Turn That Old iPod Wireless With These Ingenious Headphones

LG Tone Free FP9 review with headphones and visible lights

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

It’s a digital world, but analog still rules

Audio input jacks are convenient. Sure, smartphones may have ditched headphone jacks, but there’s a world of audio sources that depend on the connector. As an avid traveler, I typically plug my noise canceling headphones into the seatback entertainment system during a flight. At home, the Meze 99 Classic plugged into the PlayStation 5’s DualSense controller is my go-to for immersive late-night gaming sessions. When I take my iPod Nano out for a run, I rely on wired headphones. And if I want to enjoy certain records, I often plug a pair of headphones into the record player’s amplifier. The experiment is robust, reliable and simply works.

LG Tone Free FP9 review with audio cable connected

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

That said, I’m a big fan of the convenience and pocketability of true wireless earbuds. Given how ubiquitous they’ve become, it’s surprising that hardly any company has tried to combine the convenience of using a pair of quality wireless headphones with classic analog sources. Enter the LG Tone Free FP9.

The LG Tone Free FP9 bridges the analog-to-digital divide by using the case as a transmitter.

The LG Tone Free FP9 differentiates itself in a crowded market segment with a range of innovative features, but the one that stands out the most is the ability to plug in a wired external audio source. Grab the included USB-C to 3.5mm audio cable, plug it into the charging port, and flick a toggle switch to put the case into transmitter mode. That’s it. The Tone Fee’s charging case acts as a Bluetooth transmitter and functions effectively as an external Bluetooth dongle.

LG Tone Free FP9 test connected to an iPod

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

I tested the product for nearly a month, and the experience was true to what LG promises. I pulled songs from my iPod and used the headphones with the PlayStation 5 for completely wireless gaming. It also freed up my record player and allowed me to bring the analog music experience to the digital future – without wires.

The product works great for the most part. Latency is kept to a minimum although I observed just a hint of lag with multiplayer games. That might rule out FP9 for hardcore FPS gamers, but casual gamers should be fine. The audio quality is perfectly usable and there’s a lot of fun pairing a thoroughly modern audio accessory with vintage audio sources.

I wirelessly jam my iPod tunes, but a few improvements would make the LG Tone Free FP9 nearly perfect.

That said, the implementation isn’t entirely without flaws. For starters, I would have liked the addition of multipoint Bluetooth support. This would allow the headphones to stay connected to a phone when used in transmitter mode so you don’t miss important calls or messages in the middle of a gaming session. is an entirely either-or situation. I’ve also observed that the overall volume levels drop a notch or two in wired mode, but that’s a minor miss, considering the overall convenience. Still, there are plenty of other things to link about the LG Tone Free FP9.

Read more: The best true wireless headphones you can buy

Does the LG Tone Free FP9 sound good?

LG Tone Free FP9 review with headphones placed outside

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

If you are curious about how good the sound of the LG Tone Free FP9 is, you can refer to the LG Tone Free FP8 in-depth review by our partner site. SoundGuys. Both headphones are largely unchanged in the audio quality department. Spoiler alert, the sound quality is very good with a robust selection of equalizer presets available through the LG app to further tweak the audio experience to your liking. LG’s house sound has a bit of a treble boost to get higher frequencies through the mix. Personally, I liked the 3D Soundstage setting which boosted bass and sounded fuller, but not particularly neutral.

The LG Tone Free FP9 sounds great, but the active noise cancellation is far from best in class.

Like most premium true wireless headphones, the LG Tone Free includes active noise cancellation to reduce ambient noise. It is possible to adjust the active noise cancellation between two levels via the application. With noise cancellation set to high, I observed a fair amount of attenuation although nowhere was it enough to envelop me in silence. Also, headphones tend to leak some sounds in the form of digital sound artifacts. Overall, the active noise cancellation is functional but far from the strength of the LG Tone Free FP9.

What else?

LG Tone Free FP9 review with lid open on a guitar amp

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The LG Tone Free FP9 also carries over what is quickly becoming a common feature of LG’s high-end true wireless headphones. Yes, I’m talking about ultraviolet light sanitization. It’s a fun little gadget but won’t convince germophobes. For one, it only works on the mesh of the ear instead of cleaning the entire ear cups. Moreover, it only kicks in when you put the earphones on charge for more than five minutes. Of course, you will still need to remove any debris stuck behind the medical grade silicone tips.

A Bluetooth transmitter built into the case is an ingenious solution that I hope others will eventually embrace.

As true wireless headphones, the LG Tone Free FP9 does a perfectly serviceable job. However, the real value of the product lies in LG’s innovative introduction of a never-before-seen feature. The case-integrated Bluetooth transmitter is an ingenious solution that extends the usefulness of true wireless headphones beyond phones. It’s a feature that I hope every earbud will eventually use.

LG Tone Free FP9 wireless headphones

LG Tone Free FP9 wireless headphones