Quick Look: Lypertek PurePlay Z3 True Wireless Earbuds Review 1

Quick Look: Lypertek PurePlay Z3 True Wireless Earbuds Review

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Lypertek Logo

Lypertek is a relatively new brand in consumer audio, so much so that they essentially appeared out of nowhere globally with three similar-sounding products, the MEVI, BEVI, and TEVI. The last one, TEVI, is their true wireless earbuds solution and garnered rave reviews, especially at its going price back then, and things have improved even more with a nice price cut as well as a rebranding. Gone is the TEVI name unless you take a look at the company website, and we instead have the PurePlay Z3. I was working with a local PR firm in the UK on a couple of different things, and they expressed interest in coverage of these having sung praises galore. Thanks again to Lypertek for providing a sample to TechPowerUp over their marketing agency!

At first glance, there is not much to differentiate the PurePlay Z3 from the vast majority of similar true wireless (TWS) earbuds in the market today. Recognizing also that this is not a brand-new product, the rebranding is an effort from the company to have it better fit with its goals to be a leader in consumer audio. Targeting a neutral sound profile, Lypertek wants to offer great battery life and tactile buttons along with good wireless codec support, all at an excellent $69.99. This new, reduced price tag is what mostly got me interested, having used plenty of more expensive TWS earbuds from larger brands, including Audio-Technica, and so here we are taking a quick look at the Lypertek PurePlay Z3.

Packaging and Accessories

The product box comes with a plastic seal all around, and removing it reveals a fairly squarish design with the company logo and product name on the front and on either side of a render of the ear buds. On the back are the salient marketing features listed, and a visual representation of the contents greets us on the side. A single seal keeps the box intact, and then we see a wraparound top that unfurls to reveal the contents inside. Lypertek includes the quick start guide (online copy here) and a thank you note in a separate pouch. The ear buds and case are placed inside a piece of foam that has cutouts to snugly hold the three items, with a tab at the top to help lift this layer to reveal the other accessories underneath.

I do like the unboxing experience of the PurePlay Z3, with clean layers and markings throughout and a good balance of function and form. The final set of accessories come inside a cardboard box with labels which reveal it contains replacement ear tips, and it is placed in a recess customized for the box with more cardboard around for further protection. Lypertek includes three sets of replacement tips, with size S and L silicone tips as well as a set of size M foam ear tips, which are nice to see since these make for a more snug fit with better isolation for those who prefer it or are allergic to silicone.

Closer Look

The case is instrumental to true wireless earphones, providing storage and charging capability at the same time, and the Lypertek version takes on a familiar form factor in the shape of a rounded pill (~80x40x30 mm) that opens in the middle. There is a notch to aid with this, and we see indicator LEDs underneath, on the black plastic rim that goes around to the other side, which has a USB Type-C port for charging underneath a solid hinge. The entire case is out of plastic, but differentiates itself from most others with a well-done fabric finish in a blue color. There is another color option, ivory, which looks more golden in the photos I have seen. A carry strap and the Lypertek logo on top complete the exterior, and opening the box reveals the charging specifications.

The TWS earbuds do not in my opinion set themselves apart visually in the sea of similar-looking products available today, especially from the side. This is a working formula that has been successful, so I can understand adoption of the same. This version is predominantly black, including at the front, with a chrome ring around the tactile button on each bud for accentuation. We see the Lypertek logo and product name as well, and these are small and light enough to where you won't experience fatigue over even longer listening sessions if they fit well. There are indicator LEDs on the front, and a vent to access the integrated microphone on each. The stems are about average in length and come with the medium silicone tips pre-installed. These are a safe default, but I recommend trying the others to be sure. The FlexFit foam tips were the best for me, allowing for a snug and comfortable fit.

There is an 800 mAh battery inside, which is charged at a maximum rate of 700 mA at 5 V and outputs 50 mA at the same voltage for each of the two pods that fit the earbuds. This means seven charging cycles are theoretically possible, but after accounting for electrical losses at each step, six cycles are more realistic.

Setup and Audio

Out of the box, you will need to press and hold the two earbuds for a second to turn them on. An audio message reflecting the status of each earbud is played as well, and a double click turns on pairing mode. A compatible Bluetooth device, of which there are several here owing to the Bluetooth 5.0 LE protocol compatibility, will see and pair with one earbud first before doing the same with the other. This is due to support of Qualcomm's TrueWireless Plus technology, and partly how these earbuds have an automatic battery-based switching mode for uniform battery charging and adaptive switching between the primary and secondary bud. As with the Creative Outlier Gold earphones, there is also mono mode for when you use a single earbud and leave the other in the case.

Battery life is a key metric for TWS earbuds, and these promise 10 hours of use when fully charged. I hit over 9 hours regularly at ~60% volume on my phone, and the included charger provides for another six charge cycles. Charging them with the case takes about 90 minutes, and there is a quick charge mode by default, wherein 15 min gives you up to 2 hours of listening time. The indicator LEDs on the case show the progress of charging the case in 25% increments, which can take much longer depending on the source. The case does not support any quick charging in itself that I saw. Regardless, this makes for very respectable battery lives to where I got a week on average while commuting, going for walks or exercising outdoors over the ~3 weeks of testing. These are also IPx7 waterproof for the more intense physical workouts, or even a quick shower, which makes the PurePlay Z3 a good audio solution for the gym and outdoors.

The buttons on each bud allow for more once paired, including media playback and volume controls, as well as pulling up the OS assistant on iOS and Android. The included microphones are decent for calls and smart assistant voice control, but do feel more like an afterthought compared to the listening hardware, which are a 6 mm graphene drivers, an unnamed Qualcomm 32-bit triple-core Bluetooth audio SoC, an equally unnamed Kalimba DSP and, you guessed it, unnamed DAC/amp combination. In addition to the standard SBC codec, these also support aptX and AAC. Nothing more, which is a shame as I would have liked to see some newer, improved codecs adopted despite the age of the product.

Here's where things stand for audio listening—you are not going to get the deepest bass or fantastic highs. Lypertek tuned the sound signature to a neutral profile. As someone who listens to a lot of classical music and smooth jazz when using these outdoors and sometimes even while writing a review on TechPowerUp, I personally dig this a lot. The neutral profile means you are more likely to hear audio as the creator intended, which in stereo mode and when isolated well makes for a very good listening experience. The sound stage is not very big, and there is distinct separation of the two channels, but you do get detailed notes for orchestral music in particular in return. Vocals take a small hit compared to just about everything else I have on hand, including the Creative Outlier Gold, Audio-Technica CK3TW, CKS5TW, and ANC300TW, and the EVA2020 x final, as well as a couple of other Bluetooth earphones that are not of the true wireless type. For instrumental music in particular, however, this thing hangs with the best of them, and did I mention the rest are all more expensive?

Lypertek wants $89.90 for the black version of the PurePlay Z3and $79.90 for the ivory variant, for customers in the USA, although street pricing seems lower in general at ~$75 for the black version as of the time of writing, which makes the Lypertek PurePlay Z3 a fantastic buy. The company does seem to have distributors and resellers in mostly Europe and Asia, however, where things are arguably even better priced. The only item of note is the company expressing outright that it is not tuned towards bass or treble, so do keep that in ind. I appreciate the battery life and case design even if it does feel quite similar to the Sennheiser Momentum TWS case, and the tactile buttons on each earbud make the controls easy to use on the go as well. The rebranding exercise seems to be taking forever, however, with even the company website still claiming the TEVI name. But be it the TEVI or PurePlay Z3, it should be right up there at the top of your considerations.
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Jun 28th, 2022 20:57 EDT change timezone

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