Struggling to decide what to get dad for Father’s Day? If he loves listening to music everywhere but hates wires, then true wireless earbuds would be the ideal gift for him. Right now, Amazon and Best Buy have the Apple AirPods, AirPods Pro, and Samsung Galaxy Buds on sale for as cheap as $110. These are three of the best true wireless earbuds that money can buy, each boasting a robust build, easy operation, and good sound, not to mention zero risk of getting whacked on the face by cords. Read on to find out which pair suits your pop best and make sure to order today so it will arrive before the big day.
Samsung Galaxy Buds — $110, was $130
The Apple AirPods might be the most popular option, but the Samsung Galaxy Buds are the best true wireless earbuds that you can buy right now for Android. They offer a super comfortable and secure fit, six hours of playtime (an hour longer than the AirPods), and they’re sweatproof. Right now, you can buy them at Best Buy for a cool $20 off. Get the Galaxy Buds with a wireless charging case for just $110 instead of $130.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds are triangular and ergonomically shaped to fit the ears snugly. They attach to three sets of silicone eartips and sport fins, and although they seal the ears shut and provide a physical layer of noise reduction, they’re among the most comfortable truly wireless earbuds we’ve worn in a long time.
The Galaxy Buds promise a solid six hours per charge. That’s an hour longer than the more expensive AirPods. Unfortunately, while the playback time is impressive, the amount of juice the wireless charging case can hold is not. The Galaxy Buds offer just seven hours of additional battery life, but not to worry. These
Samsung’s buds come with a lot of neat features. Controls can be accessed via tapping and touching the buds to switch songs or adjust the volume. The controls can be customized using the Samsung Wear app, which also offers great customization for your listening preferences. Activating ambient sound mode allows the Galaxy Buds’ built-in microphones to adjust the level of noise that goes in, letting you hear traffic noises, flight announcements, or your coworkers calling out to you. And if you lose your Galaxy Buds, don’t fret. Just activate “Find my earbuds” on the app and you will no longer have to dig through couch cushions, bags, or jeans pockets whenever they go missing.
Samsung collaborated with AKG to ensure the Galaxy Buds deliver the type of customizable sound experience that other
The Samsung Galaxy Buds pose a serious threat to the AirPods’ popularity with their superb design, solid sound, and ease of use. Get them for just $110 instead of $130 at Best Buy today.
Apple AirPods (2nd Gen) — from $139
What’s the difference between the first and second generation of AirPods besides the wireless charging case upgrade? Not much, to be honest. They look exactly the same, although there are some notable improvements underneath the hood, including the H1 chipset, longer talk time, and support for voice-activated Siri. They also remain ridiculously easy to operate and set up for iOS devices, although the lack of waterproofing or workout features is baffling considering the price point (you can take the Galaxy Buds to the gym, and they cost less). Right now, you can get the AirPods 2 with the standard wired charging case for $139 (down from $159) at Amazon and $169 (down from $199) for the model with a wireless charging case.
The latest AirPods rock the same golf-tee shape of their predecessors. A lot of people seem to like this design (considering how immensely popular they are), although if you ask us they look like the old EarPods with the wires cut off. Compared to its wired counterpart, the wireless charging case now has its LED lights on the front, which allows you to see charging status when the case is placed atop a Qi charging pad. Apple claims that the case can carry the same amount of reserve charging it did three years ago, offering up to 24 hours, which still beats most competitors.
The onboard controls are the same as before – for better or worse. Each AirPod works autonomously, which means they don’t run out of juice at the same time. They auto-pause audio immediately when you take one out — but only with Apple devices. As usual, they don’t have volume and song-skipping default controls, offering only play and skip forward with a double-tap. You can assign play/pause, next track, and previous track controls in your iPhone’s Bluetooth settings on either earbud if you want to, though. To change the volume, you can simply ask Siri to turn it up or down for you. If you have an
Speaking of Siri, voice-activated control wasn’t possible with the old AirPods. You can thank Apple’s new H1 chip for adding it, alongside lower gaming lag, and its “50% faster” connection for phone calls — although we didn’t really notice any difference compared to other
When it comes to sound quality, the AirPods fall under the “Not bad” category. It reminded us a lot of the wired EarPods. It’s far from terrible, and we do appreciate the softness and warmth it lends to certain songs, but that’s not exactly what you’re looking for when you’re listening to hip-hop, rap, and other beat-driven genres. It’s a very safe sound signature, designed not to offend anyone.
You get a modest update with the AirPods. If you’re an iPhone user, these are the best
AirPods with Charging Case — $139, was $159:
AirPods with Wireless Charging Case — $169, was $199:
AirPods Pro — $235, was $249
It’s probably pretty obvious that we weren’t all that impressed with the standard AirPods. There are just several other
Love it or hate it, the AirPods’ golf-tee design is iconic, so Apple didn’t stray too far away from it when designing the AirPods Pro. They just now sport a shorter stem, which brings us to this major concern: Battery life. While the AirPods Pro offer the same battery performance as the standard AirPods (roughly 4.5 to 5 hours of listening time and/or 3.5 hours of call time per charge), we fear that their smaller batteries might not last in the long run. Unlike the Airpods, the AirPods Pro come with three sets of silicone eartips that snap on with a satisfying click instead of sliding onto a little nubbin as so many other in-ear buds require. This change not only offers a more secure and comfortable fit but also contributes to a better bass response.
The AirPods Pro inherit the original AirPods’ controls which means they’re ridiculously easy to operate and, as expected, Siri is always listening and ready to obey your every command. As with most true wireless buds with active noise-canceling, you have the option to either shut noise out or let it all in. Apple calls the latter feature “Transparency Mode” and activating this allows sounds from the outside world to arrive in a very natural way, almost as if you’ve taken the buds themselves out. Noise-canceling is decidedly top-notch and almost on par with what over-ear ANC headphones offer. Last but certainly not least, the AirPods Pro deliver a pretty impressive sonic performance. Their sound signature is terrific, rich in subtle details with some zesty treble, rounded-up by a full-bodied bass.
We tip our hats to the Apple AirPods Pro. These are absolutely the best
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