Soundcore Sport X10 wireless earbuds review: Waterproof sports buds with surprising sound quality
Anker Soundcore’s latest earbuds tick all the boxes for active users but can they also cut it when it comes to audio fidelity?
⊕ IPX7 waterproofing is ideal for sports use
⊕ Punchy, solid sound with plenty of power
⊕ Better ANC than you might expect
⊕ Plenty of fitting options mean a secure experience
⊖ Touch controls would be the icing on the cake
Anker’s Soundcore Sport X10 wireless earbuds are designed for use while exercising and come in black or white, with a red version to be launched soon.
There are two key features that reflect the sport-centric design, the first being the over-ear hooks, which can be rotated up to 210 degrees to give you the best possible fit for your ear shape, along with the five differently sized ear tips included in the box. The second is an impressive IPX7 water resistance rating, meaning they can be washed under a tap with no qualms. There’s also a feature called SweatGuard, though in practice this is likely just a fancier name for waterproofing.
You open the charging case with a button, which ensures it doesn’t spring open during while you’re running, for example. The case charges over USB, with a USB-C to USB-A cable in the box, and the buds provide eight hours of battery life with an extra 24 in the case for a pleasing total of 32. Support for fast charging means a 10 minute charge will get you two hours of playback in an emergency – more than enough for the average run or gym session.
There’s a pairing button on the case and setting up is a breeze. They use the newer Bluetooth 5.2 standard and, though only AAC and SBC codecs are supported, listening during exercise doesn’t demand a supreme level of fidelity so you don’t miss the more data-heavy codecs. Had Soundcore included higher Bluetooth codecs, the price would likely be higher due to hardware requirements.
That’s not to say the Sport X10s don’t sound premium, though. In fact, they sound remarkably clear and crisp with a well-balanced soundstage from their 10mm drivers. Soundcore’s BassUp system can be used to push the low end and, although this is a bit much for regular listening, it’s more suitable for exercise when your heart and lungs are doing their own pounding. In the Soundcore mobile app, you can change the BassUp setting and choose from 22 preset EQ curves or a 9-band custom EQ.
The buds have a total of six mics that power not only the very serviceable voice calling but also noise cancelling, which works more effectively than you might expect from such affordable earbuds. A combination of button presses switches between noise cancelling and transparency modes, the latter particularly important when running in public places. There are no touch surfaces sadly, just regular buttons, but you can customise button behaviour in the app to an extent, as well as activate a Wind mode to deal with making calls in bad weather.
Anker Soundcore has made the right choices with its Sport X10s. The price is sensible but they boast important features for sports use, such as a secure fit and waterproofing, and they sound truly impressive, with long-lasting battery life.
- 32 hours total battery life
- Bluetooth 5.2 with SBC and AAC codecs
- IPX7 waterproofing
- 210-degree rotatable ear hooks, 5 ear tip sizes
- Active noise cancelling and transparency modes
- Companion app with customisable EQ
- BassUp technology for bass boost
- 6 microphones onboard
- USB charging case
- Voice calling
- Contact Soundcore
- Buy: Amazon UK, Soundcore
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