Oppo’s Enco lineup of true wireless earphones has been a relatively quiet success for the company, and has received largely positive feedback from the community, including myself. While the premium Enco X2 headset is among the best that you can guy for around Rs. 10,000 or so, the Enco Air series is a bit more of a hit-or-miss situation. While the regular ‘Air’ variants haven’t quite matched up to the hype, the ‘Pro’ headsets have generally been good picks when it comes to features and performance for the price.
Following up on the somewhat ordinary Oppo Enco Air 3 (which was launched in early 2023) is the Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro. The successor to the Enco Air 2 Pro is considerably more expensive at Rs. 4,999, but promises big improvements in the specifications sheet and performance to make up for the increase in pricing, including advanced Bluetooth codec support and bamboo-fibre diaphragms for the drivers. Is this enough to help the Enco Air 3 Pro retain Oppo’s perceptional leadership of the budget true wireless segment in India? Find out in this review.
Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro design and features
We don’t often see massive design changes in generational updates when it comes to true wireless earphones, and that’s indeed the case with the Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro. Apart from minor changes, the Enco Air 3 Pro largely resembles the Enco Air 2 Pro to the point where it’s hard to tell the two apart. The newer earphones are available in a new green colour option which isn’t available on the Enco Air 2 Pro, though.
The earpieces of the Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro have a stem design with rounded out sides all around, and distinct ‘L’ and ‘R’ indicators cut into the earpieces for easy visibility. Unlike the basic Enco Air earphones which have an outer-ear fit and no ANC, the Enco Air ‘Pro’ lineup features a proper in-canal fit, which allows for effective active noise cancellation. The earphones are light and comfortable, and come with a charging cable and three pairs of silicone ear tips of different sizes in the box.
As before the controls are touch sensitive, with lightly indicated areas near the top of each earpiece stem. It’s less than ideal, because the small size of the touch area makes it easy to make mistakes. You can set various gestures to control various functions of playback, noise cancellation, voice assistant, and volume, with different gestures capable of being mapped to different functions.
It’s a reasonably detailed set with plenty of room for customisation, but given the propensity for touch miscues, you might want to keep it a bit simple and deactivate certain gestures such as single-tap entirely. While I’m not entirely against touch controls, the zone definitely needs to be bigger than what’s on the Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro earphones.
The Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro earphones are IP55 rated for dust and water resistance, so you’ll be able to use them for workouts safely, and even in somewhat wet conditions such as light rain. The charging case of the headset has the Oppo logo at the front, an indicator light just below the logo, the USB Type-C port for charging at the bottom, and no pairing button.
You can put the headset into pairing mode with a long-touch gesture on both earpieces at the same time. Additional features on the Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro include support for Google Fast Pair, app-based features such as Oppo Alive Audio (virtualised Spatial surround sound) and Golden Sound (customised frequency compensation based on the specific hearing of each user).
Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro app and specifications
The Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro expectedly features app and feature customisation support, but how it appears and is accessed depends on the device you’re using. If you’re on a supported OnePlus or Oppo smartphone, you’ll see the ‘app’ appearing in the Bluetooth settings of the phone, making for easy access that visually matches the user interface completely. If you’re using other devices, the HeyMelody app offers access to the full feature set on both iOS and Android.
Oppo Enco Air 3 Pro performance and battery life
While Oppo’s budget lineup has typically been device agnostic in terms of performance, the Enco Air 3 Pro takes a big step in setting itself up as made for certain devices. Support for the LDAC Bluetooth codec is fairly wide across Android devices, and this ensures a considerably different sound quality experience when using the earphones with an Android smartphone. Although the sound isn’t bad with the AAC codec (on iOS), there’s an audible difference here.