Beats Features

Apple Airpods vs Powerbeats Pro: which should you buy?

You could have missed it, however AirPods have type of taken over the world. You’ll be able to’t take a trip to the native mall without seeing twenty pairs of our new plastic overlords whispering into the ears of younglings. AirPods are all over the place, and there’s a purpose for that. They’re super moveable, straightforward to make use of, and don’t require pressing any buttons or opening any apps to get them to work completely. Nonetheless, they’re not with out their problems, and it looks like Apple knew precisely what these points have been as a result of the new Powerbeats Pro repair principally all of them. So which ones are higher? Let’s settle this once and for all.

Which earbuds are higher to put on?

Arguably, crucial facet of a pair of earbuds is how properly they fit. First, they’re missing the physical clamping drive of a pair of over-ears. Second, they’re lacking the massive cushioned ear pads that often assist to dam outdoors noise. These two pairs of ‘buds from Apple take two solely totally different approaches to this drawback. In a basic Apple move, the AirPods try to remedy this drawback with the design, taking more of a “one-size-fits-all” strategy. The design is principally similar to the Earpods that come with your iPhone, but minus the wire. The aim is simplicity, and everyone should have the ability to take them out of the box and place them comfortably into their ears. Sadly, that isn’t the case. The AirPods do fit nicely for some individuals, but no so much with others. Still, even when you get them to fit they do nothing to dam outdoors noise. So greatest case state of affairs, the AirPods only remedy one of the two essential points with fit.

The Powerbeats Professional have the identical over-ear hook design as the standard Powerbeats, but they ditch the wire connecting them.

That’s where the Powerbeats Pro comes in with a completely totally different strategy to this drawback that it inherited from the Powerbeats3: the earhook. The earhook design won’t be all too snug for some, nevertheless it does clear up the issue of how you’re going to maintain a pair of wireless earbuds from falling out of your ear. Relatively than hoping that these earbuds fit in your ears when you attempt them for the first time, you at the very least have some security understanding that at the least the hooks will maintain them on your head.

Shot of the Beats Powerbeats Pro in hand.

The new redesign of the earbud and hook is modern and helps to keep them in place while sporting them.

The Powerbeats Pro additionally comes with a couple of totally different sizes of ear ideas, so you can find the one that fits greatest for you. Apart from probably fitting the ears of extra individuals, the ear ideas also present extra isolation from outdoors noises which is a key facet that the AirPods are lacking. While the Powerbeats Professional isn’t good by any means, they do more to unravel the difficulty of fit than the AirPods which is why they win this round.

Winner: Powerbeats Pro

Do the Powerbeats Professional or the AirPods have better battery life?

Close-up shot of the Lightning charging ports of both the Apple Airpods and the Powerbeats Pro

Both charge by way of Lightning, sadly.

As soon as you’ve acquired them comfortably in your ears, the subsequent most necessary facet of a pair of true wireless earbuds is battery life. You might have one of the best sounding, most snug pair of earbuds on the earth, but when you can only take pleasure in them for an hour at a time what’s the purpose? Each of these earbuds come with quick-charging instances that give you a place to store your earbuds whereas simultaneously charging them, which is good. Additionally they both cost by way of a Lightning connector which is type of a bummer seeing as USB-C is supposed to be our collective inevitable future.

But that’s the place the similarities finish because considered one of these is just not like the opposite. In our testing, we managed to get 4 hours and 7 minutes of constant playback out of Apple’s AirPods when related to an iPhone X. That will get even shorter if you’re rocking an Android system. Testing them with a Pixel 3, we solely received 3 hours and 29 minutes of constant playback which isn’t nice considering the median for true wi-fi earbuds seems to be about 4 hours. As I’m positive you’ve observed by wanting at the graph above, the Powerbeats Professional don’t fall sufferer to poor battery life. Actually, they’re the perfect we’ve tested on any pair of true wi-fi earbuds with a continuing playback time of greater than 10.5 hours both iOS and Android. If straight up battery life is what you care most about, then get the Powerbeats Pro. It’s a no-brainer.

Winner: Powerbeats Pro

Which pair of earbuds is simpler to hook up with?

Shot of both the Apple Airpods and Powerbeats Pro in their respective charging case.

The AirPods are easier to make use of general when compared to the Powerbeats Professional.

Bluetooth connectivity is paramount with true wi-fi earbuds. It should be obvious, contemplating there are not any wires to attach the earbuds to your supply system or even to each other. To be truthful to everyone else making true wireless earbuds, this can be a robust drawback to unravel. Bluetooth is inherently not nice, however Apple managed to principally remedy the difficulty with a mixture of the brand new Bluetooth 5 and a completely new and proprietary hardware chip that’s in each the brand new Apple AirPods and the Powerbeats Professional.

Pictured are the Airpods on top of an iPad and next to the Google Pixel 3.

The AirPods work on both Android and iOS, but don’t anticipate them to work perfectly.

