To summarise this LG Tone Free FN7 review: despite looking quite plain, they are a fantastic pair of noise-cancelling earbuds with a UVNano charging case that claims to kill 99.9% of bacteria.
Household name, LG, have been fuelling the tech industry since 1958. They’re one of the most trusted brands there is when it comes to consumer electronics. Last year’s FN6 earbuds were no exception- their UVnano self-cleaning technology made us sit up and take notice. But they did lack one feature everyone has come to expect in a pair of wireless earbuds, active noise cancellation.
Attempting to build on the popularity of their predecessor, the LG Tone Free FN7 wireless earbuds have finally added ANC to the mix, making this pair of headphones a serious contender in T3’s list of the best true wireless earbuds.
LG Tone Free FN7 review: price and availability
Available now, you can pick up a pair of the LG Tone Free FN7 directly from LG for $179.99 in the US, £149.98 in the UK and AU$249 in Australia. Prices elsewhere vary so check the widgets to find out more.
They’re slightly more expensive than the LG Tone Free FN6 earbuds at launch, which were priced at $150 / £130 / AU$280.
LG Tone Free FN7 review: build quality, design and battery life
With a discreet dangling stem, the LG Tone Free FN7 look like the Apple Airpods Pro’s cheaper alternatives. In black, they're quite plain and there's really nothing that gives these the wow-factor. They’re tiny in size, with each earbud measuring 16.2x32.7x26.8mm and weighing only 5.6g each. Water and sweat-resistant with an IPX4 rating, they can withstand a few splashes but won’t survive being fully submerged in water. Each earbud has three microphones to help reduce noise and cancel out any echo.
On the stem is a small ridge, which is where the touch controls are located. The touch controls are very sensitive which meant I did accidentally pause my music a few times just by brushing my hand past them. Luckily though there’s a setting in the Tone Free app to lock the touchpad settings. Controlling them is simple, they are defaulted to the classic touch once to pause or play the music, touch twice to adjust the volume, touch three times to skip to the next song and long press to switch noise cancelling on. You can change what each command is set to from the app.
LG provides three sizes of non-toxic, hypoallergenic silicone ear gels in the box which have seen a recent redesign to cater for the noise cancelling. In use, these do feel like they could fall out but they didn’t actually budge, even during a workout. They’re relatively comfortable and definitely lightweight in the ear. I wore them for a good few hours before I started feeling any discomfort.
With a circular matte-black design, a USB-C port hidden in the back and a teeny pairing button on the side, the LG Tone Free FN7 charging case feels simple and sleek. It keeps things compact too, measuring 54.5 x 54.5 x 27.5mm and weighing just 39g. Having the UVnano technology in the charging case which kills 99.9% of bacteria on the earbuds is one of the big wins for these earphones.
Another area that has been improved on is the battery life, LG only managed to up it by an hour, but every minute counts when it comes to when your battery is going to give up on you. The LG Tone Free FN7 now has 7 hours of music from the earbuds, with 3 extra charges from the case. A total of 21 hours all in all. Charge time is only about an hour for the earbuds and two hours for the case. A quick 5-minute charge will give you 60 minutes of playtime, perfect for anyone who tends to forget to charge their devices.
LG Tone Free FN7 review: sound quality
When it came to the sound, the LG Tone Free FN7 features Meridian's Headphone Spatial Processing technology which ‘simulates the experience of listening to real loudspeakers’ as well as delivering 'vocals with pristine clarity’. I thought the LG Tone Free FN7 lived up to this with tonally balanced, convincing audio and a large soundstage. The mid-range sounded rich and although I have heard headphones with more bass, the low-end was punchy enough with ANC switched on. Another slight niggle is the volume, which I thought could have been louder.
The active noise cancelling does a pretty good job at blocking out noise, be it from a TV or background chat. I also played some aeroplane noise from YouTube and although you could still hear it, it definitely dulled the annoying growls. It doesn’t block out the noise as well as some pairs of over-ears, like the Sony WH-1000XM4 for instance, but it does bring the noise down enough to not get distracted by it.
LG Tone Free FN7 review: app and features
In the Tone Free app, you can switch on the ANC or Ambient Sound Mode. There are also four preset equaliser settings including Immersive, Bass Boost, Natural and Treble Boost. Most will rarely need to use anything other than the Immersive and Bass Boost settings, but for the audiophiles out there, you can create two custom modes to use as well.
Find my earbuds is a feature that I think every pair of true wireless headphones should have. If you have lost an earbud somewhere in your living room or you aren’t sure which coat pocket it’s in, it will play a loud chirping sound to help you locate it, as long as you are in Bluetooth range.
Another great feature is ear detection, the LG Tone Free FN7 will automatically pause or play the music as you take them in or out of your ear. It gives me the security of knowing that I’ll notice if one accidentally falls out when I'm out-and-about.
LG Tone Free FN7 review: verdict
If you are pulled in by the UVnano case and AirPod-esque design, the LG Tone Free FN7 are a fantastic pair of true wireless earbuds which good sound and have a comprehensive app to go with them.
In price, these go up against the likes of the Jabra Elite 75T and the Sony WF-1000XM3 - I think they firmly hold their ground. Upping the cost on the FN6 in favour of a better sound, longer battery and of course, active noise cancelling was a seriously good move from LG. They may not be the most thrilling pair of headphones but they are unlikely to disappoint.
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