LG is among the few top-tier tech giants that enjoy great brand equity among masses. The South Korean tech giant is associated with almost everything from televisions to smartphones, consumer durables to personal & home audio products. One thing that was missing from LG’s portfolio was truly wireless earbuds. So, LG decides to change that in 2020 which innovative Tone Free FN7 and FN6. The unique highlight of these buds is their UVnano case that can sanitize them in just 10 minutes
LG has priced Tone Free HN7 TWS at Rs 19,990 which is the high-end segment for TWS buds and where they will face intense heat from Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 (review), Sony WF-1000XM3 (review), Apple AirPods Pro, and Samsung Galaxy Buds Live. Are they up for the task? Let’s try and find answers to that in our LG Tone Free HBS-FN7 review.
LG Tone Free FN7 price in India & specifications
|Model||LG Tone Free HBS-FN7|
|Driver||7mm dynamic driver|
|Microphone||3 per earbud|
|Battery||Earbuds – 55mAh each; Charging case – 390mAh|
|Water resistance||IPX4 splash resistant|
|Weight||Buds – 5.6 grams each; Case – 39.0 grams|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.0, Google Fast Pair|
|Audio CODEC||SBS, AAC|
|Charging||Fast Wired Charging, Wireless|
LG Tone Free HBS-FN7 unboxing
LG TWS comes in simple packaging. In the box of ToneFree HBS FN7 you get the following things:
- Earbuds with case
- USB-C charging cable
- Ear tips in different sizes
- User manual
LG ToneFree HBS FN7 review: Design and comfort
The LG ToneFree FN7 has a compact footprint while maintaining appealing aesthetics. The case itself is a cute circular puck made of polycarbonate with a glossy finish outside – it looks neat and appealing. There’s a single button on the case itself for pairing, and two LED indicators – one for the charge status, and one for UVnano. There’s a USB-C port at the rear for charging. Open up the lid and you will notice a mention of ‘with Meridian’ a prestigious brand that is responsible for turning these TWS for LG. Then there are two earbuds snuggled tightly by strong magnets.
The earbuds themself are also quite compact with small stem-like Apple AirPods. The buds themself have touch controls each to perform various actions. The buds look attractive and offer a secure and comfortable fit.
LG has IPX4 water and dust resistance certification which makes them splash and sweatproof.
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LG ToneFree FN7 review: Connectivity, setup
LG ToneFree HBS FN7 supports Bluetooth 5.0 transmission along with Google Fast Pair feature. This means you will see an instant pop-up on your phone screen as you open up the lid to take out earbuds for use.
Pairing and repairing with multiple phones worked remarkably well. Indeed, this was the most convenient pairing experience we have had in a while.
The LG TONE Free also has an automatic wear detection feature that automatically plays or pauses music when you put them in or pull them out of ear. The earbuds support AAC, and SBC codec. Support for aptX or LHDC would have melted more hearts, but ultimately tuning matters more than codec support.
LG TONE Free companion app is available for Android and iOS which gives you full control over these TWS. The app is really well designed and extremely intuitive. It lets users customize touch controls, turn on or off ANC, and has a custom equalizer. You can also check for firmware updates from the app and install them.
The app offers four default EQ presets – immersive, bass boost, natural, and treble boost. Those who prefer to customize frequencies can save two custom EQs for the preferred listening experience. LG companion app also gives users control of ambient sound. It also allows users to find missing earbud by casting a high pitch sound (believe you me, this is not a gimmick).
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LG ToneFree FN7 review: Battery and call quality
Each LG ToneFree FN7 bud comes fitted with 55mAh battery on each bud can last for sound 5 hours with ANC turned off. With ANC on we could manage around 3.5 hours of playback time. Battery depletes faster if you take calls with ANC turned on.
The backup is on the lower side but is still quite manageable. The charging case houses a 390mAh battery to refill these buds quickly. It takes around 2 hours for a full charge.
The 3 mic array ensures you have good call quality with the ToneFree FN7 TWS. Very few TWS have managed to get it right and LG ToneFree TWS is one of them.
LG ToneFree FN7 review: Audio and Noise Cancellation
The Tone Free FN7 audio quality left us with mixed feelings. LG tries to provide well-balanced audio but the end result is kind of underwhelming when compared to other options available in the same price segment.
The FN7 works best for simple and uncomplicated tracks and for some genres like pop music. These are definitely not for consumers who prefer bass-heavy signature. Consumer headphones are often tuned to boost bass and sub-bass frequencies but LG has opted for more natural notes. You can still choose the bass boost preset in the Tone Free app for a bit more romp and rumble.
Overall sound clarity is average and so is the soundstage. High frequencies are better enjoyed with the treble boost mode.
The texture of sound is not as pristine as Sennheiser Momentum 2, Apple’s Airpod Pro or Sony WF1000XM3 TWS but overall quotidian users who aren’t very fastidious about audio should be satisfied.
These earbuds also have effective ANC technology that works well enough. LG uses the top mic to identity ambient noise and uses the inner mic to filter out ambient noise. During our testing, it managed to cancel out low rumbles but doesn’t achieve stark silence as other high-end earbuds. ANC is decent but not in the same league as Sony WF-1000XM3 truly wireless earphones or Sennheiser Momentum TW 2.
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LG ToneFree FN7 review: UV nano
This is FN7’s biggest USP is UV sterilization built inside the case. LG claims it to kill 99 percent of bacteria in just 10 minutes. Well, we don’t have any expertise to verify those claims. However, it is a welcome addition during these tough times when people have grown distant and aren’t as comfortable sharing accessories.
I have a small issue though, it doesn’t work with reserve power and requires an external power supply to kick in. This somehow defeats the purpose of the on go UV sterilization which had been there would be a killer feature to have. That been said, thankfully LG has placed a wireless coil inside the case so you can use your phone’s battery or a power bank for on-the-go UV sterilization.
LG Tone Free FN7 review verdict – should you buy them?
LG Tone Free FN7 looks stylish, is comfortable to wear, has basic ANC, and an excellent companion app. UV sterilization is a welcome step for consumers with sensitive ears or people who are really serious about in-ear hygiene. As for audio quality, these are tuned to please regular consumers than audiophiles and they do feel a tad overpriced.
- comfortable fit
- convenient pairing
- Well designed companion app
- UV sterilization is a unique highlight
- Sibilance in high frequencies