The new H1 chip in both of those earbuds does extra than simply pop up a reasonably card so you can pair simply. It also helps to take care of a secure connection between each earbuds and helps with energy management as properly. Nevertheless it’s the primary cause why you’ll not often experience any dropped connections or stutters whereas using the AirPods or Powerbeats Pro (no less than on iOS units). On Android, we nonetheless experienced occasional stutters, but the connection by no means dropped and it all the time resolved itself earlier than we would have liked to succeed in for our telephones to enter settings.

Then there’s the actual technique by which these headphones transmit audio, which is by way of the AAC codec for both of those. Again, if you’re on an iOS system then you have nothing to fret about because of that pretty little H1 chip in there. Nevertheless, if you’re on Android then you’ll probably expertise some latency points in addition to the introduction of a small quantity of audible noise. Android simply hasn’t but found out AAC based on our testing here at SoundGuys using multiple telephones. Because they each function the most recent chip in Apple’s arsenal, have comparable connection power, and comparable points with Android this spherical is a tie.

Winner: Draw

Who has better features? AirPods or Powerbeats Pro?

Deciding which of those has the higher features might be the simplest factor to determine because it principally comes right down to a aspect by aspect comparison. They both have quick charging, hands-free “Hey Siri” help with iOS units, auto-pairing and staying related to the units on your iCloud account, and even ear detection so the music stops when you take them out. However there are two more helpful features that solely the Powerbeats Professional have. For one, they routinely fall asleep if you’re not sporting them and haven’t put them again within the case.

Powerbeats Pro and Apple Airpods charging case side by side.

The Powerbeats Pro have an enormous case when compared to the easily pocketable Apple AirPods case.

The AirPods on the other palms needs to be placed again within the case after each use. The Powerbeats Pro gained’t last eternally outdoors of the case both, but at the least if you overlook to toss them again in after your workout they’ll simply enter sleep mode so you can nonetheless have some juice left the subsequent time you want them. And secondly, the Powerbeats Pro are IPX4 sweat resistant, so you can truly use them at the fitness center. In contrast to the AirPods which, despite their reputation at every health club I’ve gone to within the last yr, are a ticking time bomb relating to sweat injury.

Winner: Powerbeats Professional

This one is clear, the AirPods are simpler to make use of

Shot of the Apple Airpods charging case on a white dress shirt.

The AirPods charging case i small and may simply slot in your shirt pocket, in contrast to the case of the Powerbeats Pro.

It might look like a landslide victory up to now, but there’s one area that the AirPods blow the Powerbeats Professional out of the water in, and that’s usability. They’re easy, straightforward to use, and most significantly they’re small and moveable as hell. The one main challenge with the Powerbeats Professional is the charging case, which is large and too bulky to comfortably carry in anything smaller than a fanny pack. The AirPods case, then again, is not any greater than a Zippo lighter and its rounded edges and clean aesthetic make it just as moveable and straightforward to hold. Putting them back within the charging case can also be much simpler with the AirPods, as the Powerbeats Pro requires simply the proper alignment and angle before the magnets stick in place. With the AirPods, as long as you have the fitting earbud in the proper slot, it’ll discover its means in without too much help.

Winner: Apple AirPods

Okay, let’s speak sound

With all the speak about battery life and additional nifty features, it typically gets lost that these are each nonetheless headphones. That signifies that they should, at the very least, not sound like crap. Sadly, because of how they isolate, the AirPods don’t move that check. You’ll be able to inform at a glance in the two isolation graphs above which pair of headphones do higher at blocking more outdoors noise. As we mentioned above, the fit is essential and if you care about bass response at all then you’re going to need to go together with the Powerbeats Pro since anything that the AirPods can supply is going to get misplaced in all the opposite sounds you hear when you’re out and about.

You possibly can tell by the frequency response graphs that the AirPods attempt to make up for that by adding just a little additional emphasis to the decrease notes, but because of the shortage of isolation, it actually doesn’t matter. Even with the minimal push in the lows that the Powerbeats Pro exhibit, they still present a greater low-end experience because of them truly fitting in your ears.

Winner: Powerbeats Professional

Worth matters

Pictured are the Airpods on top of a comic.

In addition to the H1 chip inside, there’s principally no difference between this and the previous AirPods.

Arguably, an important issue relating to shopping for something is the worth. Right here, the AirPods win by default simply because they’re inexpensive. If you go for the wi-fi charging case, nevertheless, you’re taking a look at spending $199, and at that time, you may as properly spend the extra $50 to go together with the Powerbeats Professional which is best in principally every means. That stated, if you don’t go together with the charging case you can get the new AirPods for $159 which is sort of a bit cheaper.

Winner: Apple AirPods

Should you buy the AirPods or the Powerbeats Professional?

Apple new AirPods 2 on an arts magazine with the case above it, shut.

The new AirPods nonetheless don’t seal to the ear, making it troublesome to move round with them in—let alone train with them.

If you can’t tell by now, we wholeheartedly advocate the Powerbeats Pro over the AirPods. It provides a better expertise in virtually each category and is best in each approach that counts. That stated, there’s a cause the AirPods are in all places. They’re insanely handy and straightforward to make use of for everyday use. While the Powerbeats Pro are better, the AirPods are in a niche of their own.

Purchase Apple AirPods
Buy Powerbeats Pro

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