SENS is a relatively new brand in India, which is only just foraying into the smart wearables and TWS market with a diverse portfolio of Indian-made products. SENS’ audio products are named after famous musicians (‘Hendriks’, ‘Cnatra’, ‘Alvis’, and ‘MJ’), and their smartwatches take their names from scientists (‘Edyson’ and ‘Nuton’). We used their entry-level TWS product, the SENS Hendriks 1 and tested it for about a week. The wireless headset can currently be purchased at an introductory price of Rs 1,699. Here is our SENS Hendriks 1 review.
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SENS Hendriks 1 review: Design
The SENS Hendriks 1 comes in a compact square box that contains the charging case with earbuds inside, a USB Type-C charging cable, extra silicone tips, a user manual, a warranty card, and a product catalogue.
The build and overall design are the highlights of the TWS. The charging case is made entirely out of metal (zinc alloy) and comes in a ‘Gun Metal Grey’ colour. The case feels quite sturdy and capable of withstanding a lot of damage. The lid easily flips open and shut with one finger and the hinge feels quite strong. Since it’s made out of metal, the charging case will get cold pretty quickly in low temperatures. While it may be heavier compared to other TWS, you can easily walk around with the case in your pocket.
The design has been kept quite minimal on the Hendriks 1. There’s a small border around the lid that extends all the way back to the hinge, essentially dividing the case into two segments. In the lower segment, just below the lid, you will find the SENS logo printed on the case. A small notification light has been housed at the lower part of the front panel. The charging port makes its way to the bottom of the case.
While the charging case may weigh around 70 grams, the earbuds feel extremely light, weighing just 3.5 grams each. You will barely notice them in your ear and can easily keep them in for hours at a time. There is a small notification on the touch panel of each earbud. The make is entirely plastic.
The in-ear design along with the silicone tips provides a very comfortable, snug fit in the ear. For those that don’t find the fit to be comfortable, the TWS is shipped along with a small pack of extra tips with varying size options. The horizontal stems are touch sensitive and can be used for music and call control.
With an IPX5 rating, the earbuds can withstand a low-pressure water spray without taking any damage. For a TWS in the entry-level category, this is an impressive rating. We used the TWS while working out and they handled the task expertly. The fit remained undisturbed throughout the workout, even when things got sweaty. The touch controls are easy to use and we were quite surprised to see very minimal accidental touch detection.
SENS Hendriks 1 review: Performance
While the Hendriks 1 certainly impressed us in terms of build, design, and usability, we were left wanting some more improvements in terms of performance. Let’s deep dive into what our experience with the SENS Hendriks 1 was like after a week of use.
The Hendriks 1 is equipped with 10mm drivers on each earbud and claims a connection range of 12 metres. However, we experienced certain drops and lags after moving 5-6 metres away from the connected device. If you intend to use these earbuds with your smartphone, the range won’t be an issue as long as you carry your smartphone along with you at all times.
Moving on to the most important part of the review, the sound profile of the SENS Hendriks 1 is slightly underwhelming. The audio output sounds a bit boxy and muffled. While it works well for casual listening, the Hendriks 1 didn’t manage to produce a lot of detail in its sound profile. The bass is constantly overridden by the higher frequencies. The overall mix feels like it lacks some depth, which would’ve been present had the lower frequencies been given more prominence. The ideal volume range for listening on the Hendriks 1 is 40-60% beyond which you will notice a slight increase in distortion of the sound profile.
The audio quality while calling was decent and the microphone performs well in quiet surroundings, relaying the voice to the recipient without much disturbance. Both earbuds are equipped with a microphone each, so you can use one earbud to call while the other one charges inside the box.
The touch controls work smoothly while listening to music or during a call. Since there is no dedicated app for the TWS, you cannot customise the controls. Single touches on either earbud alter the volume of the music while a double touch can be used to play or pause the track. A long touch can be used to skip back and forth between tracks. The Hendriks 1 also comes with Voice Assistant support, which can be activated by a triple touch on the stem.
SENS claims a battery backup of up to 4.5 hours on either earbud with an additional 30 hours in the case. These figures were consistent with our tests, as we got over 4 hours of battery life even when playing music at a higher volume. The 450mAh charging case was good enough to provide 5-6 charge cycles. The case can get fully charged in around 90 minutes, while the earbuds can reach a 20% charge in 20 minutes.
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At the price of Rs 1,699, the SENS Hendriks 1 is not a bad deal for casual music listeners. If you’re looking for an affordable, sturdy pair of earbuds that provide a great battery life, you can look into the Hendriks 1 TWS. However, if you don’t want to make any compromise on the audio output, there may be a few better contenders that are only a few hundred rupees pricier than the Hendriks 1.
Sound profile has room for improvement
Connection quality drops beyond 5-6 metres
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