With wireless earbuds flooding the market right now, it’s actually really refreshing to see something a little bit different from Creative Labs, in the form of the Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless. They are wireless earphones, but with a neckband and physical buttons.
But can it compete with the myriad of True Wireless Stereo offerings at such a competitive price point? Read on to find out.
Triple drive your audio to new heights
Design and Control
With all the electronics, battery, and controls housed in the neckband, this allows the actual earphones to only weigh in at 40g. Being this weight means they’re a lot less likely to come out whilst listening and moving around. The neckband itself really is so well made and looks super stylish. The part that rests on your neck is made from a really supple silicone and is extremely comfortable.
It’s a shame that the micro-USB charging port has a bit of a flimsy rubber cover. It doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the beautiful aesthetics.
There also isn’t any IP waterproof rating at all on the Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless which is such a shame. It just narrows down the usage to a more specific pair of earphones rather than for general use. They’re clearly not designed for use in sports.
There are 3 physical buttons, yes actual buttons in a touch control mad world! I actually don’t mind this as they’re raised making them super easy to find and operate. There is a plus and a minus button which adjusts the volume with a single press. Whilst pressing and holding changes tracks respectively.
The central multifunctional button is used for everything else. Holding down the button switches the unit on and puts it into pairing mode. Single pressing the button once connected controls playback and as the device has a built-in microphone this can also be used for answering and ending phone calls. Voice assistants such as Siri or Google Assistant can be called up as well by pressing this same central button twice. During testing, this worked flawlessly even in noisy environments.
It is also commendable that these earphones come with six different ear tips, three silicone and three foam versions, each in sizes S, M, and L. This allows the fit to be individually adjusted so you’re sure to get the most comfortable listening experience. Not enough companies include enough ear tips so this is a huge plus and others should certainly take note.
There’s also a useful little practical feature in that the earpieces are magnetic. This allows you to clip them together around your neck whilst taking a break rather than having to stow them away when not in use.
For those times when you’re not using the earphones at all or you’re travelling, there is a nice little carrying case, which because it’s quite small in comparison to the earphones and neckband, does take some very precise packing to ensure it all fits in and closes.
The Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless has a solid 20 hours of battery life. I was comfortably able to hit this on multiple charges thanks to the 130mAh rechargeable lithium-polymer battery. Unfortunately, though, this is charged using a micro-USB cable and takes about 2 hours. I really would’ve liked to see USB-C and fast charge capabilities, especially in this day and age. It’s also worth noting that for at least the last hour and a half of usage there is an audible beep indicating the battery is low. This would be fine if it wasn’t every 45-50 seconds as it does severely impact the listening experience.
There’s Bluetooth 5.0 which allows multipoint connections, alongside Qualcomm aptX, aptX HD, aptX Low Latency, and also AAC audio codecs.
This means you can use the aptX Low Latency codec to watch movies, YouTube videos, and play games without worrying about sync issues.
If you have a device that supports the aptX HD codec, it opens up the already incredible soundstage even more and shows how good these earphones really are. To have this advanced codec in such an affordable pair of earphones is remarkable.
Creative also sell a neat little Bluetooth transmitter, the BT-W3. This can be purchased individually or heavily-reduced as a bundle with these Aurvana Trio Wireless earphones. It’s a superb little device and can bring even advanced codecs to any console, mobile, or PC/Mac as long as your listening device supports it, which of course the Aurvana does. It’s so good we did a little separate review of the BT-W3 right here
Then there’s Creatives Super X-Fi technology which these earphones support.
Super X-Fi is holographic audio. This gives the impression of multiple speakers placed at a distance with the feeling of the audio hitting you from every angle possible, rather than just directly into your ears.
It works by first downloading the free SXFi app on your mobile. Then following the tutorial, the app takes photos and digitally maps both of your ears and face. It then builds a custom profile completely tailored to you and your features. This is the important bit as we already have 3D audio and surround sound, but when using headphones or earphones we all have very differently shaped ears and heads so the experience can be very different for each individual.
There are limitations with Super X-Fi. It can only be used on music stored locally, not with any streaming services. It also only works whilst the app is active.
However, that said in certain scenarios it is quite simply phenomenal, especially when used for movies and gaming.
When used for music it almost simulates the feeling of being at a concert. The sound is much wider and has a feeling of spaciousness. Personally, this has a bit of a negative impact on the listening experience but I can see the potential.
For gaming and movies though, I feel this technology could be the future. When tested on an action movie it’s almost mind-blowing. When compared to regular surround sound and even 3D audio this blows it out of the water.
The experience feels completely personal to me. I have to remember I’m wearing earphones at times and not sitting in a room full of speakers. It’s the same with gaming, I’m able to hear so much more than I previously thought possible.
For example, on an FPS game, I’m able to tell exactly where people are and where gunshots are coming from. Whether it’s a sniper from a huge distance or someone right through the floor below me. I’m able to completely pinpoint their location. I feel like I have such an advantage! I can’t wait to see where Creative go with this technology.
Sound and Performance
The Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless features a hybrid triple driver system. This comprises of 2 Dual Balanced Armature drivers to deliver those detailed highs and natural mids and an 11mm Dynamic Bio-cellulose driver to deliver the rich powerful bass.
Because each of these drivers handle their own dedicated range it means incredible accuracy across the audio spectrum providing an impressive frequency response of 5–20,000 Hz.
Think of it as 3 separate speakers in your room. 1 tweeter for the high trebles, 1 for the midrange, and 1 subwoofer for the bass. That’s exactly what you’re getting here, just scaled down in your ears. No small feat packing all that in!
Thanks to this triple driver system it doesn’t ever feel like one frequency is overpowering the other, which is so often the case for single-driver earphones. Here they all just work together so beautifully and compliment each other perfectly. Even when pushed to really high volumes, of which there is no lack of reserves, I never experienced any harshness or distortion, definitely thanks to the 3 separate drivers providing such a high output.
If I was to pick out some very minor negatives. There is definitely some underlying noise, especially at low volumes. This is not really uncommon in wireless Bluetooth earphones but it does seem a bit more prominent here.
I would also say that the bass, although extremely warm and powerful, isn’t quite as precise or as tight as it could be when compared to others that I have heard and own. But that’s me being very picky!
There’s no active noise cancellation on these, however, this doesn’t matter one bit. The Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless ear tips give incredible noise isolation even in loud environments. This is helped by having the excellent choice of silicone or memory foam tips to help find the perfect fit.
The microphone situated on the neckband used for phone calls, or nowadays more likely zoom calls, features Qualcomm cVc 8.0 Noise Cancellation technology. This provides much better voice pickup and crystal clear voice clarity. When using these earphones on calls and comparing them to various other much more expensive earbuds, these were picked out on numerous occasions for being by far the clearest.
No matter what source you use or what device you link them up to, whether you’re listening to music, watching a movie, or even playing a game, the sound is always so engaging. It’s rich and warm yet exciting and playful, whilst always staying perfectly balanced across all genres, which really is an incredible feat.
Very few earphones on the market have a triple driver setup and this is without a doubt the reason for such outstanding audio performance. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a pair of earphones as good as these under £100. The sound quality far outclasses even more expensive offerings.
I am genuinely so surprised how good these Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless earphones are, especially at such a competitive price point. They thoroughly deserve the Thumb Culture Gold Award!
Disclaimer: A sample was received in order to write this review.