What should modern TWS earbuds look like? This question can be answered by KZ company, which has already proven its professionalism many times. Today I have a review of the third generation of wireless earbuds called KZ Z3.
In this review, you can find out not only how the earbuds sound in the real world, but also I will share with you about the wearability and other interesting aspects of the device. Therefore, if you are interested in this earbud model, I advise you to read this article in full.
As for the price tag, currently the cost for KZ Z3 is about $44. Is it a lot or a little? Let’s compare the price tag with previous generations of devices for greater clarity. For example, the KZ S2 headphone model will cost you $28.
Therefore, I propose to go through the main technical specs of the new generation of TWS earbuds in order to understand whether the earbuds are worth their attention or not. The first thing to say is that this Z3 headphone was created using hybrid technology. That is, one dynamic and one armature driver is used inside the device case.
Wireless communication is also excellent here, since the earbuds received Bluetooth 5.2 versions with support for the aptX codec. In addition, the device received a minimum level of latency, multifunctional touch controls and a good battery life.
Okay, now I propose to start my full and detailed inspection of KZ earbuds. Therefore, let’s start our inspection of the device from the appearance and its configuration.
KZ Z3: Specifications
|Driver unit:||10 mm dynamic and armature 30019 driver|
|Bluetooth protocol:||aptX, AAC and SBC|
Unpacking and packaging
TWS earbuds are delivered in a fairly compact package, where on the front you can see a drawing of the earbuds with the model name. But on the back of the package, there is a list of the main features.
In the meantime, I found the following components inside the package. For example, this is a charging box with earbuds inside. There was also a short Type-C charging cable and two sets of replacement ear tips with instructions for use.
It should be noted that the packaging itself was made of a fairly dense material and did not cause me strong disgust. In general, the package bundle was typical, like most TWS earbuds. But the quality of the materials used was pretty good. Now let’s talk in more detail about the fit and appearance of the device.
Design, build quality and materials
The appearance of the new generation of KZ Z3 wireless earbuds very much reminds me of the style and design of past generations of TWS earbuds. That is, the device received almost the same shape and ergonomics in design. Therefore, I will immediately note that I did not have severe discomfort during my testing.
This means that I could wear the earbuds for hours and did not feel very tired, as is usually the case with vacuum in-ear earbuds. It is also worth mentioning that the weight of one earbud was only 5.9 grams. This is not too little, but not too much either.
If you are considering earbuds for sports, then there will be no particular problems here either. Since I have used KZ Z3 earbuds several times in the gym and even ran with them in the stadium. During all this time, they never fell out of my ear canal. Although I did not find any information on water resistance, I assume that sweat during training will not damage the earbuds.
As for the quality of performance, everything was very good here. All components were assembled perfectly and during my wearing I did not find any extraneous squeaks and noises. At the same time, the manufacturer assures that he used materials such as an alloy of aluminum and lava in the KZ Z3 earbud model. But in practice, this material just reminded me of glossy plastic, which had a lot of fingerprints on it.
On the outside of the Z3 earbud case, you can see the touch control panel with the company logo and LED indicator. Meanwhile, there was a three-pin charging connection on the inside. On the base of the sound guide, under the silicone ear tips, a metal mesh was installed to prevent dust and other debris from entering. Also, along the body, you can find holes for the microphone and for the release of excess air.
Now let’s talk about the charging box itself. It was already made of matte plastic and during my test, it was not particularly smeared with fingerprints. Apart from the Type-C charging connection at the bottom of the case, I didn’t find anything else here.
Under the cover of the charging box, you can find seats for earbuds with two contacts and a small LED indicator. The indicator itself shows the level of the remaining charge in the box. As for the workmanship, there was a slight backlash in the open state of the lid. In addition, the earbud seats were not equipped with a magnetic connection, which is a bit strange for this class of devices. Okay, now I propose to start examining the next section and talk about the quality of the connection.
Connection, latency and touch connection
The latest generation of Bluetooth 5.2 version is responsible for the wireless connection in the KZ Z3 earbud model. This version of the wireless connection caught the signal through two walls in the room without any problems. Also in the open air, the earbuds could easily catch the signal from the smartphone at a distance of up to 15 meters. That you will agree very well.
In addition, the Z3 TWS earbuds can be used as a pair or separately. It is also worth mentioning the presence of a chipset from Qualcomm QCC3040 with support for aptX, AAC and SBC audio codecs.
Okay, now let’s talk about game mode. The new generation of KZ Z3 earbuds uses a game mode and, as the manufacturer assures, when it is activated, the delay will be about 40 ms. Yes, in games like PUBG Mobile, there was almost no lag. But in slow motion, one could calculate that the delay was about 120-150ms. But even this delay was very low and your hearing will definitely not feel it.
When it comes to touch controls, it’s not all that bad. That is, this model of KZ Z3 earbuds received the following control functions. For example, you can play or pause tracks, skip tracks forward or backward, activate the voice assistant, answer phone calls, and switch game mode to standard or vice versa. But here I did not find such functions as volume control, although the manufacturer indicates its presence.
Sound and microphone quality
Inside the case of each KZ Z3 earbud, one dynamic driver with a size of 10 mm and one reinforcing driver 30019 were installed. Naturally, these are hybrid wireless earbuds, where a dynamic driver is responsible for low frequencies, and a reinforcing radiator for mid and high frequencies.
During my testing, I was once again surprised at how well the KZ earbuds played. They had a good margin of the maximum volume level and I had no problems at all with listening to music of various genres. In a word, the earbuds absorbed any music and sounded very beautiful, as for their price.
If we talk in more detail about each frequency range, then the low frequencies received a very bright and rich sound. Especially while listening to music, I observed the presence of a lot of bass. It was there and played richly and dynamically.
At the same time, the middle and high frequencies had good detail and had a crystal sound even at the maximum volume level. Each musical instrument was played distinctly and separately, and the vocalist’s voice was also straightforward and bright.
When it comes to microphone performance, in a quiet place, I didn’t have much of a problem during my testing. But in noisy places of the city, my interlocutors heard me distantly and not quite clearly. But do not forget that these are TWS earbuds without a leg and therefore the location of the microphone here is not very good.
Battery and run time
In the instructions and on the official website, I did not find information about the battery capacity of the KZ Z3 earbuds. But during my testing, at 50% volume, the device lasted about 6 hours and 10 minutes. But at 100% volume for 3 hours and 50 minutes.
But the capacity of the charging box was known – it is 300 mAh and you can charge the earbuds 2.5 times. Therefore, the total battery life of the device was 15 to 22 hours, depending on the sound volume.
At the same time, the Z3 earbuds are charged in just 50 minutes, and the charging case itself was charged via the Type-C connection in 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Conclusion, reviews, pros and cons
After reading the full review, I think you understand that the new KZ Z3 wireless earbuds are definitely worth your attention.
On the positive side, I can single out – this is a good combination of materials used with perfect workmanship. The earbuds also received the most recent update in wireless connectivity. Since onboard the device has Bluetooth with version 5.2 and support for aptX audio codecs with game mode.
But the most important feature in the Z3 earbud model is its fit and sound quality. That is, the earbuds received perfect sound for hybrid TWS devices.
Of the minuses, I can single out – this is the lack of a volume control function, there are no additional features, such as ANC functions and transparency mode.
Price and where to buy cheaper?
As I said earlier, the price tag for the new KZ Z3 earbud model was very tempting and amounted to only $43.98 with a 40% discount.
Therefore, given its sweet cost, I can definitely recommend these earbuds for purchase. Trust me, you will be surprised by their sound quality and comfortable fit in the ear canal. What else is needed for a good TWS earbud?