Manufacturer 1More has a new set of wireless earbuds that further reduce the cost of active noise cancellation (ANC). The $70 PistonBuds Pro, which come in white and black color options, are available right now on Amazon.com.
Like the original $50 PistonBuds, the PistonBuds Pro are very small. They’re not quite as small as the recently released 1More ComfoBuds Mini, which are the smallest ANC earbuds you can buy, but the PistonBuds Pro are almost identical in size to the tiny $150 Beats Studio Buds. The PistonBuds Pro have moved away from the stem-based design of the PistonBuds, which should help those with larger ears get a secure fit, as the PistonBuds’ stems tended to stop the earbuds from being more deeply inserted.
Their ANC mode can be switched from its normal setting (good for handling constant indoor sounds like a noisy fan or the roar of a jet engine) to a wind noise resistance setting, which 1More claims can cancel out the microphone noise caused by light to moderate wind. You can also quickly switch to a transparency mode that will let outside sounds in, making it easier to have conversations or hear important announcements. Neither of these features are offered by the less expensive PistonBuds.
The earbuds maker claims battery life for the PistonBuds Pro is 7.5 hours per charge, with a 30-hour total play time when you include their charging case’s capacity. That’s when ANC is turned off. Turn it on, and these numbers drop to five and 20 hours respectively. That’s comparable to other budget ANC wireless earbuds. A quick-charge option will give you an extra hour of listening time with just five minutes of charging.
The PistonBuds Pro are rated IPX5 for water resistance, which should be plenty of protection for your workouts, and will even let you clean the buds under running water — just don’t fully immerse them. In terms of tuning, 1More has once again partnered with Sonarworks. The Latvian audio company has created 12 equalizer settings for the PistonBuds Pro, giving people the ability to choose deeper bass, or a variety of other frequency balances. There is no manual EQ option.
The included low-latency gaming mode is claimed to offer “virtually zero audio to video lag,” but it’s not clear how the company has achieved this given that the PistonBuds Pro only support SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs, neither of which are especially lag-free.
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