Lily Katz / Android Authority

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Samsung provides to its litany of true wi-fi earbuds with the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2, a pair of energetic noise-cancelling (ANC) earphones that share loads of DNA with the profitable Galaxy Buds Professional. The Buds 2 are the primary of Samsung’s earphones to incorporate an ear tip match take a look at and use Bluetooth 5.2. Arguably one of the best factor in regards to the Buds 2 is the $149.99 value, however Samsung’s extra strong flagship earbuds usually go on sale for simply $20 extra, making the Buds 2 a tough promote.

Let’s disentangle the complicated record of Samsung Galaxy Buds to see how the Buds 2 evaluate to their siblings. Are these earphones price it, or do they find yourself misplaced as the center baby between the Buds Professional and Buds Plus?

About this Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 hands-on: I examined the Buds 2 working firmware model R177XXU0AUFC, Galaxy Buds 2 app model 3.0.21061051, and Galaxy Wearable app model 2.2.41.21071361. Samsung quickly supplied us with this unit for testing.

Our audio specialists at our sister website SoundGuys will purchase the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 for additional testing and a full overview. We are going to replace this text with goal measurements when accessible.

What’s it like to make use of the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2?

A hand reaches to remove one Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless 2 earbud from the case.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

The Galaxy Buds 2 retain an identical design to the Galaxy Buds Professional, with a rounded earbud form freed from silicone wing ideas. Every earbud weighs simply 5 grams. Nonetheless, stabilizing wing ideas would have been a pleasant possibility for athletes who need to reap the benefits of the IPX2 water resistance. Why Samsung refuses to return to the higher match of the Buds Plus’ design is a thriller because the Buds Plus stay essentially the most comfy earphones round.

Headphone shopping for information: A newbie’s information to all issues headphones

As with earlier Galaxy Buds, the Buds 2 are full of high-tech sensors, amongst which is a proximity sensor for computerized ear detection. If you take away each earbuds, music playback pauses. So as to resume playback, it’s essential to faucet both earbud; music doesn’t resume mechanically once you re-insert the ‘buds. The contact controls are efficient and intuitive however the touchpads usually register unintentional contact, a pervasive drawback that plagues older Samsung earphones too. It didn’t take lengthy for this to turn out to be a nuisance: I usually adjusted the earbuds as they got here unfastened from my ear canals, which despatched media playback right into a frenzy of track skips and pauses.

Is the charging case effectively constructed?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless charging case with the USB-C input in view.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

The boxy charging case seems to be practically an identical to that of the Galaxy Buds Professional and Galaxy Buds Stay. Whether or not you go along with the Graphite, White, Olive, or Lavender colour variant, the case exterior is white with the inside matching the earbuds. The case seems to be nice, although I want Samsung had swapped the shiny end for one thing a bit grippier. However hey, when you fumble the case, it gained’t pop open and eject the earphones. I take a look at dropped the case from hip top (one meter) and the lid stayed shut.

A USB-C enter rests on the again of the case with two battery indicator lights that embellish it, one on the skin and one on the within. The outside gentle signifies the case’s remaining battery, whereas the inside gentle corresponds to the earbuds’ remaining battery life.

Must you obtain the Galaxy Wearable app?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earbuds in the open charging case while connected to the Galaxy Wearable app on a Samsung Galaxy S10e.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

Sure, the Samsung Galaxy Wearable app has loads of options for the Galaxy Buds 2, however provided that you pair them to an Android cellphone. That’s proper, Samsung continues to drag pages from Apple’s playbook: there’s no iOS app assist for the Galaxy Buds 2. You’ll be able to nonetheless join the Buds 2 to an iPhone, the identical method you’ll be able to join AirPods to Android telephones, however you don’t get any software program options or entry to updates.

You should use the Galaxy Wearable app to toggle noise-cancelling on or off, and to allow or disable ambient sound mode which amplifies background noise by the headset to maintain you conscious of your environment. You’ll be able to select between three levels of ambient sound depth, and its impact is kind of pure relative to different earbuds’ ambient listening modes.

