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Treblab Z7 Pro Review Touch Control ANC Headphones With Awareness Mode

 

The Treblab Z7 Pro are budget ANC headphones with premium construction and flagship features! The front sides of the earcups are lined with PU leather and the right earcup integrates a touch sensitive panel designed to control functions via taps and swipes. You can control play/pause, track skipping, volume, anc/ambient modes, voice assistant, calls (answer/end/reject) and awareness mode. If you like the touch control functionality of true wireless earbuds, you will like the Z7 Pro headphones as the touch control panel is just as responsive, requiring only a light touch to activate.


As well as touch controls, there is a rubbery 3-button rocker that provides a soft tactile feedback. The rocker has a slight depression in the centre button, although it's not very pronounced so, it's not easy to locate sometimes. Next to the rocker, there is a non-recessed 3.5mm headphone jack and USB-C charging port. There is also a status led, which blinks during audio playback.


The Z7 Pro headphones use hybrid anc microphones (two of them) to block external sounds coming into the headphones, as well as two "enc" microphones to minimize background during calls. Voice calls come in loud and clear. The mics perform well in loud environments too, although the noise reduction algorithm is tuned for environmental type sounds rather than voices.


Like most anc headphones, when you turn on anc you also get a boosted bass response, which is a by-product of the active noise cancellation signal sealing off the earcups. Speaking of earcups, the earpads are oval-shaped with firm memory foam padding - very comfy and don't pressed too hard, thanks to the low/medium clamping force of the headband. The inner hole is large and lined with lighter material so, the earcups don't heat/sweat as much. The inner hole measures 6cm high, 4cm wide with 2cm depth to the drivers, which are covered with thin fabric material.


The Z7 Pro headband measures 2cm wide and, it's thinly padded on top and bottom with soft foam padding. The headband uses a plastic ratchet band reinforced with a metal band. It also integrates tilting yokes for the earcups and a swivel/folding hinge to rotate the earpads flat and fold them inward for transportation. While a volume test done via YouTube may not be the most scientific, you can really feel how powerful the Z7 Pro headphones are. The drivers put out very impressive sound with rich vocals, punchy bass and clean treble. The stock sound signature should appeal most people, although EQ app support would have been nice for tweaking the sound.


You will hear voice alerts when activating anc and ambient/transparency mode. You can turn off both anc and ambient/transparency sound off, which is nice as this allows you to enjoy audio using the natural passive noise isolation of the earcups, which is good. As far as anc/ambient sound performance, anc works well at blocking bass type sounds, traffic and deep rumbles (e.g. construction work) as long as they aren't too high pitched and variable like people's voices. 


Ambient mode works well too, letting external sounds into the earcups so, it feels a bit like wearing on-ear/open-back headphones. Ambient/transparency mode is a plus also for situational awareness and when talking to people. Speaking of awareness, the Z7 Pro headphones integrate a function called "awareness mode", which is a neat feature you typically get with some noise protection earplugs.


The way awareness mode works on the Treblab Z7 Pro headphones is very easy. You simply rest the front of the palm flat, pressing up against the front of the touch control panel to activate it. The smart circuitry automatically lowers the volume of the audio you're listening, while simulatanously turning on ambient sound so, you can effectively talk to people without having to remove the headphones. When you're done talking to someone, simply remove the hand from the touch control area and the volume automatically goes back up to the level you had it set to.


Treblab's Z7 Pro Awareness mode works really well and without delay. It happens almost instantenously. Awareness mode is much better than using standalone ambient/transparency mode because of the audio volume reducing factor. Aside from more expensive headphones like Bose's QuietComfort 45, which integrate Awareness mode, most anc headphones on the market don't integrate it so, if you're looking for more affordable headphones alternatives that integrate awareness mode, Treblab's Z7 Pro is a good option and, they only cost 1/3 of the price.


A few things you can and cannot do with the Treblab Z7 Pro headphones. You cannot use the Treblab Z7 Pro headphones in bluetooth mode whilst charging but, you can use them in wired mode whilst charging. You can use the headphones in wired mode when the battery is empty. Charging the Treblab Z7 Pro headphones takes 2.5 hours and there is quick charge support. From a quick 10-20 minute recharge, you can get 5 hours worth of playtime. Battery life is very good too. With anc off, you can get round 43 hours (at 50% volume) and with anc on, you can achieve 30 hours of playtime. You cannot play/pause and track skip in wired mode.


The Z7 Pro are equipped with Bluetooth 5.0 chip, which supports AAC, aptX, aptX HD and SBC codecs, as well as multipoint connection and absolute bluetooth volume. The Z7 Pro weigh 246 grams. the included audio cable weighs 13 grams and measures 1 meter long. There is also a short charging cable included. The Z7 Pro status led turns white in ambient mode and green in anc mode. When anc and ambient mode are turned off, you only see a blue flashing light, which is the bluetooth status led . It's useful that the led has been designed this way as this allows you to quickly see at a glance whether you forgot to turn off anc/ambient mode. The Treblab Z7 Pro headphones also integrate a battery status voice alert that anounces the battery level in numerical percentage (i.e. "battery level 100%")


The user guide that it's included with the Z7 Pro is worth mentioning because it's very good. A lot of user guides tend to be in "short excerpt" form or diagram form. While simple, these types of user guides aren't very user friendly. The Z7 Pro's user guide is very detailed, explaining at great length every aspect of the Z7 Pro so, you learn everything about the headphones. There is a also a troubleshooting section.


While the ANC performance may not be on Sony/Bose's level nor is the price tag! The Z7 Pro fares well agaisnt flagship headphones when it comes to sound and comfort. The only minor thing holding back the Z7 Pro headphones is the packaging design, which is a bit plain and budget-looking. A more eye catchy, premium design would really propel the Z7 Pro closer to flagship status, just on the stregth of the audio quality and comfort alone.


The included hardshell case, it's a Treblab branded one and very snazzy. It has a rugged waterpoof exterior and soft lining inside it. The zipper is not waterproof but has reverse coil teeth that will help minize water ingress. The metal zip slider has a rubber pulltab. Internally, the case isn't preformed and has a large velcro fastened mesh pocket, which means you could potentially use the case as a tech organizer, which is a plus. The case weighs 162 grams and measures 21cm long, 17cm wide and 5.5cm high (5cm internally). You can buy the Treblab Z7 Pro directly from Treblab.

 

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