Some consider the best wireless earbuds in the market to be Apple Airpods Pro. Not just because it has to its feature ‘Active Noise Cancellation’ and a ‘Transparency Mode’; with the former allowing the cancellation of active noise in the surrounding. Letting you focus more on what you are listening to. Superb for listening to music, listening to a podcast or you decided to watch a YouTube video or take an online video course when Champion’s League final is going on with men in the house ain’t just allowing noise to be managed.
The transparency mode on the other end does the obvious opposite. It allows a reasonable amount of your surrounding noise to get through, allowing you take note of what is going on around you. Simply the best for listening to music and walking on the road, people die by that habit of not being able to be aware of their surrounding while they listen to music on the road, which could cause road accidents.
But these alone cannot be reasons Airpods are considered the best wireless earbuds. Earbuds coming with noise cancellation and passive listening is now a regular. So why do people believe Airpods are the best?
The Airpods released some years ago became the trendsetters with its unique design and features. Since then it has been a prototype for other earbuds makers to want to copy from or compete with. We can say they have served as the reigning champion in the past few years, but we surely now have breath taking very competitive earbuds springing out that makes us question that dominance. We look at earbuds like Samsung Galaxy Buds Live and Huawei FreeBuds 3.
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These earbuds are quite very unique, with superb features and are totally taking away the envy from the Apple Airpods. But who comes out victorious if they get all compared? Let’s find out.
Apple Airpods Pro
The Airpods Pro is a top significant earbud that tops the ranks as one of the best earbuds, if not the best. It was released on October 30, 2019, and since then been a great force in the earbuds market.
It comes with a revamped design from the past release, having a rubber tip that gives better fit in the ear. The stems are also shorter with a smaller charging case as more portability is a welcoming development.
With Apple willing to remain dominant, a feature called the ‘Ear Tip Fit Test’ was launched. It allows you know the exact earbuds that fits in your ear via a software’s algorithm, getting you the right size needed. Not every time this is practised by the way. But without it you are very likely to get a very comfortable ear fitted earbuds with the design of the Airpods pro.
The Airpods Pro comes with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and Transparency mode, which is unique having both. With Siri, you can also achieve voice commands and control or voice assistance.
If you love using your fingers to do things, the Airpods Pro comes with a force sensor that detects when you touch the stem of the Airpod. With one press, you play, with two you fast-forward, three for rewind, press and hold is to switch from ANC to Transparency mode and vice versa.
The Battery life of the Airpods Pro is reliable, though we can see better span. It has to itself, fast charging time of less than 40 minutes and a 4 – 5 hours usage.
Its sound quality and performance is of very high rating.
Huawei FreeBuds 3
Huawei FreeBuds 3 is an open-fit tip earbud with Active Noise Cancellation. This makes us wonder how it was attained, as making noise cancellation may work with technology yes! But it is still safer to have a firmer in-ear bud. One that fits into the ear like the rubber tip, increasing the ability for noise cancellation. This defiled that, and gave us a nice looking open-fit active noise cancellation earbuds.
The FreeBuds seems bigger than the Airpods, with a longer stalk also. They come in black and white colour options, and perfectly fit in the ear that even your daily workout isn’t likely to make them fall off.
The microphones of the FreeBuds are at the base of the stem, and are able to deal with movements well when you are on a call, but a noisy environment will impair.
The ANC is quite great, cancelling noise of up to 15db, and still able to allow some background noise to get in- so you feel safer walking down the road knowing what’s going on around you.
Samsung Galaxy Buds Live
The bean shaped Samsung Galaxy Buds Live design is quite innovative. Though might be mistaken to be actual bean by a 2-year old and maybe bury it in the ground or thrown to the field.
Launched during Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2020 event, the Galaxy Buds Live packs great sound and audio quality. A battery life better than the Airpods Pro, and looks so cool in your ears without sprouting a stem.
Having a battery that spans up to 6 hours with ANC enabled, and about 8 hours without ANC is huge compared to its competitors. Yet the case adds 22-28 hours of more time. That is more than a day of listening to whatsoever you desire even with ANC active.
The Buds Live case charges wirelessly. The beans, have good noise cancellation feature but some will argue it’s not better than the Airpods Pro. With good audio quality that matches the Airpods Pro- bold, classic bass, appropriate midrange and a well detail high ends, all together you have one of the best sound you can get in an earbud.
No matter how good they seem to be, they must still have some cons. Like I can see your kid throwing this into the thrash can thinking it’s a bean, LOL! Not a premonition though. They also might not fit all ears due to its bean shape, and may require adjusting them regularly if that happens. Which can accidentally trigger touch controls. And do not forget the noise cancellation is not the very best.
Let’s take a look at the features and specifications of Huawei FreeBuds 3, Galaxy Buds Live and Airpods Pro compared.
|Specifications||Airpods Pro||Huawei FreeBuds 3||Samsung Galaxy Buds Live|
|Design||White with rubber tips and stem||Open-fit tips with stem||Bean shaped with 3 colours options|
|Charging case weight||45.6g||48g||42.2 g|
|Water and sweat resistance||IPX4||IPX4||IPX2|
|Battery||4 hours with ANC on 5 hours with ANC off Fast charging and Qi wireless charging.||4 hours with earbuds With charging case 20 hours. Fast charging and Qi wireless charging.||6 hours with ANC on 8 hours with ANC off Fast charging and Qi wireless charging.|
|Active Noise Cancellation (ANC)||YES with Transparency Mode||YES||YES, with HearThrough mode|
|Bluetooth||Bluetooth 5.0||Bluetooth 5.1||Bluetooth 5.1|
|Sensors||Force sensor||Bone sensor||Infrared sensor|
|Compatibility||iPhones||All smartphones||Best for Samsung phones, but works for others.|
|Other features||Dual beamforming microphones. Siri Voice assistance Customization||Wearing detection Customization Voice assistance.||Three-microphone array. Bixby Voice control Customization Touch controls AKG tuneup HearThrough mode|
|Price||$249 USD||$225 USD||$169.99 USD|
We have on our hands three amazing earbuds. It is hard but doable to compare. With Airpods Pro leading in audio quality, and others very close and even matching such quality. The Airpods Pro offers better ANC that can completely block out your environment and also allows for transparency mode. With this it possess a better ANC than Galaxy Buds Live and Huawei FreeBuds 3.
The battery life of Samsung Galaxy Buds Live tops both FreeBuds 3 and Airpods Pro. This makes it a great preference if you prefer longer lasting battery. The low price in comparison to the other buds also gives Galaxy Buds Live an edge. But it is most suitable for Samsung phones and Airpods Pro for iPhones. They are best compatible and offer even more features when matched that way.
Huawei FreeBuds 3 comes as a great choice due to its Android and iPhone compatibility. Makes it very suitable for all Smartphones. Regardless, it gives similar audio quality as others.
Therefore, for Android phones generally, Huawei FreeBuds 3 seems like a better choice. It is also an alternative for iPhone users.
For Samsung phones, Galaxy Buds Live is superb and has compatibility with Android 5.0 and above. It also uses AAC to pair with iPhones.
The Apple Airpods Pro only edges out in quality slightly, but for compatibility Samsung Galaxy Buds Live and Huawei Freebuds 3 wins.