TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.5
Reviewed Feb 11, 2021 at 08:46 am
TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless Picture
6.7
Neutral Sound
7.7
Commute/Travel
8.1
Sports/Fitness
7.0
Office
5.3
Wireless Gaming
5.2
Wired Gaming
7.0
Phone Calls
Type In-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless Truly Wireless
Noise Cancelling Yes
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless are well-built in-ears with an impressive ANC feature that can block out lots of background noises. These headphones have an excited, V-shaped sound profile that adds an extra thump and punch to your audio while making vocals and lead instruments sparkly and bright. While there isn't a dedicated ANC off feature, 'Transparency Mode', allows you to hear some ambient noise around you. Unfortunately, they don't have any features for customizing their sound to your liking, and they only last for a little over four hours off of a single charge. Fortunately, their portable charging case offers around three extra charges for when you're on-the-go.

Our Verdict

6.7 Neutral Sound

The TOZO NC9 are passable for neutral sound. Their V-shaped sound profile adds extra thump and punch in the bass range while making vocals and lead instruments sound bright and sparkly. However, this may be a bit overwhelming for fans of neutral sound. Unfortunately, they don't offer any sound customization features.

Pros
  • Consistent audio delivery across different users.
Cons
  • No sound customization options.
7.7 Commute/Travel

The TOZO NC9 are good for commute and travel. Thanks to their ANC feature, they can block out bass-heavy background noises like bus and plane engines as well as the sounds of people chatting around you. Their in-ear design is very portable, and while their continuous battery life isn't ideal for long plane rides, their portable charging case makes it easy to power up when you're on-the-go.

Pros
  • Impressive noise isolation.
  • Portable design.
Cons
  • 4.2-hour continuous battery life.
8.1 Sports/Fitness

The TOZO NC9 are impressive for sports and fitness. These portable, breathable in-ears have a stable fit, so they shouldn't fall out of your ears during moderately intense workouts. They even have an IPX6 rating for water resistance, though we don't currently test for this. That said, their bulky design may not be comfortable for all listeners.

Pros
  • Portable design.
  • IPX6 rating for water resistance.
  • Stable enough for moderately intense workouts.
Cons
  • 4.2-hour continuous battery life.
7.0 Office

The TOZO NC9 are fair for office use. Their ANC feature does an impressive job blocking out background noises like coworkers chatting nearby, and you can activate their Transparency Mode if you want to hear ambient noise. They don't leak a lot of noise, either, so you can crank up the volume on your music without really bothering those around you. While they're decently comfortable, their bulky fit isn't ideal for all listeners, and their 4.2-hour continuous battery life isn't ideal for long shifts. That said, their portable charging case offers around three extra charges.

Pros
  • Impressive noise isolation.
Cons
  • 4.2-hour continuous battery life.
5.3 Wireless Gaming

The TOZO NC9 aren't compatible with PS4, PS5, Xbox One, or Xbox Series X consoles. While you can use them with Bluetooth-enabled PCs, their latency is likely too high to be suitable for gaming.

5.2 Wired Gaming

The TOZO NC9 are wireless-only headphones, so they aren't suitable for wired gaming.

7.0 Phone Calls

The TOZO NC9 are okay for phone calls. Their integrated microphone has a decent recording quality, so whoever's on the other end of the line should be able to understand you, even if your voice sounds a bit thin. Also, their ANC feature offers impressive noise isolation, so you aren't distracted by background noises during your calls. However, the microphone struggles to separate your voice from background noises, so it may be drowned out if you're calling from a moderately noisy environment.

Pros
  • Impressive noise isolation.
Cons
  • Disappointing noise handling performance.
  • 6.7 Neutral Sound
  • 7.7 Commute/Travel
  • 8.1 Sports/Fitness
  • 7.0 Office
  • 5.3 Wireless Gaming
  • 5.2 Wired Gaming
  • 7.0 Phone Calls
  1. Updated Aug 11, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.5.
  2. Updated Feb 25, 2021: We retested the passive noise isolation performance of these headphones while they were turned off. The Noise Isolation score hasn't changed.
  3. Updated Feb 11, 2021: Review published.
  4. Updated Feb 08, 2021: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style

The TOZO NC9 are truly wireless in-ears with a similar look to the TOZO T12 Truly Wireless. They're mostly made of matte plastic with a glossy plastic outer ring. They have a rounded, slightly bulky shape, too.

7.0
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.02 lbs
Clamping Force
0 lbs

The TOZO NC9 are decently comfortable. They're a bit bulky, and they sit a little deep in your ears. However, they don't go deeper into your ears when you press their controls, which is nice. Also, they come with lots of different earbud tip sizes to help you find the best possible fit. For more comfortable in-ears, check out the Cowin Apex Elite Truly Wireless.

