TESTED AT $49
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Astrotec is a Chinese manufacturer popular for their well-established earbuds line, in-ear monitors and TWS earbuds. In this review, I’m looking at their latest product, the new Astrotec S70 TWS earbuds. The S70 has active noise cancellation (ANC) and retails for $49.

Disclaimer: This sample was provided by Astrotec for the purpose of an honest review. All observations and opinions here are my own based on my experience with the product.

Pros
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Fast charging
  • Charging case accomodates larger eartips
  • ANC and ambient mode
  • Unique aesthetic
Cons
  • No aptX or LDAC support
  • Sound gets a little congested

Astrotec S70

Packaging & Accessories

The Astrotec S70 comes in a small dark-grey box with an image of the earbuds on the front and some features listed on the back. Inside the box, we find the usual TWS bundle: S70 earbuds, charging case, 3x pairs of silicone eartips and user manual.

Design

Astrotec S70 earbuds and charging case

Astrotec has gone for a unique aesthetic with the S70 and I think they’ve done a great job with its design. The first thing you’ll notice is the translucent purple shells (it also comes in black). This gives the S70 a really interesting appearance and at the same time, lets you see all of the earbuds’ internals.

The shells have a semi-conical bullet-shaped head with a short stem hanging down, similar to AirPods and other TWS earbuds. The nozzles are slightly oval-shaped but also accommodate regular eartips without issue. I love the fact that the included eartips are purple to match the shells and charging case.

On the rear of the shells is the touch-sensitive controls. This area is slightly recessed below the outer circular ridge and has a flat inner surface. I like this because it makes the controls easy to find and I found myself making fewer missed taps than usual. All of the regular touch controls are accounted for, including call and playback functions, activating voice assistant as well as volume adjustment.

Internally, the S70 has an LCP (Liquid Crystal Polymer) diaphragm. It’s equipped with Bluetooth 5.0 but the chip used has not been disclosed. In terms of supported wireless audio codecs, the S70 has SBC and AAC.

For my ears, the S70 is extremely comfortable. The shells are very lightweight and the fit feels secure. Even during exercise or light running, the S70 stays firmly in my ears. Passive noise isolation is average for this type of shell.

Charging Case & Battery Life

S70 charging case with anime cat

The S70’s charging case is made from the same translucent material as the earbuds themselves. There’s a USB Type-C charging port and a single LED indicator on the bottom of the case. It’s a fairly small case and can easily fit into a jeans pocket. The lid is magnetic and snaps shut firmly so your earbuds won’t fall out accidentally. I’m also happy to report that the case accommodates large third-party eartips too.

When it comes to battery life, the S70 performance is average, offering around 4.5 hours of continuous music playback with ANC turned ON. The charging case can recharge the earbuds an additional 3 times for a total of around 18 hours of use. That isn’t remarkable but it’s on par with most of the competition at this price point.

ANC (Active Noise Cancellation)

There are 3 modes of active noise cancellation available: ANC On, Ambient mode and ANC Off. The quality of the ANC and Ambient modes is surprisingly good. With the ANC turned on, the noise from my air conditioner and fans is almost completely eliminated. It works equally well for engine noise, making these a great companion for train, bus and plane rides.

The Ambient mode works well and lets you hear what’s going on around you. You can even have a decent conversation with the Ambient mode on so it is practical and useful. One thing I really like about the S70 is that the music quality is consistent regardless of which ANC mode you’re using.

S70 earbuds and charging case

Mic and call quality

The S70’s built-in microphone works quite well, although the voice does sound a bit compressed. It does a pretty good job of cancelling external noise so it’s definitely sufficient for day to day use.

Astrotec S70 microphone test.

Sound

Charging case with earbuds

The Astrotec S70 has a fairly generic TWS sound signature i.e. warm with emphasis on the lower midrange and upper bass combined with a laid back treble. It has a pleasing tonality that’s ideal for going about your business but less so for any critical listening. S70 is an earbud that’s perfect for walking, working out or taking a bus ride. It’s doesn’t have what you’d call a high-fidelity sound but it’s musical and non-fatiguing.

Bass is boosted but not heavily. It’s rhythmic and fairly punchy but somewhat lacking in detail and texture. The predominance of warmth in the presentation reduces the clarity in favour of a more musical tonality. Overall resolution and instrument separation are mediocre and there’s not much definition in electric guitars or other midrange instruments.

Vocals are smooth and reasonably engaging but limited in texture and detail. Male vocals, in particular, tend to blend in with lower midrange instruments and the sound becomes quite congested during busy segments. The S70’s treble is smooth and non-fatiguing with fairly rounded, soft notes. As a result, detail retrieval is limited but it also means there’s no sibilance or listening fatigue from harshness.

S70 earbud in hand

Comparisons

Edifier TWS330 NB ($59)
TWS330 with case

The Edifier TWS330 NB has a similar warm sound signature but more bass impact and definition. TWS330 NB has better instrument separation and overall resolution, resulting in less congestion during busy music.

Although the Edifier has a similarly smooth treble, its detail retrieval is a bit better due to its superior resolution and spacing. Vocals too are softened but have slightly better articulation compared to the S70.

ANC performance is similar on each model, with both performing better than expected at eliminating external noises such as fans, air conditioners and engine noise. I find both earbuds equally comfortable but the S70 is more original and interesting when it comes to design.

Astrotec S70 earbuds and charging case with book

Conclusion

The Astrotec S70 has a modern and interesting design that sets it apart from the competition. It’s comfortable, has surprisingly good active noise cancellation and has reasonable battery life. It’s somewhat average when it comes to sound quality but is comparable to other TWS earbuds in its price range.

Specifications
  • Model Name: Astrotec S70
  • Driver Unit: Japan 6mm LCP Diaphragm Dynamic Driver
  • Frequency Response: 10Hz -20K Hz
  • Impedance: 32Ohm
  • Sensitivity: 110dB
  • Charging Methods:
  • Fast charge / Magnetic Charge (Earphones)
  • USB-C (Charging Case)
  • Bluetooth Version: Bluetooth 5.0
  • Audio Codec: AAC, SBC
  • Transmission Range: >10m
  • Continuous phone call time(ANC/ON): 3.5hrs
  • Continuous music playback time(60% Vol.): 4.5hrs
  • Continuous music playback time(60% Vol., ANC/ON): about 4.5hrs
  • Charging Time Of Earphones: About 1hr 
  • Charging Time Of Charging Case: About 1.5hrs
  • Battery Capacity:
  • 42mAh (Single Earphone)
  • 400mAh (Charging Case)
Founder of Prime Audio
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