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earbuds case partway in a zippered bag.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

Just like the Sony WF-1000XM4, Samsung’s app additionally has a rudimentary ear tip match take a look at, providing you with speedy suggestions with regard to your selection of ear ideas. It’s completely obligatory so that you can discover a correct pair of ear ideas with the intention to expertise optimum noise cancellation. Ear tip match exams are on the rise as ANC turns into a extra widespread function in wi-fi earphones.

The correct ear tip match is important to expertise optimum noise cancellation.

Should you dig round a bit, you’ll discover Labs the place you’ll be able to allow “gaming mode” to scale back audio-visual latency. Gaming mode isn’t restricted to cell gaming; it occurs to be a pleasant function for watching any type of video too. A collection of EQ presets (regular, bass enhance, mushy, dynamic, clear, treble enhance) can be found within the app, although you’ll be able to’t create a customized EQ. Bixby followers can entry the digital assistant with simply their voice. You’re not wed to Bixby and might disable it when you’d choose to tap-and-hold for Google Assistant as an alternative.

Whereas the Buds 2 lack Bluetooth multipoint, you should use seamless earbud connection (quick switching). With this, you’ll be able to toggle between beforehand paired cell gadgets by tapping on the Galaxy Buds 2 from the specified cellphone’s Bluetooth menu. This course of is way sooner than manually disconnecting from the present machine earlier than connecting to the designated one. Quick switching works throughout working techniques. I may simply change backwards and forwards between an iPhone and Samsung cellphone.

The one solution to entry firmware and software program updates is by downloading the Galaxy Wearable app. We advocate doing so with the Galaxy Buds 2 as Samsung is fastidious about updating its merchandise, and is thought to introduce new options to older earbud modes, extending the lifetime of your buy.

What options do you get once you use the Buds 2 with the Galaxy Watch 4 Collection?

It’s also possible to use the Buds Controller on the Galaxy Watch 4 sequence to shortly management the Buds 2 out of your smartwatch. From the watch face, you’ll be able to toggle between ANC and ambient sound modes with a single faucet. It’s also possible to use it to allow or disable the earbuds’ contact controls. Buds Controller works with the Galaxy Buds 2, Galaxy Buds Professional, Galaxy Buds Stay, and Galaxy Buds Plus.

Is the Galaxy Buds 2 noise-cancelling any good?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earbuds next to the extra ear tips.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

In line with Samsung, it cuts 110.36Hz sounds by as much as 98{2d266c2b7f7b21b9d5247541775384085ff4c78fbe34d1f6195ea0b207eacd24}, practically halving the perceived loudness, which is kind of good. Keep in mind, Samsung recorded this information in ideally suited situations. Anecdotally talking, the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise-cancelling is ok. The ANC extra successfully hushed the predictable rumble of my microwave greater than the clicks and clacks of my mechanical keyboard. We’ll depart it as much as SoundGuys to place this specification to the take a look at, however the truth of the matter is that the Galaxy Buds 2 will solely cancel noise successfully when you get a dependable, correct match.

The Galaxy Buds 2 are made to go wherever, and might quiet your day by day commute.

Whereas most individuals will really feel at dwelling with one of many three supplied ear tip sizes, not everybody will. Since Samsung doesn’t embrace wing ideas with the Buds 2, it’s possible you’ll not keep a safe match for very lengthy (a difficulty I had throughout testing). Should you can’t get the ear tricks to create a robust seal on the entrance of your ear canals, ANC gained’t actually work. A bodily barrier is required to passively block out high-frequency sounds, therefore why the ear tip match take a look at is so essential. As soon as that requirement is met, then the noise cancellation can focus its impact on predictable, low-frequency sounds.

You would possibly like: The most effective noise-cancelling true wi-fi earbuds

How do the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 sound?

A woman wears the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earbuds.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 have a regular consumer-friendly frequency response that mimics that of the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus and Professional. Bass and treble notes are amplified, which brings out that beloved “oomph” from kick drums with out masking element from excessive notes like cymbal hits and vocal harmonies. Samsung doesn’t go overboard with the Galaxy Buds 2 tuning, and these earbuds ought to make practically all genres of music sound nice.

