Apple AirPods Pro Announced

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by pure5152, Oct 28, 2019.

  1. KowalskiFUT

    KowalskiFUT Rando

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    Looking to buy wireless IEMs to use with an iPhone. Would be very interesting to hear how these compare to Massdrop x Nuforce Move, or Senn Momentum True Wireless.

    I do not expect spectacular sound quality, but they should be decent/listenable. All three have battery life that is enough for me. I would prefer acceptable call quality, but most important feature (after sound quality) is (re)pairing with iPhone. It is obvious that Airpods Pro are leading in that regard, but I am not sure how much are the other candidates worse in that regard.
     
  2. jexby

    jexby Posole Prince

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    after a day, still will only use AirPods Pro for telecoms at work, and mobile phone calling.
    do like the noise cancelling which allows for lower volume setting.

    anyone want to trade your (never used) size Large tips, for my (never touched) size Small ?
     
  3. netforce

    netforce MOT: Headphones.com

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    Some thoughts from an Android guy trying out the Airpods Pro.

    Some pros:
    • ANC is fairly effective, not as good as the Sony WF but still works well
    • Transparency Mode is without the doubt on the Airpods Pro, better than the Senn MTW and Sony WF. Sounded quite natural vs the other options which in their comparable modes. The latter sounded like you were hearing your surroundings through a narrow tube
    • SQ is better than I expected. I would say flat/neutral FR with some upper mids/treble roll off.
    • Good battery life, haven't needed a charge again since after my first charge up.
    • Connects quite fast, the 7 seconds the WF needs is a little annoying compared to how quick the Airpod Pros connect.
    • Touch controls are super quick and responsive. Works well and easier than the Sony and Senn.

    Some nitpicks:
    • Not a ton of gain compared to the Sennheiser MTW or Sony WF
    • Was driving with the Airpod Pro and ANC, it was kinda giving me a headache/felt like a constant pressure in my eardrums.
    • Comfort is pretty mixed for me, my right side sits fine but my left is quite uncomfortable. My left ear has a slightly protruding anti tragus and gets sore after 30-40 minutes.
    • Included cable was just a USB-C to lightning, only had my laptop and desktop mobo with a female Type-C to use to charge it up with.

    Some cons:
    • The Airpod Pro only using their own tips kinda sucks. The Senn MTW I slapped on the Final E Series tips for better comfort/SQ, The Sony WF I am looking at putting on some different tips also. No options at all with the proprietary tips.
    • Its pretty lacking for android users, which might be a little bit obvious. No customization, no telling you how the seal is. It plays whatever you send it but not much option wise to do on an android after that.

    Some thoughts after using them for a couple of days. I was curious about them but it doesn't work too well for me and my Android phone and the discomfort I am in my left ear is a bit of a nonstarter. Going to spend a few more days with the Airpod Pro but thinking I am going to return them back to the Apple store.
     
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  4. aamefford

    aamefford Nothing like chamberpot coffee

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    Hmmmmm.... I’m locked into Apple. Sounds like I keep my gen. 1 air buds, and my Sony wh1000xm over ears for travel and convenience and save $250. Until the batteries go tits up on my Airbuds anyway.
     
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  5. pure5152

    pure5152 Friend

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    Honestly yeah, if you're satisfied with your current gen1 airpods, that's probably the way to go.

    Random aside/rant, but it sucks that Apple keeps making airpods irreparable and thus essentially throw-away consumables though.

    Apparently they didn't necessarily have to do it this way, too. Quoting macrumors:

    No doubt that AirPods Pro are a great product and technological achievement, but making them consumables just sucks. At least apple does allow mail-in recycling for AirPods, but still...

    /endrant
     
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  6. aamefford

    aamefford Nothing like chamberpot coffee

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    Satisfied is relative with gen 1’s. Convenience gets a 10/10. Sound gets 6.5/10 for music - good enough when I’m using them. Sound for phone calls and such gets a 10/10. Durability gets a surprising 10/10. I’ve washed them along with the jeans who’s pocket they were in - not once, not twice, but 3 times... bag of dry rice for a few days, and they still work. Ok, back to subject. Enough on the gen 1’s.
     
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  7. Ksaurav402

    Ksaurav402 Friend

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    How is the call quality in noisy environment or when taking calls in windy condition? Does it cancel background noise?
     
