Scott Schumer is an executive in the fields of consumer electronics, commercial audio, video, and IoT who has a passion for custom AV installation, smart home, affordable AV equipment, and high-performance headphones.
He formerly served as sales, marketing and product development at Sennheiser / Neumann USA; Harman; Loud Technologies; and Blue Microphones; and is currently managing North American sales for Peavey Commercial Audio.
You could be forgiven if you mistook Tribit for one of those Chinese OEMs making “me too” collections of audio products that litter Amazon's listings. After having reviewed several of their products, though, I can tell you while their designs are not radically different from anything you have already seen, their form follows function and the quality of the materials and features and benefits are first-rate, despite the incredible value. The company recently impressed me with its StormBox Micro and XSound Go Bluetooth speakers, as well as the FlyBuds 1 wireless earbuds, and I was impressed with the sound quality, features, and build quality. So I'll admit my biases right up front: I went into this review of Tribit's QuietPlus 78, a full-sizes over-ear Bluetooth ANC headphones with higher expectations than one should probably have for a $79.99 pair of cans.
The first thing you notice about the QuietPlus 78 is that it's quite comfortable for a full-sized, over-ear, closed-back wireless headphone. It may not be the lightest design you can get your hands on, but it's nonetheless comfortable, with high-quality materials and just the right amount of caliper pressure. It features a fold-up design and comes with a very nice hard-shell carry case. The only finish option is black with a slim silver ring around each earcup, but it's a classic, understated aesthetic.
Buttons are well-placed and feel solid. Once you get the hang of which button to press and how many times to press it for each function, you won’t have any trouble remembering how to select between the three ANC modes (Low, High, Ambient, and Off), volume up and down, next and previous track, play and pause, answer and end call, redial last called number, activate Siri, and enter and clear Bluetooth pairing.
There are some frustrations with the controls. To access Siri, you need to press the multi-function button twice. I much prefer hands-free activation of digital assistants, which is the sort of thing you normally only get on higher-priced headphones. But it doesn't take that long to acclimate to the double-press.
It also doesn't take long to get used to toggling between the different active noise cancellation modes. Surprisingly, I found myself enjoying the ANC Low settings, as there are times when I just need a bit of noise attenuation, and that's exactly what this mode provides. ANC High, on the other hand, is perfect for travel or for particularly noisy environments. The pass-through or Ambient mode is like Transparency mode on the AirPods Pro, just without the perfect level of balance you get with Apple's pricy in-ears Still, it works well considering the price. All things considered, the ANC on these wallet-friendly headphones is very good.
The QuietPlus 78 employs Bluetooth 5.0, so it was no surprised to discover that, despite the price tag, this headphone benefits from a stable connection, excellent range, low latency (there was no noticeable lip sync issues when watching YouTube or other streaming videos or during gaming), and excellent battery life. Furthermore, the QuietPlus 78 can simultaneously connect to two devices and will switch to whichever device becomes active. For example, if you pair to both your smartphone and computer, if you are listening to music from your computer and your get an incoming call, the QuietPlus 78 will automatically switch to your smartphone for the duration of the call.
Battery life is listed as 30 to 35 hours on a single full charge, which takes roughly three hours. “Turbo-Charge” allows you to gain four hours of playtime from a quick ten minutes of juice. The package comes with a USB-A to USB-C cable. No wall converter is included, but any USB power adapter can be used. Also included is a 3.5mm audio cable that allows you to switch over to wired oepration for uninterrupted listening on those long flights or if you simply forget to charge the headphone.
Should you expect audiophile-level performance out of Tribit's flagship wireless headphone? No, but then that isn’t its intended purpose. If we can agree its purpose is delivering clear and intelligible phone calls and solid music, movie, and gaming experiences, The QuietPlus 78 is more than up to the task.
Low frequencies pack plenty of punch,the mids are never muddy, and highs never get shrill. They create a nice left-right soundstage but lack the spacious, immersive imaging you expect from flagship Sony, Apple, and Bose wireless ANC headphones. It really comes down to how much performance you're willing to pay for, and the Tribit QuietPlus 78, while far from perfect, delivers far more listening enjoyment than you would expect, given its price.
The Tribit QuietPlus 78 is priced competitively against the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 ($79.99) and sells for just a bit less than the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC500BT ($79.99) and JBL Tune 750BTNC ($99.95).
The Soundcore Life Q30 has an attendant app that brings a great suite of sound customization. The Audio-Technica model has very good active noise cancellation, but less battery life at 20 hours compared to 30 or 35 for the QuietPlus 78. JBL’s offering here has the least battery life at 15 hours of operation between charges, but does allow hands-free voice control of digital assistants including Alexa, Google, Siri, and Bixby.
Amongst these affordable, feature-rich, full-sized Bluetooth headphones with ANC, you really can’t make a bad decision. It will come down to what’s most important to you. None lack in sound quality. though the associated app for the Soundcore Q30 allows you to tweak the sound to your preference. They all integrate with your Bluetooth devices, though I give the nod here to JBL for their enhanced hands-free voice control of all major digital assistants. All offer acceptable clarity for making and taking phone calls.
Deep bass and fold-up design are where the QuietPlus 78 sets itself apart, so if these are important factors for your wireless noise cancelling headphone needs, the Tribit QuietPlus 78 is a wonderful choice.