From time to time, it’s possible you’ll discover minor auditory masking as I did within the track Melatonin by Zac Greer. The background guitar strums are troublesome to listen to in the course of the refrain for the reason that Buds 2 relay the lower-pitched electrical guitar strikes with extra amplification.

The Buds 2 could make any track sound good.

You’ll be able to select from a collection of EQ presets throughout the Galaxy Wearable app when you don’t just like the default sound. When you can’t create a customized EQ from Samsung’s app, most smartphones embrace an built-in multi-band equalizer. Should you’re itching for much more customization, it’s possible you’ll need to think about a third-party EQ app.

Do the earbuds keep linked?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 remained linked to my Samsung Galaxy S10e or iPhone 12 Mini wherever inside my 60-square-meter condominium, even with layers of drywall separating the supply from the Buds 2. Connection stability was additionally constant because the Buds 2 underscored my walks with rock ballads.

You get entry to the newest Bluetooth 5.2 firmware and get three Bluetooth codecs to select from: SBC, AAC, and Samsung Scalable Codec for constant high-quality audio to iPhones and Samsung gadgets. Whereas true that each one Android handsets assist the AAC, its efficiency is risky on Android relying on the {hardware}.

How lengthy does the Buds 2 battery final?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earphones in the open charging case on top of a Samsung Galaxy S10e smartphone in pink.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

In line with Samsung, the Galaxy Buds 2 final 5 hours with noise-cancelling enabled. You get an extra 15 hours of ANC listening from the charging case. If you place the earbuds within the case for simply 5 minutes, you get 60 minutes of playtime.

Learn on: Let’s speak true wi-fi earbuds and their battery life

Samsung offers you a couple of choices for charging the case. You’ll be able to take the wired route with the included USB-C cable or place it atop a Qi wi-fi charging mat. You’ll be able to even cost the case and earbuds by inserting it on high of a Samsung Galaxy machine, as long as it helps Wi-fi PowerShare.

Can you employ the Galaxy Buds 2 for cellphone calls?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 have a triple-microphone array with unimpressive outcomes. Within the demo under, my voice comes by as “hole” and even “muffled,” a consequence of the proximity impact. Whereas that is disappointing, microphone high quality is well improved with a firmware replace. Certain, the preliminary outcomes aren’t stellar, however this shouldn’t be the only cause you flip away from the Buds 2.

Must you purchase the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise cancelling true wireless earbuds in the open charging case, partially obscured by greenery.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

Whereas the Galaxy Buds 2 aren’t a breakout pair of earbuds, they carry out effectively and it’s thrilling to see efficient noise-cancelling earphones that fall under the $150 value level. The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 can be found for pre-order and value $149.99, however it’s onerous to justify the Galaxy Buds 2 when the extra premium Galaxy Buds Professional usually retail for lower than $170. The Buds Professional are rather more sturdy, assist Samsung 360 Audio, and have excellent noise-cancelling. Should you don’t need to pre-order the Buds 2, you’ll be able to wait to buy them on August 27.

Should you don’t look after noise cancellation, think about the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus as an alternative. Whereas these earphones are a couple of years previous, they’re supremely comfy. You get direct Spotify entry from the contact controls, practically all the identical software program options because the Buds 2, and very good standalone battery life (effectively over 11 hours). The most effective half in regards to the Galaxy Buds Plus: they usually go on sale for lower than $100.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Renders Evan Blass

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2

Small noise-cancelling earbuds for day by day use.

A extra reasonably priced pair of noise-cancelling earbuds from Samsung, with an IPX2 waterproof construct and compact, light-weight design. There’s quite a bit to like with these playful earphones.

What’s the distinction between the Plus, Stay, Buds 2, and Buds Professional?

