HomeReviewsRedmi Buds 4 Active Review: Very close to a perfect deal

Redmi Buds 4 Active Review: Very close to a perfect deal

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2023 has seen a lot of affordable TWS releases already. A couple of years ago you would have been hard-pressed to find a decent pair of wireless earbuds under Rs 2,000. But with a slew of releases from (relatively) new players like Mivi and Truke, the budget TWS segment is going through a very important shift. Enter Xiaomi, which has had a stronghold on the budget smartphones market in India over the last decade. The new Redmi Buds 4 Active TWS seeks to replicate the same quality and value for money that Xiaomi offers on its smartphones. Priced at just Rs 1,399, the Buds 4 Active could easily be the go-to choice for consumers buying their first pair of TWS. We’ve been using these wireless earbuds for the last few days as our daily driver for music, voice calls, and even a fair bit of gaming. If you’re thinking of buying the Redmi Buds 4 Active, you may want to read this in-depth review.

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Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Design

The Redmi Buds 4 Active are available in two colour options – Air White and Bass Black. We used the Air White variant for this review. The retail box has two extra pairs of ear tips inside but surprisingly lacks a USB charging cable. Nevertheless, if you have a USB Type-C cable lying around, you don’t have to worry about it too much.

Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Design

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The pebble-shaped charging case has a matte-like texture with a glossy strip running across its circumference. We don’t get to say this quite often for entry-level earbuds, but the build quality here is amazing. Even though it’s an all-plastic case, it can easily absorb a few knocks. But what’s really impressive is the strength of the hinge, which is easily the best we’ve seen in this segment. You can fidget with the case all you want without worrying about the hinge loosening up.

At the bottom of the case, you will find the USB Type-C charging port along with a white notification light. The Redmi branding is engraved in the back panel, right underneath the hinge. The front of the case has no markings, recesses, or indents. While the design may be minimal, it doesn’t get in the way of functionality – you can easily flip open the case using just one finger.

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The two earbuds are magnetically locked in a vertical position inside the charging case. The earbud housing panel is coloured grey, offering a nice contrast to the white exterior. The earbuds replicate the build quality of the charging case. You don’t have to worry about handling them with care. Xiaomi has gone for a standard in-ear design for the stem earbuds. A safe choice but a welcome one. The default medium-sized ear tips worked perfectly for us. For those struggling with the fit, there are two extra pairs of small and large size ear tips inside the retail box. We wore these earbuds while working out and did not face any problems with the fit even when things got sweaty. An IPX4 rating ensures that minor splashes and sweat won’t do any damage to the TWS.

Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Design

Redmi Buds 4 Active has touch-sensitive outer panels for music playback and call controls. No controls have been assigned to single touches, which greatly reduces the risk of accidentally pausing the music or hanging up on a call while adjusting the earbuds. A very intelligent solution that we would like to see on other TWS as well.

Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Performance

As is the case with every audio product, the design takes a backseat to the quality of the audio output. While we were impressed with the form factor, comfortable fit, and smooth controls of the Buds 4, it would have been completely undone with an underwhelming sound quality. Luckily, that is not the case with Redmi Buds 4 Active.

Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Performance

Let’s get the specs out of the way first. These earbuds use 12mm drivers to deliver the audio output. The frequency range on offer is 20Hz – 24KHz. While the TWS offers Bluetooth 5.3 support, our minor complaint is that it does not support the AAC codec. It gets Google’s Fast Pair feature though, which is nice to see. There is also a low latency mode for gaming. Once connected to your device, these earbuds have a functional range of 10 metres.

We played a variety of artists and genres on the Redmi Buds 4 Active and never once felt like we were using an entry-level TWS. The audio output is very clearly bass-driven, but it makes for a fun listening experience. If your musical palate majorly comprises pop music, these earbuds won’t leave much room for complaints. While the low end may be boosted, the high and mid frequencies get the appropriate representation on the soundstage. We listened to King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s newest release and were pleased with the overall output produced by the TWS.

The sound clarity can still be worked upon, even though it doesn’t stifle the listening experience in a major way. While listening to slowcore and ambient artists like Grouper and Aphex Twin, the gaps in detail were quite noticeable. The is a slight distortion in sound at the maximum volume. We’d suggest sticking within the 60-80% range.

There is also a low latency mode on offer, although we won’t recommend these earbuds strictly for gaming purposes. If you look around, there are a plethora of entry-level gaming TWS on offer, which would be more suited to your needs. The Redmi Buds 4 Active TWS does not claim to be a gaming TWS either. We put on the Buds 4 Active for a couple of COD Mobile sessions. The crip sounds were relayed really well on the earbuds, but the noticeable lag deterred us from keeping them on.

Moving on, the Redmi Buds 4 Active provides decent audio quality on voice calls in an indoor environment. We used the earbuds on cellular as well as WhatsApp calls. The ENC does a passable job of extracting the caller’s voice from the surrounding noise, but the relayed audio isn’t entirely devoid of disturbances. As is the case with most entry-level TWS, the quality of the microphones undermined the overall calling experience.

Redmi Buds 4 Active review: Performance

The Redmi Buds 4 Active can also be paired with the Xiaomi Earbuds app, but there’s not a whole lot of stuff you can do on it. Apart from toggling the low latency mode and renaming the earbuds the app offers no other options. We’d like to see Xiaomi flesh out this app with an update, allowing users to assign custom controls and even mess around with the equaliser settings.

Since we only used the Redmi Buds 4 Active for a few days, we cannot speak to its battery performance. We had the earbuds on for at least 2-3 hours every day and they never ran out of juice. Xiaomi claims a battery backup of almost 5 hours on the earbuds and an additional 30 hours in the case. This is in line with what we observed during our time with the TWS.

Read Also: Samsung Galaxy S21 FE Snapdragon 888 SoC variant today debuted in India


For first-time TWS buyers looking for an entry-level pair of earbuds, the Redmi Buds 4 Active is a very easy recommendation. The trifecta of minimal design, seamless touch controls, and good audio output is perfectly matched by these earbuds. We also like the durability of the charging case – something that gets glossed over in this price range. If you’re primarily concerned with listening to music, the Redmi Buds 4 Active is a solid buy at Rs 1,399.

Redmi Buds 4 Active: Pros

  • Great design
  • Durable
  • Very impressive audio output for the price
  • Highly affordable

Redmi Buds 4 Active: Cons

  • Lacks the AAC codec
  • Mild performance when it comes to voice calls

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2023 has seen a lot of affordable TWS releases already. A couple of years ago you would have been hard-pressed to find a decent pair of wireless earbuds under Rs 2,000. But with a slew of releases from (relatively) new players like Mivi and...Redmi Buds 4 Active Review: Very close to a perfect deal

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