7.6
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use Decent
Feedback Good
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
No
Noise Cancelling Control On/Off
Talk-Through
On/Off
Additional Controls Voice Assistant

The controls are good. You can tap the left bud once to switch between ANC mode or Transparency Mode, which lets in ambient noise so you can hear people talking to you. Tap the left bud twice to skip back to the previous track, and hold it to turn the volume down. You can tap the right bud once to play/pause your audio, twice to skip to the next track, and hold it to turn the volume up. If you get a phone call, you can tap either bud to answer and hold either bud to end or reject the call. Tap either bud three times to activate the voice assistant. Overall, the controls are responsive and there's lots of audible feedback, including voice prompts and beeps when you reach max and min volume.

9.2
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 0.8 °C

The TOZO NC9 have incredible breathability. Thanks to their in-ear fit, they don't trap a lot of heat, so you shouldn't sweat more than usual while wearing them.

9.4
Design
Portability
L 1.5" (3.8 cm)
W 1.1" (2.8 cm)
H 1.0" (2.5 cm)
Volume 1.60 in³ (26.22 cm³)
Transmitter Required No

The TOZO NC9 are outstandingly portable. They're very small and lightweight. Their carrying case isn't very bulky, either, and it should fit easily into your pocket or bag.

7.5
Design
Case
Type Hard case
L 2.9" (7.4 cm)
W 1.7" (4.3 cm)
H 1.3" (3.3 cm)
Volume 6.10 in³ (99.96 cm³)

The case is good. It's mostly made of plastic, which feels hard and solid. You can use it to charge the in-ears, and the four LED lights help indicate the battery level.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

The TOZO NC9 have a good build quality. They're mostly made of plastic, with matte plastic on the exterior and glossy plastic on the interior. The buds are rated IPX6 for water resistance, though we don't currently test for this. Overall, they feel pretty solid, though the earbud tips are a potential weak link.

7.5
Design
Stability

These headphones have good stability. They should stay in your ears during moderately intense exercise. However, they lack stability fins, so they may fall out during more intense workouts.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  • TOZO NC9 headphones
  • 6x ear tips
  • Charging case
  • USB-C to USB-A charging cable
  • Manuals

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
4.19 dB
Treble Amount
0.88 dB

The TOZO NC9 have a somewhat excited, V-shaped sound profile. There's extra thump and punch in the bass range, while vocals and lead instruments are bright and sparkling. However, some listeners may find that their mixes sound a bit muddy or boomy. There aren't any sound customization features, so you can't adjust their sound.

8.2
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.36 dB

These headphones have impressive frequency response consistency. Once you get a proper fit with the included earbud tips, you should get a consistent audio delivery each time you use them.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
6.7
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
5.31 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
10 Hz
Low-Bass
6.72 dB
Mid-Bass
5.83 dB
High-Bass
5.19 dB

The bass accuracy is acceptable. The entire range is overemphasized, so you really feel the deep thump, rumble, and punch in your mixes. This is ideal for fans of bass-heavy genres like EDM and hip-hop, but other listeners may find it a bit boomy or overwhelming.

8.3
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
2.27 dB
Low-Mid
2.54 dB
Mid-Mid
-2.45 dB
High-Mid
-0.01 dB

These headphones have great mid accuracy. There's some overemphasis coming from the bass range that can add a bit of muddiness, and the small dip in the mid-mids nudges vocals and lead instruments slightly towards the back of the mix. However, the rest of the range is balanced and neutral, so vocals and lead instruments are clear and present.

7.0
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
4.42 dB
Mid-Treble
4.11 dB
Low-Treble
1.43 dB
High-Treble
4.75 dB

These headphones have adequate treble accuracy. The range is overemphasized, so vocals and lead instruments are detailed and a bit harsh, while sibilants like cymbals are piercing.

7.3
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
1.58 dB
Dips
1.86 dB

The TOZO NC9 have decent peaks and dips performance. The dip in the mid-mids nudges vocals and lead instruments towards the back of the mix, while the peak in the low-treble makes those same instruments a bit harsh or painful. The uneven mid-treble can make sibilants alternately piercing or dull.

9.4
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.15
Weighted Phase Mismatch
1.11
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.2
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
0.88

The TOZO NC9 have outstanding imaging. Their weighted group delay falls below the audibility threshold, resulting in a tight bass and transparent treble. Also, the L/R drivers of our test unit are well-matched in phase, frequency, and amplitude response, so objects like footsteps and voices are accurately placed and localized within the stereo image. However, these results are only valid for our test unit, and your experience may vary.

