If you're in the market for a pair of wireless earbuds, it's fair to say there is a lot of competition in the market. Almost every brand involved in the tech space has something to offer, as well as a host of more specialist brands.
It can be quite a minefield. What's more, there are great swathes of people who really aren't interested in the finer details. They just want a pair of earbuds which sound good, don't die too quickly and won't break the bank either.
If all of that comes from a brand they know and trust, too, even better. Well, enter the Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 +. Are they any good? Well, let's find out.
Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + review: Price and Release Date
The Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + were released on the 8th of November 2023. They come in three colours: So Pink, So Purple and So Grey.
In the UK, the earbuds retail for £79.99. That's pretty inexpensive, and should make them a really compelling offer for most people.
Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + review: Features
So, what can we expect from these earbuds? Arguably the headline feature is the battery life. The Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + are rated for 7 hours of ANC listening time for just the buds, with a whopping 35 hours of ANC-enabled buds and case power.
That's seriously impressive. It should mean that users are able to get through more than a few days of usage without having to reach for the charger.
Other highlights include a Qualcomm S3 Sound platform powering the device, with Qualcomm aptX high resolution audio on offer. Qualcomm's cVc noise cancelling technology is also present and correct, rounding out a fairly compelling package.
The case is made from 60% recycled plastic, too. While it doesn't make too much of a difference in use, it's a neat little add on.
One thing which is missing, though, is an app. There is nothing to pair it with on your phone, which does mean you'll miss out on things like EQ control.
Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + review: Performance
In use, all of the claims about battery life prove themselves time and time again. In fact, when I first started testing them, I forgot all about charging. They felt like they housed a perpetual battery for around a week and a half of use.
Sound quality is fine. It's nothing to write home about – certainly not the best you'll find – but it's not bad. It's a little woolly in the low end, which is the main gripe I have.
Noise cancellation is – again – fine. You won't write sonnets about it, but it does a half decent job. Total silence? No, but it offers enough reduction to take the world around you down a smidge.
Credit where it's due, the transparency mode is really quite good. You'll find yourself using that quite a lot, I'd imagine, as the blend of audio and external sound makes these earbuds quite useful.
I really do miss the lack of an app, though. There were so many points where I'd like to have tweaked the EQ or had a more control over the noise cancellation which simply wasn't there.
Still, that might be a good thing. If you're looking for a really simple pair of earbuds, that may well be a positive for you.
Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + review: Verdict
It's a strange review to write, this one. These certainly aren't bad earbuds, but they also don't feel as fully featured as others on the market. For a small amount more, you can get into some really brilliant earbuds which perform much better.
For me, the crushing blow is the sound quality. It's fine but it really is nothing more than that. It's just begging for some EQ control, which is when the lack of an app is most noticeable.
It's not all doom and gloom, though. If you need something with a really top battery life, or want a pair of earbuds which have a range of snazzy colour options on offer, these are a worthy pick.
Nokia Clarity Earbuds 2 + review: Alternatives
You don't need to go too much more expensive to get your hands on some really top notch earbuds. For starters, there's the OnePlus Buds 3. Those are only £20 more expensive, but offer a much more compelling package. The sound quality is fantastic and the noise cancelling properties are great.
If you really must have a big brand name on the case, check out the Sony WF-C700N. Those offer a great all round package, with one of the best apps you'll find anywhere on the market.
If your budget will stretch a little more, it's worth going for the Nothing Ear (2). Those are some of the best affordable options I've ever used, punching way above their weight and offering fantastic sound quality.