Welcome to the next chapter in my ongoing quest to find a pair of Bluetooth headphones that I can use while working out. I’ve tried a few pairs of wired Bluetooth earbuds with limited success, but for a while now, I’ve had my eye on the latest version, the completely wireless style. The QCY Q29 Wireless Bluetooth Headphones looked like a good pair to evaluate, with their relatively small profile and compact charging case. Let’s see how they did! Gadget on!
The QCY Q29 Headphones are available in two color schemes:
- Space Gray (reviewed here)
- Pearl White
Per the Amazon page for the QCY Q29:
- Bluetooth 4.1
- 220 mAh battery provide extend 12 hours music and talking time. 45 mAh battery for each earbud.
- Wireless connect range up to 10 meters (33ft)
- Charge Port: Micro USB
- Earphone Weight (Each): 5.3g
- 12 Month Warranty
I liked the QCY Q29 packaging. It’s compact, with little wasted material, and it is made from 100% recyclable cardboard. Note also that it is sealed with a strip of tape.
- QCY Q29 Bluetooth Earphones
- 220 mAH Charge case
- Micro USB Charging Cable
- 3 Ear Tips
- English User Manual
- Original QCY Package Box
Features & Performance
Initially, the QCY Q29 earbuds were inside their charging case, and my first impression after removing the charging case from the package was, “Wow, this is really small and compact!” I suppose when you don’t have to store any wires, you can save some space. The charging case has a dark gray-tinted, translucent lid, through which you can just make out the Q29s beneath it.
Opening the clamshell-style charging case, I was immediately impressed with the look and style of the Q29 earbuds. Their color and shape compliment the charging case quite well in their dark gray color scheme.
The Q29 earbuds fit down into charging case in separate right and left “pockets” that have been specially shaped for each of them. In the photo above, you can also see that each pocket has two tiny metal contact points that are used to charge the Q29 earbuds. More on this below.
Above, a pic of the QCY Q29 earbuds. I really like the look and styling. They are dark grey glossy hard plastic on the front, with buttons that are slightly softer to distinguish them by touch from the other parts of the earbuds.
In the photos above and below, you can see that the Q29 earbuds have removable soft silicone ear canal tips. They came from the factory with the middle-sized tips attached. You can also see from the photos above and below that, in my excitement to begin photographing the QCY Q29 earbuds, I forgot to remove the thin plastic film that covered the tiny metal charging ports that mate with the metal pins inside the charging case. Oops.
The Q29 earbuds have an interesting shape. They are not the smallest wireless earbuds I’ve ever seen, but they are small, and their overall square, yet generously rounded shape gives them soft contours for fitting in your ear.
Initial pairing of the Q29 earbuds with my iPhone was fairly simple. Per the instructions, pulling the earbuds from the charging case activates them. So I started by pulling the right Q29 earbud from case charging case, then putting it into pairing mode by holding down its button on for several seconds. Next, I selected “QCY_Q29” and pairing for the right earbud was accomplished. Pairing the left earbud involved pulling it from the case and holding its button down for several seconds to put it into pairing mode. It automatically found the right earbud and paired with it. Good to go.
However, here is where I found the QCY Q29 to be very frustrating. I couldn’t keep them paired, with my phone or with each other. I would put them back in the charging case, assuming they were charging properly. But when I would pull them out of the case to use them, they would have lost their paring with my iPhone. I would them have to go through the entire above routine again. Occasionally this would work, but more than half of the time, the left earbud would refuse to pair per the above process. Often I would go through the routine above several times only to be frustrated that it was not working, give up and angrily put them back into my workout bag. No bueno.
I have to admit that I was really not quite sure exactly how to wear the QCY Q29 earbuds. My initial thought was to place them like in the image above and below, with the “QCY” logo in a readable position.
The Q29 earbuds felt the most stable in this position because I was able to somewhat tuck them down into my ear. In addition, the tiny microphone hole was facing forward toward my mouth, so it was in the best position to answer phone calls.
However, as you can imagine, this position was not very stable, and it also significantly reduced their ability to answer phone calls because the microphone hole was directed away from my face. Honestly, the Q29s were fine for sitting at my desk while working, but not very stable for exercising. After a while, once the sweat started flowing, they would start to slide out and I’d have to constantly push them back in. In fairness, I have had this problem virtually with every other pair of earphones or earbuds that I have tried for working out, and I suspect my issue is larger than average ear canals.
As mentioned at the outset, one of the aspects of the QCY Q29 that I really liked was its small, slim charging case.
The Q29 earbuds can be placed in the case, which serves two functions, both storage, and charging. In order to charge the earbuds while in the case, the case has its own on-board battery. The micro-USB to USB charging cable is then plugged into the back of the Q29’s case and this charges both the case’s on-board battery as well as the earbuds themselves.
When everything is working properly and the Q29s are fully charged, the tiny LEDs on each earbud are lit in a white color, indicating that they are ready to go with a full charge, as seen in the images above and below.
However, much more often I found it very difficult to position the left earbud properly so that it could charge in the case. What I would see was more like in the image above, in which the right earbud has charged fully, but the left earbud did not charge, or only partially charged. This was another frustrating aspect of the Q29s.
The QCY Q29 was a mixed bag for me. I really like the appearance, size and styling of the product. The small, slim charging case with its transparent lid, the shape and size of the earbuds themselves, even the colors and textures were all quite appealing to me. They did fit in my ear a bit strangely; they were perfectly fine for sitting at my desk listening to tunes, but for working out, they were not ideal and I would have to continually shove them back in. Additionally, it was difficult to keep the left earbud fully charged because I couldn’t seem to position it properly in the charging case. Finally, and most frustrating, the QCY Q29 would not stay paired with my iPhone. I would have to manually re-pair them constantly, and even then the left one often refused to pair. All in all the QCY Q29 was a bit disappointing to me, especially because I really wanted it to work well.
Source: The sample for this review was provided by QCY. Please visit their online retailer, Amazon, for more info, to check pricing or to order.