Review: Yamaha TW-E3B and TW-E5B  true wireless Bluetooth earbuds

Review: Yamaha TW-E3B and TW-E5B true wireless Bluetooth earbuds- Friendly to your ears as we pleasantly surprised by the Yamaha TW-E3B and the TW-E5B.

The Yamaha TW-E3B is the cheapest set of the two. For 99 euros these are affordable true wireless earplugs and therefore a solid competitor for the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2, JBL Tune 130/230NC, Nothing Ear (1) or the countless other brands operating in this price segment. They are also available in six different trendy colours. The Yamaha TW-E5B can be found a segment higher and is sold for 159 euros in four different colors. The wireless earplugs have some similarities, but also differences. You can read all about it in this review.


In both cases, these are of course wireless earplugs that work via Bluetooth. Both models support audio codecs such as SBC, AAC and aptX. They are equipped with a microphone, so calling is no problem with either model. Voice assistants are supported (Siri and Google Assistant) and you can use the Yamaha Headphone Control app to personalize settings and sound through an equalizer. They are water resistant through IPX5. Noise canceling is missing on both sets.

Unique is Listening Care, where the earplugs also offer a full sound experience at lower volumes thanks to an algorithm to protect the hearing. According to Yamaha, these in-ears are free from the challenge that many other in-ears face, namely compensating for the loss of information on certain frequencies. This is caused by listening at lower volumes. Users often want to increase the volume, which in turn is harmful to hearing. Listening Care thus protects your hearing and lets you hear the full sound spectrum even at lower volumes. Both earphones come with Yamaha True Sound. With this Yamaha wants to demonstrate that acoustic and electronic innovations can overcome the sound technical limitations of a compact housing.

In the box we find a charging cable (usb-type-a to c), manual and various eartips in different sizes. Choose from XS, S, M and L. So there is always the right size for your ears.


Of course there are also the necessary differences between the Yamaha TW-E3B and the TW-E5B. That starts with the box. Although the outer packaging is designed in the same style, the inner box of the TW-E5B turns out to be much more luxurious with different compartments and the charging case in a bag. The difference in size between the two charging cases is immediately striking. The Yamaha TW-E5B has a much larger charging case and after opening it becomes clear why, because the Yamaha TW-E5B are quite a bit bigger and more luxurious.

The Yamaha TW-E3B has a dynamic 6 mm driver and also looks a lot smaller. We have the (matte) black version of both earplugs and what is striking is that there is little frills on the TW-E3B. You will find a physical button on both sides with an LED light in front of it, but otherwise it is one whole. It may also look a bit boring.

The Yamaha TW-E5B features a dynamic 7mm driver. Although the part that is slid into the ear is almost identical, the rest of the housing is really a lot bigger. This model has physical buttons on the top and a relief pattern on the side, which we also find on the top of the charging case. It not only makes the TW-E5B more luxurious, but also heavier, namely 6.5 grams per earbud as opposed to 5 grams per earbud of the TW-E3B.

Differences can also be found in the specifications. The Yamaha TW-E3B has bluetooth 5.0, while the TW-E5B has bluetooth 5.2. The latter also comes with Ambient Sound, through which external sounds can also be passed on. This way you stay better informed of your surroundings and you can also safely walk on the street with the earplugs in. In addition, this model also supports the Qualcomm aptX Adaptive audio codec. The battery also lasts longer. According to the specifications, you can listen for up to 30 hours on the Yamaha TW-E5B, namely 8.5 hours per charge and another 21.5 hours with the charging case included. The Yamaha TW-E3B lasts 6 hours on a single charge and an additional 18 hours with the charging case included.


Of course you can take them straight out of the packaging, put them in the charging case and connect them to your smartphone via bluetooth. However, for the best experience, please download the Yamaha Headphone Control app first. Connect the earbuds to your smartphone and they will also be found quickly in the app. Here you have the choice to enable Ambient Sound (with the TW-E5B), Listening Care, a special gaming mode and you have an Equalizer where you can adjust the sound to your liking. There are a number of presets available as Energy, Vocal or Groove, but you can also create and save your own presets. The Yamaha Headphone Control app also gives you the option to download firmware updates for your earbuds. It’s a small, yet easy-to-use app that’s great value for its customizable sound settings.

