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The Galaxy Buds 2 are the fourth set of earbuds Samsung has released in the last 2 years. The Buds+ are still great, but they hit gold with the Galaxy Buds Pro, so where do the Buds 2 fit in?
Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Specs
- Battery Life (ANC off): 7.5 hrs (29 hrs with charging case)
- Battery Life (ANC on): 5 hrs (20 hrs with charging case)
- Dust/Water Resistance: IPX2
- Fast Charging: 5 min for 1 hour of listening
- Charge Type: USB-C & Qi-certified wireless charging
- Driver Size: ??? (2-way square dynamic drivers)
- Bluetooth Version: 5.2
- Noise Cancellation: Yes (Active Noise Cancellation)
- Accessory Kit: 3 sets of ear tips & USB-C charging cable
- Colors: Graphite, Lavender, White, and Olive
- 2-way Dynamic speakers produce an impressive audio range
- Deep and responsive bass
- Active noise cancelling
- Voice-activated ambient mode
- Comfortable fit
- Very lightweight
- Nice looking colors and finish
- Compact carrying case with wireless charging
- Decent battery life
- Quick charging earbuds (5 min for 1 hour of listening)
- Custom on-ear touch controls
- Horrible water and dust resistance (IPX7)
- Only average battery life in ANC mode
- Not compatible with Samsung Galaxy Buds app on iOS
- No ear wings an extra secure fit
- No 360° Audio mode
- No Voice Detection Ambient mode
Still No iOS App Support
I’m not sure if it’s on Apple’s side or Samsung’s, but the Buds 2 are exactly like the Buds Pro when it comes to compatibility. You can connect them to iOS devices, but you still don’t have access to all the in-app luxury features.
It’s a real head-scratcher since Samsung is possibly eliminating a huge chunk of potential customers. Especially since the Galaxy Buds+ and Buds Live work with the Samsung Wearable iOS app.
There’s still a workaround, though. Using any Samsung or Windows device, you can make adjustments in the app, and they’ll carry over to your iPhone. Customize the touch controls, Ambient mode level, EQ, and more.
On the other hand, if you’re an iPhone user, you’re probably better off with the AirPods Pro or Beats Studio Buds. They’re about the same price, but you’ll have access to all of the luxury features. All without the hassle of switching devices whenever you want to adjust some settings.
A Little Less Luxury
If you’re a Galaxy Buds Pro owner, and thinking about “upgrading” to the Buds 2, then you might be disappointed. With a few changes to the hardware and software, the Buds 2 are essentially the Buds Pro Lite.
For Android users, the main differences are the weight and waterproof rating. Weighing in at about 21% lighter than the Buds Pro, they’re a little more comfortable for all-day usage, but workouts are a no-no.
Some people might be able to get away with it, but the IPX2 water resistance rating is cutting it close. Especially if you sweat a lot like me.
For Samsung users, there are two more big differences. First, they don’t have the 360° Audio mode that Samsung introduced on the Buds Pro. To me, it’s not a deal-breaker, but the other missing feature can be.
The Voice Detection feature is a nice luxury that I’ve grown to love, so seeing them exclude it in this newer model is disappointing. On the other hand, you’re getting a nice discount if you can do without it.
Back To 'Square' One
With the Galaxy Buds 2, Samsung went back to the square dynamic drivers they’ve used on the Galaxy Buds and Buds+. The traditional round drivers they used in the Buds Pro is one of the main reasons that their sound quality is the best in the series.
On the other hand, the square 2-way dynamic drivers in the Buds 2, still produce great sound. Plus, the AKG tuning does a great job of getting everything they can out of the drivers.
The main benefits of the square driver style are better power efficiency, lighter weight, and a more compact design.
If you look at the Galaxy Buds 2 as the “Buds Pro Lite,” they’re actually a better value at the current price. Especially if you can live without 360° Audio, Voice Detection, and a higher water resistance rating than IPX2.
Just like the previous models, the charging case is compact, and they’re available in some cool color options. In the end, the Galaxy Buds 2 are a solid set of headphones that have great audio quality and some nice luxury features.