This story is part of
, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.
I’ve tried many a cheap earbud that sounded good when listening to music but came up short on calls — Zoom, voice and otherwise. If that’s a priority for you, consider this: For a limited time, and while supplies last, thewhen you clip the on-page 20%-off coupon and then apply promo code MPOWM999 at checkout. That’s over a buck less than the last time I wrote about these.
Mpow? For once this is a brand I know. It’s been around for years and makes some of the better low-end audio products I’ve tried. (CNET’s David Carnoy is a big fan of the company’s X3, which made his list of.)
The M9 doesn’t offer traditional active noise-canceling features, though you do get passive noise reduction via the silicone ear tips (which, like most, must be seated snugly inside your ear canals). Rather, it employs four-microphone “environment noise canceling,” which is specifically designed to improve the audio quality on calls. It does so by reducing background noise and improving voice detection.
How well does this actually work? I did a couple informal tests, walking outside on a particularly windy day. The folks I talked to said it sounded like I was inside; they couldn’t detect any wind noise. Your mileage may vary, of course, but I’ll just note that the M9 scored an average user rating of 4.4 stars — from over 8,000 buyers.
Other notable features: a USB-C charging case, an IPX8 waterproof rating, touch controls and support for single-earbud mode. Better still, Mpow backs the M9 with a two-year warranty, which is pretty uncommon. Just one requirement: You have to register the product on its site within 15 days of purchase.
All told, this is what I classify as a stupid-good deal. $21. Bonkers.
First published earlier this year. Updated to reflect new sale price. Removed expired bonus deal.
CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest promo codes from Best Buy, Walmart, Amazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our .