  8. pure5152

    pure5152 Friend

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    Yeah it cancels noisy environments well. Tried calling at a noisy restaurant with an outside band and it blocked the outside noise pretty well; I've also tried it in a bus and on the subway and it did a pretty good job canceling a lot of the loud rumble.

    In general, my experience is the noise cancellation does an excellent job cancelling low-mid freq noise, and just an okay job canceling higher frequencies. When on a bus, for example, the rumble of the engine is almost entirely gone, but you can still hear a little of the whir of the air conditioning overhead.

    Also yeah, I'm hoping the durability of these is on par or better than the airpods. I've dropped the gen 1 airpods multiple times and have had no issues. Hopefully should be more durable with the new IP4X water/dust resistance rating.
     
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  9. iFi audio

    iFi audio MOT iFi Audio

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    It does, but we shouldn't be that surprised that Apple pushed its own standard, right? Good thing that extra tips are affordable.
     
  10. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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  11. limesoft

    limesoft Facebook Friend

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    This is my take on the sound of these.. I'll skip the ergonomics/other stuff - all of that is excellent and there are tonne of reviews online talking about that (and not enough about the sound).

    I can vouch for the Airpods Pro sq - they are surprisingly coherent and probably the best sounding wireless IEMs I've heard. They won't replace my Andromedas for sound quality only ofcourse, but they beat the Sony WF1000X M3 with a more natural/neutral signature; the Sonys have much higher distortion in the mids which I feel, also more DSP'd for lack of a better word. I admire the neutral and easy going frequency response of the APP, akin to HD650 (with some slight differences of course in favour of the Senns) - nice achievement from Apple, they didn't follow the trend of sparkly V shaped "exciting" sound signature but did their own thing with a more reference balance - you can see some love went into tuning these; probably not just some marketing "guru" pushing moar bass and treble is what people need.

    * Treble is not super resolving but I'm spoiled with Andros.
    * The bass reaches low -can get wooly, but no biggie. It's nice and satisfying, I don't find it lean.
    * Sometimes a tiny peak on super high treble (like 16khz) - but this is me being nitpicky. I'm very sensitive to treble.
    * Mids are actually really good on these - a little bump, very resolving and clean and no harshness.
    * Not harsh sounding at all, it's has a gentle/sweet touch to it - mids and treble won't bite your head off, sibilance is hardly present if ever. I like this slight softness to it.
    * Can't hear any major frequency peaks or dips worth talking about! My favourite thing about these..
    * Generally clean and low distortion - must be quite a good driver. Not much grain, compression, or other nasties I can detect.
    * I'd say quite comfortable mid-fi tier iem - bests many wired IEMs that have dodgy tuning.

    I can see why some reviewers say they sound boring and not as good as the Sonys - they're not used to a more reference/gentle tuning so on first listen the Pro's don't arouse them as much. HD650s sounded boring to me when I first tried them but are now my favourite headphone. Boring is good.
     
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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2019
  12. iFi audio

    iFi audio MOT iFi Audio

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    Very cool, thanks.
     
  13. burnspbesq

    burnspbesq Friend

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    I’ve been living happily with the PowerBeats Pro since July, and right now I’m in my first listening session with the new Noble Falcon. Might have to give Apple a shot.
     
  14. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex SBAF's Imelda Marcos

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    How are the nobles? They weren't even on my radar but at $156 they seem reasonably priced.
     
  15. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    Or even worse, doing the Ety deep insertion thing and meeting a friend, "hold on, just a minute". With my ER2XR it's somewhat worth it though.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2019
  16. burnspbesq

    burnspbesq Friend

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    It’s very early, but initially both sound and ergonomics seem pretty good. Unlike Beats, there are no earhooks to get tangled up with glasses. They’re pretty light. Pairing with iPad was quick but a little wierd (left ear pairs first, then right).

    First albums listened to were Aaron Diehl’s “Space, Time, Continuum” and “Jenny Scheinman and Allison Miller’s Parlour Game.” Instrumental timbres, including piano, were good. Think I may have heard a hint of image instability on a couple of tracks, but not distracting.

    it might be interesting to put what appear to be the four current contenders (Apple, Beats, Senn, Noble) in a box and send them on tour. Have read some good things about the Focals, which are even less $, but they aren’t “true wireless.”

    Added: Noble is doing 20 percent off for Black Friday, which takes them down to around $125.
     