0.9
Sound
Passive Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
N/A
PRTF Distance
N/A
Openness
1.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
1.9

These headphones have a terrible passive soundstage, which is typical for in-ears. Due to their design, they bypass the outer-ear, which is one of the key factors in creating a large and out-of-body soundstage. Sound seems like it's coming from inside your head rather than from speakers placed all around you.

0
Sound
Virtual Soundstage
Head Modeling
No
Speaker Modeling
No
Room Ambience
No
Head Tracking
No
Virtual Surround
No App
8.3
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.157
WHD @ 100
0.085

The TOZO NC9 have a great weighted harmonic distortion performance. All frequencies fall within good limits, resulting in clear and pure audio reproduction.

Sound
Test Settings
Firmware
Unknown
Power
On
Connection
Bluetooth 5.0
Codec
SBC, 16-bit, 48kHz
EQ
No EQ
ANC
On
Tip/Pad
Silicone (small)
Microphone
Integrated

These are the settings we used to test these headphones. Our results are only valid when using these settings.

Isolation
8.2
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-21.79 dB
Bass
-18.32 dB
Mid
-17.48 dB
Treble
-29.29 dB

Update 02/25/2021: After user feedback, we tested the headphones completely off to measure their passive noise isolation performance. Turning the ANC on also matched our original measurements. The scoring of this box hasn't changed.

The TOZO NC9 have impressive noise isolation. These headphones have an ANC feature. However, you aren't able to turn this feature off unless you completely turn off the headphones. That said, you can cycle between the ANC and 'Transparency Mode', which is advertised to let in some background noises while blocking out others. With the ANC feature on, these headphones can block out bass-heavy background noises like bus and plane engines as well as higher-frequency ambient noise like people chatting nearby or the hum of AC units.

8.3
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
31.63 dB

These headphones have a great leakage performance. They don't leak a lot of noise, and escaping audio sounds quite thin, so it shouldn't really bother those around you if you listen to your music at loud volumes.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
Yes
In-Line
No
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
No
7.3
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
269.09 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
2.79 dB
HFE
6,267.15 Hz
Weighted THD
1.007
Gain
9.93 dB

The microphone's recording quality is decent. Your voice should sound fairly natural, but also thin and a bit muffled.

6.6
Microphone
Noise Handling
SpNR
5.91 dB
Noise Gate
Always On
Speech + Pink Noise Handling
7.0
Speech + Pink Noise Audio Sample
Speech + Subway Noise Handling
6.0
Speech + Subway Noise Audio Sample

The microphone has a disappointing noise handling performance. It struggles to separate your voice from background noises, so the person on the other end of the line may have trouble understanding you if you're calling from a moderately noisy environment.

Active Features
5.7
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
4.2 hrs
Additional Charges
3.0
Total Battery Life
16.8 hrs
Charge Time
1.4 hrs
Power-Saving Feature
No
Audio While Charging
Yes
Passive Playback
No
Charging Port USB-C

The TOZO NC9 have a sub-par battery performance. The manufacturer advertises a continuous battery life of eight hours, however, they only lasted for a little over four hours in our tests when in ANC mode. However, battery life can vary depending on usage, so your experience may vary. Their portable case offers around three extra charges for when you're on-the-go. You can also use one earbud while the other charges, which is nice. If you're looking for ANC earbuds with a longer battery life, try the EarFun Air Pro True Wireless.

0
Active Features
App Support
App Name No App
iOS No
Android No
macOS No
Windows No
Equalizer
No
ANC Control
No
Mic Control No
Room Effects
No
Playback Control
No
Button Mapping No
Surround Support
No
Connectivity
6.9
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
5.0
Multi-Device Pairing
No
NFC Pairing
No
Line Of Sight Range
214.00 ft (65.23 m)
PC Latency (SBC)
230 ms
PC Latency (aptX)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX HD)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX-LL)
N/A
iOS Latency
127 ms
Android Latency
158 ms

The TOZO NC9 have fair Bluetooth connectivity. They don't support NFC pairing, and you can only pair them with one device at a time. While their latency with PCs is likely too high to be suitable for watching videos, they perform better with iOS and Android devices. However, some apps compensate for latency differently, so your real-world experience may vary.

0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line Of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
0
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
No
USB Audio
No
Detachable No
Length N/A
Connection
No Wired Option
Analog/USB Audio Latency
N/A

The TOZO NC9 can't be used with a wired connection. The included USB-C cable is for recharging their case.

