FiiO Control App. The official claims that the sound delay of the earbuds can be controlled within 100ms. Although it cannot be compared with gaming earbuds and e-sports earbuds, it also meets the game needs of casual players to a certain extent. Using the Latency Test App to conduct multiple tests, the latency of FiiO FW3 is 103ms when the game mode is turned on, and 135ms when it is turned off.
Playing games and watching videos is no problem – it works flawlessly on both Android and iPhone with perfect sound and picture sync.
The battery capacity of the charging case is 380mAh, and the earbud is 65mAh. The single battery life of the earbuds is up to 7 hours, and the total battery life is up to 21 hours. The battery life of FiiO FW3 can only be regarded as very ordinary among TWS earbuds and needs to be improved. Also, FW3 not support wireless charging.
Hardware Configuration, Sound Quality and Preset EQ
FiiO FW3 uses the HiFi architecture of Bluetooth chip + independent DAC chip + sound unit. The AK4332 DAC chip has a built-in decoding function, which can better convert the high-fidelity digital signal received from the Qualcomm QCC5141 bluetooth chip into an analog signal.
Thanks to the 10mm carbon-based dome diaphragm dynamic driver, the vocals of FW3 are thick and full of atmosphere. Compared with the FiiO FW5 with armature driver blessing, it focuses more on the mid-low frequency part.
Also, different digital filters can be set on the APP to change the frequency response characteristics of the sound. Through different music types, selecting different digital filters can enhance the sound quality performance.
Preset EQ is also a very interesting way to play. In the App, you can adjust the sound style you like according to the frequency point and amplitude of the center frequency. And there are three presets of popular, classical, and Harman curves. By default, FiiO FW3’s unique tuning makes it very suitable for listening to some music with a strong sense of rhythm. The mid-frequency density is high, the high-frequency extension is acceptable and not harsh, and it has a fast transient response. The dynamic range and resolution are relatively strong among true wireless earphones. The hearing under the aptX Adaptive codec is very comfortable and transparent. The low-frequency quantity sense is impressive.
FiiO FW3 not only supports SBC/AAC/aptX codec, but the addition of Qualcomm QCC5141 bluetooth chip makes FW3 pass the Snapdragon Sound certification – supports LHDC/aptX Adaptive codec, and the wireless transmission rate reaches the highest 96kHz/24Bit. Also, the LDAC codec can be updated later via OTA.
As a HiFi true wireless earphones, the sound of FiiO FW3 is really good. With the hardware guarantee of AK4332 DAC chip, Snapdragon Sound certification, and professional preset EQ – it makes FiiO FW3 very special in this price range.
Specs Comparison: FiiO FW3 vs. FiiO FW5
|Bluetooth Platform||Qualcomm QCC5141||Qualcomm QCC5141|
|Dynamic Driver||10mm Carbon-Based Dome Diaphragm Dynamic||10mm DLC Dome + PU Diaphragm Dynamic|
|Armature Driver||N/A||Knowles RAD|
|Call Microphone||Electret Capacitor *1||MEMS Microphone *2|
|Call Noise Reduction||Single-Mic CVC Noise Reduction||Dual-Mic CVC Noise Reduction|
|Control Buttons||4 Physical Buttons||4 Physical Buttons|
|Audio Codec||SBC/AAC/aptX/aptX Adaptive/LHDC||SBC/AAC/aptX/aptX Adaptive/LHDC|
|Battery Life||7 – 21 Hours||7 – 21 Hours|
|Sound Style||The sound is more inclined to the mid-low frequency, the vocal is thick, and the atmosphere is sufficient, which is more suitable for the interpretation of vocal and pop music.
The vocal positioning is slightly forward, but it is not close to the ear, and the mouth shape is slightly larger. The timbre is relatively neutral, and the fundamental frequency of the vocal is improved.
|With the support of the armature driver, FW5 has a brighter and clearer mid-high frequency performance. When performing metal percussion instruments, it has a more realistic on-site restoration ability.
Compared with FW3, the female voice of FW5 has more line sense. There is not too much coloration in the mid-low frequency, and the low-frequency quantity is not much, which reduces the influence on the turbidity of the mid-frequency. The overall sound style is a high-fidelity and high-resolution tuning route.