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OnePlus Bullets Wireless review: Great affordable Bluetooth headphones for everyone

Our Verdict

Price: $69Bottom line: For just $69, which is only a little more than you'll spend on a solid pair of wired earbuds, the Bullets Wireless are a great pair of Bluetooth headphones that work well with any phone and provide great value without trying to woo you with advanced features and tricks.

For

  • Above-average sound quality
  • Clever connect/disconnect with magnets
  • Light and comfortable for neckbuds
  • Simple USB-C charging
  • Great price and value

Against

  • Not particularly flashy or good looking
  • Ear tips and hooks are basic
  • Splash-resistant, not fully waterproof
  • No Google Fast Pair pairing

We're well past the point of no return when it comes to removing headphone jacks from smartphones. High-end phones, in particular, have dropped the headphone jack as quickly as companies could get enough consumer research to show that it wouldn't materially affect buying decisions. This has boosted an already-strong market for Bluetooth headphones of all shapes and sizes, as USB-C audio just hasn't taken off and people would rather go wireless than deal with a bunch of dongles.

Most of the big smartphone makers also have a line of audio products, and you can buy Bluetooth headphones from dozens of known — and hundreds of unknown — companies. They run the gambit from cheap $20 pairs up to $300 and beyond for over-ear noise-cancelling cans. But leave it to OnePlus, which continues to include a headphone jack on its phones, to make a pair of sensible mid-range headphones — the Bullets Wireless, which go for just $69.

OnePlus Bullets Wireless headphones

Bluetooth earbuds for all

OnePlus Bullets Wireless What I like

If you've had a OnePlus phone or any of its accessories like chargers or wired headphones, you know what you're getting into when it comes to the Bullets Wireless. These are simple and well-made from end to end, with quality higher than the price would suggest — from a hardware perspective, I wouldn't balk if OnePlus had set the price at $89.

Dead-simple design focuses on comfort and ease of use.

OnePlus went with a modified neckbud design in that the Bullets Wireless don't have a hard or fixed neck ring. It's easily flexible, meaning it can expand and contract to fit around a large or small neck, or even around the collar of your jacket. It's also very light, and the soft touch rubberized coating doesn't get hung up on clothing or hair. The earbud cords don't retract like some neckbud models from LG, but they're long enough that your ears are never supporting the weight of the neck portion of the headphones — at the same time, they aren't long enough to swing around and be annoying. As a result, the Bullets Wireless are very comfortable to wear.

The earbuds themselves are rather basic — they have a standard design to go in your ear, and they're left/right ergonomic with a curve to better fit. There's also a rubberized loop portion designed to help keep the earbud positioned in your ear and not yank out, but this is entirely removable if you don't feel like you need the extra in-ear security. You get three sets of tips and loops, and once you go through the familiar guess-and-check method of finding the right combination, they feel fine. The fact that the earbuds are super small and light means there aren't any bad pressure points, at least in my ears, but the earbud tips aren't anything special — just generic rubberized material, and the only part of the experience that feels a bit on the cheap side.

OnePlus talks about some sort of "Energy Tube" for better sound, and I can't really speak to the physics of all that. But I can say the earbuds sound really good. I didn't experience any distortion problems with high volume or lots of bass. It's clear to me that the 9.2 mm drivers are more capable than the quality of music you're going to be sending them over a Bluetooth connection, though the aptX audio tries to give you as much wireless quality as possible. Oh, and that connection was always solid — I didn't experience any unexpected cutouts or dropped connections.

Bullets Wireless sound great, have good battery life and thankfully just charge over USB-C.

There's a regular in-line remote on the left earbud wire with dedicated volume up/down buttons and a play/pause button. You can do a press-and-hold on the center button to invoke Google Assistant (just like any other headphones), or do a quick double-press to skip tracks. After using touch-controlled earbuds recently, it's so refreshing to be able to just reach up and press a button, without a second thought, to change the volume or pause.

And if you don't want to even do that much, you can simply pull the earbuds out and snap them together. Soon as they get close, magnets in the back of the earbuds pull them together — that pauses your music and disconnects the earbuds. Separate them again, and they'll re-connect to the last device you were using. There's a power/pairing button along the left side of the neck, but it's almost never necessary since the earbuds are always on and ready to go when you disconnect their magnets.

OnePlus quotes 8 hours of battery life for audio or 10.5 hours for calls, which matches my observations. That's probably fine for most people in real-world use but will seem low if you're used to larger neckbuds or over-ear headphones (opens in new tab) that offer 15 to 25 hours of listening. Unless you're a heavy user you'll probably be recharging these things every couple days, and it's a painless experience because they use USB-C — you get a short cable in the box, but you can use any one you can get your hands on. And with just a 10 minute charge, the tiny batteries inside give you up to 5 hours of battery life again — easily assuaging your battery anxiety.

