Considering the generally-positive user feedback and the budget price (all three MSRP for under $60, and are often available for $40 or less), it makes sense that these waterproof earbuds are top sellers.
However, battery life is unimpressive, controls and pairing can be finicky, and there are reliability concerns with all three devices.
If your budget maxes out below $50, the Tozo T6, T10, and T12 are some of the better waterproof wireless earbuds you can find in the price range. If you have more money to spend, you may be better off looking for products with a longer life expectancy and a more reliable brand.
Continue reading for an in-depth discussion of the Tozo T6, T10, and T12. If you are looking to buy Tozo earbuds, we will steer you in the right direction.
Quick Buying Guide: Tozo T6 vs. T10 vs. T12
To begin, the model names are numbered in a confusing fashion. The T10 came out in 2018, then the T6 in 2019, and finally the T12 in 2020.
T10 really don’t do anything better than the T6 or T12. The only reason to buy the T10 is because they are cheaper than the other options.
T6 are the updated and improved version of the T10. They are as good as, or better than, the T10 in nearly every way.
T12 are the newest version, and are quite similar to the T6. T12 are generally a few dollars more expensive, but feature USB-C charging (versus micro USB charging on the T6). So, if the extra price is worth it for the USB-C, choose the T12. Otherwise, stick with the T6.
Similarities Between T6, T10, & T12
It should be noted that there are many similarities between the Tozo T6, T10, and T12.
All three Tozo products are very similar in design, style, size, and fit. They are in-ear, closed-back, truly wireless earbuds. All have a built-in microphone, and none provide active noise canceling.
Each of these products is IPX8 waterproof, meaning they can be submerged without damage. All three also use Bluetooth 5.0.
The listed battery life is similar between devices. All are listed as 6 hours of run-time, with the T6 and T10 having 30 hours with the charging case and the T12 having 28 hours with the charging case.
In testing, all three underperformed their listed battery life. The T6 and T12 both have a 4+ hour runtime, but the T10 actually had closer to a 3 hour runtime. At lower volumes, you can get 5+ hours from the T6 and T12, and 4+ hours from the T10.
Although many users report high satisfaction with all three of these products, the Tozo brand does have some reliability issues. This is true for the T6, T10, and T12, although the newer versions (T6 and T12) seem to score higher for reliability.
The microphone quality is poor, and battery failure is a common cause of device failure. Unlike some Bose or Sennheiser headphones that you can expect to last for 5+ years, the usable life of these Tozo earbuds is probably closer to 6 – 18 months.
And lastly, although they are marketed as running and sports earbuds, most users will agree that they fall out easily with use.
Differences Between T6, T10, & T12
The T10 was the first product to be released, and is probably our least recommended of the three. Compared to the T10, the T6 is smaller, better designed, newer, and has better controls and a longer battery life. The only real advantage of the T10 over the T6 (besides the price) is that the larger case makes for easier removal of the earbuds from the case. T10 has physical buttons, rather than tap-controlled buttons, which may be a positive for some users.
Compared to the T10, the T12 is more comfortable, has better controls, longer battery life, and noticeably higher sound quality.
So, it is easy to eliminate the T10 as the lowest-rated of the three. The main reason I would recommend the T10 is if you are highly budget-conscious, and can find the T10 on sale for $10+ less than the other models.
Comparing between the T6 and T12 is more tricky. The T6 has the slim case, and gets a bit more battery life than T12. The T12 has better sound quality, though, and also has a digital battery life display on the inside of the case. Both T6 and T12 can be finicky at times when it comes to volume control and adjustments.
Only the T12 uses a USB-C for charging. T6 and T10 both use micro USB. So, if you have a strong preference for USB-C, this might make your decision easy — just purchase the T12.
Tozo T6, T10, & T12 Product Review
All three earbuds are designed fairly well, considering the price and their limitations. The newer T6 and T12 fit more comfortably, but none of these products offer best-in-class comfort.
The earbuds are finless, and are generally not usable for running or vigorous physical activity. As long as you can find an earpiece that fits properly, the fit should be good enough to wear while walking, driving, or sitting at a desk. But for working out, the fit just isn’t good enough.
Considering the sub-$50 price, sound quality is pretty good. If you are comparing these to $100+ earbuds, you will probably be disappointed with the audio. Bass is pretty solid, but the mid- and high-ranges are flat and muffled.
Software & Features
All three of these models come with a charging case, which is a great feature to have. Because they fall short of their listed 6 hours of battery life, it is especially convenient to have more charges available in the case.
Although the charging cases can be charged wirelessly, no wireless charger is included. Thankfully, you can find wireless chargers for $10-15.
The T12 have a battery indicator display inside the charging case, which is a clever idea. You can set the earbuds in the case, and the display will tell you whether the battery is at 20% or 80% remaining, for example.
In testing, we weren’t impressed with the controls on any of the earbuds. The buttons are not responsive, and some functions require you to be wearing both earbuds in order for the controls to work.
Pairing can also be an issue, which is true of most budget bluetooth headphones.
In the short term, durability is excellent. These earbuds are IPX8 rated, so water and sweat are not a concern. The earbuds are small and compact, and feel pretty solid. They can survive drops without any damage or loss-of-function.
However, the durability issues show up over months (or years) of use. Battery life is not great to begin with, but it really starts worsening after many charges. Even if the earbuds last for a few years, it is likely that the battery will be almost useless by that point.
Bluetooth connection also tends to worsen over time, and many users report a total inability to pair their earbuds within a year of purchase. And the controls are finicky from the beginning, but this effect is more pronounced after a few months of use.
As mentioned previously, don’t purchase these Tozo earbuds if you need earbuds that will last for many years. But if you don’t mind replacing your earbuds within 1-2 years, these are actually a pretty good little product.
In the sub-$50 price range, it is impossible to find a perfect set of wireless earbuds. The Tozo T6, T10, and T12 are not perfect products, but they have some features that are impressive for the price range.
The wireless charging cases provide extra charges, which allow you to get 20+ hours of battery life from your earbuds. The IPX8 waterproof rating ensures that you can use them for working out, without causing any damage. And the sound quality is not spectacular, but it is solid considering the price.
Our main complaint with these Tozo earbuds is related to reliability. Based on our testing, as well as user feedback, we expect the usable life of the T6, T10, and T12 to fall somewhere between 6 and 18 months.
As tech bloggers, we can’t fully endorse a product with such a short functional life. If you are okay with replacing your earbuds each year, any of these Tozo products are pretty awesome earbuds, especially if you can find them for under $40. But if you need earbuds that will last you for many years, we recommend that you avoid the Tozo T6, T10, and T12.