TCL launches new products to challenge Sony and Bose
TCL, with its subsidiary TES, also showed up at the IFA 2019 and during its press conference showed how it wants to get noticed by audiophiles and all those users who love to listen to music on-the-go as well as at home.
TCL audio products and services for a young audience
"We want to be a brand that is for now and future." TCL Entertainment Solutions (TES), a subsidiary of the main TCL, presented to the press and users. The company, which has been focusing on the international market since last year, wants to focus in particular on audio and smart products and services.
TES presents itself as a brand that points to the present and the future
The brand is aimed at a young audience, families and millennials, those who are able to create and spread new trends. That's why the TCL team, since 2018, has been trying to combine innovation, design, user experience (ease of use as well as good battery life), audio performance and smart solutions.
"We want to create an ecosystem of TCL products that synergize with one another, to provide the best experience users can enjoy both inside and outside their homes. Most importantly of all, we want our products to improve the lives of consumers," said Wiebo Vaartjes, CEO of TCL Entertainment Solutions. And that's why TCL came to IFA with a soundbar, true wireless earbuds, and noise-canceling headphones. But did TCL manage to mix all these ingredients in the right way?
True wireless earbuds and headphones for an on-the-go experience
True Wireless Earphones: TCL offers two models
TCL presented two pairs of true wireless earbuds. This decision is not surprising: more and more brands are committing themselves to this type of product and TCL did not want to fall behind. Always keeping in mind the young (or youthful) target audience, it tried to improve the design to make the headphones comfortable to wear for the majority of users: 95 percent of you should be happy, according to the brand, thanks to the "ear-centric" design that takes into account the whole inner part of the ear and not only the ear canal.
The basic design is the same in the two models, case included, with some small differences. The SOCL500TWS offer a transparent design and are truly original in purple, blue, orange and black. The ACTV500TWS are instead more sober-looking, in black and copper or white and copper and the case offers a better grip as well as a metal hook that allows you to hang it comfortably on your backpack. The latter are designed primarily for sports users and, in addition to offering Comply™ foam cushions, they offer IPX7 certification for protection against water and sweat, compared to the IPX4 certification offered by SOCL500TWS earphones.
In both cases it is clear that TCL has tried to focus on a colorful and original design, without forgetting two important factors when it comes to true wireless earbuds: comfort and battery life. I put the headphones in my ears with ease but of course, to understand if they remain firm even during physical activity and to get an idea of the actual battery life, we will need to test them thoroughly. I'm really curious to try them given the price of €79 and €99.
Three pairs of active noise-canceling headphones
In this case, we are talking about three products: the MTRO200NC, ELIT200NC and ELIT400NC (I know, remembering the names is a struggle!). In DNA they have a common gene called ANC (Active Noise Cancellation), in addition to support for Bluetooth 4.2.
The MTRO200NCs are made of plastic, which in my hand did not give the impression of being very resistant but these were not final products, and they can be folded easily for transport. The headphones incorporate a 32mm driver and uses soft cushions. The brand promises 20 hours of battery life (17 with ANC active) and offers support for fast charging to get an hour of use in just 15 minutes of charging.
The ELIT400NCs are also made of plastic, can be folded and are larger than MTRO200NCs. Like tge ELIT200NCs, they offer Hi-Res Audio certification and fast charging. The 400NC model consists of a rigid band as opposed to the 200NCs that can be hung around your neck. As the name suggests, the other difference is in the size of the speaker integrated into the headphones, which is larger in the ELIT400NC (40mm). Both the ELIT200NC and the ELIT400NC are now available in Europe at a price of €79 euros and €129.
In this case, too, we will have to wait for the final products to evaluate their performance, I have to say that they didn't convince me very much when I went hands-on. Of these three models, the ELIT200NC is the one that convinced me the most.
A soundbar for those who don't want to leave the couch
The TCL RAY DANZ Soundbar is designed for living rooms that don't have room for multi-speaker systems but when you don't want to give up a surround sound experience. The soundbar integrates a total of three speakers but what immediately catches your eye are the two empty areas on the sides.
It's no coincidence, of course: the new TCL soundbar has been designed to allow the integration of side speakers to reflect the sound in these two areas to propagate it to a specific angle, offering a more natural 360° experience. The speaker positioned in the center clearly reproduces the sound.
TCL promises an optimized sound experience and a more natural perception of the sound inside the room regardless of its positioning. We had the chance to experience the soundbar in action and my first impressions were positive: whether I was on the right, on the left or in front of the soundbar, the sound was homogeneous.
TCL challenges the bigs boys on the market
Wiebo Vaartjes and his international team have a clear idea of the audience TES wants to reach and the type of products to focus on now and in the future. The team is made up of experts in this field who, before joining TES, have offered their contribution to other brands such as Philips, for example. The conditions for being noticed in the market do not seem to be lacking here.
Now, it will be necessary to test these devices to see if they are actually able to offer a quality audio experience, without disappointing in terms of battery life.