OnePlus Bullets Wireless headphones

Not much wrong

OnePlus Bullets Wireless What's not good

As a slight counterpoint to all of that simple design discussion, one could argue that people often use headphones as a fashion statement or an extension of their personal style, and the Bullets Wireless do basically nothing in this respect. They're simple and all black save for a small red ring around the earbud. You could mistake these for any other generic pair of Bluetooth headphones you bought on Amazon for $25 from a random company you've never heard of. OnePlus interestingly didn't even put its logo on the typical spot of the earbud endcaps, only putting a light grey printed logo on the left side of the neckbud and an embossed logo on the carrying case.

The design isn't particularly unique or eye-catching, and that case sure is dopey looking.

The included silicone carrying case definitely stands out, being bright red and all, but the case is otherwise a little funky to me. It's a good way to wrap up the earbuds and the included charging cable when you won't be using them for a while and want to keep them safe in a bag, but it's too big to be a daily-carry case and provides no other function. There's no separate pouch for replacement earbud tips or loops, and the case lid simply closes with one magnet rather than some sort of seal or zipper — so it doesn't keep dust or water out.

I shouldn't be entirely surprised considering this is OnePlus we're talking about here, but I'm slightly upset that the Bullets Wireless aren't properly waterproof. Like the OnePlus 6 they're merely splash-resistant, which means you'll have no issues sweating all over them but you shouldn't ever submerge them in water. While you somewhat understand not having an IP67 rating on a phone that has lots of components, it seems like a relatively trivial manner to get a real waterproof rating on something as simple as a pair of headphones. Not because I want to swim with my Bullets Wireless, but because I never want to have to worry about getting them too wet.

Lacking Google's 'Fast Pair' system is an odd omission.

OnePlus touts the ability of the Bullets Wireless to auto-pair with modern OnePlus phones, which is neat, but that functionality unfortunately doesn't extend to any other phone. It would've been great if OnePlus simply went with Google's "Fast Pair" pairing system that's compatible with almost all modern Android phones, and accomplishes the same goal. Aside from this restriction there's nothing else proprietary about the Bullets Wireless, and they're a great to use with any phone — why not keep the whole thing open? A small negative mark on what's otherwise a great no-nonsense experience.

OnePlus Bullets Wireless headphones

Great value, great headphones

OnePlus Bullets Wireless Review

For me, reviewing the Bullets Wireless is an interesting juxtaposition to the review of the Google Pixel Buds I just finished. At $69, the Bullets Wireless are less than half the price of the Pixel Buds, and in dropping the price have stripped away the "advanced" part of the equation — there are normal physical controls, a regular charging system, no fancy headline-grabbing features or any extra nonsense. But actually, that's a good thing.

With the Bullets Wireless, every dollar you spend goes toward the things you actually care about with a pair of Bluetooth headphones: quality sound, simple design, good comfort and basic features executed properly. Sure the carrying case is a little dopey and they're just splash-resistant, but those are small negatives compared to all of the advantages they have over both the super-cheap and high-end competition.

4.5 out of 5

For just $69, which is only a little more than you'll spend on a solid pair of wired earbuds, the Bullets Wireless are a great pair of Bluetooth headphones that work well with any phone and provide great value without trying to woo you with advanced features and tricks.

See at OnePlus (opens in new tab)

Update July 2018: After a brief hiatus, the OnePlus Bullets Wireless headphones are back on sale directly from OnePlus.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

