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Apple AirPods Pro review: Pro quality sound and comfort

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Quick Verdict: The addition of noise cancelling is the headline feature for the Pro version of Apple's AirPods, but they're also far more comfortable than the original AirPods.

  • Noise cancelling is quite smart
  • Much more comfortable fit
  • Fast pairing with iOS devices
  • Smaller microphone stubs make them less obvious
  • Relatively expensive
  • New case is wider than the originals
  • Fixed battery makes their future unclear

Apple most certainly didn't invent Bluetooth headphones, or even bud-style Bluetooth headphones.

Still, there's no doubting that Apple's mighty marketing machine has managed to make the design of the AirPods into something iconic, whether you're a follower of fashion or technology.

Apple may have mangled the correct grammar you have to use around discussing the AirPods Pro, but it's also produced an excellent and comfortable set of Bluetooth buds that are recommended if you can match their asking price.


Design

  • Shorter microphone stalks than original AirPods
  • Choice of silicone tips for isolation and ear comfort
  • Charging case is fatter than the original
Apple AirPods Pro

Performance

  • Easy to pair with iOS devices
  • Active noise cancelling works quite well
  • Transparency mode works but is awkward to engage
Apple AirPods Pro

Battery

  • Around 4 hours per charge
  • Case is wireless charging by default
  • What happens when the batteries die?
Apple AirPods Pro

Verdict

  • Better sound than previous AirPods, but not an inexpensive buy
Apple AirPods Pro

Are the AirPods Pro both a grammatical disaster and a better sounding pair of buds than the original AirPods?

Absolutely they are, but that's not quite the same thing as making them a must-buy prospect. If you're already rocking a pair of AirPods, the impetus to upgrade is relatively slender, and it would make far more sense to make the most of your existing AirPods anyway.

If you're in the market for wireless buds of this type, they're certainly worth considering, although there are plenty of other options, including some with active noise cancelling, that you could also consider.


Pricing and availability

The Apple AirPods sell in Australia for $399.

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Specifications

Apple AirPods Pro
Finder score: 4

Build

Category
In-ear headphones
Colours
White

Connectivity

Wired/Wireless
True Wireless
Bluetooth
Yes
Bluetooth Version
Bluetooth 5.0

Features

Noise Cancelling
Active Noise Cancellation
Detachable Cable
No
Rechargeable Battery
Yes
Water Resistant
Yes
Battery Life
Up to 4.5 hours

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