  17. StageOne

    StageOne Friend

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    Over all solid sound quality. Comparable to my Drop RE-00s. Good mids and overall balanced with a slight bump on the mids. Treble is tolerable with no noticeable spikes. I was not looking for these to have great fidelity but more noise canceling ability and decent sound. The solid sealing makes it easier to have a conference call on noisier environments. And the microphone seems to have at least as good pickup as the 1/2 gen AirPods.

    Noise canceling:
    In my home-office environment they eliminate most of the outside noises. I tried tapping on the desk and for the most part, you can’t really hear any of the thumps. Cars passing outside just go by without a hint of noise. You can still hear talking but it’s muffled and allows you to focus on the task at hand.

    On plane:
    I’ve listened to the Bose QC-25 and the Sony WH1000MX3s and I was hoping for a bit more noise cancellation. I started listening as we were sitting at the gate and it made the chaos of boarding much easier but I noticed a fairly high pitched whine as the engines accelerated for take off. The upper registers leaked a bit more than I was expecting. Once the power was throttled down for cruising it was much better though there was still a noticeable whine.

    Switching to the Sony’s, they seemed to do a little better job of dealing with the higher frequencies but I did notice some lower ones were more prominent over the AirPods. There seems to be a trade off but I’d give the nod to the Sony’s for the total reduction in decibels.

    Compared to regular ear buds: The AirPods Pro were much better on the plane and greatly reduced fatigue. I’d have a hard time going back to non-NC earbuds after traveling with these.

    Overall I’m pretty happy and while wished for more NC like the Sony, since I fly only a few times a year, I’ll take the portability of the AirPods over the bulk of the Sony’s. If I traveled more often I’d lean towards the greater NC abilities of the WH1000MX3s.

    Side Note, getting a good seal is paramount. I needed to re-adjust the AirPods a couple times during the flight as they “loosened” up. I don’t have the latest iOS release to test the sealing but I just stuck with the medium tips and felt they were decent. Once I get back home, I’ll try out the others and see if they do a a better job of sealing. Also, with the current tips, I noticed eating can cause the seal to break and reseal. Minor annoyance but something that might bug others.
     
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  18. limesoft

    limesoft Facebook Friend

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    Seems the Airpods Pro develop issues after being used for some time - the microphone openings have a very fine mesh on them which likely gets clogged up with dirt as they are used over time, this in turn messes with the auto sound adjustments - the microphones can't determine if the earphone is properly sealed, and the sound balance suffers (there is some kind of dsp adjustment). I got mine replaced at Apple store - the sealing test never worked no matter which tips, the new ones immediately had better/fuller sound quality, but i suspect this problem will happen again...

    Also, it's more difficult to get a good seal as their tips are not close fitting, so i need to fiddle with them often... for these reasons - a lightly eq'd Sony wf1000X3 (to remove a localised treble peak which made them sound a bit tiring/rough which I initially though was distortion - smooth/neutral otherwise) are superior: they seal much better thus offering more consistent sound quality, and don't have the durability issues.

    Sony wins again - sorry Apple. If Pros didn't have this long term consistency issue and offered better sealing I would still pick them over the Sonys
     
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    Last edited: Sep 14, 2020
  19. ksat90

    ksat90 Acquaintance

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    There also seems to be a problem with the early units - I bought mine in Feb 2020, and after two months the left unit started making crackly noises while walking.

    Further firmware updates seemed to fix it but also reduce ANC strength. Recently I felt like it wasn't doing ANC well anymore, and the sound quality in NC mode is much worse than in Off. Some speculate [1] that the early strong ANC probably messed up the driver's lifespan.

    I saw that Apple had initiated a service program [2] for affected units, and I asked for mine to be replaced. They sent in a new one and asked me to send mine back in the same packaging, so it was pretty convenient. The new ones had way better distortion characteristics (best way I can describe it) in the bass to lower mids, and bass NC was also significantly better (obvious while commuting).

    So just a heads up, maybe test a new pair and see if there are significant differences if you're not super happy with the APP.

    [1] https://medium.com/@jcrrn/we-need-to-talk-about-airpods-pro-4bbd2533e031
    [2] https://support.apple.com/airpods-pro-service-program-sound-issues
     
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  20. limesoft

    limesoft Facebook Friend

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    Give it few weeks/months and the news one will start playing up again.. their anc/measurement microphones get clogged up and the sound suffers, its a design problem
     
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