Nura has found a niche in the audio market. Its earphones marry hardware and software admirably, melding a unique personal experience with robust tech.
Its first headphones were big. Really big. The Nuraphones took over your whole ear as well as your ear canal, with intrusive, but needed, in-ear buds to make sure the sound you were getting was the best possible (for you).
Since then it has found its way into the earphone market, with the 'wireless' (with a wire connecting each bud) NuraLoop, connected because of the impressive software used that maps your ear.
The NuraTrue is the Australian company’s first foray into True Wireless, with ANC on board as well as the software offering the personal touch.
We’ve been using NuraTrue for a few weeks now - here are five things to know about the new ANC earbuds.
1. You need to get a seal of approval
Before you even think about putting a pair of Nura earphones on, you have to be prepared to enter… the Nura zone! It’s fun, we promise you, and is a big part of the Nura package.
Nura is all about sound personalisation. It calls the process ‘music in full colour’ and it’s easy to see why. The folks that made the headphones include medical doctor and hearing scientist, Dr. Luke Campbell, and electrical engineer, Dr. Dragan Petrovic.
Their idea was to map each ear, making sure that each Nura device was fine tuned for the person wearing it.
This process takes a few minutes. Connect the earphones by Bluetooth, load up the app and then sit back to hear sound effects that wouldn’t be out of place in a Star Wars movie. This is the mapping of your ear and it really does work.
By the end of it, you can toggle between two sound profiles: a neutral one and a personalised one. The difference is black and white.
2. Decent design that makes a statement
Now the NuraTrue earphones are ready for your ears, we better take a look at them. As we mentioned in our intro - Nura’s first set of headphones were massive. These True Wireless buds certainly aren’t on the scale of those, but it does seem that the folks at Nura do like things to stand out.
The circular buds make a statement when in side profile, so they don't stick out too much when you are in profile. They aren’t too obtrusive but people will definitely know that you are wearing them.
They are really well designed. The Nura logo is a big part of the fascia, while the ear bud sits neatly into your ear. There are a number of buds in the pack to make sure you target the right fit but they nestle well and are really comfortable to wear.
The case is… fine. We would have liked something a little sturdier. The lid of the thing lifts up and we would have preferred a sliding lid, just because it would feel a little more premium. It’s nothing to worry about, though. It’s certainly well made and not too bulky in the pocket, even though the earbuds are on the larger side.
3. Noise control works well
After having your ears mapped, the first thing you will want to do is listen to some music. We had fun toggling between the neutral and personalised sound profiles and we think you will too.
Now, this is where we have to admit that we just don’t know what goes into the sound mapping. We utterly believe that the software involved makes music sound better and that has to be the Litmus test here. One look at Nura's website and there is a lot of jargon. The way the ear is mapped, according to Nura, is by looking at the sound emitted by the tones that are pumped into your ears (the Otoacoustic Emission (OAE)) and encoding it and making it better.
The science sounds impressive and so does the result. For a start, the ANC on these things works well. There’s a definite ‘drawbridge up’ effect when it comes to blocking out sounds, but also a more rounded sound framing what you are listening to.
4. And now for the music
And what have we been listening to? Well, we’re as pretentious as all those fancy high-end audio sites, so we listened to a mix of music just to make you aware that we have an eclectic taste that puts your own to shame.
You Don’t Know What Love Is by Bobby Gillespie the ear buds with an indie country mix, Thom Yorke’s revised version of Creep is slow and brooding and tested the low end of the earphones well (and shows to you that we obviously like Radiohead and pretentious remixes), Helado Negro’s Gemini and Leo is a stunning song and soaked up the sun through these earbuds. While Princess Chelsea’s The Cigarette Duet was also on our playlist because of our recent addiction to TikTok. It also hits the high end well with its woozy wurlitzer melody. Bass wise, Wake U/p by Claptone boomed through the NuraTrue. As for the depth of sound, we did have to have the volume up higher than normal to get the full effect.
There is a button in the app that allows you to flit between noise cancelling on/off which is easy to use.
There’s no denying the sound quality of the NuraTrue earphones and if you don’t like it then you kind have your own ears to blame, given how 'personal' the sound is.
5. Battery is decent, touch controls work well
Battery wise, you get a decent six hours out of the buds and up to 24 hours from the case so there is no worry when it comes to battery life. The touch controls on the earphones are good. We like how they are easily customisable through the app. As with most earphones, the volume control has to be done through the app but skipping through tracks and answering phone calls can all be done through the controls on the earphones.
There are other controls as well, including Immersion Mode which increases or decreases the amount of noise cancelling. We like that this is a slider rather than a toggle as it means you can choose just how immersed you want to be.
Nura NuraTrue: Final Verdict
The True Wireless earphone market is a crowded one. To stand out you need to make a noise in more ways than one. We have been fans of Nura for a few years now and are happy to see and hear the brand head into the True Wireless market.
The results, from an audio point of view are fantastic - and as we have come to expect from the brand. The design of the earbuds is a touch bulkier than we would have liked but they make a statement - and a decent one at that.
The NuraTrue earphones are available from £199. Head to its site for more information.