Let’s get the common similarities out of the best way in the case of the Samsung Galaxy Buds: every mannequin helps SBC, AAC, and the Samsung Scalable Codec. All of Samsung’s true wi-fi earbuds additionally function contact controls and a USB-C charging case with quick and wi-fi charging together with Wi-fi PowerShare compatibility. IP scores vary from IPX2 to IPX7, and all however the Galaxy Buds Stay embrace ear ideas for a sealed match.

Now for the variations:

The Samsung Galaxy Buds are the unique Galaxy earbuds

With the appearance of the Buds 2, the unique Samsung Galaxy Buds have been discontinued. You’ll be able to examine these earphones in our Samsung Galaxy Buds overview, however all it’s important to know is that they use Bluetooth 5.0, have an IPX2 ranking, and supply six hours and 32 minutes of playtime based on SoundGuys’ take a look at outcomes. If you will discover a pair of the unique Galaxy Buds, you in all probability gained’t pay greater than $80 for them.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus are the king of consolation

A picture of the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus vs Samsung Galaxy Buds Live comparison photo with each earbud in and out of their respective cases.

Lily Katz / Android Authority

The Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus are nonetheless kicking round by each Samsung’s web site and different retailers. With an almost an identical look to the first-generation Galaxy Buds, you could be tempted to skip over the Buds Plus — don’t. These are arguably one of the best Samsung Galaxy Buds in the case of worth. The earbuds advantage an IPX2 ranking, and launched quick switching and direct Spotify entry to the Galaxy Buds line, which have been retroactively added to the unique Galaxy Buds.

Standalone battery life is spectacular at 11 hours and 44 minutes, with the case that gives one reserve cost cycle. Samsung made nice enhancements to the microphone high quality with the Buds Plus over the Galaxy Buds. These earbuds even have wing ideas for a safer match for any exercise.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Stay introduced a brand new, open-type match with ANC

The Galaxy Buds Stay are the notorious beans that immediately goal the Apple AirPods. That is the one open-type match earphone to this point from Samsung and, if the corporate is wise, the final too. The Buds Stay are distinctive as a result of they’ve noise-cancelling though they don’t seal to the ear canal. It’s spectacular that it really works in any respect, however when you’re going to pay this a lot for noise-cancelling earbuds, you would possibly as effectively buck up for the Buds 2.

You get 5 hours and quarter-hour of playtime from the Buds Stay with ANC on, and these earphones modified the form of the Galaxy Buds charging circumstances from a tablet form to a jewellery field.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Professional are Samsung’s flagship noise-cancelling earbuds

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro 10

Adam Molina / Android Authority

Samsung dropped the bean design with the Galaxy Buds Professional and introduced again ear ideas for a sealed match. These are nice earbuds with an IPX7 ranking, and so they have been the primary (and solely) Samsung Galaxy Buds to assist 360 Audio. You get 4 hours and 48 minutes of battery life with ANC on. The iOS Galaxy Buds app doesn’t assist Galaxy Buds Professional, and also you want a Samsung smartphone to reap the benefits of 360 Audio which is appropriate with Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, and Apple TV Plus.

What must you get as an alternative of the Galaxy Buds 2?

Past the complicated line of Samsung Galaxy Buds, you might have an abundance of choices. Android smartphone homeowners who desire a good pair of earbuds ought to have a look at the Amazon Echo Buds (2nd gen) ($119). These earphones function excellent energetic noise-cancelling that provides the dearer Galaxy Buds Professional an actual run for his or her cash. Another choice are the Google Pixel Buds (2020) ($179). Whereas these don’t have ANC, they do assist high-tech options like Google Translate, direct voice entry to the Google Assistant, and auto-pairing on Android.

iPhone homeowners within the Galaxy Buds 2 ought to as an alternative get the Apple AirPods Professional ($199). Sure, Apple’s earphones value a bit extra, however they usually go on promotion for lower than $199. You get energetic noise-cancelling, a greater IPX4 ranking, and seamless integration with different Apple gadgets beneath the identical iCloud account. If you use the AirPods Professional with an iOS machine, you additionally get entry to Apple Spatial Audio for a extra immersive music and video expertise.

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