During its annual developer conference, Google I/O, Google announced a new pair of true wireless earbuds, and Pixel Buds Prowhich is going to be Available for pre-order starting July 21 In stores on July 28. The new Buds Pro offer more features than last year’s Pixel Buds A-Series, however, at $199, they’re also twice the price. So are they worth the extra cost or should you stick with the $99 entry-level Pixel Buds A-Series?
To help you answer this question, we’ve compared the features and specifications of both models so you can find the one that works for you. Note that While we reviewed Pixel Buds A-SeriesWe haven’t tested the Pixel Buds Pro yet. Hopefully we can get some hands-on time with the earbuds before they launch this summer.
sound and sound
Regardless of the price, the fact that the Pixel Buds Pro offer active noise cancellation while the Pixel Buds A-Series isn’t the most significant difference between the two sets of earbuds. As a result, you can reduce background noise with Buds Pro – a feature that can help improve focus while working from home or let you eliminate ambient noise while on the go. That might be a welcome change for some, given that we’ve found the Pixel Buds A-Series to don’t offer much in the way of passive noise isolation.
Pixel Buds Pro also features an optional transparency mode when you want to hear what’s going on around you or chat with someone, a feature the Pixel Buds A-Series lacks. Additionally, Google says the Pixel Buds Pro will support spatial audio tracking later this year. An upcoming update will make listening to specific content more immersive, as the feature re-creates an experience similar to a surround sound setup without the need for multiple speakers. There are also some audio features that both earbuds have in common, such as Volume EQ, which automatically adjusts the volume based on your environment.
On paper — and according to Google — the Pixel Buds Pro should work just fine on calls. Google says your voice should be clear no matter where you are, thanks to noise suppression for background distractions like traffic and features like wind-blocking mesh covers. Pixel Buds Pro also come with three microphones in each earbud. The Pixel Buds A-Series only offer dual microphones in each, however, we found that they still worked well on calls even while in noisy environments.
Multipoint Bluetooth connectivity is also a feature only Pixel Buds Pro offers. This means the earbuds can automatically switch between the last two connected devices, including laptops, TVs, tablets, Android and iOS phones. However, no matter what you buy, they both share the Fast Pair feature, so you can easily pair your Bluetooth devices with supported Android products. For the unfamiliar, Fast Pair lets the speakers operate close to the device and pair them simply by tapping on a notification that pops up. While both earbuds also work with iOS, they are best used with Android devices, which can take advantage of their many features. This is partly because there is no Pixel Buds app for iOS that allows Apple users to adjust settings like EQ, regardless of which pair you buy.
Battery life is another area where the Pixel Buds Pro beat Google’s Pixel Buds A-Series — on paper at least. Google claims that the Pixel Buds Pro charges wirelessly via the included charging case and provides up to 11 hours of continuous listening with active noise cancellation disabled or 31 hours with the charging case. However, when ANC is enabled, you will still be able to get seven hours. In contrast, the Pixel Buds A-Series’ built-in case lacks the ability to charge wirelessly, and instead relies on USB-C. The latter earbuds also provide up to five hours of listening time and up to 24 hours only with the case.
Design and fit
No matter which type you buy, you’ll have a choice of three sizes of ear tips – small, medium and large – which come in the box for the best fit. However, on paper, it appears that the Pixel Buds Pro offer some additional features to improve comfort. Google says it has added new sensors to measure and relieve pressure in your ear canal to increase comfort, a claim we haven’t tested yet. The buds are also located deeper in your ear canal than the Pixel Buds A-Series headphones.
In terms of weight and size, the Pixel Buds Pro are slightly heavier and weigh 6.2 grams compared to the Pixel Buds A-Series, which weigh 5.02 grams. The new earbuds are also slightly larger (22.33 x 22.03 x 23.72 mm) compared to the Pixel Buds A-Series (20.7 x 29.3 x 17.5 mm).
If color is important to you, Pixel Buds Pro offer more variety, including black, blue, green, and red colors. In contrast, the Pixel Buds A-Series are only available in white or green. While they look similar, the Pixel Buds Pro seem to offer more mic inputs around the exterior as well. However, neither offer forward/backward swipe gestures to control the volume, meaning you have to tap to do so, something we weren’t impressed with during our A-Series review.
In terms of durability, both the Pixel Buds Pro and Pixel Buds A-Series offer IPX4 water and sweat resistance, which comes in handy if you exercise a lot. Both also allow for hands-free “Hey Google” voice commands, so you can get directions, set reminders, or access music and messages without touching the phone via the Google Assistant.
Google Pixel Buds Pro vs. Google Pixel Buds A-Series
Of course, this comparison is just an overview of some of the key differences between two pairs of true wireless earbuds. If you’re interested in the initial specs and want to dig deeper, you can explore some of the finer details in the table below.
Google Pixel Buds lineup
|Customize||Pixel Buds Pro||Pixel Buds A-Series|
|Customize||Pixel Buds Pro||Pixel Buds A-Series|
|Colors||Black, blue, green or red||white, green|
|Active Noise Cancellation||yes||no|
|Spatial audio with head tracking||Later in 2022||no|
|battery||Up to 11 hours of listening time, up to 7 hours with active noise canceling on, 31 hours with the case without ANC||Up to 5 hours of listening time or up to 2.5 hours of talk time with the earbuds alone. Up to 24 hours of listening time with the charging case, or up to 12 hours of talk time|
|Google Assistant Support||yes||yes|
|Connection||Bluetooth 5.0||Bluetooth 5.0|
|Water Resistant Certification (Earbuds)||IPX4 water resistance||IPX4 water resistance|
|Water Resistant Certificate (charging case)||IPX2 water resistance||Nobody|
|microphones||Three microphones in each earphone||Dual microphones in each earphone|
|Amplifiers||Custom designed 11mm dynamic tweeter||12mm dynamic driver with passive noise reduction|
|Earphone size||22.33 x 22.03 x 23.72 mm||20.7 x 29.3 x 17.5 mm|
|Case size||25 x 50 x 63.2 mm||63 x 47 x 25 mm|
|earphone weight||6.2 grams||5.06 grams|
|chassis weight||62.4g with earbuds||
52.9g with earphones
|Charging cord included||Yes, USB-C||Yes, from USB-C to USB-A|
|Ear tips in 3 sizes included in the box||yes||yes|
|custom slide||Six-core dedicated audio chip||to be announced later on|
|Availability||July 28||in the store|
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