Connectivity
PC Compatibility
Analog
No
Wired USB
No
Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
PlayStation Compatibility
PS4 Analog
No
PS4 Wired USB
No
PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No
PS5 Analog
No
PS5 Wired USB
No
PS5 Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
Xbox Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
No
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Non-BT Wireless
No
Xbox Series X|S Analog
No
Xbox Series X|S Wired USB
No
Xbox Series X|S Non-BT Wireless
No

The TOZO NC9 aren't compatible with Xbox One or Xbox Series X consoles.

2.2
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
Charging Case
USB Input
No
Line In
No
Line Out
No
Optical Input
No
RCA Input
No
Dock Charging
Yes
Power Supply
USB-C

The TOZO NC9 come with a charging case that offers around three extra charges. You can charge it using the included USB-C cable.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The TOZO NC9 earbuds come in 'Black', and you can see the label for the model we tested here.

If you come across another version, let us know in the discussions so we can update our review.

Compared To Other Headphones

The TOZO NC9 are noise cancelling in-ears with an impressive ANC performance. They have a similar, slightly bulky design compared to the TOZO T12 Truly Wireless and the TOZO T10 Truly Wireless. Their V-shaped sound profile adds thump, punch, and excitement to your audio, but there isn't any way to customize the sound. You can only cycle between their ANC feature and Transparency Mode, which lets in some ambient noise, but you can't turn both of these features off at the same time. See also our recommendations for the best wireless Bluetooth earbuds, the best noise cancelling earbuds and in-ears, and the best wireless Bluetooth earbuds under $100.

TOZO NC2 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless and the TOZO NC2 Truly Wireless have different strengths, and which you may prefer depends on your needs. The NC9s have an impressive ANC feature that does a good job of blocking out noise like the rumbling bus and plane engines. On the other hand, while their ANC feature doesn't work nearly as well, the NC2s have much longer continuous battery life and a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer.

TOZO T12 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless and the TOZO T12 Truly Wireless are very similarly performing headphones, so depending on your listening habits, you may prefer one over the other. The NC9 have an ANC feature that offers better noise isolation, especially against bass-heavy background noises like bus and plane engines. However, the T12 have a better leakage performance, and their continuous battery life is a bit longer.

TOZO T6 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless and the TOZO T6 Truly Wireless have similar overall performances, so you may prefer one over the other depending on your listening habits. Thanks to their ANC feature, the NC9 offer a bit better noise isolation, especially against bass-heavy background noises like bus and plane engines. However, the T6 have a better leakage performance, and their continuous battery life is a bit longer.

TOZO NC7 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC7 Truly Wireless are better headphones than the TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless. The NC7 have a more balanced sound profile compared to NC9, especially in the bass range, so they're more suitable for fans of neutral sound. Also, they leak less audio, and they have longer continuous battery life. Their charging case also supports wireless charging, which is handy. That said, the NC9's charging case offers around one extra charge.

TOZO T10 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless are better headphones than the TOZO T10 Truly Wireless. The NC9 have a more comfortable fit, and their V-shaped sound profile is less boomy and muddy compared to the T10's bass-heavy sound profile. That said, the T10 have a better leakage performance, and their passive noise isolation has somewhat similar performance compared to the NC9's ANC feature, although they don't reduce as much bass-range noise.

Mpow X3 Truly Wireless

The Mpow X3 Truly Wireless are better for neutral sound than the TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless. The Mpow's sound profile is more neutral compared to the TOZO's V-shaped sound profile, and they have a more comfortable and stable fit. That said, the TOZO offer a much better noise isolation performance, so they're a better choice for your commute.

Mpow X5 Truly Wireless

The Mpow X5 Truly Wireless and TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless are very similarly-performing headphones, though one pair may suit you better than the other. The Mpow deliver audio more consistently, leak less audio, and have longer battery life. However, despite not having ANC like the Mpow, the TOZO do almost as good a job at blocking out ambient noise. They also take much less time to charge.

Cowin Apex Elite Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless are better headphones than the Cowin Apex Elite Truly Wireless. The TOZO are better-built, and they offer a more balanced mid-range. Also, their ANC feature isolates against more background noise, and they leak less audio. That said, the Cowin are more comfortable.

Mpow X6 Truly Wireless

The TOZO NC9 Truly Wireless are better overall in-ears than the Mpow X6 Truly Wireless. The TOZO do a far better job of blocking out ambient noise, offer superior microphone recording quality, and last a little longer on a single charge, though the Mpow have a case that supplies roughly one additional charge. The Mpow's mic also does a slightly better job of isolating speech from background noise. They also deliver audio a little more consistently and have a more comfortable fit.

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