45 Comments
  • Anyone know when the purple ones are available
  • There's gonna be purple ones?!
  • I miss the old style in 👂 headphones. This new design with the flaps and hooks and stuff never fit me properly or feel comfortable. Give me a standard pair of mid 80's Sony Walkman ear buds please.
  • You can remove the loop portion if you don't want it. Then you'd just have the regular earbud tips.
  • Are these just for listening to music or can you use them to make calls too?
  • You can use them to make calls.
  • You can make calls. I made a couple, they worked. Didn't do any recordings to check quality though considering nobody on the other end complained about quality.
  • If these are really comfortable, I may pick up a set. Wired quality is still better, but there are times when I don't want to carry a large set or deal with wires. Well, at least the wire to the phone, lol. I have a set of Jaybird 3's, but they are less comfortable than USonic and don't sound as good. Ps: why the emphasis on working with other phones if they are Bluetooth?
  • I'm still baffled as to how the appearance matters.
  • Because... Because...
    Hold on, I'm thinking!
  • Don't hurt yourself..
  • Thanks! That's exactly why I try not to do it too much!
  • Me too, but there's no denying it's more important to some than audio quality. That's why beats have always sold so well.
  • Because, like I said in the review, lots of people think of headphones as a fashion accessory as much as they think of it as an audio tool. Why do you think the entire Beats brand exists? It sure as hell isn't for the audio quality. There are dozens of examples of this in the audio world.
  • Yep.
  • Yeah, I guess I see that too. A videographer showed up at a sound job I was doing last week with a pair of Beats. Don't know what model, but they require a battery to work. Anyways, he was having audio problems with his camera feed from my mixer and I helped him troubleshoot, and I don't know what was worse: the muddy overblown bass or the brittle highs.
  • But, "not flashy...," what is this, 6th grade? Smh, uncle Marty
  • How's the call quality? Is there any background noise suppression?
  • Made a couple calls, nobody on the other end complained. Good enough for me! No mention from OnePlus about noise suppression.
  • Well done review. I watched Flossy Carters Youtube review of these phones and he gave big approval of these as well. Thanks for the review.
  • They are a major "Go!"
  • Are they bass heavy? Like, artificially so? I need detail and instrument separation across the spectrum!
  • If you're that picky BT isn't for you, and definitely not buds. You'll need a decent set of open back can probably.
  • Yes, the soundstage of good openbacks is nice :)
  • Eggmundo - By the way, if detail and instrument separation are really important to you, it would be fun to give HTC's USonic earbuds a listen. They are better at letting you focus on individual instruments than even my Sennheiser open backs, and you can pick an instrument and follow it all the way through the song. I've never heard individual instruments stand out so clearly on headphones in my 20 years of pro audio experience, and it's actually improved the way I mix live concerts.
  • Thanks dude. Yeah, my trusty HTC 10 earbuds still impress me for bundled earphones! Although I think the U11 and U12 ones are even better? The 10 ones are very solid but the bass is OTT and boomy. In any case, I've ordered a pair of Kef M100... Can't wait to try them!
  • Solid, relevant/concise review. Good work Andrew.
  • Thank you! Glad you enjoyed it.
  • Referral link for those that are sold on the new wirless Bullets. https://www.androidcentral.com/e?link=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.anrdoezrs.net%2F...
  • So, one thing I look for in Bluetooth ear buds is multipoint, mainly cos I use the same pair of buds for my phone and my PC - not having to unpair and re-pair my buds with each device is extremely convenient. Do these have multipoint? 🤔
  • nice article, thanks for this information.
    if you want more information so visit here-
    https://newtechnicalnews.com/16-02-2018-best-earphones-android-smartphones/
  • What Bluetooth standard are they? Are they using BT5 to match the One+6 Bluetooth 5 from the Snapdragon 845?
  • Spec page lists BT 4.1 https://www.androidcentral.com/e?link=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.anrdoezrs.net%2Flinks%2F100048248%2Ftype%2Fdlg%2Fsid%2FUUacUdUcU1981846%2Fhttps%3A%2F%2Fwww.oneplus.com%2Fbullets-wireless&token=4vBtXAVc
  • So these look almost exactly like the BeatsX I currently us. Though I am an Android user, there was a good deal and now I have to fiddle with apple chargers. I've actually been pretty pleased despite my usually despising Beats products. Any chance you could get your hands on a pair for comparison? Seriously if they aren't the same manufacturer I would be shocked if a lawsuit wasn't coming.
  • Looks like the BeatsX and RHA MA650 got married and had a baby. I have the RHA set and really like it. The end caps of the neckband are larger and more weighty which is to accommodate larger battery (12 hrs vs. 8 on these and BeatsX). I actually like the weight as it keeps them from flopping around easier and the battery life is also a good bonus.
  • Love my wired bullets when I'm forced to go Bluetooth Oneplus will be top of my list.
  • Having basically all form factor bluetooth headsets. I always end up using firm neckband headsets for their comfort and ease of use. Thanks for the review. Will be ordering these.
  • Thinking of buying this for gym use, Does it hold up? That thing in the centre stay tight to your neck? Thanks in advance
  • They went on sale today at 10am, and at 10:20 I could not get a set! lol
  • Same. The most annoying part is I signed up to be notified and received no email. Well done, OnePlus.
  • Same. It's late June and they didn't restock. Wtf Oneplus, you grossly miscalculated the demand. Of course I could buy them out of Aliexpress, where you can actually get them, and they're probably not even rip off but the real thing...
  • I was able to get one when they opened up for sale today. Will see how the fit and sound.
  • I've never been able to get comfortable with ear buds. I prefer the over the head head phones that look like smallish ear muffs. Maybe it's the structure of my ears. They are quite large. My brother tells me to be careful about going out in a high wind because I might take flight. Anywho..nothing beats a great Bluetooth speaker.
  • Apparently sold out within *3 minutes* today!
  • Ok well I purchased two pairs these to have a real nice great sounding headset for home and the gym.
    Before I purchased them I also purchased a $14 pair of the same style from ebay.
    Recently I decided to do a sound comparison and honestly the OnePlus set did have a little bit clearer
    sound but nothing mind blowing and with music player equalizer functions you can pretty much match up
    the sound to be very satisfying with a $14 pair.
    So to sum it up you can save yourself a lot of money if you don't follow the hype.
    These are very nice just not worth the $69 I paid for each of these.
    Now I have to sell one since they are not much better than a cheap pair.