Thanks to its transparent design and sparkling LED lights, standing out from the crowd isn’t a problem with the Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8. While flashy colors and sparkly things aren’t necessarily the first things that come to mind when looking for earbuds, they do add to the overall gamer aesthetic for playing games on mobile. But while this gorgeous beauty has everything it takes to top the charts when it comes to form, does it also hold its own when it comes to function?
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Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8 design and hardware
Given its name, the Crystal series’ USP is definitely its transparent design. The luxurious look offers gamers an ultra-cool peek into the machinery within the device; plus, the six available colors add to its personalized appeal. From among Alfalfa Purple, Lotus Pink, Ice Blue, Mint Green and Bright Black, I tested out the White Moon version, and it’s every bit as elegant as the photos online make it out to be.
Another feature that makes the Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8 stand out is its lack of an actual “case”. Instead, it makes use of snappy magnetic clasps to keep your earbuds in place. There’s a satisfying click whenever you snap the earbuds back onto the charging case, and it lights up to let you know it’s doing its job.
Speaking of all the lights, the pulsing LEDs are actually a handy indicator for the earbuds’ battery life. You can check how much juice you’ve got left for both the left and right earbuds, as well as the actual charging case itself. You can easily see the percentage on the LED display of the case each time you holster the earbuds back on, but I do wish there was some way to make the indicator light up without having to remove and reattach the earbuds each time I want to check my charging level.
It comes with a silicone carrying case and a lanyard too, but while it does protect the charging case from unwanted bumps and nicks, having it on always made it a challenge to pry the earbuds out. The charging case shifts around inside the silicone case because there’s no proper grip there, so using the silicone case is a personal preference rather than a necessity.
Gaming experience, battery life and connectivity
Acefast claims that the earbuds can go for 7 hours on a full charge and 30 hours for the charging case, and in the full week that I tinkered around with it, I didn’t have to charge the case once. Calls came through clearly and so did my voice on the mic, but while the earbuds did work well on Spotify without a hitch, there’s no Active Noice Cancellation here – a feature that’s pretty standard nowadays with other competitors in the market. The lack of an ANC feature aside, the quality of the sound did come out pretty decent – it’s still sub-par compared to the top-notch sound quality of the EPOS GTW 270 Hybrid gaming earbuds, however.
While the Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8 can only connect to one device at a time, I like how easy it is to pair them. Simply remove the earbuds from the charging case and they’ll automatically go into pairing mode – no holding down buttons for so-and-so seconds required. There are different silicone tip sizes included too, although none of them felt quite right to me – at least, not as snug as my EPOS did. I gave them a go on a quick morning jog and they didn’t fall off despite my qualms, though.
Now, for the purposes of this review, I mostly did my tests on games as opposed to music – and herein lies my biggest gripe about the earbuds despite the beautiful design. While testing them out on different genres of games on my REDMAGIC 7S Pro, there was always a very noticeable lag – which is a huge no-no for any kind of gaming peripheral.
Playing a regular RPG like Watcher of Realms didn’t make the latency feel significant, but on titles where a small slip-up in the sound effects can affect your in-game performance, that latency can be unforgivable. For instance, playing Streets of Rage 4 had Axel punching a trash can a few seconds too early before the sound effect of that trash can getting punched actually came on. Even Sonic leaping on top of enemies had a noticeable delay with the sound effects, lending to a less-than-stellar experience when gaming on the go.
What’s the verdict?
This mortal sin is the biggest thing that’s keeping me from enjoying the Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8 no matter how pretty it is. It might be good enough for music or casual games, but for those who are looking for something more robust and on-point with their video games, these earbuds aren’t your best bet (I’m also not a fan of the touch controls because I can never get them to work perfectly for me, but that might just be a “me” issue).
By the way, I also made the overconfident mistake of washing the earbuds under some running water in the sink after a jog, and the water seeped into the right earbud. It’s still working fine, but there’s an unsightly stain that’s clearly visible through the crystal cover (you can see it on the image below). The earbuds have an IPX4 rating, but it’s best to stick to dry conditions if you want to keep your earbuds safe.
That said, the Acefast Crystal (2) Earbuds T8 is a bit of a mixed bag for me. On one hand, it’s not meant for gaming due to its noticeable lag, but on the other, its looks fit right into the gamer aesthetic with the flashy lights and the transparent case. I suppose it’ll all boil down to your specific priority when it comes to form and function – and if you’re willing to shell out a hefty $99.99 for it.
BUY LINK: ACEFAST