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Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) in review

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Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) in review

At its September event, Apple not only showed off new iPhones and Apple Watch models, but there were also new AirPods to see and hear. Since I listen to music every day at work and also do sports every day, headphones are a must-have for me. For some time now, the Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) have accompanied me at work and during indoor and outdoor sports. Helmet reviews are always very subjective and exaggerated by self-proclaimed experts, so I’m only giving my experience and opinion here, nothing more, nothing less.

Apple isn’t reinventing the wheel itself, but rather has made improvements under the hood. Apple uses its own H2 chip with more memory. There are also new pilots on board and the microphones have been placed differently. Apple relies on Bluetooth 5.3 and its own voodoo software to embed AirPods into its own ecosystem across all devices.

The facts in quick succession

Apple is now also installing a volume control on the bars of the AirPods Pro. Previously, no direct was installed. How you judge this for yourself is a matter of opinion. With the Apple Watch, you may need to exit the app during a workout to use the crown to control volume, which makes it easier to get hold of the controls on the AirPod itself. While running it doesn’t really make a difference to me, but I still find the volume control on the AirPods themselves to be very handy.

Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) can also be located via “Where is?”. If you have misplaced them, you can find them via the app. Are you afraid of having your AirPods stolen? The speaker box (to be located) is also an Apple AirTag. A thief who links your AirPods through their account and keeps the case would be traceable to you. AirPods also notify you when set up on a third-party device.

Building on a feature introduced in the first generation of AirPods Pro, the new AirPods Pro now have “up to 2x” better active noise cancellation. How does my hearing feel? In fact, I’m of the opinion that household noise and everyday noise don’t affect me as much anymore. Also works great without music, just put AirPods in your ear, turn on ANC and enjoy a little more peace and quiet.

The new AirPods Pro feature a newly developed driver and amplifier, which work with the H2 chip to deliver low distortion, deeper bass, and clear treble for music, videos, and more. I feel like I’m doing better there too, but it’s not like I want to compare the first Apple AirPods Pro with tin cans. It’s absurd, because they sound good to my ears.

The Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) sound even rounder. I have many playlists in Apple Music with content from all genres, sometimes it’s explosive what comes out of the little things. As before, AirPods support head detection. Whether you want the music to play based on the movement of your head is a matter of setting. For example, if you move your left ear away from the “sound source”, you will have more power on the right.

And while we’re talking about the ears. These can also be “measured” with the new AirPods Pro (2nd generation). Works like Face ID. You photograph your ear and your head several times and the system then tries to make the most of this information. Incidentally, this also works for 3rd generation AirPods, AirPods Pro in general, and AirPods Max.

There’s also a separate item for your AirPods in Settings, where you can choose what’s controlled and how when you tap the bars. You can also do a fit test for the ear inserts – by the way, there are four sizes, before there were only three. “Adaptive transparency” can also be enabled. It is intended to reduce sudden and loud outside noises. It works very well imperceptibly or not, because during my test I could not trigger it.

The second-generation AirPods Pro achieve up to six hours of listening time with active noise cancellation turned on, an hour and a half longer than the original AirPods Pro. With the new MagSafe charging case, the new AirPods Pro with active noise cancellation can play music for up to 30 hours, six hours longer than before. In reality, I was still below that, because it’s good to know that we have “until xx hours”, but the reality is different. Here’s what it looks like: up to 6 hours with ANC and up to 7 hours without (up to 30 hours of playtime with charging case, up to 5.5 hours with 3D audio on and head tracking) . So while you get all the fun from the software, you also get less viewing time. And if you then think that you are going to open your eyes to the maximum, you will also notice a different battery consumption. Nevertheless, Apple remains within the specified range.

The new Apple AirPods Pro in a nutshell:

Richer sound compared to the predecessor, the transparency mode has also been significantly improved. Even with active noise cancellation, you can go even further. Volume control at the dock is an asset. AirPods are actually not just hardware, they become a listening pleasure in the Apple universe thanks to the symbiosis of hardware and software functions. Apple has done its homework. They improved all the basics (sound quality, battery life, transparency, ANC…) and they fixed the biggest issues people had with the predecessors (where’s? for the case, the physical volume controls , minor tricks and a lanyard option for easier portability). The “old” comfort functions such as automatic reading of messages and notifications are retained.

Conclusion: A definitely successful update, which also costs 20 euros more than the predecessor from 2019. Means for you: 299 euros purchase price will be due if you do not wait for an offer. I can’t make any decisions for you, but if I could get the regular Pro for 200 Euros on sale, I’d probably pick them.

Ultimately, you should know that you pay 300 euros for equipment whose battery cannot be replaced. Otherwise, a small bill will always help you. Assuming “only” two years of use, you’re paying around 41 cents for your AirPods with daily use – and with that you get what I think is the best all-rounder with value-added features in the Apple universe . If you don’t care about form factor and functions anyway, then of course you have an extremely wide choice in this price segment.

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