Putting the Yamaha TW-E5B in your ears for the first time takes some getting used to. They are quite large earplugs and it takes a while to find how they can be put in the ears as comfortably as possible. Ultimately, they fit reasonably well, but still less comfortable than the cheaper TW-E3B, ​​especially due to the larger housing that rests somewhere in your ear cup. Now they are designed exactly to fit right in the opening of your ear, so maybe I just have weird ears. However, they do seal very well and the passive isolation is therefore excellent. You don’t get much from your surroundings, so you can enjoy the music to the fullest. And you can always turn on Ambient Sound on this model if you still want to hear something from your surroundings. The TW-E3B are slightly more comfortable, partly due to the compact housing, but during long listening sessions you will notice some pressure on the ears, making these both not the most comfortable earphones.

The ease of use of the TW-E5B is greater than that of the TW-E3B. The somewhat superimposed physical buttons on the top work better than the buttons of the Yamaha TW-E3B, ​​which are more sunk into the design. In addition, the TW-E5B has an extra button. The volume buttons are therefore on the same side and that just works better. With the TW-E3B, ​​you turn the volume up with the right earbud and the volume down with the left. That is a little less intuitive. However, we only applaud physical buttons. Swiping over the housings of many other brands does not work well.

What about the battery then? Actually very good. The ears have been worn a lot here during the last few weeks while writing. We haven’t timed it exactly, but the claimed battery life of 6.5 hours and 8 hours respectively seems to be quite right. This puts these models at the top of the market in terms of battery life in the corresponding market segments, which is a nice bonus.

Sound quality

The looks and specifications on paper are of course all very nice to know, but in the end it is about the sound quality. Both earphones managed to surprise us. First and foremost, it should be clear that they are not bass wonders. Do you play with the equalizer in the app and crank up the bass? Then it soon sounds too woolly. These are therefore not the right earplugs for the bassheads among us. However, you can notice that Yamaha is a real hi-fi brand, because if you go for a more neutral sound, you will notice how spatially these wireless earplugs manage to reproduce the sound. The sound is perfectly balanced and also lets you enjoy small details in the songs that you sometimes miss with other wireless earbuds. Diamonds from The Boxer Rebellion has always been a benchmark for wireless earbuds. The intro with the drums, guitar and synth is apparently quite difficult to reproduce properly. Many wireless earbuds make one big mess of it, if not the Yamaha TW-E5B that displays the intro tightly. The song Broken by the up-and-coming Belgian band The Haunted Youth lets you enjoy the guitar that moves subtly in the background during the vocal lines. Genres such as electronica and even classical are effortlessly reproduced. Music sounds big and open, making it almost seem like you’re wearing over-ear headphones instead of wireless earbuds. Will Yamaha mean this by Yamaha True Sound? Then it does seem to work.

The Yamaha TW-E3B take a small step back compared to the more expensive variant, but still have a lot to offer. The sound is slightly less spacious, but details come out well here too. Texas Sun, the song by the trio Khruangbin in collaboration with Leon Bridges, is a typical song to dream away to during the hot days. What is also striking here is how layered the music sounds, albeit slightly less than with the Yamaha TW-E5B. Instruments are really individually distinguishable, from strong guitars to noises, as if you were present during the recordings. In that regard, the Yamaha TW-E3B offer more value for money than the more expensive TW-E5B, even if the latter narrowly wins in terms of sound quality.

With wireless earbuds I always have the idea that at a low volume I hear the music somewhere through a tunnel far away and that they only start to perform at a loud volume. And your ears don’t like that. The Listening Care function is a real added value with both earplugs, by also providing the entire sound spectrum at lower volume. You don’t always notice it with every genre of music (with Rock the difference was hard to hear), but I finally got the idea that I didn’t have to turn the music up loud to enjoy it.


I am pleasantly surprised by the Yamaha TW-E3B and the TW-E5B. The good sound quality, the nice Yamaha Headphone Control app and the excellent battery life make these wireless earplugs a very good choice in both the cheaper and mid-range segments. The lack of noise canceling is made up for by the good passive isolation. The sound of the Yamaha TW-E5B is slightly more spacious and more detailed than the Yamaha TW-E3B, ​​but you pay for that. Admittedly, I’m not normally a fan of in-ears. Give me some good over-ear headphones. So these two Yamahas really surprised me. The Yamaha TW-E3B and TW-E5B prove that wireless earplugs can also produce good sound. Do you want affordable hi-fi sound and are you in the market for wireless earbuds? Then take a look at these sets from Yamaha.


  • Excellent sound
  • Good battery life
  • Yamaha Headphone Control app really added value
  • Physical buttons for operation

  • Other earplugs offer just a little more comfort
  • No noise cancelling