Apple has updated its AirPods product line recently. AirPods Pro came with the new feature ANC noise canceling. So, what exactly is the AirPods Pro priced at $299? Is AirPods Pro worth buying? To find the answers, please follow my review of Apple Airpods Pro.
The appearance of AirPods Pro is a big change. In order to add the ANC function, Apple finally applied an in-ear design, which looks like a hairdryer.
But as you know, Apple is almost the most strict company in design. Every little change in appearance is for practical uses. For example, to ensure the noise-canceling experience of AirPods Pro, the previous semi-open design on Airpods was inherently inadequate. However, the in-ear design is the best choice. The part that is inserted into the ear canal is the first barrier to noise. And the reverse sound wave created by ANC technology can be more effective.
However, the in-ear design also causes some problems for users. The fundamental reason is that this way of plugging into the ear canal makes it easy to fatigue the ear canal. The internal and external pressures produce swelling, which makes people feel uncomfortable. In general, psychologically, the wearing experience of Airpods Pro is worse than Airpods.
In order to fight with the worse wearing experience that in-ear design brings, Apple has improved a lot in some aspects:
- Airpods Pro comes with three types of silicone earmuffs to fit different people
- Silicone earmuffs are very soft. The in-ear part is very short, so they feel good to wear.
- Although it is in-ear design, there are channels inside and outside the earbuds, which is officially called ‘ventilation system’. So it will not produce a big pressure difference.
- The weight of a single earbud is controlled at 5.4 grams, which is only a little heavier than the 4 grams of the previous generation AirPods.
An unexpected benefit of the in-ear design is that it is harder to get lost. Previously, AirPods’ famous stalk was to go to Orson to pick up the lost headphones. Now this joke will be ended by AirPods Pro with the in-ear design, As long as you select appropriate silicone earmuffs.
There are also some small surprises that Airpods Pro brings:
- The silicone earmuff is not simply put on the sound tube, but an oval structure with a buckle inside.
- The charging box has also developed horizontally because of the change in the appearance of the headphones. The width of the charging box is roughly equal to the height of the previous box. And it has a wireless charging feature.
- The USB-C to Lightning cable comes with the earphones.
But there is still something needs to be improved. AirPods Pro body is round and slippery. And it is not easy to take it out of the charging box. This is almost the only disadvantage of the design part after using it
If you want to experience all the features of AirPods Pro, you need to update your iPhone to at least iOS 13.2.
The AirPods Pro pairing process is a little different from the previous AirPods. Open the charging box for the first time. Then the pop-up pairing card shows on your iPhone. And click ‘connect’ on the card then the pairing is done. You don’t need to press the button on the charging box to complete the pairing.
After pairing, users can do an ‘Ear Tip Fit Test’ for their AirPods Pro in the Bluetooth option. iOS system will play a few seconds of music clips. The inward microphone on the headphones will detect sound waves to test AirPods Pro Whether it fits your ear canal perfectly. If not, it prompts you to adjust the position of the headphones. If you can’t adjust it, it means that the size of the earmuff is not suitable. Then you need to try another silicone earmuff.
This detail highlights the technological sense of the AirPods Pro. In fact, a process similar to this “sound-feedback-adjustment” is also available on Apple HomePod.
The area covered by the black gauze of AirPods Pro is significantly larger than the previous generation AirPods. Inside it is an outward-facing microphone. The noise around the phone, which is the vibration that should reach the human eardrum, is canceled by the microphones. It is called ANC(Active noise canceling) technology, which is featured on AirPods Pro.
From the point of view of the principle and the internal and external double microphones, Apple’s active noise canceling principle is similar to other brands. The difference is that Apple’s noise-canceling function is dynamically adjusted and will be continuously adjusted at a frequency of 200 times per second to achieve a better effect.
Although AirPods Pro does not support adjustment of noise-canceling level, it has a ‘transparency mode’. It allows users to hear the surrounding sound clearly, which is suitable for scenarios that need to hear the surrounding environment, such as when running at night. You can switch between the transparent mode and the noise-canceling mode by pinching the flat groove part of the earphone handle with your fingers.
AirPods Pro’s active noise-canceling is not comparable to Bose 700 or Sony WH-1000XM3. After all, these two are more professional. AirPods Pro’s direct competitor is actually the best-known Sony WF-1000XM3 in the industry. However, the wearing experience of AirPods Pro is much better than Sony WF-1000XM3, mainly because of the weight.
Compared with the previous generation, the obvious improvement of AirPods Pro is in the operation part. Because it becomes in-ear design, if you still pat the earphones as hard as before, the ear canal may feel deep damage. So Apple applied a capacitive sensor on the earphone handle this time. And looks as if the earphone handle is worn off a flat surface.
This capacitive sensor has a ‘click’ simulation. When you touch it, it feels like the previous EarPods with cable is back. But unfortunately, Apple still does not put the volume control on the handle. You still need to control the volume with your iPhone or Siri.
Inside the headphones, AirPods Pro uses the same H1 chip as the previous AirPods. In the past several months, the second generation of AirPods has proven the connection stability and power consumption of H1 chip in the industry.
With H1 chip, the battery life is still not disappointing. With active noise canceling turned off, the music listening time can reach 5 hours, which is almost the same with AirPods second-generation. To my surprise, when the noise canceling is on, it can also reach 4.5 hours of battery life.
This time H1 chip in AirPods Pro was packaged with other parts using the System in Package (SiP) process. Coupled with high dynamic range amplifier efficiency, the sound is purer. Apple let the inward microphone also participate in the listening process. In addition to noise-canceling, the microphone also participates in sound optimization, which can adjust the middle and low frequency.
The Verdict of AirPods Pro Review
With the in-ear design, the overall feeling is that the AirPods Pro better than previous generations AirPods. With active noise-canceling and other features like transparency mode, AirPods Pro almost stands for the top technology in the TWS earbuds field. So if you get enough budget and you have an iPhone, do not even think of other brands, just get it and you will never regret.
Charging Case: 60.6*45.2*21.7mm, earphone: 21.8 x 24 x 30.9 mm
A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP
Charging Case: 45.6g, Earphone: 5.4g*2
- Good ANC experience
- Nice design
- Transparency Mode
- A little pricy