It’s been a while since Mifo has crossed our desk. The last time was when we checked out the Mifo O5 headphones back in 2019. This time around they’ve sent through their new Mifo S sports earbuds complete with a super intricate design, and small size.
There is no doubt that Mifo’s headphones are aimed at sports enthusiasts. From the packaging, through to the vibrant design of the earbuds case and even the earbuds themselves scream sports. Well, quite literally on the case as it actually saying ‘SPORT & OUTDO’ Though why Mifo decided to go with ‘OUTDO’ instead of ‘OUTDOORS’ left me scratching my head a bit. They could have easily wrapped the green banner around both sides of the case. An odd choice.
The case though as usual acts as the charger, and can provide up to 40 hours of playback, though the earbuds themselves are only capable of around six hours, which in today’s wireless earbuds world is pretty poor, especially considering the cost of these. The case has a button on the front which pops the lid where the headphones can sit and charge, and there’s a battery indicator that flashes for a few seconds letting you know how much juice is left. The case is built fairly well, feels very robust and is nice and smooth to the touch, like holding a metal pebble. I’m not sure how long the hinge on the case will last, being flung open constantly to get your headphones and mine here feels a little loose. It doesn’t sit rigid when open and there’s quite a bit of movement to the lid when moving the case around. There is USB Type-C charging here, and it comes with a nice green cable to match the green aesthetic of the case.
The Mifo S earbuds offer a super snug fit, and while I was jogging with them, had no issues with them falling out of my ears as each foot collided with the ground. They were in there for the long haul, and actually offered a decent level of comfort too. I of course, like all other headphones, used the largest sized earbud I could, to offer that extra noise isolation and also to create a better seal in my ear canal. There are four sizes of earbuds available which follow a small, medium, large and extra-large size guide. Or some may think a pair of them are actually extra small because they are so tiny! Replacing the earbuds though was an absolute nightmare. To the point where I wanted to lob them across the room in frustration. Awful, awful design. It’s almost like the rubber section of the bud that hooks to the driver was far too small for the driver itself.
The earbuds though I actually really like the small sleek design. They’re probably some of the smallest earbuds around, if not the smallest. They’re definitely the smallest we’ve seen here at TechNuovo which is unique in a way. They’re also tipped for a better fit when doing sports. They’re IPX7 rated, so technically you could wear them in the shower, but unfortunately, they’re not good enough for a swim. They also have touch-sensitive controls, and everything is done on the fly rather than through an app which is good and bad in my opinion. No need for an extra app on your phone, but the taps can be a little inconsistent at times, and I had a bit of trouble, especially when it came to tapping each earbud three times to perform an action, let alone five times! All of the actions can be seen below. One standout feature is its low-latency mode, which works especially well if you’re playing games on your phone, like Fortnite or PUBG Mobile.
I tested these headphones mainly while out and about, as they produce somewhat of an active noise cancellation, though this is nowhere near as strong as other premium headphone brands on the market. It does a somewhat good job of reducing ambient noise, but they don’t block out much in all honesty. I could still easily hear cars go by, dogs bark in the distance and other ambient noises typically found when out walking. The ambient mode is basically non-existent too, especially when music is playing. However, I was actually pleasantly surprised with the audio quality of the music I was listening to. For the most part, they favour a very warm sound. Bass tracks very rarely overpower music, though there were a couple of cases, especially listening to hip hop tracks where the base was just very loose and lacked precision. Treble was well controlled and higher-pitched instruments shone through, though vocals seemed a little muted. I would have liked to have had a bit more separation. A few notable tracks I noted down on my phone while out was Marc Cohen’s Walking in Memphis, it lacked that ‘live’ feeling that’s picked up, that slight reverb effect you know? The guitar solo in Radiohead’s Paranoid Android was just lost in the chaotic interlude and the Arctic Monkey’s Mardy Bum fared much better and had a nice mix of twang to the guitars against the bass line, but the snare and rim shots again were just lost and lacked that snap.
Call volume suffers somewhat from sounding a little too quiet, and you’re going to be reaching for the volume up button compared to your mid-volume music. The quality of people speaking to you though down the phone is fine, it’s nothing special here. Again, walking around my local area and taking phone calls I had no problem hearing the caller’s voice, but again, the lack of a decent ANC meant that background noise got in the way.
The Mifo S earbuds are a nice product with a wacky design, and if you’re after a set of earbuds for those evening jogging sessions, these would suit you. I wouldn’t rely to heavily on the ambient mode for traffic awareness while crossing the road, but for audio quality and the slight ANC while listening to music, you’re going to be in your own world. Battery life could be better though for the earbuds. The case though looks great and is built really well. For more information and to purchase the buds for yourself, head over to the Mifo website.